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Monday, 24 November 2003
Never mess with a wizard

St Mary's graveyard

The above photo shows what a church graveyard looks like in the middle of the night. I didn’t take it in the middle of the night, but when I fetched bluemeanie from choir practice one evening, at 8pm.

Last week, I mentioned that I ordered the Two Towers extended DVD set. I will watch this before The Return of the King is released this December. As we all know, director Peter Jackson cut some bits out of Tolkien’s books (e.g. Tom Bombadil), and added some characters of his own. Well, the extended version has Denethor, who was missing from the theatrical version (seige of Gondor).

I also recently read that the actor Christopher Lee (Saruman in the movie) is complaining that he was cut from the third movie.  This is inexplicable, as Lee says.  If Saruman doesn’t appear in this movie, then does that mean that the end where the Hobbits rescue the shire is cut? Will we not have a Worm Tongue killing the fallen wizard? Tolkien’s final book returns to the Shire, and the hobbits, where the whole journey began.  As we have seen in the previous two films, director Peter Jackson has turned the story into a bit of an action flick.  I suspect that in the theatrical version of the final film he will continue with this theme and over-focus on Aragorn.  If so, we will have to wait for the next extended DVD set in order to view Tolkien’s ending.

At lunchtime (during our promonade around the car park) we noticed a solitary demonstrator across the road (outside the company opposite). He was holding a banner which read: La Cantine a Denise. I popped off for my camera, but when I returned he had gone. What are we to make of this?

Posted by bigblue on 24/11/2003 at 07:59 PM
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Sunday, 23 November 2003
Before study (Oxted)

Oxted High Street

I took the above picture a while back in the Oxted High Street (Station Road East). It is a “before” study (in Christmas lights).

Today it’s a bon anniversaire to Alex who turns 14. I phoned him this afternoon to wish him a great birthday (I’ll see him next week to give the present, and wish him properly).

I have decided to award the prizes for the halloween caption competition and the winners are: bluemeanie and africanwmn. Surprise gifts are on their way to both of you.

Not much going on here. It’s wet. At least it is not too cold. According to the weather report it is 6 degrees in Oxted (but “feels like 4”). As they get their data from Biggin Hill airport, it is out a bit on the temperatures!  But notice how they predict rain every day now until Monday 1 December! bluemeanie is at rehersals the whole day today. The play is on this week. I will see it on Saturday evening, the finalé.

Posted by bigblue on 23/11/2003 at 04:56 PM
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Saturday, 15 November 2003
Brigada Internacional

international brigade statue

Jubilee Gardens and Jubilee Walk on the South Bank of the Thames, London, were opened in 1977 to celebrate the 25th Jubilee of the British Monarch. In more recent times it has become home to the London Eye. One revolution of this giant ferris wheel takes half an hour, taking you one and a third times higher than New York’s Statue of Liberty, at a cost of 11 pounds.

Apparently there are plans to develop the South Bank, in which case the Gardens would make way for buildings.

The photo above is a memorial to the International Brigade who fought in the Spanish Civil War from 1936-39. It is one of several statues in Jubilee Gardens.  I quite like the photo of this statue by ArtoftheState here.

Are you a Matrix fan? You may enjoy The Meatrix, which is an activist site that makes use of the theme of the Matrix quite cleverly.

As I welcome my mother today as the newest member of this blog, I leave you to think about poor old Kevin Widmar.

Posted by bigblue on 15/11/2003 at 10:27 PM
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Strange Church Sign

Church sign

I see that we have fallen out of favour with the local Baptist Church. Oh well, I for one am flattered by their attention.

Had a terrible flight from Strasbourg back to the UK this afternoon. Left work at 3:30 pm, but when I got to Strasbourg airport I discovered that my direct flight to Gatwick had been cancelled due to “technical problems”. I remembered a few years ago when I was doing this flight regularly I got the distinct impression that they (Air France) cancelled the flights if there was a low turnout. Later on we heard that the “technical problems” were that it was too windy for the small aircraft to land at Gatwick.  (Is that too windy, or just the wrong type of wind?)

