The Anonymous Widower

Sainsbury’s Now Sell Celias!

I took this picture in the Angel branch of Sainsbury’s.

I only buy the odd bottle these days, as the Adnams Southwold Pale Ale 0.5%, which is available in Marks and Spencer is more to my taste.

 

February 8, 2018 Posted by | Food, Health | , , , | Leave a comment

United Airlines Introduce My Ideal Flying Class

The respected travelwriter, Simon Calder, on BBC Breakfast, alerted me to this story, which is fully reported in this article on USA Today, which is entitled United adds ‘Basic Economy’ fares with carry-on bag restrictions.

My Carry On Bag

When I flew to Las Palmas recently on easyJet, I did pay for baggage to go in the hold, as I thought I’d be taking more and I don’t have a carry-on bag, that is big enough.

Why is it, that all light carry-on bags seem to have wheels, which is just extra weight and wasted space,. to carry around?

All I want is a light square box with a comfortable handle.  My current Mandarina Duck bag is shown in My Packing List.

Since then, I’ve cut down on what I take with me, so I do have a bit more space.

I could therefor easily use a smaller carry-on bag, especially, if I was going to a country I knew well like Germany, Italy,Spain or Poland.

On a more ambitious trip, I could certainly fill a bigger carry-on bag with useful items like lots of M&S Honeycomb Crispies.

But unfortunately, I haven’t found the ideal bag.

  • No wheels.
  • Small comfortable carry handle.
  • No straps.
  • Maximum volume to fit carry-on rules.
  • Big enough to take a compact SLR and lens.
  • Not too many specially-designed feature pockets.
  • Secure.

I suspect that some clever American, will be designing the ideal carry-on bag for United’s Basic Economy.

Choosing Seats

I don’t!

This means I usually get an aisle seat, which is ideal for my needs.

  • I tend to get a bit stiff sitting for three or four hours, so a walk to the toilet is easy to stretch my legs.
  • I inevitably leave something I want in my carry-on bag, so if it’s in the overhead locker,  can get it easily.
  • I can get on at the last minute and know I can just sneak into my seat.
  • I can usually get off easily.
  • I can see what’s on the trolley, without reading the menu.

It will all go pear-shaped one day, when I get the dreadful centre seat of three.

My Coat

The picture shows the inside of my warm M & S winter coat.

My Winter Coat

My Winter Coat

Note the large internal pocket, which is big enough for a thick tabloid newspaper or a paperback book.

The external pockets, also are big enough for my camera, phone and a real hndkerchief.

A Few Travel Tips

Over the years, I have gradually cut down on what I take.

  • Take a battery-powered electric toothbrush. The charger of most others takes up too much space.
  • Charge phones, cameras and other devices, through a USB lead and just take a USB charger and adapter.
  • Don’t take soap or shampoo, or anything the hotel should have.
  • As I don’t use sun-screen, I don’t take that either.
  • Take perhaps three still-rolled real handkerchiefs, as they have other users, like stylish tablecloths on trains.
  • Take a spare SD card for your camera, already unpacked and ready for use.
  • On a long trip, I take older socks, knickers and shirts, discarding them, when they get dirty.
  • Take at least two credit cards in separate places, in case you lose your favourite.
  • Don’t buy anything in duty-free. It only encourages them! And we have to carry it.
  • Take a small shoe horn.
  • Take an upmarket compact plastic knife/fork/spoon from IKEA, as you never know, when that delicious snack will need it.
  • Never take nightwear.
  • Take a torch.
  • Take one of Sainsbury’s five pence orange shopping bags.

When I used to travel with C, we used to share a lot of things, like jumpers and tee-shirts, as we were of a similar size.

In fact, the last joke she ever said to me, was that I would have difficulty finding someone, to train to my packing habits.

Comclusion

I can’t wait for a European airline to introduce a Basic Economy class.

November 19, 2016 Posted by | Transport | , | Leave a comment

Marks And Spencer Have Changed My Life

Coming back today, I went to Marks and Spencer in Waterloo station, which although it is not a full stop, must be one of their bigger Simply Food shops in stations.

These pictures sum up the visit.

Some of the products have only been available in the last year or so.

  • Chicken Pakoras
  • Crisps With Exotic Flavours
  • Gluten-Free Gastropub meals.
  • Humous
  • Kent IPA
  • Pasta Salad
  • Scotch Eggs
  • Snacks Wth Taste

When I was diagnosed nearly twenty years ago, you were lucky to find anything quick to cook in any shop, except eggs and fish.

What would I like to see now?

  • Most ready-meals  made gluten-free and labelled as such on the top.
  • Ravioli, that is gluten-free.
  • Sausages and burgers gluten-free, as in Marks and Sainsburys.
  • More gluten-free real beers.

I think it is true to say, that it’s going my way.

October 30, 2016 Posted by | Food | , , , | 7 Comments

Are Sainsburys Winning The Bag War?

Since the five pence charge was introduced for plastic bags in England, there has been very little innovative thinking by shops about how they could use the bags to drag people into their shops.

Summing up the shops I use and the comments of others, I would say this.

  • Waitrose – Thin and useless
  • Tesco – Thin and useless
  • Marks and Spencer – Not too bad!

And then there’s Sainsburys!

A Reuseable Plastic Bag From Sainsburys

A Reuseable Orange Plastic Bag From Sainsburys

 

They are surely the best, as you can fold them flat and then into a size to fit in a coat pocket or bag.

The one in the picture is probably six or seven weeks old.

One day last week, I needed a few items to complete my supper like some strawberries and I hadn’t got a bag with me. So I walked past Marks and Spencer and Waitrose to Sainsburys and bought them there together with a 5p. bag.

Do you think that Sainsburys have deliberately made a 5p. bag that lasts to attract shoppers to their stores?

Judging by the number of orange bags, I see on the streets of London, I certainly think Sainsburys have been thinking this one through.

  • Orange bags are easy to spot, so you always take one.
  • As they’re easy to fold, some might fold them and put them in their pocket or bag after putting the shopping away.
  • Seeing lots of orange bags on the street, reminds shoppers to get what they need at Sainsburys.
  • Because of the quality of the bag, it makes you think well of Sainsburys and their products.

On the other hand, IKEA deliberately make their blue bags impossible to fold, so you leave them behind, when you go shopping.

June 12, 2016 Posted by | World | , , , | Leave a comment

From Balham To West Croydon

This series of pictures show the first part of a journey I took to get to Leatherhead station from Balham station.

Note.

This map from carto.metro.free.fr shows the route from Balham to Norwood Junction (Just off map!) via Streatham Hill, West Norwood, Gypsy Hill and Crystal Palace.

Balham To Norwood Junction

Balham To Norwood Junction

Note how the Brighton Main Line goes South from Balham via Streatham Common and Norbury.

There certainly seems to be a lot of space for more development of the railway and/or housing.

 

June 7, 2016 Posted by | Transport | , , , | Leave a comment

Sainsburys Put Their Money On Crossrail

With the exception of the Tesco Extra at Goodmayes, the large Waitrose at West Ealing and the large Sainsburys at Whitechapel, Crossrail stations aren’t generally very close to large superstores, although at least nine are near to big shopping streets or centres.

As all stations and trains will be step-free, I’m surprised that we aren’t seeing more large supermarkets built close to stations.

But according to this article in the South London Press, Sainsburys have now opened a superstore by the Crossrail terminus at Abbey Wood.

Opening large supermarkets may be out of fashion, but I don’t think that the Abbey Wood Sainsburys will be the last on the line.

July 31, 2015 Posted by | Transport | , , , , | Leave a comment