Thursday, 29 April 2010

The Pope and Gordon Brown.

You might have noticed that there was absolutely no mention of the Foreign Office email that so upset all those people that have no sense of humour a few days ago. The Vatican hasn't declared war on the UK, Whitehall isn't covered by a plague of frogs, The Foreign Office it's self is still there, lightning from the heavens hasn’t blown it asunder. Clever ploy by our belovered leader to call that dear lady from Rochdale a ....... Well I am sure you know what he called her. Might have got the Vatican and the Bishop of Nottingham of his back but now half the newspapers in the country are after his blood. For what? OK. He did make a big mistake but so far no one seems to have mentioned what the big mistake was. And it wasn’t calling the lady from Rochdale a ...... .
If you sat in any bus driver’s or taxi driver’s canteen, any driving test centre while the pupils are out on their test, any hotel reception area after the customers have moved away and you will hear the same and even worse things being said. It is the same in any job that deals with the public. It’s been a hard day and the public are no longer in earshot and some, or even many hard working bus driver, shop keeper or prime minister will let of a little steam. If you work in any job and you haven’t made some derog comment hopefully far enough away from the boss’s ears then your name is Benedict 16
or was Gandhi.

So what was the big mistake that nice Mr Brown made. He didn’t switch the microphone off first. That’s all.

Don't forget to vote next week.

Sunday, 25 April 2010

Classic Bus Route

A new bus route is about to start in Torbay. It will run from Torbay Rd Paignton (that's the road that runs up from the Apollo to the railway station) then fallow the 12A route to Paignton Zoo. From the Zoo it will come down Penwill Way, some nice views there. At the bottom of Penwill Way it will turn right along Dartmouth Rd as far as Windy Corner where it will turn left and run down to Broadsands Beach. Handy if you don't have a car, it's a long walk down and a hard walk back up. The bus will then return to Windy Corner where it will turn left towards Brixham but then turn immediately right at the traffic lights onto the Ring Road (Brixham Rd) Then it will continue as far as Goodrington Rd where it will turn right along to Beverley Park holiday camp and then Drake Rd to service Holbourne Park. From there back onto Dartmouth Rd towards Torbay Rd, Paignton via the Big Tree and Whitstone Rd and Sands Rd and the Esplanade. The whole trip will take 42 mins and buses will leave Torbay Rd on the hour from 10am till 5pm (6pm from 29 May). Day tickets £4.00 adult and £2.50 child are available as are weekly and family tickets.

What is unusual about this bus service is it isn't being run by Stagecoach but by a company called Devonian Motor Services. Even more interesting is the buses DMS will be using. They will include an open top 1961 Leyland Atlantean, a 1956 Foden PVD6 back loader and a 1960 Leyland PD3. So if you just want to get down to Broadsands, always a nice place to go, or want a ride on a classic bus then be at the coach stop in Torbay Road, Paignton any day of the week on the hour between 10 am and 5 pm or at any bus stop on route and enjoy.

The 1956 Foden PVD6

Friday, 23 April 2010

St George

Today is the day we English celebrate St George's Day. Remember St George? He was the guy who changed the status of a much loved animal from endangered creature to extinct creature. Kind of fitting don't you think. The Irish have St Patrick who got rid of the snakes that were never there in the first place and the Scottish have St Andrew who like the absentee landlords who oversaw the clearances never went anywhere near the place. The Welsh have St David who lived all his life in Wales and was a good and saintly man who never covered up any sex scandals, unlike other not so good and not so saintly men we have all been reading about in the papers recently.

And what has Torbay Town Council done to celebrate the death of the last know dragon? Yes, you've guessed it in one. They have invited the Young Barbarians (sorry that should read Young Farmers) down for the week end for a quiet drink.

They are here to attend conferences and meetings that will bring them up to speed on the latest developments in farming methods that will equip them for their chosen career on the land with all those sheep milling around.

What they do end up doing if past visits by previous Young Farmers are any indication is get drunk, then get drunker, then get even more drunk before going out and getting seriously drunk. So if you are in Torquay this weekend have fun, take your video camera out with you because if you don't people back home will never believe you when you tell them how nice young farmers really can be when they put their minds to having a 'good' time.

