a voice from the overground

Archive for odds and ends

Sobering sight on the way home or the unstoppable urge to stare at a car crash.

On the way home from another shitty day in the office, which started with a flat battery in my car and a call to the AA, I was stuck in a traffic jam on the hell hole that is the M25.

It was a proper out-of-your-car engine-off chat-to-the-van-driver-next-to-you kind of jam. Ahead, about 200 yards away, I could see the ambulance lights and the highway agency guys stopping all 5 lanes of traffic.

After 15 minutes the inside two lanes were opened and we crawled past. I should have known from the looks on the faces of the Highway Agency guys that I shouldn’t be looking. And the state of the motorbike spread across three lanes should have told me not to look.

But it’s compulsive, isn’t it. The  urge to crawl past an accident at 5 mph and ogle at the damage. This time I wished I hadn’t. The poor guy was too close, I could see too much blood and the expressions on the faces of the ambulance men told me there was more I wasn’t seeing. I felt physically sick and grateful that Grace was asleep in the back.

However it puts things into perspective. There was me, pissed off after a hard day in the office, grumping home on a Friday night to Suzy and our house full of brick dust and builders mess, and I suddenly realised that life is not that bad. I’m not spread across two lanes of Surrey motorway.  It made me pull my socks up.

I didn’t break the speed limit all the way home (considering I am Mr 90mph-change-the-cd-check-the-traffic-on-my-smart-phone this was an achievement). Maybe I’ll take more care now.

My heart goes out to the poor bastard on the tarmac and his family.


Sorry tabby update

Well we contacted the group behind the missing cat posters (Animal Search UK) and they passed on my email address to a young lady whose cat was missing (for 6 months). She contacted us and following a phone call turned up with a giant Longford trap which we stationed just inside the cat flap after locking Seamus da House Cat in our bedroom.

About 4am the trap went off and said cat was trapped. We called the lady who came straight over (at 6am – ouch!) however it wasn’t her cat. I felt really sorry for her, and a little sad that I had built her hopes up only to dash them with the wrong cat. 😦

The tale of a sorry tabby…

There is a new cat in the neighbourhood – a slightly sorry looking tabby. It’s been fighting with the local cats, sneaking into houses looking for food and generally being a pain in the butt. Nobody knows whose it is and we think it’s a stray.

Yesterday I saw a lost cat sign about 2 miles away that looks just like this cat – the contact details are a lost cat website so I’ve just emailed through there saying there is a potential stray that may be your cat. I hope it is and it isn’t a red herring, if nothing else it has infected claws that cause abscesses in the cats it cuts and I’ve already been to the vets with one such abscess (the cat not me, that is).

So we shall see what happens

What the world eats

This photo essay from Time magazine is fascinating.

What struck me was the difference in proportion and type of fresh produce between countries. The family from North Caroline barely had any vege on their table at all – after some hunting some grapes were found.

The Egyptian family had mountains of peppers – enough for 2 or 3 a day each.

And the Ecuadorians, with their potatoes and plantains, looked the happiest.

Suzy’s birthday tomorrow

It’s Suzy’s birthday tomorrow. But we aren’t doing much.