Monday, September 29, 2014

The Adventures Of James - Trees Everywhere

Trees - trees everywhere!

Do you remember that Seth Troxler video about the bats?

Well this was similar.  Except I could see lots of trees.  And I wasn't on acid.  Or wearing my girlfriend's pants.

I have decided to get out and adventure more and explore more places.  As I cannot afford European travel, I shall make do with the land around me.

And what a green and pleasant land it is.  Thank you dearest rain.

So yesterday morning whilst having a long procrastination session during my studying, I eventually decided that I would wonder into yonder for an adventure through Swinley Forest near Ascot.  I already have a train ticket to Bracknell so the extra from Bracknell to Ascot was just £2.10 – well within my budget.  Who would have thought working in Bracknell would ever come useful?

I don’t think I have been in a forest since adulthood, not a proper forest – a wood yes, forest no.

First I had to walk through parts of Ascot - as you can see below, it was very dangerous.

Apparently that is the normal colour of water in Ascot.  I carefully avoided any contamination.

I was particularly impressed upon arrival.

Trees, forever trees.  How exciting.

More trees.   Less exciting.

Yet more trees.  And on, and on.

Trees are pretty boring.  No bats.

I did however find the landing strip for those cocaine planes from South America:

There was one interesting part where they were breeding dragonflies, which are damn cool insects.  So there were lots of dragonflies.  But I didn’t see anything else.  Except trees.

 My conclusion is that trees are better as furniture.

Wednesday, September 03, 2014

James Went to Sonning. And Got In.

The highlight of my weekend just gone is difficult to choose – DJing to 3 people, a gift of a tea, publishing my autumn weather forecast, a visit from my Parisian delight, an evening at the Oakford and some amazing semi-drunken southern fried chicken – Chicken Cottage is the chicken you need by the way.  Not to mention it was a 3-day weekend, I had a pie and booked Eurostar tickets to Brussels to I can go admire the European Union buildings.

But for novelty and the fact that it suits my new boring lifestyle, Sunday in Sonning was just the highlight.

Before I got to Sonning I had to get there – I was thinking of getting the bus from town but one of my most treasured personal advisors suggested walking along the Thames.

And with the beautiful weather which I had predicted a monthin advance, I set off, down through the Oracle, past Mandela, through TVP and along a nice woodland path into the picturesque village of Sonning.

I arrived upon the cricket club – on a quaint traditional village green with a clubhouse – the club was impressively inaugurated in 1750, though sadly had an electronic scoreboard – I was hoping there would be a man/woman changing the scoreboard manually by inserting different plastic numbered boards.

A little sweaty upon arrival, a bottle of Magners cooled me down – yes there were plenty of alcoholic refreshments, including locally brewed beer and a Pimms tent.  Prices were unexpected - £3.50 for a bottle of Magners, £3 for a glass of wine - £6 for a jug of Pimms.  Cheaper than Hull.  Cheaper than the posh bit of Hull, anyway.

The cricket itself was supposed to be a 20/20 game but was changed after around 13 overs to a 25/25 game – doesn’t quite have the same ring does it?  I think it was Sonning 1st team vs a President’s XI select – though I could be wrong.  I was more interested in talking to friends and consuming alcohol.  I know Phil Tuffnell was playing.

Tuffers didn’t last too long – I saw him face a couple of balls, went for a drink and by time I got served he was out.  He wasn’t much better with the ball at first either but really improved in later bowling spells.

The match was won in glorious style – a magnificent 6 off the 3rd-last ball (approx) – quite a way to win a game.  It was looking like Tuffer’s bowling had swung the game back towards the President’s XI but what a way to win the game.

Honourable mention most definitely goes to the hog roast which was amazing.  And Oracle Christmas hog roast if you are reading - actually filled up the bun with meat!  Overfilled it, in fact.  Not just 1 and a half slices.

Dishonourable mention goes to the excitement of subsequently seeing these amazing cakes – lemon cake, Victoria sponge cake (my favourite), chocolate gateau – then finding out they were only for the players and VIPs.  Such a tease.

Though at least they let oneself into Sonning – a disgracefully common Ford car was found nearby and the occupant hounded out by the tannoy – or something like that.

Then several ciders later (and Pimms, yeah I might as well admit that I quite like it - it isn’t as dishonourable to my northern roots as liking Thatcher is, and fuck me, I love Thatcher), I walked back along the River Thames, and admired the beauty of England.

If anyone does not appreciate the beauty of this world, and this country in particular, then get out of your Wetherspoons and go for a walk.  It is truly gorgeous.  Mostly.

And if you don’t like rain, which creates the green and pleasant land we have, then go live in a desert.

Rant over.  Quite short for my standards.

If anyone is as equally as boring as me and would like to go for a walk one Sunday, especially if it ends in a roast dinner, please do let me know.

Next up in this series is James Goes To Slough.  Probably.

 Everyone loves a gas tower don't they?  Hmm maybe I have a new website idea...