So I had to take a plane to Paris, then fly on to Heathrow. Air France then laid on taxis to Gatwick. There were a few martians in the same situation as me, including Domonique who (while unhappy with the delay of 4 hours) was happier ending up at Heathrow than Gatwick.  In fact only 6 passengers made use of the taxis from Heathrow to Gatwick. Of course those going on by train into London wouldn’t have needed to transfer to Gatwick to do so… and those who had missed connecting flights to Edinburgh, the far East, etc. had to delay their departures by a day.

Posted by bigblue on 15/11/2003 at 12:32 AM
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Wednesday, 12 November 2003
Master Park in the Mist

Master Park, Oxted

I took this photo on 11 November 2003, at the same time of day as the picture that I took last month. You can compare it here

Please note that I have added an About Us and Privacy statement here.

Posted by bigblue on 12/11/2003 at 11:22 PM
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Monday, 10 November 2003
feu d’artifice

firework

Here’s another picture from the fireworks in Edenbridge the other night.

I had a bit of a lazy day today - watched The Office Series 2, which is brilliant btw if you haven’t seen it. I haven’t cringed so much in a long time. Pity about Dawn and Tim though.  Other than that I did a small amount of work from home.

This morning, at breakfast, bluemeanie and I enjoyed a discussion about the joys and merits of cheese.  It was interesting to watch the expressions on pinkie’s face as she worked out what we were referring to.

Posted by bigblue on 10/11/2003 at 09:56 PM
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Bon Anniversaire Spenks!

Edenbridge Tank

The above picture shows the militaristic fireworks display in Edenbridge last night (which had nothing to do with Rememberance Sunday), but was a belated Bonfire Night. More about the fireworks below.

Today is Spenker’s birthday.  Congratulations, but remember that the best years of your life are now behind you.  Actually, I think you know this already - is that why you didn’t have a party this year?

Last night Pinkie, Pinkie’s friend M and I went to watch the fireworks in Edenbridge with Spenkers and her family.  It was pretty cold (although not as much as previous years).  We got there in time for the tail-end of the street procession and a mere 45 minute wait for the firework’s to start.  Then it was time for the Bonfire Bishop to appear, to recite the poem Remember, remember, and kick off the grisly proceedings.  This year they had a traditional-looking Guy Fawkes, and thereafter a mystery guy to burn (Saddam Hussein).  There was even a real tank on the field, to help set fire to him.  When the Bishop called out to the crowd:

What shall we do with this traitor [Saddam Hussein/Guy Fawkes]:

and the crowd (mostly) responded with shouts of:

Burn him!

one remembers what a violent celebration Bonfire Night is. Well the fireworks were pretty.  Holly fell asleep on DavidM�s back on the (long) walk back to the car.  By then it was approaching 11pm.

Rugby World Cup:
Watched the rugby on Saturday morning. It reminded me of one of Popple’s legal stories:

A seven year old boy was at the centre of a courtroom drama when he challenged a court ruling over who should have custody of him.

The boy has a history of being beaten by his parents and the judge awarded custody to his aunt.

The boy confirmed that his aunt beat him more than his parents and refused to live there.

When the judge suggested that he live with his grandparents the boy cried out that they beat him more than anyone.

The judge dramatically allowed the boy to chose who should have custody of him.

Custody was then granted to the Springbok rugby team as the boy firmly believed that they were not capable of beating anyone.

A reminder to you, if you have not yet done so, to check out Scarlett and Pinkie
And here’s a photo of the guy the local Bonfire Bishop, called a traitor. Alex suggested that perhaps he is a traitor - to the human race.
Edenbridge Saddam

Say chaps, how about we don’t burn him? We could take him to the International Court of Justice in the Hague?

Posted by bigblue on 10/11/2003 at 03:09 AM
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Monday, 03 November 2003
La Honte des Moutons

cigoyne

I took this picture last year, when bluemeanie and pinkie visited Haguenau. Some of these birds don’t migrate to North Africa any more, because although it gets cold in winter they are very well looked after at the breeding sanctuaries.

Ash tells me that they have finally solved the problem of the ship of sheep.  They are sending the ship to New Zealand and renaming it The Love Boat.

Today the weather cleared up a bit and it is looking pretty mild for the rest of the week.  It’s a pity that it gets dark so early now.

Posted by bigblue on 03/11/2003 at 11:18 PM
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