Joker's Bottle of Frogs

by JokerXL

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It's a birthday!

There is cake!
Yvon is 40 today!
26th Apr 2008, 20:08   comments (5)

Signs of summer

Today is the first day this year that could be called "warm".
Tomorrow's going to be even warmer (22 degrees C)
A funny thing about being away all week is seeing the big changes in the
garden every time I come home.
Especially at this time of year of course.
26th Apr 2008, 16:28   comments (7)

Old mates

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Ian & I have been knocking around together since I was 17, he 18 and we'd just joined the army.
Now, 28 years later (!!) we're still working for the same boss.
We've been there, seen it, done it and got the T-shirts together (which, admittedly, are a little faded by now and somewhat tight round the middle, his especially, check out all those chins!).
From Canada to Copenhagen, Hamburg to Nicosia.
I was best man at his wedding, we got our names in the Guinness book of records together. I saw his new born daughter before he did and now my God-daughter is a mother too.
We're been arrested together, got in and out of fights together, had a beer with prince Philip together and been awarded medals on parade together.
Unfortunately tonight I'll have to share a cabin with the smelly old git.
24th Apr 2008, 19:39   comments (11)

Sailing off into the sunset

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A small container freighter heading into the estuary at Felixstowe.
24th Apr 2008, 08:24   comments (2)

Passing ships

This is the "Stena Hollandica", a ship I'm on about 40 times a year.
Entering the estuary between Felixstowe and Harwich. She's heading for Harwich we've just left Felixstowe.
24th Apr 2008, 04:20   comments (6)

Happy St. George's day!

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We English are very good at celebrating Paddy's day.
It's about time St.George got a bit more attention.
I, for one, will be raising a glass (of Dutch beer) to the dragon-slayer this evening and I vote that the Thames should be dyed red/white this afternoon.
There was a phone-in vote on radio Merseyside this morning on what should be the English national anthem.
What came out top? Way ahead of the rest?
The theme tune to Benney Hill.
Which, sometimes, I feel is highly appropriate, if a little irreverend towards good old Georgie-boy.
23rd Apr 2008, 13:15   comments (8)

yes, today's been rather crap

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And Norfolk line is, unfortunately for them, in the firing-line this evening.
A while back I posted a rant about how bad StenaLine were on the Holyhead to Dublin route, and how I would do my level best never to use that route again.
I'm now to be found, much more often, on the Birkenhead to Belfast or Dublin route so "ya-boo-sucks" to Stena!
Only. This is worse!
I'll spare you the details, but, here's a little story that may illustrate my plight;

Once there was a young Swallow, newly fledged and all full of himself. He loved his first summer in England, learning to soar and swoop and do that screeching thing that Swallows do so well, untill, towards the end of September, his Swallow buddies began to gather on wires and branches, twittering exitedly.
It was time to head south.
Our friend was still having a ball and, swooping, screeching, soaring
and, never having experienced a British winter, declared them all mad.
"the open spaces, the trees, the rivers and lakes, the millenium dome! What more could you possibly expect to find anywhere else?"
To cut a long story short, they left, he knew better and stayed.
All through October and November he continued to have a whale of a time soaring above the UK. December got pretty cold. January was bloody freezin' and he realised he'd made a big mistake not flying south with the others.
He swallowed (excuse the pun) his pride and headed south.
Up and up he soared, colder and colder it got. He battled on, for he was one stubborn boid.
Shortly the cold became too much for him, ice had built up on his wings and he began to descend under it's weight. Down and down he went as he became more exhausted untill at last he plummeted earthwards, totally resigned to the fact that he must now pay for his youthfull stupidity.
He crash-landed in a cow-pat, in the middle of a meadow.
When he came too he slowly began to realise where he was and what had just happened.
"Oh no", he dispared, "I'm stuck up to my neck in cow-poo, things truly couldn't get any worse!" and he began to cry and cry "but wait," he thought "at least I'm not so cold any more"
"it's pretty smelly it here but at least I'm not covered in ice and plummeting anymore"
Slowly, as he began to feel better, he started to twitter.
The twittering developed into a full blow song for joy, so happy was he to be allive!
Meanwhile, in the farmer's yard the farm cat sat, as cats will tend to do.
He noticed a twittering, coming from somewhere out in the fields, as he headed out the twittering developed into a full bodied song of joy, which was quite easy for him to pinpoint to one particular cow-pat.
He sidled up to the source of the sound, dipped his clawed paw into the poo and scooped out the young Swallow, eating him down in but a couple of bites.
And the moral of this (admittedly rather long) tale?

If you're in the shit, but it's warm and you're comfortable.
Keep your bloody mouth shut!

21st Apr 2008, 22:18   comments (6)

WRONG! Do it again!

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I really do get sooo tired of this.
Every Monday morning the same. It's starting to look like they do it deliberately. You run round all day like an idiot trying to get everything done before the last one on the list closes up for the day, and when you open the trailer doors a complete disaster meets you. It looks (once again) like it was a case of "just shove it all in there and shut the doors, once it's left the gates; not our problem any more".
It's like they're working against you, trying to make things harder than they need to be.
Well I'm sick of it. Sick of pointing this out to them week in week out.
If it doesn't improve drastically in the very near future I'm going to start looking for another job.
I'm just banging my head against a brick wall here.
And it's only Monday.
21st Apr 2008, 11:42   comments (6)