November 7th 2018

As a treat and a welcome home gift for C from Portugal, I have  taken this photo of a previously undiscovered type of mushroom in the “Ministry Fungalmanac”.



With Bonfire night a distant memory, we settle into the winter test series in Sri Lanka (Cricket for anyone from America) except this time its not on Test Match Special, TMS as it is so fondly known, a British institution, a little over 60 years old, where every ball during every day of a test match is commented on, sometimes there is no cricket because of inclement weather, but they still broadcast, they talk of the weather, busses, pigeons, cranes and cakes, with much laughter all the way, even so it is always compelling radio and I challenge anyone not to be sucked in and soothed by the calming tones of Aggers and co.

Issue is, and I’m sure i’ve mentioned this before, that for this winter the cricket will be on a rival station, so called “Talk Sport 2” buried somewhere in the maze of digital detritus. Not Talk Sport or Talk Sport 1 but 2; I hadn’t realised there was a series of stations, in fact there is much I don’t realise about commercial stations, but if I want to be bombarded with adverts for items I can surely do without and having given up the will to independent thought then i shell be sure to tune in. I listened to the cricket for 10 minutes this morning, at 6:30 GMT, I suspect they had gone off for lunch and had had the adverts so there was chat from the morning’s play.

Who am I kidding? I’m an old stick in the mud, resistant to change, they can’t take away the Antiques roadshow and they must not meddle with TMS, everything else I can accept at a push but leave these great British institutions alone. On the BBC website they have “The Cricket Social” which is meant to be a casual cafe culture type of chatty programme, reserved for the likes of Talk Sport 2 but presented by the usual TMS suspects, like a kind of Sunday Morning cooking programme where everyone is a bit hungover and as such will appeal to the youth of today. Well, I’ve got news for you Radio folk; the kids no longer get hungover, and spend far too much time on their mobiles, so holding a conversation may well be beyond them. It’s like I’m in a parallel universe and anyone who sits out side a cafe in this weather has my deepest sympathy unless of course you are smoking or vaping in which case, upon reflection, you also have my sympathy.

I was forced to miss the walk this morning, due to work commitments (How dare they), and so Mrs T had to brave the rain showers whilst I was being driven down to Swindon and beyond to a purpose built generic hotel and conference centre where the Wifi is good and the coffee machines look good, but, lets face not, churn out rotten similar tasting muddy coloured water. Lunch was good and I always tend to stuff my self, to the point of giving my self a stomach ache. Having to keep an eye out for the waiting staff who are chomping at the bit to take my plate away, knife and fork too, in an effort to curtail my having second helpings, I had to ask a colleague to guard my cutlery to day when I went back for Salmon with a beetroot salsa, I remember why I don’t like salmon every time I have salmon, and no amount of purple colour on the plate will make it taste any better, a feast for the eyes but not for the mouth

I ate it all! Then had pudding, chocolate cake and fruit salad; the cake was ok, very sweet and got stuck around the insides of my mouth, but the fruit tasted of nothing, literally nothing, and I took Kiwi and Pineapple hoping for a taste explosion in my mouth.

Back on it tomorrow folks, keep on keeping on…

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