Sunday, January 31, 2016

Yet Another Flight Story

True story! Waiting at gate A17 for my flight to Houston there were 15 wheelchairs and one gate attendant. Only three of the wheelchairs seemed to be part of a group so that meant 12 others needed to be boarded separately. The early flight to Denver was delayed till 9am, so my 6:14am flight to Houston was packed to the gills. I boarded early (what's new) and sat in my aisle seat 3 rows from the back. A nice lady sat herself in the window seat and we chatted about how there is no way we will get off on time seeing as the wheelchairs had used up most of our boarding window. Just before the doors closed a largish, not too young man showed up and sat in the middle seat. I thought it strange that he had no book, or phone, tablet or paper. He sat down, mumbled something affirmative when the pilot announced that we would get in on time due to favorable tail winds. He sat there staring into space as we took off.

I worked on putting together the perfect flight play list on my ipod (yes I still have an iPod). I was zoning on Keith Jarrett's Köln Concert Part 1 and dozing when the drinks cart came around. I felt something strange against my leg and my arm was pushed off the arm rest.The guy in the middle had started to seriously encroach on my space. I looked over at him and it was clear he was having a seizure of some kind. The window woman leaned over and tried to speak with him, but he just stared blankly ahead mumbling. We flagged a flight attendant who was nearby serving drinks, he took one look at the guy muttered "he's having a stroke" under his breath and rushed off to the back where he called for a doctor over the PA. Within 30 seconds there was two doctors in the dude's face.I moved out of my seat to let the senior doctor sit down. He examine the guy who seemed to have stopped convulsing but was still pretty much out of it. I stood in the toilet area and watched while the flight attendants brought oxygen, a blood pressure monitor and various other devices to help the doc. I have to say they were extremely efficient and on the ball.

Eventually, after about a half hour, the dude seemed to have stabilized somewhat and I overheard the conversation with the captain in the cockpit where it was decided that we would not have to reroute for an medical emergency landing. The doctor needed to stay in my seat and at some point we hit some turbulence and the seat belt sign came on. Now the plane was completely full, and the doctor's seat, while now empty was a window seat in a row where one of the wheelchair people mentioned above was placed. Business class was completely full, but they found me a "premium" middle seat in one of the exit rows. There was tons of leg room. Sitting on the aisle was a United pilot on his way to Houston for a four day hop flying one of the commuter jets around the Southern US. On the window was a woman on her way to San Antonio to meet her future in-laws. She was quite the talker and after an hour or so I got to know her whole family history including the children's divorce issues and first husband's workaholic nature. She was annoyed that her original flight to Denver was delayed and she needed to reroute through Houston. She did show some concern for the poor guy in the back, but mostly was annoyed at United. The pilot was cool. Seems he flew the squint corporate jet for a while. The same one I took on Tuesday from San Jose to Sacramento. He lives in Sacramento and commutes to Houston for his flights each week. I learned all about the life of a commercial pilot. 

On landing, the Houston Medical Emergency Team rushed onto the plane and took the sick dude off in a hurry. We all waited patiently and exited calmly. My case was first off the baggage carousel. All in all an eventful flight.

I'm here in Houston with my lovely family.

Friday, January 29, 2016


Bwo says that the blog is boring without pictures. It's a sad commentary on the state of my writing. So above you have a picture of the sun rising over McClellan, CA, home of many pawn shops and payday loan offices. Now after two packed days at a Squinter's conference in McClellan, a converted Air Force Base, I'm back in Folsom. We stayed in a hotel that was a once some sort of barracks. There was much complaining from the squints, but I had a huge room which was once probably some General's quarters. I think all the plumbing in the whole thousand person edifice went through my room, so I spent much of my jet lagged nights listening to the wooshing and gurgling of remote toilet flushes. I found this interesting titbit on Wikipedia:

McClellan has been designated as a Superfund site, because the Environmental Protection Agency has identified 326 waste areas on the base. Water wells closest to the base in the Rio Linda-Elverta district, have had the highest levels of hexavalent chromium, which is a known carcinogen. Water from six of 11 wells tested above the state’s maximum contaminant levels for chromium-6, which is 10 parts per billion.

