Annoyed!

I find it very annoying that WordPress tells me that I have to login (to WordPress), to post a comment on ANOTHER site, while using ANOTHER email address and username, that has nothing whatsoever to do with WordPress! I find this to be far too controlling of my rights and have had to forget about posting on there due to this, while any other accounts on there (facebook, twitter etc), also brings up the same demand to login to WordPress! How do they even know it’s me????? I shall understand if my account is deleted due to this rant. Whatever happened to ‘free speech’?

I missed the post!

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I know. I didn’t post anything last week. I can only apologise to my regular readers and hope you can forgive me. But that’s the way I roll? Rumble? Move? Well, whatever you call it. I do try to post every week, but when I don’t, please don’t blame me. It’s only because I couldn’t find anything to blog about! I was going to go on about how, due to the British Guy Fawkes/fireworks night being this Thursday, that Halloween didn’t happen to be quite so big this year. This is because “Families” like to have their fireworks on a Saturday night (see my picture above), when most families seem to be at home. So the little ‘trick-or-treaters’ can’t get out and about so easily, as their parents want to set off lots of loud, bangy things and pretty, flashy things and the like. So anyone who’s gone to all the trouble of decorating the house up and getting loads of sweets in, just for the occasion, are left with loads of those very same sweets! We have a male 22 year old rubbish bin, who will no doubt, help us to dispose of it all. But if I had known that there would be loads of fireworks going off instead, I wouldn’t have wasted all that money on sweets! But like I say, I was going to go on about that, but I won’t, as I’m sure you wouldn’t be interested. As Thursday is actually the Fifth of November, or Bonfire Night as they also call it, we will be having more fireworks going off then and then even MORE fireworks on yet another Saturday night! So pets beware. But did you notice how I’ve gotten the hang of using Italics now? I’m slowly getting the hang of this WordPress thing. you might even say that I’m getting really bold at using it!

Oh Guy Fawkes, where are you, now that we NEED you? (just kidding). Hopefully, if the subject matter allows, I’ll see you next week!

New Blog Feature: Favourite blog posts of the week….

A Girl In Europe


Heellllooo,

Is it obvious that it took me a large chunk of the afternoon making that sign? (Avoiding revision). Nope. Good.

So I’ll give you a few categories (I think maybe because its the first one and I don’t want to get cocky I won’t give that many because a lot of people don’t know about it yet, maybe if it grows the amount of categories can grow too)

Now it’s pretty simple you paste a link to a blog post of your own or another of your favourite blogger’s posts(if its not your post then remember to tell me the name of the other persons blog and declare its not your own) and tell me which category you want to enter.

And tadahhh thats it, in a week (or less) I’ll tell you the winners!

Categories:

1) The happiest/positive

2) The one that made me wee myself with laughter.

View original post 60 more words

Enter title here

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I have recently discovered why I am not a better photographer than I am. This is partly due to the above photograph that I took last night. It is a picture of the remnants of sunset, as I sped along towards Norwich in Norfolk, UK and was taken through the car’s windscreen. I hasten to add that my partner was driving, so no need to worry about this photographer living dangerously! As you can see, in the picture, there are two of our local telephone lines atop a telegraph pole. The pole was built and erected sometime during the last century, probably pre-1960! This is the problem. Although Norfolk has loads of great pictures just lying around waiting for people to take them, I can’t seem to find any new ones and so usually end up with something like this. On a photo-site that I subscribe to, there are many of the worlds great sites, taken from many different angles & tweaked to perfection by their ‘takers’. As great as Norfolk is, we don’t have a Golden Gate Bridge or huge rocky outcrops, there are no ‘Uluru’s or Sydney Opera Houses. No Amalfi coastlines or great Hagia Sophia type temples. So all I can do is take pictures of the things we have locally. Some people are lucky to live near many great views or architecture. Norfolk is beautiful, I don’t deny that, but I have just travelled abroad recently and it will be quite a while until I can do it again. So Norfolk will just have to do for now. We have a pier at Cromer from where this photograph of mine comes: DSC00670 But once you’ve taken it as many times as I have, it becomes a bit ‘samey’. Maybe I’ve lived here too long and need a change? I see many people who enter photo competitions have the same pictures as each other. Obviously they can manage to travel to the worlds top photo sites. I am usually too busy for that though. We can all take pictures of the moon though can’t we? DSC00512 (2) Yes, that’ll do and there’s no need to travel. I recently took a few shots of it while in Mallorca, but couldn’t see any difference. So to be a ‘top’ photographer, you need ‘top’ money and the time to spend travelling around. I don’t have either of those and so will just have to make do with what I have here and the odd trip out to different places. Please excuse the title at the top. I haven’t forgotten to add one, just that somehow “Enter title here” fits perfectly, as I have no idea what to call my post this week. I also think that my camera hinders me a bit, as somehow a DSLR makes everything look better, so maybe I’ll go back and take all the same old pictures of the same old things, but make them look better, when I get my first one, hopefully soon. I’m currently trying to get into portraits too. So maybe this new direction will open up new photographic opportunities. I never take ‘selfies’ though, I can’t afford to break the camera I have just yet!