While the shepherd's away the sheep can relax.

Wednesday, 21 April 2010

New Attraction Opening Next Month

Dinosaur World is coming to Torquay in May. It will be in what was the Queens Hotel on the Clock Tower roundabout in the Harbour. The one on the left is the dinosaur.

Hopefully it will attract thousands of people to the Bay. With all the problems the airline industry has been having over the last few days everyone has been saying it should be good news for our holiday industry here but our hotel is quiet. Usually we have people arriving on Thursday and Friday but this week there are no holiday makers booked in so I have a couple of extra days off this week. At least the sun will be shinning and a wind from the south so I will be able to get out somewhere.


Politics and Bus Stops

David Cameron was in Torquay today, lucky him. We were just walking through the Harbour when he turned up. His coach driver made the mistake of stopping on the bus stop on the Strand. The number 12 behind immediately blew his horn several times. The Strand controller went up to the driver and told him to move. Meanwhile David Cameron, head of the Tory party, had to scramble to get of the bus before it moved away. Then he moved round the harbour so fast it was difficult to keep up with him. He had Marcus Woods with him. Mr Woods is standing in the election against the sitting MP Adrian Sanders and hasn't a chance. For one thing he is best mate of Nick Bye, the Mayor of Torbay. Nick is as popular as bubonic plague and much of that popularity has rubbed off on to Marcus,poor chap. The other reason is Adrian is well liked and a hard working MP who didn't fiddle his expenses while all (many) around him were.


Would you want a man as Prime Minister who couldn't iron a shirt?

It's two hours after I first posted the above item and I have discovered the reason David is wearing a badly ironed shirt. While he was in Cornwall a student threw an egg at him which hit him on the shoulder hence the change of shirt.

Would you want a man as Prime Minister who went on the campain trail without a few spare shirts?

There're Back

After 5 days of clear sky we now have planes leaving their con trails as they head out for exotic and mundane destinations. Endangered animals the world over who had been thinking that perhaps humans did care for them have looked up and seen the marks that could foretell their eventual extinction.
Well tough chicken mates, human beings have to fly

Friday, 16 April 2010

Jame Lovelock and the End of the World

A couple of nights ago there was a program on the BBC about James Lovelock. Not one hundred percent sure who James Lovelock is? Shame on you. He invented, in his garden shed, the electron capture detector. Still no wiser? Using this devise he detected the presence of CFCs in the atmosphere, CFCs were used to pressurise spray cans way back in the sixties and the build up of these chemicals was having a very bad effect on the atmosphere. A great big hole had opened up in the ozone layer over the South Pole and was getting bigger. The Ozone Layer protects us from the extremely harmful effects of ultra violet rays and without Professor Lovelock's invention and subsequent work we would have all been at serious risk of developing cancer every time we went out in the sun. Using sun block 50 would have had as much use as splashing water on our skin. So it could be said that he saved humanity from a fate as bad as death. So I will, "James Lovelock saved humanity from a fate worse than death." Not just us but most of the animals that we, grudgingly it seems, share the planet with.

He then went on to come up with the Gaia theory. This suggests that the Earth's atmosphere has a self regulating effect on the weather. As an example the program quoted the algae that came to the top few feet of the world's oceans to breed. As more algae bread the top surface of the sea got hotter and the algae produced a particular type of chemically active gas which caused the cloud cover over the ocean to increase. This made it harder for the algae to breed as the sea cooled down. So less algae. On the face of it producing this gas didn't seem like a good idea on the part of the algae. However if the top surface of the sea did get too hot then the sea would form hot and cold layers, and the nutrients in the colder layers could not get to the surface and the algae would starve. The whole effect is like a very effective thermostat on a central heating system. Plenty of other, similar systems exist in this Mother Earth theory.

