Tuesday, 22 July 2014

A mixed bag at a one year review

Well, I've now been writing and hosting this blog for a year.

It's been a fascinating learning curve but before I get in to the review and analysis, a quick thank you and thumbs up (belatedly) to a couple of people.

First off, Mark.

Cast your minds back to that really hot (lovely!) spell we had in mid June.  Now I love the heat but not everyone does and even I find it difficult commuting at rush hour in the heat.  

It was Friday, 13th which added to the "mix".  The bus was really over crowded and hot.  Our driver, Mark, was wonderful as instead of growling at everyone, he kept everyone cool and laughing with his smiles, jokes and assuring people the air conditioning was on.   He really was trying to help everyone in a not easy situation.   

Even though the bus was very crowded, very busy and very hot inside, when I got up to ring the bell I asked if I could take his shot for the blog as a way of saying thank you.  He somehow, without delaying other, made time for a thirty second banter about the date and the fact of the full moon - a rarity to have a full moon on a Friday, 13th - about the fact that there were other funny dates in 2014 including this coming August having five weekends whereupon I found that Mark was having his holiday in August.  

Hope you have a great time.

And thank you and thumbs up thumbs up from all your passengers  

Another thank you, this time to all the staff at the BP garage, Dunchurch Service Station and especially to Liz.

So, it's another hot, sunny day and this time we're in my car, the man and me, driving back from Bilton in Warwickshire to London.  We're in my car but the bloke is driving.

Time to fill up before we get on the motorway so we pop in to Dunchurch to the BP garage there.  My car takes diesel.  My man filled up with petrol.

The good news; he didn't start the engine, it's hot and sunny and we're on a garage forecourt.  The bad news; it's a Sunday afternoon and none of the emergency road services have a fuel guy available until Monday midday.  Nor can we find anyone local who is open on a Sunday.

Liz, behind the till in BP could not have been more helpful.  She said we could push our car to the side and if necessary it would be fine until the next day there.  She also had given my man a card for a company called Dr. Fuel (unbeknownst to me).

Time is moving on, we've spoken to the AA, to Volvo Assist and I lose track now who else but it's about three hours since we put the fuel in and we're about to go with the AA guys who will come at 11:00 the next day for a rather large sum of money when the bloke pulls this card out of his pocket that Liz had given him and I see what it is.  I suggest giving them a call to see what their prices are and when they could come.

All good; one and a half hours to two hours and less than the other quotes we've had.  Meanwhile Liz is doing a terrific job keeping my spirits up with her smiles and jokes.

While all this has been going on, incredibly, another car has done the exact same thing, well actually slightly worse; diesel in to a petrol car.  Also pushed to the side.  Liz was worried it was something she was giving off.  Absolutely not.

By the time Dr Fuel came Liz had left for the day and we were helped equally nicely by the rest of the staff who allowed me to run up a tab (well I wasn't about to drive off in a hurry!) with the coffees etc before we filled up, again.

Thank you all and a big thumbs up thumbs up.

As to analysis of the blog on the anniversary?  Well, you'll have to wait for another post as both Mark and Liz deserves their belated thank yous and if I delay any more while I try to get philosophical, it'll be way too late.  Let's just say for now it's been great and I'll be carrying it on and hope for many, MANY, more guest posts from you.   Thank you.

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