Okay. Now hold that pose, smile and say smelly old English mature cheddar CHEESE! See you next week.

Self-Scanning and Self-Service checkouts make my blood boil!

Alright. I’m not going to name the supermarket that made my blood go over 100°C the other day! But OOH! I could just £*$&% the whole lot of them, I could honestly! While trying to attain one of their self-scanning devices, I found that my loyalty card had stopped scanning, so I had to put in the incredibly long number (SEETHE)! Then I went round as usual and everything was going well until the end, well it WAS a Saturday afternoon and there was a lot of ‘trolley rage’ (for trolley read ‘cart’ dear American readers). So finally, I arrive at the self-scanning checkout. I hadn’t realised that, at the end of my shop, there was one ‘impulse buy’ item that I had flung in the trolley without thinking. The young lady, for want of a better description, decided that she didn’t like the look of me before I even begun checking out. She came over with a shifty-looking stare. “I couldn’t scan this one item” I said, hoping for a bit of help, as something I did try to scan, failed completely. “Okay”, she said, “I’m gonna scan some of your stuff anyway” and she did. You would have thought I was the greatest unscanning shoplifter in the history of the world, when she discovered the one thing I HADN’T scanned. “OKAY” her voice suddenly rose by 13.5% volume, “I’m gonna have to scan EVERYTHING now” she almost shouted at me. “You’ve failed to scan this”! A tall but fairly young man suddenly appeared out of nowhere, positioning himself between me and the exit of this checkout area. While she happily scanned everything in the trolley and everyone around carried on staring at me and shaking their heads “Shame on him, how COULD he do such a thing”? “I’ve NEVER made a mistake in my whole life”! their constant, disaproving looks seemed to be saying, I asked sheepishly “Could I have some bags please”? We’ve just begun to be charged a whole 5 pence for a plastic bag here in the UK, but I didn’t mind this. The assistant barked at the young man who was enjoying his new-found position of security guard, “Okay, get him some bags”! “HOW MANY D’YOU WANT”? She asked, “Er, I dunno about 4 I suppose”? “RIGHT GET HIM 4 BAGS”! ANOTHER sorry, another order emanated from her otherwise tautly sealed lips. Having scanned everything in my trolley, she failed, much to her dismay, to find even just one more thing that I hadn’t scanned. “Right” she said a little bit quieter, “That was the only thing you’ve missed, you can pay now”. I paid quickly, stuffed everything in the 20 pence worth of plastic carrier bags and hastily made my way to the exit. Both of them stared daggers at me, while I ran this visual, stereophonic gauntlet of disapproval. I got out of the store and drove home like my life depended on it. (Within the speed limit of course, I’m not a getaway driver too)! Occasionally checking the mirror to make sure none of their secret security men were following me home.

I gave up using self-service checkouts years ago as, since supermarkets won’t pay me for doing the job of a checkout assistant everytime I shop there and they won’t hire more staff to do the job like they should, I would rather help the people who do do it, to stay in a job. I know they would love for all their checkouts to be self-service, but no way say I! Now of course, I can’t use the self-scanning ones either. It will be quite a while before I can summon up the courage to return to that supermarket, as they probably have hours of CCTV film of me shopping for magazines, sushi, pants (briefs) and chocolate and will no doubt, have alerted all the staff to my presence. I imagine my next appearance there will bring out the sniffer dogs and shifty-looking store security people, who will, no doubt, all follow me around like hawks!

“Code 10! Security alert in mens pants”! Oh the shame. THE SHAME!

Do UFO’s need passports & immigration control?

