23 March, 2015

Mini Shard Protest update

From the ground
Honestly? Southern Trains caused a huge amount more disruption and fuss today...
Exit looks pretty clear for home time
...this lot will be lucky if anyone even notices, especially when the hoard starts to pour around them on the big commute home again...on a normal day there are more people sat there having a smoke than there are people protesting today...bit of an anti-climax really...

Protest at the Mini Shard 23rd March

Mini Shard Protest 23rd March 2015
Yep, so a bit worried what the office would be like this morning (as there is an "Occupy" protest due to happen this week, starting today)...
Mini Shard Protest 23rd March 2015
...the answer?  A bit of scaffolding around the escalators covered in anti-climb paint, a bit of glue on the windows (I guess to make it easy to remove any spray paint/permanent marker pens), a *lot* more security guards and a lot more police...and basically nothing else!

I guess it's tough to get up early in the morning and commute to a protest eh?

Update - According to Facebook it's at 11:30am that they plan to "Take  the space"...let's see what happens! ;)

Update update - You can watch the protest live here - http://bambuser.com/v/5372441 (their cameras)

20 March, 2015

Eclipse pictures from London Shard 2015

2015 Eclipse from the Mini Shard
So we all gathered on the terrace on the 14th floor to have a look and see what (if anything) we could see of the eclipse...(it was very cold and super windy up there - and I didn't bring my coat so I didn't want to stay long) -
2015 Eclipse from the Mini Shard
- and actually it did get really quite dark, it was definitely twilight, all the buses and taxis put on their headlights, looking out over London you could see loads of other groups of people gathered on rooftops -
2015 Eclipse from the Mini Shard
- but thanks to that "toxic smog" from Russian factories, the actual sun itself was completely impossible to pin point (bit of a shame) -
2015 Eclipse from the Mini Shard
- oh well, there is always 2090! ;)

29 January, 2015

Cthulhu - The London Times

Cthulhu for President - London Times
...as observed today, sat at my desk in the News Building...

Now where is my Elder sign, please tell me I didn't leave it on the tube?!!

15 January, 2015

Wow, got to see an Enigma Machine today!


Yeah, an actual real one - in the office up on the 14th floor (right there on a desk!) - don't worry, I didn't leave sticky fingerprints all over it...super cool though... ;)

UPDATE!! Did get to leave sticky fingerprints on it, with permission though! Got a full training session on how to encode and decode (and I was the operator)!
IMAG2196
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Sweet! ;)

09 December, 2014

Delicious Christmas Lunch...!

IMAG2099
...fruit punch, mince pie, full Christmas dinner, cheesecake and fruit...(oh and a cracker) - still wearing my hat, it's not coming off for the meetings this afternoon... ;)

Oh and that view in the background I have got so used to that I didn't even bother to frame?  All the way down the Thames to Canary Wharf... ;)

It's got me to thinking about December 25th and what time I need to be out of bed!

01 December, 2014

December 1st...!

December 1st
Wow...how did we get to December already?  Things are starting to get distinctly festive in London, the Shard has started to get glittery, the Salvation Army brass band was in London Bridge station playing a selection of Christmas hits this morning and a small(ish) tree -
December 1st
-  (with what appear to be temporary decorations) has appeared outside the News Building (you can see where someone tried to put the lights up and then threw them on the ground in frustration)... ;)

Still, I think we have about 90% of the Christmas shopping is done (a couple of gifts and the food to go), so this year, with a bit of luck we will be able to relax into it - if my last couple of bits of holiday are approved today then my Christmas break begins in two and a half weeks...! ;)

Bring it on...!

30 September, 2014

14th Floor open!

...and Wow!  Just need some cash on my lunch card now!
Oh boy...new canteen is amazing... :0
IMAG1900
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...around the corners -
Floor 14 - News building - Shadow walk
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The Book Wall - News Building
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- real books in the book wall!  And then outside onto the new terrace -
14th Floor Terrace - News Building
View from the canteen south (with man and vegetation)
View of the Shard from the 14th floor terrace at the News Building
View from the 14th floor - News Building
Astonishingly cool... ;)


04 September, 2014

London Bridge Chaos!

London Bridge - platforms destroyed!
Argh...and I thought I had cleverly missed all the mess...!

