The Anonymous Widower

Is It Time To Close the Madeleine McCann Case?

Close is probably not the word, but there comes a time after any death or when someone goes missing,  when those left behind must move on!  And I say that, as someone who has lost not only a son, but a wife as well. I also once in the 1990s had a long talk, with a senior detective, who had been involved in quite a few cases where a body had been discovered many years after death and the results weren’t always murder, but sometimes a very unusual accident. Admittedly most of his cases involved older children or adults, so his experience can’t be applied to the McCann or any other child cases, but it was a fascinating insight into so-called cold cases.

Read this article on the BBC, which describes a dignified protest by others who have lost children.  Here is an extract.

The Met agreed to review the case after a Home Office request, but London Assembly member Jenny Jones has said this was unfair on other crime victims.

It is in some ways a hard thing to say, but I agree with Ms. Jones. As the detective also told me no murder or possible murder case is ever closed in the UK.

It is not a decision I would like to take, either as the parents , a policeman or a politician. But then I had to move on in my life! and I can say that it has helped me to come to terms with all my grief. After all, everybody has something to give to society and dwelling on the past doesn’t help in that process. Learning from your experiences and the mistakes you might have made does help and we all have a responsibility to help ensure that what happened to us, doesn’t happen to others.

May 26, 2011 Posted by | News | , , | 7 Comments

Chaos Around the Essex Road

An accident, where a motorcyclist was badly hurt, closed the Essex Road in Islington today and effectively shut down the area all the way to Newington Green, Dalston Junction and Highbury Corner for several hours.

I saw the remains of the bike jammed under a van.  It looked like the  rider hadn’t been going slowly and carefully.

I hope he survives, but surely one accident like this shouldn’t be allowed to cause this much chaos. Whoever was at fault, should face the full force of the law!

As it is, in the end I had to walk all the way home from the Angel in the pouring rain.

Luckily all I was carrying was two ready meals from Marks and Spencer, so it wasn’t a bad inconvenience.

May 26, 2011 Posted by | Travel | , | 4 Comments

Mathmos Lighting

This company, famed for the Lava Lamp, seems to be thinking the way I am on column lights with its Airswitch range.

I need one that is the size of the IKEA one, with the controls of the Airswitch.

May 26, 2011 Posted by | World | , , | 3 Comments

More on Chris Huhne

Popbitch also dicloses two facts about Chris Huhne.

His father made his money selling speed cameras to the government.  If this is actually true, then surely he should have known that you can get caught for speeding.

Hi mother used to be the voice of the speaking clock. If that is true, there is a history of public speaking in the family.

May 26, 2011 Posted by | News, Travel | , , | Leave a comment

A Superinjunction Everybody Can Disclose

Popbitch, which is best described as a gossip site, has bought a racehorse and called it Superinjunction.

It hasn’t been entered yet, so it is not in the various on-line racing databases.

You can inquire about a piece of the action by e-mailing

May 26, 2011 Posted by | News, Sport | , | 2 Comments

Faking It!

Jerry had a way with building; cheap and nasty.

Take this little gem of a cover over the hole where he should probably have put a bolt to secure the beam.

Another Examp;le of Jerry's Handiwork

Underneath was a hole filled with some sort of mastic. To match the nuts and bolts on the staircase, I needed to create a dome headed bolt that could be screwed or fixed into the hole.

Just as I did when I created the dome-headed bolts, I cut a small length of studding.  In this case though I just cut the head off of a brass bolt.

Off With Its Head

That way, I won’t get any electrolytic effects because of dissimilar metals.

A Completed Bolt

The picture shows a completed bolt.

It was then a simple matter of gluing the bolt into the hole using No More Nails.

The Installed Bolt

I suppose I could have used just an ordinary brass bolt, but felt I needed to use the dome-headed theme of the staircase.

May 26, 2011 Posted by | World | , , | Leave a comment

A Hay-Fever Diary

Last year I put together a Pain Diary to see if I could find a better strategy to feeling better.

So now, as I’m suffering badly from hay fever or something like that, I’ll see if I can find any link. Note the two factors after the date are the pollen level according to the BBC and how I have felt on the day out of ten.

Monday, May 23rd – Moderate – 3/10

It started as a good day.

But after washing my hair at about three, it went swiftly downhill.  It was almost as if I’d got soap in my eyes.

I had dinner at Arbutus and felt a bit better as I was very cruel to a rabbit.  But I suspect the restaurant was air-conditioned.

Tuesday, 24th May – Moderate – 3/10

I got up and after breakfast went back to bed only getting up at about 10:00.  I didn’t eat much all day, as I was so tired.  I think it was just a Beanz thing for lunch and strawberries for supper.

Wednesday, 25th May – 4/10

Again I got up late and went to IKEA in Croydon.  Lunch was a plate of IKEA gravadlax and a bottle of ginger beer. Did the air-conditioning help?

Thursday 26th May – Moderate – 6/10

Lunch was an egg dish in Carluccio’s and then getting wet in the rain.

Supper was a Marks and Spencer beef stroganoff after a drink down the pub.

Friday 27th May – Low – 5/10

I had a lot of pain this morning, in my face, left arm and left leg. I was sneezing a lot as I walked around the city.

After lunch of a salad nicoise, I slept for two hours.

Supper was another Marks and Spencer salmon after a drink down the pub.

Saturday 28th May – Low – 5/10

Less pain than yesterday, but like yesterday I did have a two hour sleep after lunch.

