Saturday, June 30, 2012
It's nice to have something good to celebrate. We have a lot of enforced celebration here at the moment, such as the Jubilee. Every time I put the radio on over the course of four days "Land of Hope and Glory" was playing. If I was a generous monarch I would give any child in the country who wanted one a free ticket to go to the Olympics. Mind you I wouldn't stop there, this would just be the start of one huge giveaway. Anyway The Government wants each school in Britain to receive six free tickets, though London Mayor Boris Johnson is trying to find sponsorship for a further 75,000 to be given to London pupils so one in eight can attend the Games. Tickets for the opening ceremony are priced from about £20 to £2,012 and from what I've seen of it so far, this ceremony could well be a great source of national embarrassment. One of the things that bothers me about buying tickets for the Olympics is that I believe that the taxpayer has already payed for the cost of it all, so having to buy a ticket to attend is a bit like paying for something twice.
The official estimate for the Olympics is £9.3 billion but other estimates put the figure as high as £24 billion. From a newspaper article comes this alarming statement; of the '£1.13bn being allocated to the police for extra counter terrorism during the games or the £4.4bn budgets of the security and intelligence services.' All this for an event that is over in just eighteen days.
Performers at the ceremony have been sworn to secrecy, so let's hope that no one has been asked to wear anything like a large rucksack, such as the day after we won the Olympics bid. I'm sure it'll all be fine, after all the security has cost a bit so what could go wrong? There are supposed to be five hundred extra police taking over a holiday camp in Weymouth for the yachty part of the Olympics, which sounds like a great idea for a "Carry On" style movie though I wouldn't like to be working the bar in that place. I have an image of them all standing in the rain on the beach, watching distant ships through binoculars for any signs of "trouble". Weymouth, lovely though it is, is a small and faded holiday resort known for its rehab units.
On a happier note a wedding took place here recently, which was a source of genuine celebration that didn't cost anyone billions of pounds. Hundreds of people turned up and had a wonderful time. It was the wedding of the year in these parts, despite there being any mention of it in the town newspaper. That two people should find so much happiness in each other is a triumph of love and hope.
Sunday, June 10, 2012
Here we are enjoying the summer months and the warmer rain that this season brings in such surprising abundance. (see film attached, though I recommend turning the volume down for this one) Something to do with the jet stream being further south than usual at this time of year apparently. In the west of Wales six inches of rain fell in one day, which does seem unusual, resulting in a large amount of flooding. I go onto youtube to look for some amateur footage of the Wales floods and find that there are large storms and flooding in Australia as well. Heaviest rain in two decades. Over in America there has been thirteen inches of rain in Pensacola, Florida but there is also the emerging walking dead zombie problem. Cloud nine has been suggested. At least we have been recently prepped by the tv for this one, and anyone seeing a homeless person acting strangely is advised to contact the police so that they can come and kill them. Homeless person/brain eating zombie to be blown away, is there much of a difference anymore? Welcome to our caring sharing future.
The storm here destroys lots of deckchairs and the excellent quality beech wood is quickly bundled up and carried home to be recycled into something else, so that out of this destruction something new might be created. This is also familiar thinking by the look of it, although in my case I don't actually perform the destruction, though I have been whistling quite a lot lately.
The BBC iPlayer has a program called Coast, which recently featured a piece about the last clifftop farmer in this area and includes some stunning aerial photography of this part of the coastline. The episode was called 'Life Beyond the Edge' and shows a vanished way of life that looked perfectly idyllic; fishing in the morning and tending vegetables in the afternoon. So much for progress.