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Saturday, 16 September 2006


Congestion on the M25 again yesterday evening caused long delays, and forced me to take an alternative route. I am thinking of getting a sattelite navigation system to assist me in plotting these cross-country journeys. The system would need to be linked to the Traffic Management System (available in UK, France, Germany) which would warn of upcoming congestion and road works and propose alternative routes. However I suspect that these systems are great when you are the only car on the road with one: what will happen when everyone is redirected onto the alternative route?

Posted by bigblue on 16/09/2006 at 01:15 PM
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Friday, 15 September 2006

hot air blower

I arrived at my client’s site this morning to find this man wielding a hot air blower.  I have noticed these units in operation before. Who could forget seeing Haguenau council workers both removing and replacing leaves on a road at the same time? It was the first time that I have seen someone using this tool to remove puddles from a road.

Posted by bigblue on 15/09/2006 at 08:44 PM
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Thursday, 14 September 2006
Burgh Heath Revisited

site of Burgh Heath accident

A week after the accident near Burgh Heath I took the same route to avoid another nasty accident on the M25.  I couldn’t resist taking the above photograph for comparison. As with last week’s photo, click on the photograph for a wider view.

Posted by bigblue on 14/09/2006 at 10:56 PM
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Wednesday, 13 September 2006
A Head


This head in a flower-pot can be found outside Sarastro Restaurant in Drury Lane, Theatreland, London.  The restaurant is named after a character in Mozart’s Magic Flute, and situated within a Grade II listed Victorian townhouse. The restaurant was designed by artist Richard Sleeman, and is sumptuously decorated in an Opera Theme from ceiling to floor. Fourteen opera boxes adorn three sides of the restaurant, accommodating from 4 to 22 people each. The restaurant serves Mediterranean cuisine, specialising in fish dishes. Sundays and Mondays feature opera performances by up-and-coming stars of the Royal and National Opera Houses.

Posted by bigblue on 13/09/2006 at 11:06 PM
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Tuesday, 12 September 2006
Home of the muffin man


This street is in the Covent Garden district of London, once famous for an open-air morning food market. Muffins were probably sold there, and from there to vendors who went door-to-door in London selling them on. As we all know, there are two types of muffin, the American and the lesser-known English. According to Wikipedia the American muffin (as a foodstuff) is a 19th Century invention, the English muffin (as a foodstuff) is barely 200 years older, whereas the word muffin dates back to the 11th Century, deriving from the (old) French word moufflet, meaning soft (for bread). So the word was used before the 17th Century to describe something different, or similar.  In modern French un mouflet is a word meaning kid (American) or sprog (British).

Posted by bigblue on 12/09/2006 at 10:24 PM
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Monday, 11 September 2006
Zimbabwe Vigil

Zimbabwe vigil in London

This is the Zimbabwe vigil which takes place every Saturday afternoon outside the Zimbabwe Embassy in London, and has done so for almost 3 years now.  At the time of Zimbabwe’s liberation in 1980 there was great excitement about the prospects of that country in progressive circles around the world. Mugabe was hailed as a freedom fighter and democrat. He briefly led the Non-aligned Movement and was seen as an anti-apartheid stalwart in the region.  A mere 25 years later Mugabe is a cardboard cut-out hate figure, widely derided as a dictator. Mugabe is one of many leaders world-wide who have flown (and fallen) like Icarus.

Posted by bigblue on 11/09/2006 at 11:13 PM
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Sunday, 10 September 2006
A Blue Man

A Blue Man

This is one of the Blue Men from The Blue Man Group show that I went to over the weekend. Like Scarlett, we met them after the show, but we didn’t discover any secrets: no words passed their lips.

My favourite bits of the show involved the audience participation, particularly the old lady they “dragged” on stage to eat and share cakes with them.  On Friday at work we were all talking about our plans for the weekend and, when I mentioned that I was going to the show, one of my colleagues mentioned that he had been to see the show in Las Vegas. He added “you’ll see lots of skin”.  I noticed on the Blue Man Group website that their show varies in the different cities in which it is staged, but I didn’t notice any skin (except for the hands and heads, as show above) during the show. One can only imagine what “blue” shows in Las Vegas exhibit “lots of skin”.

Posted by bigblue on 10/09/2006 at 11:19 PM
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Saturday, 09 September 2006
Blue Men Group

Blue Man Group

A while back Scarlett went to see the Blue Man Group. She liked what she saw, and she bought tickets for Pinkie and me. Today we finally went to the show, taking Raghav with us. It’s a brilliant show. I don’t quite know how to describe it, but the description in the photograph above catches it quite well: a euphoric celebration, and suitable for children of all ages above 5 years.

Posted by bigblue on 09/09/2006 at 10:18 PM
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