The Anonymous Widower

Dinner From The Microwave

The Times today is having a go at microwave cookers. It didn’t stop me from eating one of Marks & Spencer’s Fuller Longer meals tonight.  It was called Chicken in a Smoky Tomato Sauce.

It was surprisingly, quite well-endowed on the chicken front, although the sauce didn’t appear very smoky.  But I could do without that! The only allergen was a small amount of cow’s milk. Here’s a picture.

Chicken in a Smoky Tomato Sauce

Note the Estrella Damm Daura beer.

I will have one of these again.

June 21, 2012 Posted by | Food | , , | 7 Comments

Hopping On And Off Buses and The Underground

I often don’t do all my trip around London in the obvious and direct way.

Today for instance, I went from The Angel at Islington to Oxford Circus. I could have taken a tube changing at Kings Cross, but in the end I took a 30 bus to Kings Cross and then the Victoria line. So sometimes you inevitably have to choose where you get off from deep underground.  Wouldn’t information on the weather be useful? Especially as the weather changed dramatically, whilst I was underground. But I’ve heard complaints of information overload already.

The other thing that irks me is that the Underground is a right-handed world. You stand on the right of the escalators, most staircases are easy to go up and down on the right side and the gates are always set-up to be right-handed. Why can’t at least the wide gates have a touch pad on both sides to speed-up those dragging mobile wardrobes? I always try to be left-handed to give my gammy hand something to do.

June 21, 2012 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , | Leave a comment

A French Blue Plaque?

I saw this blue plaque on the wall of the old Dickins and Jones building in Argyll Street today.

Blue Plaque for Germaine de Staël

The lady refered to, is better known as Germaine de Staël and there is more information about the plaque here.

June 21, 2012 Posted by | World | , | Leave a comment

The Thames Barrier Park

Yesterday, I went to the Thames Barrier Park to have a walk.

It is a great place for a walk and the coffee in the cafe there, is very good. Just take the Docklands Light Railway to Pontoon Dock station.

June 21, 2012 Posted by | Transport/Travel, World | , , | Leave a comment

Chinooks Over Canary Wharf

I was a bit slow to catch them with my camera, but what were these two Chinook helicopters doing over Canary Wharf.

Chinooks Over Canary Wharf

If  you look to the left of the Blackwall sign, you should just about be able to see them. I can’t find any reference to them on the Internet. I suppose they were some dummy security exercise for the Olympics

June 21, 2012 Posted by | World | , | Leave a comment

One Line Spam E-Mails

I have seen a large increase in the number of one line spam e-mails over the last week or so.

Typically, the e-mail has the following characteristics.

  1. There is rarely a Subject
  2. The sender maybe someone you know and the e-mail address is not encoded.
  3. The e-mail is copied to lots of other people, who often are connected to the sender. I’ve just received one from Australia and it is copied to masses of people in the country.
  4. The body of the e-mail consists of a single complicated link. Don’t click this, as you’ll get infected with a virus or an advert for a drug you don’t need.

So what should you do if you get such an e-mail?

Ask Leo has the details here.  Read it.

He says that the sender’s e-mail account has been hacked, so contact them immediately and get them to run a virus check on their computer and change their password and account recovery questions.

I would also advise, that if they use HOTMAIL, GMAIL, YAHOO or any other free e-mail to move away from that account and get a new account.  I know it’s a pain, but they could use your account to send other things that you might not like, as they have your current ID and password.

Read Leo as I said and if you don’t believe me, believe him.

I have had five of these e-mails in the last couple of weeks; two from friends, a couple from Australia and another from who knows where.

The frequency seems to be increasing.

June 21, 2012 Posted by | Computing | , , , | Leave a comment

Hayley Turner Rides for the Queen

Hayley Turner is riding Momentary for the Queen in the Ribblesdale Stakes today.

Hayley is a coeliac and now is the best lady jockey in the UK. Many will say the best lady jockey ever to ride in the UK.

June 21, 2012 Posted by | Health, Sport | , , | 2 Comments

A Vulcan Story

Whether this story is true, I do not know, but I heard it from a retired RAF officer many years ago. The Avro Vulcan was one of Britain’s three V-bombers; Vulcan, Valiant and Victor, which were designed for Britain’s nuclear deterrent.

In a way, the Vulcan was unique in that it was instantly recognisable because of its delta wing. The shape also had the advantage that it didn’t have a very good radar signature.

I was told that at the height of the Cold War, the United States was worried that a sneaky Russian bomber might get through to bomb the cities of the East Coast.

So the RAF said, that they would stage a surprise attack.  A Vulcan was chosen and got through the radar defences unseen.

I think it is true to say, that in those days, there was a lot of rivalry between the RAF and USAF, and any story that showed up the others was distributed with glee.

There is now a Vulcan, XH558, in flying condition and it makes a wonderful sight in the air. But don’t forget your ear-plugs!

I must add one personal reminiscence here about the Victor.  When Handley Page folded in 1970, they were still converting some of the remaining Victors to the tanker role. These planes had to be ferried to Woodford near Manchester for the work to continue.  The job was entrusted to Handley Page’s test pilot, who after this job would not have a job with the company. Most were in need of a bit of repair, but he’d found one, on which he could retract the undercarriage and get a lot of power out of the tired engines. I was working at ICI in Welwyn Garden City at the time, and a colleague, who had used to work at Handley Page, said that there was going to be a low-level flypast over Hatfield Airfield and we were probably in the flight-path.

We were and at lunchtime, we saw this Victor pass overhead at probably the minimum allowable height of 500 feet.

It was a sight to be remembered.

June 21, 2012 Posted by | World | , | 6 Comments