I did drink quite a lot of tap water, so I hope I don't grow an extra eye. Mind you, super powers (like the ability to understand how to talk to my wife so she doesn't get upset) would be nice.

Last night I got to sleep at my regular home in Folsom, the Residence Inn at Ironpoint and East Bidwell. Keeping with tradition I walked over to Chipotle for my favorite, a veggie burrito. Bwo alerted me to the troubles they have been having with Salmonella and E-Coli. I had no idea that Chipotle had numerous contamination issues, seeing as I only listen to the BBC and hear no internal US news. But, once again I took my chances after having braved the toxins of McCellan and enjoyed my dinner. After eating I took a stroll along the shops and wandered into a PetsMart. I was thinking how pathetic it is that once upon a time I would have to go shopping at places like Toys R Us for gifts for the kids, now it's stuff for the dog. Needless to say I was completely intimidated by the trillions of toys and chews and brushes, so I quickly ducked out of there and hurried back to the hotel where I was asleep by 8pm. Only one more day here in Northern California before the 6 am flight to Houston and the warmth of the family.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

The Jet

One of the nice things about working for Squint incorporated is that they have a few company jets.I got to fly on one from San Jose to Folsom this morning. It is very nice. You wait in a nice building near San Jose airport, show your badge and hop on the jet and twenty two minutes later you hop off in Folsom. There was even a Hertz car waiting for me at the other end. The jet flies at around 10000 feet (this according to Chris who was flying with me, he is an expert glider pilot) which means you can see the ground quite clearly. You get a wonderful view of the rolling hills as you come in to land at Mather Field in Folsom.The second picture is just after take off and that's Mountain View and its surroundings, you can clearly see the Moffett Field runways between the clouds. California seems to have had a bit of rain and the fields on the way to Folsom are quite green, and not the brown I am used to seeing when visiting over the last few years. A nice experience.

The flight attendant even gave us cookies.  

Monday, January 25, 2016

BA 285

Seat 29A. Not a bad seat at all. It's an exit row and there is only a single seat in front of me. I'm by the window with a seat to my left and a very quiet girl who has not uttered a word so far and we are eight hours into this ten and a half hour flight. There is a open space in front of my seat so I can get out without bothering the nice Russian man in the singleton in row 28. I've watched three movies. Two were less than memorable but I liked The Martian with Brad Pitt. Now I'm listening to my iPod. Yes I still have an iPod and it contains some good music. The 10.5 hours to San Fransisco seem to take forever but it's so much better than flying from Tel Aviv like in the old days. At least no change of planes.

I expect this will be a difficult week. Jet lagged with lots of sitting around in meetings. It really gets no easier as the years wear on. I am looking forward to smelling the air in the Bay Area. It's been a while. One positive is that now that my manager moved to Santa Clara I will get to visit the Bay Area and not have to head straight off to Folsom. I do get to take a ride on the corporate jet on Tuesday morning and that is usually fun. Give me a break, I'm trying to find positives here. No question that at this time I would much rather be out walking Roxy by the river rather than cooped up in this metal sardine can with wings. 

Friday, January 22, 2016


This is definitely worth a watch. Definitely a fitting tribute to a great man. 

Thursday, January 21, 2016

From the Shtetl to The Cape

Today would have been my dad's 92'nd birthday. I still think of him a lot. I most certainly never appreciated him nearly enough while he was alive. By now I have forgotten the bad temper and stubbornness. I hardly remember how he used to shout at my mom and at the maids and that we never spoke one word during my 12 grade year. I remember him as a sweet old man who was generous and kind. Someone who loved his grandchildren and would drive miles for a bargain, especially on Diet Coke. I have this picture of him in his bar holding a drink and smiling. It's up on the wall next to me here in my home office. He looks like such a fun guy.