Sunday 29th May – Low – 6/10

The pain has been back in my arm today.  And I had a good two hours sleep in the afternoon.

I didn’t have much lunch, but supper was Moroccan Chicken from the freezer with rice and strawberries to follow.

Monday 30th May – Low – 6/10

The pain was still in my arm today.  And again I had a good two hours sleep in the afternoon.

I cooked the Beef and Bean Casserole, but supper was very much a snack.

Tuesday 31st May – Low – 7/10

The arm pain wasn’t so bad today and I didn’t have the sleep in the afternoon.

Lunch was eggs in Carluccio’s and supper was a couple grilled pork chops with some beans.

Wednesday 1st June – Moderate – 5/10

I didn’t have much pain, but I did need a couple of hours sleep in the afternoon.

I was also lazy and had supper in the Northgate Arms

Thurday 2nd June – High- 6/10

I went to the physio this morning and after some asparagus for lunch, I slept for a couple of hours.

Supper was fish and beans.

Friday 3rd June – High – 7/10

Perhaps the physio helped, but my arm was much better today.

Lunch was in Carluccio’s in Hampstead and supper was a Waitrose Indian meal for one after my long walk in Bow.

It was the first day in a long time, when I didn’t have a long sleep in the daytime.

Saturday 4th June – High – 7/10

As the blog shows, I went to the Derby, where it was very hot.  I came back tired and went to bed at 21:30, which is early for me. I slept until 07:20, which is a long sleep for me.

Sunday 5th June – Moderate – 6/10

Not too bad a day and the pain hasn’t been too bad.  It’s now 22:00 and I’ll be going to bed soon.

May 26, 2011 Posted by | Food, Health | , | 3 Comments

Memories Of Deauville

With the G8 summit being in Deauville in the next few days, I’m reminded of a few stories from  the French seaside resort.

The first time, C and I went, we drove along the coast after taking her first red Lotus Elan over on the ferry. It actually was the only overseas trip we did in the car, before she replaced it with the one that I still own.

We did all of the usual touristy things, like seeing the Bayeau Tapestry, the Mont St. Michel and the port of Honfleur, but two things stand out.

When we went to the races, we parked the car next to a Ferrari Testarossa.  It was immediately surrounded by French kids, which I think says a bit for the pysche of the French, who tend to prefer the small and perfectly formed like Piaf and Sarkozy. 

We also were sitting in a cafe in the main street, enjoying a good lunch, when a guy drove up on the opposite side of the street in a BMW convertible and showed everybody how to park a car in a space that was a metre or so too short. He just shunted the cars in front and behind until the space was large enough. Everybody in the cafe enjoyed it and gave him a good Gallic cheer, when he locked his car and walked away. Unfortunately, we had virtually finished lunch and had to move on, so we never saw the end of the story.

We did go to Deauville a couple of years later in my Cessna 340A with our middle son and his friend, Andy, for a day at the races. We had a good day, but at the end of the day we were treated to one of the worst displays of bad manners I’ve ever seen.

When you want to leave a small airport, you fill in all the appropriate paperwork and then go to your aircraft, request permission to start your engines if required and then when that is complete, you request permission to taxi. Deauville was quite busy that day, with several aircraft wanting to leave. So as you do, we just formed an orderly queue until ATC gave us permission to enter the runway and takeoff.

But this wasn’t good enough for one American.  He just passed the queue in his private jet and to various cries of “Sacre Bleu!” and “You don’t have permission!”, he just lined up and took off. What an idiot!

When the man died a few years ago, I actually felt relieved that such a rude man had gone.  It is very rare that I do that!

Sadly there are many more rich, famous and very rude these days.

May 26, 2011 Posted by | Business, Sport, Travel, World | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Phishing Scams From Someone Claiming to be HMRC

We all get these and some look like they come from sensible addresses like

Here’s a typical content.

Date 21/05/2011
A tax refund of 1560.10 GBP .(Still Pending) Due to invalid account record we were unable to credit your account Please submit a verified tax refund request.

A refund can be delayed for a variety of reasons. For example submitting invalid records or applying after the deadline.
Click the “Refund Me Now” link below and follow the on screen step in order to have us process your request.

Refund Me Now Note: For security reasons, we will record your ip-address, the date and time,Deliberate wrong inputs are criminally pursued and indicated.

Best Regards,
HM Revenue & Customs

They are all a scam designed to get your login asnd password to the HMRC web site.

They show all of the typical mistakes of scammers.

  1. Why would they say 2510 GBP, when the £2510.00 would probably be used?
  2. The English is a bit clunky.  But then so is a lot of Civil Servant-speak!
  3. I especially like the last bit saying “Deliberate wrong inputs are criminally pursued and indicated.” What do they mean about indicated? Does a nice young lady all dressed like Lady Gaga in leather come round and give you a ticking off?  Now that will be fun!
  4. And then there’s the Best Regards bit! Very HMRC! I don’t think!

So what should you do with these e-mails, other than comply with what they say?

The real HMRC have a page which says what to do.

Note this clear statement on the page.

HMRC will never send notifications of a tax rebate by email, or ask you to disclose personal or payment information by email.

You should never disclose your personal and/or payment information in reply to an email that may look like it’s from HMRC, you may well be revealing your details to a fraudulent website.


It also says you should forward them to

I shall be sending a few today, so let’s see what happens.

May 26, 2011 Posted by | Computing, World | , , , | Leave a comment