Wednesday, February 25, 2015
Proportion and Scale with Vitus Gerulaitis and Wilkinson Sword
or salmonella at the very least.
It's just a bit of bog in a wood to some, but half a dozen springs spring forth in this muddy and woody morass and they need to be springing forth with a little more exuberance if we are to experience some decent summer flows in the Dever,
Yes, and I'm sorry for this, a little more rain in this valley please!
P Thanks to Wilkinson Sword for stepping into the breach to provide proportion and scale. Vitus is not a fan of chasing pike with a fly, they prefer to use jigs or dead baits in the Baltic states apparently.
The grayling anglers are also picking up a few rainbows, which are in superb condition and are probably the rearguard of fish that escaped into the river during the floods of last winter.
and who sowed the seed of that idea?
I rarely contemplate, what might have been, but a few years later the Houghton Fishing Club reduced the size of their fish production unit and laid off two keepers. As one of the last in and unmarried heathen to boot, I am sure I would have been one of the first to fall, so perhaps the time away at the unhappy hatchery wasn't a bad move. I hardly saw Mick Lunn when I worked at the club, but six weeks into my tenure at the unhappy hatchery a brown envelope arrived with a note " Your eel money boy" my share of the takings for the catch from the eel set during my brief time at the club. Some have sought to discredit his methods in recent times, but I reckon he was alright, the ability to alternate between dealing with recalcitrant under keepers and US Presidents is a difficult trick to pull off but he managed it, he was certainly "of his time" and probably had chalky water running through his veins.
We would not have been forgiven if we had left Otis at home, as for many years they had labradors in the house, so prior to our visit as a bowel emptying exercise we delved deep into the dales to a fish farm where I once undertook three weeks work experience with a chap who now works in the warmer climes of the far east. The toilet was in a barn, the caravan in which we lived was ten foot long with no electricity and sited on the side of the valley where the sun never shone, Oh, and then it snowed. On at least two occasions we pulled frozen swedes and kale from nearby fields in order to provide sustenance and complete the Kolyma gulag feel. It was some experience, but the knowledge that your aunt and uncle were half an hour away with a warm bath and some roast chicken provided quite a bit of comfort. The fish farm looked a sight more welcoming than I remember, and parts of the villages are now decidedly "chi chi" But it must remain a difficult place to hatch fish because the low water temperature dictated that the eggs took forever to hatch and the Dalby Forest upstream meant that inlet screens must be attended to throughout the night to clear leaves and debris.
Quite stunning, something to aspire to and several levels up from the life sized plastic iguana that we have stuck to a tree in our garden.
and now here's Bob with the travel,
Parts of the UK motorway system are at the point of over saturation, and the next time I meet up with a big noise in the world of transport strategy I will upbraid him/her accordingly.
Why is so much freight consigned to the road? The A34 is a procession of car transporters moving automobiles to Southampton in order that the Grimaldis et al can ship them abroad, or occasionally park the odd consignment on a sand bar in Southampton water.
Early on in our journey north to visit ailing relatives, the radio trumpeted that a car transporter had fallen over on the A34 a few miles behind us and the road was closed. Thankfully no one was hurt and we felt sure that by the time we headed south around tea time somebody would have cleared it up. Twelve hours later two lanes remained closed, tailbacks were extensive and we got grumpy and teeth were once again ground although missing " Eastenders - Live!" and a long forgotten packet of polos provided some succour during our delay.
Later this week we must once again twice negotiate the fifteen miles of fifty miles an hour on the M3. It will be the eighth time in a week, which is small beer for some commuters, but I walk to work I'm not used to this motorway mayhem. Thirty miles of our forty minute journey on a major UK transport link will be conducted at fifty miles an hour. We are travelling up to some smoke to see Henning Wehn, a much appreciated Christmas treat from Child A and Child B, and a comedian who Madam and myself greatly favour after listening to a live performance via the miracle of podcast during our extensive motorway travels in Germany last year, where we cruised merrily at a speed approaching three figures, never saw a cone, no teeth were ground and there was plenty of room for everyone who wanted to use the road. My CSE grade 2 German confirms that there are no words in the German language for "average speed check"
Somebody sort our motorways out, and let's get a little more freight on the rails.
While we're on Europe, a twenty pound ticket and a favourable exchange rate saw us scuttling through Le Manche last week, for a "holiday in a day" A nice lunch, a little shopping and some confustication in French. Without average speed checks (sorry, them again) we can leave home and cross over to the other side in just over two hours, not quite as fast as Derek Acorah or Doris Stokes but relatively quickly nonetheless. Emerging blinking into the light we move very quickly on an excellent road for thirty minutes to be rewarded with the necessary retail and culinary experience before we bowl on back to blighty, thoroughly refreshed with our hat on three hairs, whistling dixie. The atmosphere on entering Calais was a little edgy, more and more young men up from the horn of Africa congregate in the town and a troop of armed police officers confronted fifty or more on the hard shoulder near the entrance to Eurotunnel. Two stepped out into our lane as we made our considered approach and, looking across to the line of freight on the bridge that leads to passport control we picked out a pair tugging at the rear doors of a lorry. It is desperate stuff, Paris was on edge when we visited a few years ago, goodness knows what it is like now, complicated times that will not be best served by extremes of view, and requires addressing not at a municipal level but internationally.
On occasion I'll turn to the Catholic Church for guidance,
Sorry that should read,
Sometimes I watch episodes of Father Ted back to back for hours on end.
A series of marches through every town in England with banners proclaiming " Careful Now" may not be a bad idea in the coming weeks