The thing that struck me the other day is that the world my kids are growing up in is as different from the world I knew as my world was to my parents. I have been doing some research into the family archives as I am perhaps looking to refresh our Lithuanian roots. Some of the Lithuanian archives are available online ( has some of the Lithuanian archives transposed into online databases) and I found a record of Vulf and Yudel's passport application in Feb 1929. These are my paternal grandparents I believe. I also found a record of their marriage in 1923 in Butrimonys in Lithuania. We were Ostrinski in those days. We have a copy of the ship's manifest from London to Cape Town when my mother's family came over, and it looks like my father's father was on the same ship. He probably sent for his family once he got established. We never really pushed my parents to record their history and now it's too late. I enjoy doing the research, it's the archaeologist in me and I hope to find more info in the US next week.

I looked into what happened in the town of Butrimonys during the war and found a web page that gave the story of "The Destruction of the Shtetl Butrimantz". It seems the Jews of Lithuania did not fair well in the Holocaust. There were 235000 Jews when Germany invaded the country and 18000 left at the end of the war. Of the 2000 Jews living in the Shtetl of Butrimantz only 10 survived. The Sirota family,my paternal grandmother's family, came from Butrimantz. There are Sirotas named among the victims of the massacre, I don't know at this point whether we were related.

So my dad was born into a world of chaos. His family fled their homeland when he was very young. They settled in South Africa. I'd imagine nothing could have been further from the Shtetl in Lithuania than Cape Town, South Africa. He worked hard all his life to open a world of possibilities and what he hoped would be financial stability for his children and grandchildren. Looking from where he came, I think I understand this more than ever.   

Wednesday, January 20, 2016


I am sad today. Harold, my sister's (bso) best friend is not doing well. He has been sick and it seems he is now very sick. Harold is part of our Houston family and it's hard to imagine him not being around. I am heartbroken for my wonderful sister, her friendship with Harold is a big part of her life. She says he is not in pain and that is very good. It's just a plain sad, shitty world. 

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

The Groomer

Roxy's coat has been getting more and more matted. Her tail had more dreadlocks than Bob Marley's head and all in all she was in need of a good grooming. Trish, mother of Annie and Lily, suggested we try a groomer that comes to the house. The Rox does not like anyone touching her tail and is not in love with brushing particularly so we decided it would make sense to have a professional do it.

The groomer arrived as planned today, but bwo promptly forgot she was coming and buggered off to a meeting. So it was lucky that I was on my back to work from home early as I am still not feeling great and need to be near a friendly toilet. So I met her, a big sporty woman with her grooming van parked outside in the drive. She introduced herself to Roxy and they got on fine. She took Roxy into her truck, her mobile salon, and started brushing and combing. After a few minutes she called me away from my work to help hold the girl as she was clearly not enjoying the brushing and clipping.

I have never seen Roxy so spooked, not even at the vet. She was shaking and shivering. I held her tight and the woman completed her first round of removing the matted hair and half her wonderfully bushy tail with a clippers. There was enough hair on the clipping table to build at least one more border collie. The plan was to then bath and dry Rox before doing a "final shaping". I left her to the bathing. One end of her van held a huge bath that she fills with water in which she places the subject. After a few minutes I could hear Roxy screaming like a banshee. She was not at all happy. She whined, then screamed, even heard a few barks (Roxy never barks, except at foxes and squirrels taunting her from the trees). After a heart wrenching quarter hour it quietened down and I thought it must all be over, when the groomer (big strong woman) appeared with Roxy. She was in tears (the woman not the dog). This was just not a success. The groomer admitted defeat and had given up as Roxy would not stay in the bath or let her dry her. So no shaping or final clipping, nothing. The groomer could not take her mobile salon and zoom away fast enough. Obviously I'm a sucker for tears as I paid her the full amount.

We won't do this again. 

