Category Archives: Rambling

Amazing product support Osprey Rucksacks

Our Osprey soft luggage/ wheelie rucksacks are a vital part of our escapes to the Greek islands. Each year I breathe a sigh when I see them appear on the luggage carousel. They come with a ‘lifetime’ guarantee, but who really believes such things?sojourn

This year, the smallest of defects occurred, the zipper tag snapped. A minor, but necessary part. I assumed I would be able to buy one on the website, but couldn’t find anything other than a link to the ‘Mighty Warranty’ page. Not really expecting a response, I filled in the form and hit the send button.

Within an hour I had an email. Within two days I had the replacement tag.

Having spent the last few months handling my father’s estate, dealing with banks, building societies and stock brokers, I have become rather jaded with the ridiculous procedures and practice of what are euphemistically called ‘help desks’.

I’ve never met her, but I find myself a little in love with Viktoria, from Osprey. If only all help desks were as helpful life would be so much easier!

We are now ready for our next adventure, a new zip tag fitted, the bags ready to roll. I will still worry about them. Having seen my sister’s indestructible luggage destroyed (You might remember the advert, an elephant standing on a case. Well, Athens baggage handlers did a better job than the elephant.) I always marvel that our bags survive the airport baggage handlers trip after trip.

A flight, a bus ride, and a ferry to … awaits.


Thanks, Osprey (and Viktoria!)

Change the Honours System NOW!

Watching the devastating events in France and listening to doctors, nurses and people who were simply there. These people acted without considering their own safety.

Who do we honour? Half-wit celebs, singers, actors and civil servants.

As a nation, do we honestly consider any of them worthy? How many so honoured have subsequently been discredited revealing perversions beyond belief, making a mockery of their position?

Why can’t we honour heroes of every nation? Why not reach out beyond our borders to prove we care?

Stop the mockery. Honour people anywhere in the world deserving our respect.

Never going to be famous

I doubt one of my books will ever be discussed on Mariella Frostrup’s open book programme on radio four. I’m often in the car when this is on and listen to the books celebrities choose as their favourite reads.

I honestly have to say, ‘Why?’

“Of course the tale of the vagrant nose-flute player is a metaphor. I felt the descriptions posed a delightful juxta-position to the protagonist’s past life as a Hungarian sex worker.”

Do people really enjoy this stuff, or are they ashamed to admit to what they usually read? I don’t think anybody has ever chosen a book I have even heard of, let alone considered reading.

So, I’m resigned in my writing style. The best I can hope to do is offer an enjoyable read and leave lofty literary ideals to those obviously more intelligent than I am!
Okay, anybody who knows me would spot the lie. I rarely acknowledge the possibility of there being a greater intellect than mine. Thankfully, we can all be different. When it comes to reading, I have a relatively wide range.

My reading rules:

Rule one: I want my books to take me to foreign worlds. Give me monsters, space ships, or dragons. Don’t give me misery on Morecambe bay.

Rule two: the story has to move. If I’m still wondering what’s happening by page 60, I give up. I suspect this eliminates finer literature. I have occasionally broken this rule. Usually when I am on holiday and have run out of things to read, I invariably regret it.

Rule three: surprise me! Nothing worse than everything happening in the order I expect it to occur.

A simple set of rules, but I suspect these are the reason I find most prize-winning novels a chore.

Good job we can be different, isn’t it?

Ramblings of a dog walker – 18th January 2015

You can tell a badly trained dog by the way the owner talks to them. Not only are they dancing around my dogs, desperate to stick a cold nose where mine don’t want a cold nose, but they are called back with such meaningless words as ‘Danny! Come here this instant, what have I told you …’

Dogs don’t remember what you told them. They want to sniff butts and if you can’t call them back, they should be on a lead.

I confess to being a bit grumpy. We are living close to Blackpool and the locals have to be the worst dog owners on the planet. Some kick the dog out of the car door and let it run on the field while they stay in the car with the engine running and read their paper. Others form into groups chatting whilst the dogs crap all over the place.

When I asked somebody why nobody cleans up the crap, I just got a blank look and a shrug. ‘We don’t do that round here.’