Well it’s a funny one, I know. You must be sick of me writing things related to air travel by now. But just imagine it for a moment. A UFO (or UAP if you want to be all correct about it) would be funny, if they visited earth and had to go through immigration. “Hello Sir or Madam, what is the purpose of your visit to our country and how long do you plan on staying”? Why would they be here? Just visiting like E.T? Or maybe for abduction purposes. If they didn’t have a good reason, or no passport, would that make them an illegal alien? Could they be smuggling? Who knows? They might just be here for the ‘duty-frees’, as they probably can’t get our quality selection of perfumes, tobaccos or alcohol wherever they came from. Maybe they came for the sun, as all the ones on TV seem to have very pale and insipid looking skin. Do you think they have cabin crew on them there things? Please feel free to leave me your thoughts in the comments.

“Last call for Uranus at gate 18”. Gotta go that’s my flight. I’m gonna go through a WORMHOLE! See you next time!

Disabling Holiday travel

“Travel both broadens the mind and loosens the bowels”. So sayeth my partner. I think the second bit comes from the differing choice of foods that you find abroad. Some spicy and some not. But it’s the travel bit I want to address here. My partner Sue, is disabled. She is a paraplegic and uses a wheelchair, that she is confined to. Or to explain it better, she is paralysed from the chest down (from T4, for those of you in the know). This is roughly half-way down her chest. So she can use her arms and can lift and move herself a bit, but not much. So when we travel by air, while everyone else is heading on down the tunnel, from the airport straight into the plane, Sue usually has to go in a funny truck, that lifts up and down and somehow attaches to the other side of the plane from the tunnel. From there, she is lifted from her wheelchair into an ‘aisle-chair’, which is more like a sack-barrow with a seat on it. She is then strapped onto this thing, to move just a few yards from the plane door, to where she will be sitting. Usually this is either the front left or right aisle seat. This last time, on a ‘737’, due to differing safety laws, she had to sit in the fourth row instead of the first and in a window seat, instead of the usual aisle one. We took this ‘safety’ thing to mean the safety of all the able-bodied passengers. Needless to say, she was left in an uncomfortable and distressed state, due in part to the (obviously un-researched) problem of getting her into that position on the plane and also due to the cabin crew having no idea of a disabled persons needs at all! But travelling with a disabled person is something even I, as her partner, had no idea about until I tried it. You know when you see a ‘special offer’ in the travel agents? ‘Seven days in the Med, for only £3.50’! Well, Sue has never and could never go on one of those, because, as able-bodied people can just ‘flop anywhere’ in any room on any bed, again, she can’t. She needs a special hoist to lift her onto and off of the bed and also into a shower-chair (that’s a wheelchair, that can be used for showering in), which needs to be used in a wet-room. Which is basically a room like a whole shower cubicle, so that everything in it can get wet. She also can’t use a shoe-box sized room. This can be handy, in that you get a much bigger room to move around in, but we would prefer to be able to use a normal room, like everyone else! Staying on the subject of the room, one of the reasons she’s only been able to travel again recently is, that with her condition of being unable to just use ‘any room’, If her room was given away to anyone else, as rooms sometimes are, due to double-booking etc., the only option Sue has, is to go straight back home on the next available flight! No way to spend a holiday. Her most simple wish, to be able to walk on the beach with me, hand-in-hand, is one that can never be granted. Also we are misunderstood sometimes, as occasionally, people make the mistake of thinking that she gets ‘special’ treatment, by getting all these ‘added extras’. That couldn’t be further from the truth, as the only special help she gets, is just so that she can live as normal a life as possible. Even with all this help, that ‘normal’ doesn’t even begin to approach the normal of everyone else, as everything takes longer to do and sometimes needs three people just to help her achieve it! One case that comes to mind, is when we first moved into our present home. A lady had lived here before, who, although old, was perfectly mobile and had an ordinary bathroom and shower. When ringing to ask how much longer it would take to convert our bathroom for Sue’s use, the lady on the phone said “Well I hope you appreciate the amount of money we’re spending on you to make this happen”! Sue simply replied “I’m not asking for anything special though, just the right to have a wash, like everyone else”. The lady thought for a moment, then became a bit ‘nicer’ when she understood, everything happened a lot quicker after that. That’s the main problem we have, if people could understand disability and the needs of those with it, like making somewhere accessible for instance, then all our lives would be so much simpler. Back on the subject of travel though, think about how you get on and off a plane so easily. We wish we could do that, but this most recent trip of ours (a two-hour flight, in both directions), took six hours in total! Having to be put on the plane first and having to wait for assistance at the other end, meant sitting around for another hour upon arrival, before we could even begin to move and having to do it all again the same, upon our return. I think next year, may well be a ‘stay-cation’!