Monday, January 18, 2016

Sunset Today

Sunset today on the copse with Roxy chasing her ball. A short break from peeing sulfuric acid.

Sunday, January 17, 2016


Living in South Africa, California, Texas and Israel, I have never stayed anywhere where it snowed regularly. Not that it snows that often in Richmond Upon Thames. So, I get very excited when it does snow. Both Roxy and I loved going out into the light snow fall this morning. I am still not feeling so great so I did not go out for too long but we got to walk out on the copse through the snow (I did take some pictures out on the copse, but it was too dark).

I love the sound of the snow. You hear nothing as it drifts to the ground. Light as air. And all around everything looks and sounds different. There is a sort of stillness all around, even the morning calls of the birds sound different. Muted. Unfortunately the snow did not hang around for long, but it's still quite cold out. This is supposed to be a cold winter, so perhaps by the end I will have had my fill. Not yet though. Bring on more snow.

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Red Pee

I am back from the hospital and its all over except for the bleeding. It went as well as could be expected. New Victoria is a very nice place and my room was more like a hotel than a hospital. Complete with little soaps and designer shampoo. The food was good too. I am still in some pain but I think that is to be expected

The Landers looked after Roxy and bwo looked after me. She was awesome as usual. Of course, the whole thing was updated on Whatsup. I don't know what we did before we had Whatsup, people just found things out when told. I'm feeling quite tired and finding it difficult to concentrate. I think I'll go nap again. Hopefully I will be able to get back to blogging tomorrow.

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Ureteroscopic Stone Removal and Cystoscopy and Stent Procedure

I had a CT scan last week. It's all these pains that I have been having, see. I was sure they were kidney stones, but the doctors here wanted me to have diverticulitis. Well they never found and diverticulitis but they did find quite a large kidney stone stuck somewhere in between my kidney and bladder. I went back to the urologist tonight for him to go over the tests (a Mr. S - specialists in this country are misters not doctors). Anyway seems I'm to have the stone removed on Friday (day after tomorrow). "No problem" he said. "It should not hurt too much" he said. With the way they understate everything here I'm sure it will hurt like the bejesus.

It's all at the nice New Victoria Hospital. A good place. They gave me a nice sandwich after (cheese and tomato on white bread, my brother would have appreciated it) and excellent coffee. Hopefully this "procedure" does not take to long. They bust up the stone using what the consultant (specialist) claims is a very small pneumatic drill, a miniature version of what they use on the road, and then put in a long plastic stent for a few weeks. Sounds marvelous. Getting old is overrated.

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

A Scarf

A scarf is very important.

It turned cold this week. It's one degree outside. I never much appreciated scarves, I do now.

Interesting word scarf, nearly as nice as shrub.

Monday, January 11, 2016

David Bowie

David Bowie died yesterday. I heard this morning as it was announced on the BBC on my way into work around 6:30am. I have to admit that while I have become quite an emotional being over the years, I rarely feel anything when so called "stars" pass on. This one was different. I was immediately transported to Gerald Strimling's apartment on Park Drive. Avril and I were in Standard 9 so it was 1976. Gerald lived then with Stuart and they were much older and therefore much cooler (Avril was the real reason for the invitation to their apartment). I liked Bowie before and the song Sorrow from Pinups was a favorite. But Gerald played us Hunky Dory. It changed my life. I have to say that it ranks in my top three albums and has at every stage of my life. I remember the first year at the Technion in Haifa in 1978 being terribly lonely, homesick, lovesick and lost, I turned to Hunky Dory - the recording I had on cassette eventually wore out.

Of all the amazing songs on that record, it's The Bewlay Brothers that still blows me away every time I hear it. From the creaking at the beginning to the chorus at the end it is in my opinion a masterpiece.

The incredible outpouring of emotion over Bowie's death has flooded my Facebook feed. For me and my hevreh he was the man. Listen to Hunky Dory now. You will not be sorry.

