25 February 2012

Beware of Sheep

In the late 1980's I commuted daily between Birmingham and Leominster - often along the A44.  One sunny evening in 1988 I made a quick recce of Bringsty Common (and its pub) - yes it is up to hosting an orienteering event we just need to find someone to map it...

I did not think it would be 24 years before we held our first event there...

First outing for the HOC Hi-Vis Tabards
"Beware of sheep" and "please take you litter home" - are these two linked? I know that the Cluns can be naughty boys but, frankly, how much damage can one sheep do?

Bringsty Common - we quickly learned - avoid the bracken
Aha - I won!  Sadly of 23 starters only 5 were under 40 years old - and the winner was 50.  Does not bode well for the future of orienteering.

EVO - the reborn "Live and Let Live" - excellent.  This is where Robert's father spent time on fire watching duty in WWII - the pub being more welcoming than the open hillside behind
Now that is what I call REAL CHIPS

It has been a butchers for over 50 years and I have driven past 200 times - but this was the first time I noticed it - currently the 5 star Knightwick butchers


21 February 2012

In Ireland for Sanitation

It is audit time at work - and I'm off over the Irish Sea once again:

Interesting planes on the apron - 4 engines, Soviet made - just looked them up - Antonov 12BP

Nice when you are remembered - the waiter recognised my voice on the phone - and thanked me for my TripAdvisor review.  I was tempted by the sushi - but, really, you can't beat scallops straight from the west of Ireland for sweetness

Mains was a mixture of fried fish - there is some sea bass in there but it was the turbot that sold it to me

My companions

The gentleman is a former airline pilot and the lady was one of his cabin crew, now wife.  Keeps his hand in flying private jets - over to Doncaster a week or so back and got a tour round XH558 - lucky man.

Started out with Aerlingus but, being 707 trained spent much of the 80's flying for Air Nigeria (office manager turning the president's portrait to face the wall - there has been another coup), Air Zambia and flights in and out of Tripoli and Berui - but luckily not to Iran - warned off an offered extra sector by a contact who had just flown the Shar out of the country, and many many other tales.

A further claim to fame was, apparently, his last "interaction" with a certain Irish carrier - but sadly unrepeatable here.

18 February 2012

ooohh I say... Crumpet!

In the U.K. the term "crumpet" is sometimes used to refer to an attractive woman, often as the phrase "a bit of crumpet

 Any way that's not what this blog is about

Aldi Edgbaston - Mr Warburtons Crumpets - 79p for 6,  Aldi Crumpets - 37p for 6

Warburtons have a very positive image and have been successful in gaining market share - however Aldi are fast leaving behind their nasty-cheap-cheerless image - and it where I shop by preference so I feel another test is required:

First: Are we comparing like with like?

Best Before is 21 Feb for Aldi and 22 Feb for Warburtons - so OK

Weight per unit:  47g Aldi 61g Warburtons - ahhh - a pack of 47g Warburtons would be 61p then compared with 37p for Aldi

Left - Warburtons Right - Aldi
Ingredients - similar - Warburtons quotes E numbers while Aldi prefers the chemical name.  Neither reads particularly more or less "healthy".

Nutrition - More calories and sugar from Aldi, more salt and more water from Warburtons everything else the same.

Taste: Both samples were toasted, buttered and halved.  Plates where then shuffled (eyes shut) until I lost track of which was where and then after 30s of further cooling - tasted.

Warburtons - softer, less baked, delicate taste but a bit bland
Aldi - over baked, tasty but with a bitter aftertaste - from the burned base I think


I will stick with the Aldi - prefer the smaller size as means less calories consumed and 2/3 the cost (by weight) or 1/2 the cost (by unit).  If the next lot are over baked - then switch to Warburtons.

Did I miss something?

I am going to Tiree in March - and there is an orienteering race close to Oban and the day before the ferry departs - serendipity - so I entered promptly (because they may need to restrict numbers), entries have been open for 2 days - and it is still only me on the list.

Did I miss something? - the area looks nice on the map but perhaps there is some hidden unpleasantness.

17 February 2012

16 February 2012

La La La La Banca...

Once more to La Banca - which used to be my nearest branch of Barclays

Don't be put off by the location (Cotteridge) - it is a surprisingly good restaurant

That is Filetto al Dolcelatte (fillet steak) and red cabbage and parsnips

Bread and Butter Pudding - Italian Style (Pannetone)

Who's your favourite boy band then?

We are!

Happy days

and several pints

11 February 2012

Georges should get it but George will get it

Off to the Electric Cinema - 103 years old - to see The Artist***.  Full house - 100% full house.  Average age ~40.  Complete building is licensed - so you can sit with a wee drinkie (refills ordered by text) and know that everyone is going to behave and there is a proper person looking after the projection.  I only went because it was recommended - I was expecting some typical "EU funded" French for the French Movie but no...

Stand out movie - best since "Senna" and before that "The Kings Speech". 

***don't follow that link unless you are NOT going to see the movie.  Don't do any research - don't watch the trailer - just go and see it cold.

Georges Valentin (played by Jean Dujardin) will no doubt get defeated by George Clooney in the Oscars - but is it not always that way?