Showing posts from July, 2013

Back home...

... they'll be watching and waiting... (Now - no prizes, but extra points for anyone to get that odd lyric reference)... We have a full house again, after a few days of just Mrs F and I with Daughter-of-Furtheron back from Spain and Son-of-Furtheron temporarily with us until he can move on to his new "apartment" in the Midlands it is a bit like the old days with a full house.  To be honest this'll be one of the very last times like this as when S-o-F moves out that'll pretty much be it, that will be him moving out really.  According to the Royal Mail which we used to check his address details it is an "apartment" not a flat he is moving to... honestly it becomes more like America everyday with the "season finale" replacing "last of the series" etc.  Soon we'll have "overtime" on the football - heaven forbid that becomes soccer!!!  Anyway I digress this wasn't intended to be a rant about the Americanisation of the

A Chapter Closes

I've hired a small van for the weekend so rather than celebrating our 28th wedding anniversary with Mrs F I'm off to empty Son-of- Furtheron's flat in Wales. After 5 years of him living there this is the last time I'll go there. Apparently there is a carnival procession through the town on Saturday possibly in recognition of this momentous event ... Or maybe not ;-) Daughter-of-Furtheron is home from a week long watersports trip to Spain. Frankly not the best experience. The coach broke down in France on the way there so a 12 hour wait in a layby didn't cheer her up them coming back they missed their ferry slot through another coach problem. She is hoping to go again (third time!) in 2 years time by persuading her teachers to let her go as an instructor. She no doubt will succeed!

Royal birth and how it complicates my devious master plan

So we have another heir to the throne, although I'll never see his coronation given I doubt he'll be south of 70 before he accedes to the throne, thus I'll have to be older than 120 probably to see this event. Now - you know they changed the law so if the baby had been a she they would still have remained 3rd in line to the throne even if the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge had a subsequent male child?  Well they did; however this was not retrospectively applied.  This means Princess Anne, whilst being the Queen's second child, is actually lower in line to the throne than Andrew and Edward, her younger male siblings, and all of their offspring.  I think this is a travesty for woman's rights and should be corrected forthwith!!!   Actually the main reason I have this interest is that it would elevate Zara Philips (Princess Anne's daughter) from a lowly 15th in line to I think 9th.   Why is that important?  Simple.  Zara is married to Gloucester rugby star and fo

Summer Storms

Like many people in the southern UK last night we had disturbed sleep due to the thunderstorms.  Can't say though I'm too unhappy to see the back of the heatwave, I know that only a few weeks ago I was sat at home with a fleece on bemoaning having to put the heating on in June!  However I'm not a hot weather person, it gives me headaches, makes me listless and can be a trigger for my horrible vertigo attacks.  The really horrendous one I had in the USA some years back was triggered in temps above 30°C.  Yesterday my son, his girlfriend and I escaped to a Chinese Restaurant for lunch - it's biggest saving grace was bottomless glasses of drink and air con!  Then we spent the height of the day in the cinema watching "The World's End" - funny film, if you like Shuan of the Dead you'll find it funny, not as good as that film or Hot Fuzz the other two in the "cornetto trilogy" and nowhere as good as Paul but a funny and cool couple of hours. Of c

Graduation and missing a crash...

Son-of-Furtheron is now Son-of-Furtheron MPhys (Hons) ! :-) We had a trip to Wales to see my son, his girlfriend and their friends graduate.  S-o-F also won one of the top prizes the department give out for outstanding academic achievement or something - he has worked immensely hard to get what he has. It was a gloriously sunny very hot day - most unlike Wales!  All his friends had a great time, his dept took great care of us laying on a nice reception with plenty of food. Also for the first time we got to meet his girlfriends family, we all lined up for a big photo, us on one side and her family on the other and my son suddenly said "Hang on what is going on with this photo?" realising the likeness to the regular "new family" photo taken at weddings... it was a lovely lovely day finished off with us all having a lovely celebratory meal back at our hotel before the new graduates went off to the pub for the last time with all their friends. They have found a fl

What is going on with British sport?

For most of my life it has been that British teams and individuals come a valiant second or third, we occasionally win like the 1966 football world cup or the 2003 drop goal spectacular in the Rugby Union World Cup, but generally runners up or knocked out in the semis is what we expect.  We show great sportsmanship and do it all normally on a fraction of the budget/facilities of those that win, TV documentaries showing the "nearly" world champion grafting away in some windy dilapidated shed where we all say that it is a miracle they did so well as they contrast other countries with their modern state of the art facilities and armies of support staff raising their athletes to the peak of performance, whilst our guy has to hold down a job as a bus driver to supplement his income. However last year we did pretty well at the Olympics, above our expectations, a Brit won the Tour de France for the first time ever (and as I write this the tour is led by another Brit - you never kn

Are you a donor?

A friend of mine has a daughter who has for many years had a chronic kidney condition.  This has led to a difficult life and one that presented her with a considerably shortened life expectancy.  This weekend however a miracle happened, she was alerted that a kidney might be available for a transplant.  I followed the story via good old social media the way you do these days, through the run to the hospital, confirmation the kidney was available, the agonising wait to see if it was a match, the joy that it was, the op late last night and the good news this morning that all is looking good so far in her early recovery.  There is a super picture of the recipient with the biggest smile you can imagine. Of course there is a tragedy behind this good news story - an otherwise healthy person who sadly died suddenly of a brain haemorrhage.  However the fact that person was on the organ donor register has meant this life giving opportunity to my friends daughter. Are you on the register ?

Drinking Dreams

I've had two recent drinking dreams. They disturb me.  I know many alcoholics in recovery have these happen.  The latest two have had similarities and are different from older ones. First one I was somewhere and I knew I was drinking - I was discussing in my head the issue of having started again, I was drinking lager and considering this "ok" but was concerned I'd progress to other drinks. The second one I was in an odd bar/pub.  It was a huge oval bar with people sat it - not unlike some bars I used to visit in the USA.  I was pushing myself back from the bar to distance myself.  Not sure I was drinking in the second one but was concerned about it - I was in the place to drink there seemed no other reason to be there. So two within a week - something is going on in my head.  I'm still trying to figure out my new way of working, now faced with only being in the office 2 days a week I'm stressed about getting done what I need to get done in that time,

British Grand Prix

Regular long term readers of this blog may recall that my marvellous spouse and offspring bought me a weekend pass to the British Grand Prix back in October as my 50th birthday present.  Now people who read this blog will know I like motor racing, F1 in particular, back in the 80s when there were GPs at Brands Hatch, our local track, we'd regularly get up at 5am to be camped on South Bank by 7am and then sit in the car park as the sun set waiting for the nonsense of the 50 undisciplined lines of cars forcing themselves through one gate to exit.  I went to practice at Silverstone in 92 (I think) when Damon Hill forced an ugly handling Brabham onto the back of the grid.  The last GP I went to was the legendary European GP at Donnington in 1993 where it rained and rained and I witnessed Ayrton Senna's incredible drive to victory, that day he was unbelievable able to drive around as though there wasn't the 2 inches of water that there really was.  So 20 years since a physical G