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Big Trees

I love trees. Its one of the things I missed all the years I lived in Israel. Trees. Last year when we went back to South Africa, we drove the Garden Route from PE to Cape Town. I insisted we stop at the "Big Tree". While growing up, we stopped there on every trip to Cape Town. I love that tree. I am impressed that it is now part of the "Garden Route National Park". In the old days there was an easily missed sign on the side of the road and a simple path to the tree. No fences nothing. Now there's a wonderful wooden trail from the park entrance (and pay booth) to the tree. After all these years I still found it impressive. It was one of the highlights of the trip for me.

I suppose growing up in South Africa set something in my consciousness and trees bring me peace. That's probably one of the reasons I walk so much. All around Richmond there are special trees. The British really value and take care of the natural life around their green and pleasant land. I found the Woodland Trust has a pamphlet called The Ancient Tree Hunt (London Tree Trail). There are a number of ancient trees, right here in our area. The tallest London plane tree stands in the grounds of the El-Gaucho restaurant on the tow path between home and the bridge. The Richmond Royal Oak (tree number 40404) is near pen ponds and is reputed to be over 750 years old. 

This morning I visited the Richmond Park Oak (tree number 40371). It's a wonderful old oak tree that stands off the main path between Richmond and Ham gates. The wonderful thing about these old oaks is as they get older and start to develop some dead wood, the wildlife move in. There are many birds and squirrels that live in the rotting branches. This morning there must have been a half dozen squirrels playing among the branches. I tried to catch them with my iPhone camera but they were just too quick. This is the best I could do.

Roxy "squirrel scourge" went berserk chasing the poor blighters in the park this morning. She could have caught any number but prefered to chase them up trees and then sit at the bottom urging them to come down and play. They will have nothing to do with this of course.

Saturday, January 9, 2016


Bwo signed up to attend a conference in Brighton this weekend. I volunteered to drop her off thinking Roxy and I could do some exploring along the coast. We woke up to what is called "blustery" weather here in the UK. Elsewhere it would just be called windy. By the time we got to Brighton it was very blustery. The wind was howling and the walk along the coast I planned looked less and less attractive. I found this walk, "The Kipling Roedean and Rottingdean Trail" on my favorite walking app iFootpath. The walk starts out along the "Undercliff Path" which sounded exciting. There are many warnings NOT to walk the path in bad weather and many have been swept into the sea. This is what it looked like when Rox and I got to the head of the path.
 As you can see if you look closely there are mad dogs and Englishmen out there between the waves. I watched as a particularly strong blast of wind whipped up a huge breaker that covered the path completely. So I chickened out and decided to walk the hills overlooking the sea.
So Roxy and I set off. There were nice paths over the hills. It was a little muddy and the wind was strong but to our backs and the views spectacular. About an hour into the walk I bumped into a lady with her two boarder collies and while Roxy and her dogs had a good sniff of each other, I asked her if there was a nice path that would get me back to the car without doubling back. She pointed out a path up a hill to the left and said it was about 45 minutes back to the car. I should have known. The English are rubbish at estimating how long it takes to walk anywhere. Two and a half hours later having passed numerous sheep looking down on Brighton from the hills, we finally got back to the car, windswept but happy. 

A Tail Of Two Fleeces

Somewhere between fifteen and twenty years back I bought two North Face fleeces. Both are made of Polartec, one thicker and warmer than the other. I have worn these jackets every winter since I got them. They have been through the wash hundreds of times and as far as I can tell are still usable. The thinner one I wear on every walk when it's above 10 degrees C, the thicker when it's colder. The thinner one is getting a bit worn and the lining on one of the sleeves is coming loose. I have looked at getting new fleeces over the years but could never take my hand off my heart and splurge when I have two perfectly decent, broken in versions.

It was with great joy and happiness that my lovely daughter (bdo) stopped over in London on her way back to Israel from Houston. She had been vacationing with her US family among the gaggle of girl Ostrins. She had a great time (Thanks family, you are definitely keepers). Quite unexpectedly she presented me with a gift - a brand spanking new North Face fleece. Softer than the old ones, even more space-age Polartec "wind pro" material. It quickly moved into first place among my fleeces. Black. Of course.