With my usual platforms now completely destroyed (as I mentioned previously) - the journey into London Bridge has been much the same as normal (just slightly narrower platforms to disembark - walking up the train instead of the platform skips the queue - so no big deal)...getting home again last night was another matter entirely though (I'm hoping this was just a blip, but last night no-one knew where to go - it was bedlam) -
London Bridge Chaos
London Bridge Chaos
London Bridge Chaos
London Bridge Chaos
London Bridge Chaos
I'm fairly sure I visited all the remaining platforms at least twice before I found a train heading in the direction I wanted...so things aren't quite sorted yet...see how we go tonight...welcome back to work, Fink! >:P

Pictures from Cornwall...

Widemouth Bay already
Widemouth Bay
Widemouth Bay
Widemouth Bay
Launceston Steam Railway
Widemouth Bay
Widemouth Bay
Widemouth Bay
Widemouth Bay
Ready to surf!

03 September, 2014

Woah, London Bridge...

London Bridge - platforms destroyed!
...looking down from the News Building, all my normal platforms have completely GONE (zoom in)!  Wonder which one I need to use to get home tonight?  Oo-er...

London Bridge new platforms open!

London Bridge new platforms open
Soooo...back from happy holidays (and look - all the new platforms are finished and open at London Bridge!  So glad I missed all that nonsense...), only one day of disaster to report (holiday was largely great weather and great fun) - the day we were supposed to pack up and move from Bude to Warminster (and do Wookey Hole) we had got up early, packed up the car, unpacked the car again to find the kids shoes, packed up the car again, handed our keys back to reception, strapped everyone in, waved to Nanjan and Pops (who were there to see us off and help out with baby-sitting during the packing process - thanks for that!) turned the key in the ignition - aaaand - NOTHING!

The guys from the caravan park were extremely helpful, tried (in vain) to jump start us with the puny battery from their little white van and so we called the AA...(trying to make it sound like we were in a more terrible position than we actually were) and then began a wait of almost two hours without a single update (which I am generously attributing to the 95% lack of mobile signal in the entire South West)...when the nice AA guy finally arrived (from just up the road), he ran a battery test and held up the machine to show me the "BATTERY FAIL - REPLACE" message but was happy to let us sail away into the (now afternoon) sun so long as we didn't turn the car off until we got to Warminster (where he would arrange a new battery to be waiting for us at around 5pm)...

Off we went and (of course) the M5 was a car park, so we swung off onto to the A303 tightly crossing our fingers (which turned out to also be a car park as a direct result of the M5 being a car park)...so we covered the kids ears, cursed, and drove, very slowly, towards our destination, past signs to Wookey Hole (having no time to visit it now - telling disappointed little ones that we would have another go in October half term), time now getting tight, we pulled off the A303 onto some tiny little roads following the Garmins instructions and hit the centre of a tiny town where there was a closed road which the Garmin was absolutely adamant we take (even when we were 3 miles past it, it was *insisting* we go back before it would issue any further directions - argh)...!

It was just about now, pretty much lost, with no mobile internet to get directions from Google maps, time running out to meet our battery man that Poppy was sick...*very* sick...all over the back of the car, including getting some onto Thomas, who was not amused, and Annabelle decided that it was dinner time and started screaming like we were trying to murder her...and it was in this exact fashion that we finally clawed our way into the car park at Warminster Travelodge (after five hours on the road instead of the predicted two)...head and hands up against the windows looking and feeling a little like an Edvard Munch composition...

The battery was finally replaced about an hour later (the AA guy got stuck in traffic too), and actually, even though it seemed like it might be the cherry on the top of the cake, our dinner at Little Chef that evening was a pleasant surprise...I recommend the "foot-long" (it isn't quite) Chilli Dog... ;)

18 August, 2014

Off on holiday...

Widemouth Bay Holiday Village
...soon! Got three days left at work (well, two and a half now)...plans are for a nice comfortable static caravan on the cliffs overlooking Widemouth Bay in Cornwall (for 7 nights) and a couple of days in Somerset (to break up the journey) visiting Wookey Hole and Longleat neither of which Flyingpops or I have visited since we got married - 3 kids ago - (those links are to my pics from 2008)!

Really looking forward to it...just hope the weather holds up! ;)