Friday, 1 May 2009
my Thursday travel backpack still needs to be emptied
I sometimes post a bus or taxi picture when I remember that I'd originally intended to have a sort of London theme linked somewhere within this blog. My recent travelling, both for holiday to Normandy and also to the Temporary Apartment for what is now approaching three months means that the London theming has slightly declined.
Thats not to say I haven't also been around town. A meeting with my Boston friend was in London, a theatrical visit to the Barbican, a South Bank meal at Riviera, business meetings in the City and sundry trips to Portobello Road and the Electric are interspersed with my travel.
But its all gone a bit piecemeal on my understanding the recent UK news events. I'm told that the planes are so full on Sundays now because its the people heading home from their shopping expeditions to cut price London. My friends at the barbecue the other evening were telling me that local (foreign) TV advertisements were selling 'Bargain Britain'.
Whenever I see a picture of Gordon Brown, he either looks morose or has what looks like a photoshopped grin. I know he is supposed to be figuring out how to pilot us out of his recession, but it looks as if there's a fire on every engine at the moment. Choose from corrupt bandwidth-stealing politician expense declarations, car scrappage allowances for those who mainly drive quite old second hand cars so that they can take big loans to buy new ones or a whole series of other questionable situations.
The current government has been in a little longer than the age of the cars which get these refunds, but instead of we voters getting a rebate it looks like a further ten years is needed to get back to a neutral position. Even the Government's petition site seems to suggest that the next thing the Prime Minister should do is resign, with some 34,000 signatories last count.
He won't of course.
And the people taking snaps of one another in Heathrow wearing those blue face masks last weekend. It was around Wednesday when I caught up on that piece of news. A taxi driver asked me where I was from.
"UK", I explained, "Ah, Swineflu", he replied, as I initially tried to work out if it was some kind of local insult. I finally realized it was about H1N1 (swine), not to be confused with H5N1(avian) flu all of which is clear at the aptly named Pandemicflu.gov website. Now I knew why they'd been wearing the facemasks.
So I'll be taking it easy this weekend- my overseas counterparts have been taking Labour Day in its various guises - which created a few unexpected gaps in Friday's schedule. I've a backpack of travel stuff to unpack, but its deposited on the floor at the moment waiting to be unzipped. And there's something strangely liberating about having a full weekend ahead, instead of just a Saturday. Perhaps I won't worry too much about 2019's return to balance. The guys predicting 1999 didn't do such a good job either.