Friday, January 8, 2016


I read somewhere this week about a survey that questioned Brits all over the UK. People were asked what typifies "Being British". All sorts of things came up, for example: standing in queues, a cuppa tea, sarcasm, Sunday Roast at the local pub, talking about the weather and not looking people in the eye on the tube. One action stood out more than any other. All over the UK people felt that "Saying Sorry" was particularly British. I must agree.

Yesterday Roxy ran up to a couple in the dark and as they cooed and aahed at her, she jumped up and put her muddy paws on the guy's pants. I rushed up to apologize, before I could say anything out burst a torrent of sorrys. Not only was he sorry, she was very sorry. So very sorry. I tried to look stern and gently scold Roxy, but they were so sorry my little reprimand felt insignificant. We were definitely out-sorryed. I've even noticed at work if two squints meet at the entrance door and bump into each other, they both say sorry to each other without thinking (unless they're Italian). If you run someone over with your cart at the supermarket, they will surely be very sorry. It's all rather quaint.

Oh and one other thing British people felt typified themselves, was the consumption of alcohol before 8 am at airports. I will pay special attention next time I'm at Heathrow.    

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

The Loose Tooth

It was around this time three years ago that we moved to the UK. I had been travelling back and forth from Israel to Egham quite a bit and was just starting to get used to life in the dark and cold of a real winter. It was cold. I remember coming into my office after the New Year break in Israel and seeing the glass of water I had left on the window sill completely frozen solid. The heating was useless in that building and we each had to have personal heaters to stop our feet from freezing. Since then we have moved into our nice warm offices in central Egham and bwo and I have settled into our cozy house on Petersham Road.

That was an exciting time. A lot of changes to deal with and new skills to acquire. I enjoyed the feeling of not knowing what would be coming next. Not knowing where we would be in one, two, three or four years time was a new challenge for me. I always have a plan. Always. So the uncertainty of the move to the UK was new to me. I kind of liked it. Sort of like playing with a loose tooth, a nice sort of pain. Now we have been here for three years, with the probability of one more year. I still have no idea of what will be after this. Back to Israel? Then what? Where? I find I'm pushing on that loose tooth more and more.

Tuesday, January 5, 2016


So I have a dilemma. Which litter picker upper do I go with, the Draper which is cheap at £5.95 (with Amazon prime)    or the much better quality Helping Hand 32" Street master Litter Picker   which comes in at a hefty £15 (without delivery)? I could also get the Caraselle Refuse Bag Holder for a mere £16.95.

You may ask why this sudden litter obsession. It all started while listening to Clare Balding's wonderful book Walking Home: My Family and other Ramblings recently downloaded from audible. For one of her walks she meets up with David Sedaris, one of my favorite authors/radio personalities who I was surprised to find lives in Horsham in West Sussex. According to Wikipedia, "He enjoys collecting litter in the local area". According to Clare it's more like a raging obsession. He cannot go out walking without a high-viz vest (very popular in the UK - the height of cycling fashion), a litter picker upper and a refuse bag holder. I love the idea. While our area around Petersham/Ham/Richmond is pretty well kept, the odd bit of litter is even more conspicuous and an eyesore. I think I'm going to set aside at least one walk a week for litter collection. Of course, one must have the correct tools.

Monday, January 4, 2016


Bwo and I have a sort of routine going. On the days we have dinner together we seem to find ourselves sitting in the lounge in front of the TV watching Gogglebox. I admit the show's premise sounds lame, but Gogglebox is awesome. Basically you watch people watch TV. Really. There are a regular bunch of families and friends that watch some of the week's TV and comment on what they are seeing. You spectate on them from cameras placed on their TV as if you were the TV. The shows switches between the content and the watchers showing only selected snippets.

