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I have just got home from work. I also expect to have to work a few hours on Saturday morning as well.

My new colleague is away this week and I have been given no help. When I go away the week after next they will have someone from Bristol over to cover. Mmmmm!!!

To pile things up, I had a half day on Tuesday for a Plot meeting. As I approached the motorway junction for work I had a blow out. So from Tuesday to this morning I have had to commute via train, as my tyres had to be ordered in. Doesn’t sound arduous does it? But it costs twice as much as using the car and takes longer; is overcrowded – but not by London standards – and has been very noisy.

This morning the train was late. This may not sound unusual, or very inconvenient, but our station is only served by one, or maybe two trains an hour, so there is no alternative.

I’m looking forward to our mini break in London in 2 weeks. I’ll not have to worry about keeping up with work and don’t want to. Then I know that Christmas is just around the corner, a few more days off then.

What I have come to realise is that my bosses have no idea how much work I do, or the effort I put in. Maybe they’ll listen when I shout at them when I get back from London.

Better Late Than Never

Apologies for the lack of postings recently. Things have been moving at a fair pace in work.

Work colleague announced last week that he would be retiring on 9th October. Things moved a lot quicker than everyone was expecting, especially after it was decided not to replace him. Therefore there was no need for him to remain to train his replacement – a non starter to begin with.

So for the next two weeks he’ll be visiting his customers and saying goodbye. However I get no help until he has left and we can reallocate work with my colleague who is going to help me out.

Personally I can’t wait. I need to slow down and take time to breathe.

While I’ve been away I’ve read: Fire & Steam by Christian Wolmar (a history of the railway in Britain); Eleven Minutes Late by Matthew Engel (disappointing as it is billed as a book about a train journey around modern Britain but spends more time covering the history of British rail – not to be read so soon after Wolmar); The Dead Rise Not by Philip Kerr (another in his Bernie Gunter series – a German private eye in 30’s Berlin and after).

I’ve now started the 4th Shardlake novel – Revelation.


Tomorrow my wife is leaving me for another man. She is going to be alone with a friend’s husband – not even an invite for the abandoned spouses.

They will be rolling down a hill in a sphere – alone, together, unchapperoned, without Christian supervision.

The funny things is that she is accompanying Penfold in a giant Hamster Ball……. Cripes Chief!!!!!!

Now I’m in trouble…..


I’m currently wondering how I’m going to fit everything that I want to do into an increasingly decreasing time allocation. I want to start doing more things in the evenings and on the weekends but I can’t decide exactly what I want to give my time to.

I am already booked for 14 sermons next year, with the possibility of more to come. This is something that I want to do as much of as possible. As such my theology course will need to take a more prominent role. This means that I will have to free up time for preparation.

In addition I want to begin doing more with my model railway ambitions as a release from work and study.

Yet I still need to find a way help FW with the allotment project and other things -or decide that my role needs to be handed onto someone else.

Work has taken a not quite unexpected turn as I have been told that my colleague will be taking early retirement. As far as my bosses are concerned they want this to happen sooner rather than later. However my boss announced that he will not be replaced in the immediate future.

His idea is that one of the girl’s takes on his work and helps me. My concern is that if we take on further accounts then I won’t be able to cope with my work and helping her out. She does not have the experience on my side of the business and would therefore necessitate more involvement on my part.

At present this doesn’t sound ideal to me as I am already stretched but understand that we currently don’t have sufficient work for 2 people but to much for 1.

The Weekend

The weekend was very relaxing, even though we had a nephew a day on Saturday and Sunday. Having said that having Shouty Boy here on Sunday and Monday meant that we got many of those Bank Holiday jobs done.

Shouty finished painting under the sink and the outlet pipe for us. He helped FW to put “frosting” onto the bathroom window, so we have removed our “classy” shopping bag “curtains”. Then he helped us to put the pictures up that have been waiting for the past 6 months or so.

Both Shouty and Stroppy have offered to help paint when we do the office next.

Today I have taken the day off so that I can have a rest from work to recharge. Of course, having a mobile and Elderberry don’t always help 🙂

End of An Era / A New Dawn?

Today saw the end of an era with the death of Senator Edward Kennedy. He was the last direct link with the powerful Kennedy clan that, at the start of the 60’s, had looked to be the future of American politics. Their father, Joseph, had hopes that all three brothers could rise to the ultimate position in US politics.

Edward entered the Senate as the replacement for JFK, assuming his seat after JFK became President. Yet, within 10 years, 2 brothers would be dead and Edward faced with a career limiting scandal. The Chappaquiddick accident left a stain that would follow him for the rest of his political career and destroy his hope of becoming President or Vice President.

Yet he managed to become a “big hitter” in the Democratic party and helped to bring about many major changes in American society in the next 35 years. This included working with the Republicans where it was necessary in order to get a piece of legislation through both Houses.

With the death of younger members of the family he is the last real link between the Camelot and hope of his brother’s Presidency, the promise of Bobby’s candidacy and the modern Democratic Party.

The New Dawn?

Well today Network Rail announced the preferred route for High Speed 2 – the hoped for new dawn for rail travel. If it goes ahead we could see rail journeys from London to Glasgow being cut to 2.5 hours or London to Birmingham in 45 minutes.

Of course that means spending £34bn+ for the full line and no one knows whether or not we can afford this. It would be easy enough for the current government to say that they will give the go ahead, knowing full well that they are likely to be out of power next year.

The Conservatives have stated that they will definitely commit to building HS2 from London to Manchester and then onto Leeds, at least. Personally I think that the whole thing should be built to Glasgow/Edinburgh plus the extension to Leeds and then Newcastle.

Doing this would reduce the need for short haul flights and congestion on the motorways. Yet it must, more than anything, allow affordable travel to all. Not the way things are now with very high fares for a poor service.

Hopefully the present, and future, government will commit to the project and that we’ll see the great leap forward in public transport that this country needs.

We also need to look at the future and High Speed 3. Maybe we could see a link into Wales and the South West to allow a truly national High Speed network. This would give us a far more enivronmentally friendly way to travel across the country.

Yet I think we all know what is likely to happen though….

Work It Out

Things are as busy as ever at work. So much so that I’ll be working on Saturday afternoon so that I can get on top of things.

My colleague has been off all week and I have had to cover his work as well. Really it shouldn’t make much difference as I do the majority of the work anyway. Yet, when he is away, I realise that we have enough work for 1.5 people but not 2. In addition he does his work and nothing else. For example, we have filing that needs to be done but he would rather look at holiday brochures or the trade paper.

This week I have been chasing my tail and, just as I catch up, things happen – like our printer being out of action for 3 days.

Thinks What I Did

The reasons I didn’t go out in the sun on the weekend:

1. I felt like crap all day Saturday
2. I hate daylight – especially bright sunshine
3. It’s not the rugby season
4. I gave the bathroom its second coat of paint – surprise for FW for when she came back from her folks
5. I went to see my folks on Sunday afternoon

Today I have had a slightly different Saturday.

I had a lie in. I have watched about 40 minutes of football and, so far, only one film – Big Jim McLain starring John Wayne. This is a 1952 effort about an investigator for the House UnAmerican Investigations Committee and is very much of its time – today we would describe it as jingoistic and portrays Communists as evil, world conquering wannabes. There are several speeches about how people turned away from the Party as they discovered its true purpose was to enslave mankind.

After tea I will be watching The Medusa Touch starring Richard Burton and Lee Remick.

FW is currently visiting her family in Dorset. I have a surprise ready for her return that took a few hours to prepare this afternoon. Ssssshhh!!! Don’t tell her…