A big rock in Mallorca

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I went here the other day, to look at a lighthouse (Cap de Formentor) and to look at this big rock (Es Calomer). I climbed up (and down) a truckload of precarious looking concrete steps and pointed my camera at that there rock and because I did, you can now look at it too. I also realised that I don’t like heights like this, especially when people are coming and going past you in all different directions and I could very easily have ended up in that very water you can see below. I therefore declare this sight ‘Beautiful but deadly’. The photo is all my own work, but I think from now on, I’ll take pictures of things a lot closer to the ground!

Fine-Ants Problems

Well hello again! I hope you are having a fine and happy summer, o readers of my incessant blog! We’re not, in the UK that is. The weathermen (and women) tell us that “it’s going to be a lovely day tomorrow, with temperatures up to 22 degrees celsius” and then it isn’t. It’s cold (16 deg.), wet and rainy, then on the next forecast, they say “Well it’s been a lovely, warm day today” and it wasn’t. So maybe they’re just pretending, as there’s nothing they can do about it. Anyhow, I’m digressing as, the main reason for this ‘rant’ isn’t the weather at all, but rather money. ‘Finance’, not like the title at all is it? It certainly isn’t funny and neither is money.

We recently had to change some money from ours into theirs for a holiday, at the rather French sounding, ‘Bureau de Change’. Why can’t they just call it money exchange? Anyway, this is from British Pounds into European ‘Euros’ that I’m talking about here. I spent weeks watching the euro exchange trends, seeing it bounce up and down against the pound, like a pony-tailed young girl in a tennis dress at Wimbledon, trying to win a few points against it’s opponent. The Greeks couldn’t seem to sort out their problems with the ‘single currency’ and I waited, like a hawk, fluttering it’s wings and hovering above a mouse or vole, ready to pounce the very moment the Pound hit the magical 1.50 mark. Or 1.45, or 1.44, you get the picture. But it didn’t and when the Bank Of England didn’t do what it was supposed to do to the interest rates, the exchange rate suddenly fell like a stone and I, like a rat leaving a sinking ship, dived into the nearest foreign exchange to change my money at a paltry 1.38! We had got some Euros a few weeks earlier at a higher rate, so we’ve still done fairly well I suppose and only lost a few pounds into the bargain. The last time we went, we only got 1.20, so we’re still way ahead of that now. At least I now know that I couldn’t work in finance. Never mind ‘Black Friday’ or whatever, my nerves are now so bad, that on my first day there, I would be the first out of the window, even if things were going OK! I know I shouldn’t joke about such things, but I could never handle such a high-pressure environment. I get worried if I over-inflate my tyres, never mind the bloomin’ economy!

What I do dislike about changing money though, is the porkies they all tell! That is, porky-pies (lies). Bit of rhyming slang there. They say, “Oh come and change your money here, we don’t charge any commission”! Rubbish. So the actual foreign exchange rate for the Pound to Euro is say, 1.42, that means that on the online comparison site, the place you intend to change your money at, will say 1.40 or 1.39. When you get there however, it will say 1.38 or even 1.36! I always ask why this is and they say “No, we don’t charge commission, but we have to make money somewhere”! In other words, they DO charge commission, but call it a ‘different’ exchange rate. Then if, while on holiday, you haven’t blown the lot on bull-shaped bottles of Sangria and china donkeys in hats with holes for their ears to poke through, as presents for the family, then you get robbed again, when you try to change your money back! The rate to get your pounds back, always means that you lose quite a lot, just on those two transactions alone! So it’s always best to really enjoy your holiday. Forget about blowing a load of cash on things for Auntie Flo et al and just stuff yourself with spicy foreign food and strange herbal concoctions of the local spirit, to use the money up. Then when you get to the ‘Bureau de Change’, you’ll have such a bad head, you won’t care if you get much back or not!

I hope you have all had/are having/will have a great holiday or just a great summer if you’re staying at home. Whatever you’re doing, make the most of what we have left of any good weather as, as I always say, it will “Soon Be Christmas”!