Building bridges

No, not those sorts of bridges. As far as “social” bridges go you won’t be surprised to learn that my opinion is that someone ought to stick a rubber hose up London and begin pouring warm soapy water into a funnel at the other end.

This is the bridge that someone forced a “low loader” over, damaging the structure and closing it to even its usual, modest weight limit commercial vehicles. You can get over the beast in a car or small van now but that’s your lot. Elephant howdah not recommended, especially in convoy.


I would imagine that the damage was done while the low-loader’s load was rocking back and forth with its full mass grounded on just the one patch rather than spread over the – hopefully – more multiple wheels.


As a consequence, the Canal & River Trust rubbish skip that lives on yon side of it cannot be reached for the time being by the usual bin-men and their rubbish lorry. CaRT have, gleefully it must be said, removed not only the skip but also the fenced compound that the skip used to live in. Any guesses on the odds of that facility never re-opening? They’ve already done away with the water-point…


CaRT have an unstated but glaringly obvious policy of allowing the boater facilities that they are supposed to be maintaining to fall into disrepair and be closed, driving us all into the tender, loving arms of commercial private marinas. I honestly think that the Executive and Trustees imagine that we won’t notice! The problem is, of course, that we are not as stupid as are they.


Have the Canal and River Trust Ltd and/or the local Council the corporate balls required to insist that those who broke the bridge pay to make it good again? I doubt it. I’ve seen Chihuahua with meatier equipment, and it must be pointed out that I have done so without making a wildly enthusiastic habit of observing the todging tackle of Chihuahua.

The bridge was not in the best of health even before someone dragged a heavy load over it. It was designed and built about two hundred years before the HGV was invented.


Half of the rendering that was slapped on to hide the crumbling brickwork had already cracked and fallen off.


It’s all part and parcel of the not-so-gentle decay that is the reality of the English canal system.

The wildlife on these moorings is surprisingly a little more varied than in Windy Alley. There’s a hawk of some kind and it is fascinating to watch it hovering, searching the ground for some unfortunate critter to drop down upon. There is a moorhen in the reeds opposite the Cardinal, so at last I get to enjoy watching some pleasant water-fowl.

Sadly, there are also swans, swans with eight cygnets. Vile creatures. Would that the hawk fed on swan! Ill-tempered, highly territorial, violent and filthy is what swans are. If you’ve ever seen a patch of towpath that has had swans sleeping on it even just overnight, you’ll know what filth and mess is.


Clarissa Dickson Wright had the correct way of dealing with swans.

Roast and served with vegetables.

Talking of roasting, I have a new gizmo on the way. Some Swedish “Omnia Oven” – a multi-layer pot that can be used on a fire/gas/whatever and behaves like an oven. The Hutson is in reality a bread-and-pie monster, and if this beastie works I might at last be able to make proper bread and pies again – albethey “bundt” shaped ones. The write-ups are good, and the many videos on U-Bend look convincing.


Doubtless it will take some getting used to.

It went “out of stock” the moment yours truly made his purchase, but my local Amazon tell me that they have one on hand now. Here’s the link if you want a closer look – Omnia Oven.

In for a penny in for a guinea I’ve also ordered a couple of the silicone inserts (no, not those sort, silly!) – most folk of the boat/van/survivalist-cabin-dwelling variety on U-Bend videos recommended them as making the beast both easier to clean and to persuade to give up its cooked contents. Instead of the food therefore being in contact with the aluminium parts of the pan I will likely be ingesting petro-chemicals from the silicone.

Given the state of the world today, I couldn’t give a rodent’s rectum about either. I likely die from the effects of the aluminium, from the effects of the petro-chemicals in the silicone inserts, or I more probably get kicked to death in the street for refusing to “take a knee” when ordered to by some rampaging racist mob.

I’ll let you know how it goes, when it goes. The gizmo, that is, not the mob.


Half of the time I can’t believe that we’re already half-way through this year, and the other half of the time I can’t believe that we’re only half-way through this year.

What and whither next I (hesistate to) ask?

I was promised a Jetsons lifestyle by 2020, and all I got was a face-mask and a load of ageism followed swiftly by generalised racial hate and a police force that’s turned into a troup of second-rate street-entertainers busking and desperate for mob approval.

Ho hum.

Have I mentioned my rather prescient latest books? Available in many formats in all good (and bad) book shops.

Cheerio, and thanks for the apocalypse



The Age of Stupid


Both good, I hope, for a giggle.

Still working on the next un-international non-best-seller…

The Beast of Cholmondeston Lock


It’s on the way and, rather like the gentleman with the horns and the sulphur aftershave, will be with you (and us all) soon.

Chin-chin for the mo, Muskies.

Ian H.


    1. If the world hadn’t already been familiar with global chaos and misinformation then it certainly is now! As a species we don’t seem to be able to p*ss in a pot effectively. Aliens? Now’s your chance! Invade…

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I beg to differ, not second rate but first rate mainly due to their stage managers having been elected in without the teeny-weeniest hint of experience, political panderers trying their hardest to remain popular in defiance of the wishes of all decent denizens of the land.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. It is, methinks, a side-effect (the main damned effect!) of hiring for “diversity” instead of competence and experience. Seeing the English police do the “take a knee” thing was excrutiating and embarrassing – and sad.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh dear, I had to go into the link for your new gadget and look at all the picture options, the one with the cake… I have a craving for cake! It looks so good! The bridge reminded me of the time a few years ago on a Shearings Tour bus somewhere in Scotland we had to crawl over a hump-backed bridge really slowly ensuring the hydraulics on the wheels were at max so as not to get impaled on the hump (so to speak). Shocking leaving folk without facilities because they’re too lazy to sort the bridge out. I did wonder what they would do if, like the one black bag of rubbish left by someone, everyone still deposited it, they would have to move it wouldn’t they or CaRT it away somehow?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. The sad thing is that having (“temporarily”) closed this rubbish point and directed folk to the next one along – CaRT haven’t been bright enough to increase the emptying regime for the point that they’re directing everyone to! It was overflowing yesterday when I called there. Joined-up thinking they do not do. The grunt workers and the volunteers do a magnificent job – and it’s lucky that they do, because the CaRT Executive and “management” couldn’t think their way out of a wet paper bag!


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