Now when I saw that the program about him was on I looked forward to it, mainly to see what he had to say about man made climate change. I know he has a reputation as an eco-pioneer who a few years ago surprised many by advocating nuclear power saying it was the only way we could provide ourselves with all the power we have come to expect in our daily lives. What would he say, would he have some hope of a solution. Regular readers here will know that I personally believe that it is all ready too late to save us from the long term effects to the worlds weather systems due to all the greenhouse gases we have put into the atmosphere, and are continuing to pump in like there is no tomorrow.

At the end of the program Lovelock outlines, in the starkest terms, the fate that awaits Earth's people: billions dying from hunger, thirst, global war, national wars and local wars for dwindling food and water, widespread extinctions, and civilisations destroyed. The Mother Earth theory still holding up only this time it isn't controlling the run away algae population.

Good luck to the human race over the next hundred years.

Poor Iceland

Dear Iceland (the country not the supermarket),

It's cash we want not ash.

So far I haven't spoken to anyone who has been caught up in the problems caused by the ash cloud drifting over out heads but next weekend my brother is planning to fly out to Australia. Each time the National Air Traffic Service move the time for reopening the airspace back he must getting a little bit more worried.

I have a feeling the effects of this ash cloud will be felt long after the cloud it's self has gone. The short and long term knock on effects from people missing holidays to airlines going bust are just to awesome to think about for any length of time with out the brain starting to hurt. If you had sat down a week ago in a pub with a few mates and tried to think up what could go wrong with your holiday I doubt you would have come up with this in a hundred years.

Thursday, 8 April 2010

Postal Voting for You.

Just in case you haven't been watching the TV news or reading your newspaper over the last couple of days the you will hear it first here. The General Election is on May 6. OK, you knew that.

Not going to vote, can't be bothered, it's not worth the effort walking down to the Poling Station and getting asked as you leave the church, school, village hall etc which way you vote by that group of persistent people who always hang about outside poling stations on election day. You'd think they didn't have anything better to do. What do they do in the 5 years between election days, hibernate?

Anyway, this year you don't need to bother with all that hassle. You can register to vote by post. All you need to do is visit this site, Postal Vote Application, fill in the form you can download and post it to your local electoral head person and a few day before the election you post you voting paper with it's little cross to the same person. Do it now or some time in the next week because it has to be done before 20 April. Otherwise the long walk down to the Poling Station for you.

Sunday, 4 April 2010

An Other Half a Million Quid

So now the total bill for years of neglect is going to be close to £3million. Councillor Lewis, in charge of the project, confirmed that the recently discovered problems on the cliff face will also put back the opening until the end of July. Well what's an other month in the 2 and a half years it has already taken?

No mention was made as to when Rock Wall it's self would be open. Rock Walk is the pathway along the top of the cliff face that has now become the name of the whole area.

Councillor Lewis also said the planned changes to the road at the bottom of the cliff face would also be delayed for the time being. The cliff side of the carriageway would open for parking while traffic would continue to travel along the seaward side as at present. This arrangement would mean, for the time being more space for parking. The intended scheme would reduce the number of parking places in the area is disliked by many. It would have included a taxi rank and coach parking bays outside the theatre and a stop for the land train as well as disabled parking. This would restrict the number of car parking places to about ten compared to the 70 or 80 parking places for cars that were available prior to the work starting in Jan 2008.

Lets hope the wait is worth it.

The problem is in the ground where the walkways are going, unexpected holes have appeared and each supporting pile will have to be individually tailored to fit.

Thursday, 1 April 2010

No Work

After working most of the hours God sent over the last 4 weeks it seems I'm not needed this weekend. That doesn't bother me too much but the forcast for the next few days is wet, windy and not all that warm. So it looks like I will spend my time off doing jobs about the house, like reading, blogging and sleeping.

Just to show, if you needed showing, how long the winter has lasted the photo of my Camellia plant. It is just begining to flower, the photo was taken today. Last year it had flowered on Feb 25.

Professor James Lovelock, a scientist with many years experiance in enviromental issues, it was he who suggested the Earth is a living organism which he called Gaia, has got himself in to trouble once again. This time he has said in an interview that it is too late to save the world from the serious effects of climate change. At last some one agrees with me. I have been saying the same thing for years.