Gogglebox should be required watching for all immigrants into the UK. There is no better way to get exposed to British culture. It could take the place of a Merkaz Klita (absorption center - where you learn Hebrew etc. on immigrating to Israel) for the UK.

We have got to know all the families that take part, some are hilarious, some quite sweet, some ridiculous - but all very real. They're from all walks of life and all over the UK. If you ever get the chance don't give it a miss. Trust me.

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Chiswick Bridge to Petersham

I did the Chiswick Bridge to Petersham section of the Thames Path this morning. Bwo dropped Roxy and I off at the bridge and it took us just over two hours to ramble home. This is definitely one of the nicest parts of the Thames that I have walked so far and something I would recommend to all visitors and locals. I mostly enjoyed the views on the far banks while walking through the lush greenery that borders Kew Gardens and the river. This is the view of Syon Park House from the other side of the river - with obligatory rower.
There were lots of rowers out on the river this morning and a fair number of joggers on the path. About an hour into the walk I really needed to pee. Now England is not Israel and it's not acceptable to just haul out your goods and pee where ever the urge takes you. In fact in all the three years we have been here I have never once seen anyone pee on the side of the road - not even taxi drivers. Occasionally you see a vehicle stopped on the motorway verge, but if someone is heeding the call of nature, they are doing it out of sight. This building pressure was a problem as there is precious little besides greenery and water on the path between Kew bridge and Richmond, let alone a toilet. On top of it all the cadence between the joggers and rowers meant there was never really a break where no one would be able to see me relieve myself off the side of the path. Eventually, just past Syon house, I caught a break in the action and breathed a heavy sigh of relief as my morning coffee flowed away. Thank goodness I'm a boy, I hate to think what women do on this stretch. Things definitely improved from then on.

It's now Sunday evening. The sun has gone down on a wet and soggy England. Tomorrow is work. After two quiet holiday weeks, it will all start up again and I have that "Sunday Evening Feeling" I used to get before the school week started. I hear bwo in the kitchen, sounds like stir fry, a favorite of mine. She must be taking a break from her binge watch of "Jessica Jones" on Netflix. Life goes on.

Saturday, January 2, 2016

A Movie and Nando's

Bwo and I spent a pleasant afternoon at the movies. We saw the new Star Wars epic. It's really quite entertaining. This is the first time I've been to movies in about a year. I fact, the last movie I saw in a movie house was the middle Hobbit episode. I see anything interesting (and much that is not) on the plane as I can usually get two movies into the five hour flight to Tel Aviv. BA has a decent entertainment system. I was amazed just how much movies cost here. It shows just how out of touch I am. £16.50 for each ticket and then another £7.75 for popcorn and a drink. Good thing we don't go too often.

We had a nice quick dinner after at the next door Nando's. They make a fairly decent veggie burger. After a quick trip on the 65 bus. I'm back in our nice warm home on Petersham road. The dank cold and smell of rainy streets mixed with fresh exhaust fumes always reminds me of many past holidays in London. But now, the dog has been walked, the stomach has been fed. Perhaps I'll watch a bit of football. It's a hard life.

Friday, January 1, 2016

Welcome 2016

Welcome 2016. I hope that it's a great year for everyone. Of course, I started off the year with a spat with bwo. It's all in the way I say things. I tried to patch things up, but it gets more difficult as the years go on.

I walked from Hampton Court to home along the Thames this morning. It was cold and clear and crisp. All in all I did 30000 steps today. My best ever. The walk from Hampton Court to Kingston along the river was wonderful. There is a nice path along the river and the houses on the other side of the river (Thames Ditton) looked peaceful and serene. From Kingston to Ham House the path is really muddy. On top of it all there was some (10k?) race going on as we walked this morning and the runners chewed up the path ever more. Roxy and I had a good day and bwo made an excellent dinner. I'm not quite forgiven, but that's nothing new. Still two more days of holiday before it's back to work and the holiday period is over for another year. Rain tomorrow apparently.