Great To See My Taxes At Work


For some days now we have been warned that our road is to be closed for two days. Presumably to fix the surface which has been abysmal for getting on for thirty plus years.5j7a7715-1

Along with several neighbours, I moved my car off my driveway the night before so that we wouldn’t be stranded during the upcoming works.

The picture was taken around lunchtime. By sunset this evening there was still no sign of any activity.

The yellow sign is the only notification we, the residents, received that any works were planned.

sign

I rang the number shown, only to be informed that the number had been replaced by a new number !!!

For those interested the new number is 0300 555 1388

Eventually I spoke to a very pleasant young lady and  I had explained that I have a delivery scheduled. That schedule had taken into account their published road closure. And, since their work schedule seems to be something of a moveable feast, I was concerned that my delivery could be jeopardised. Especially, if the carrier cannot get access to my house driveway. I suspect the carrier may baulk at having to carry my goods a couple of hundred yards. Especially as the multiple packages will be a two-man lift.

I also queried why no leaflet drop had been made informing the residents that they would be stranded for two days. The lady that lives opposite does not go out often and would likely not have seen the sign. Apparently, leaflet drops aren’t always made, but had there been any businesses in our road then there probably would have been one.

So, let’s worry about the businesses but not individuals.

Another thing I was told during the call is that they often allow a day either side of a project schedule and when she checked her system she informed me that the works were actually due to start yesterday. So, in essence, they are two days behind schedule.

Aforementioned pleasant lady informed me that my query/ concern would be forwarded to the engineer responsible for these works. Presumably to come back to me with their plans.

At the time of writing I have received only an acknowledgment email along with a reference number.

Let’s see what tomorrow brings.

 

Crookhorn Post Office


Fuming !!!

Have just been to Crookhorn Post Office to post a parcel.

Stood in the queue for only a minute, was two from the counter. The cashier completed serving the lady at the counter and announced that she was going to have to stop serving as there was a task she had to complete by 12:00.

The time, on the Post Office clock was 11:55

The lady in front of me explained that she only had two parcels. This cut no ice with the cashier who just confirmed that she couldn’t take the parcels. I received the same response when I challenged her.

The lady with the two small parcels left, muttering “Unbelievable”, as did I with my single parcel. I was muttering something much stronger.

I took myself off to Waterlooville Post Office where, I had been informed, they were open until 12:30.

I paid the £0.70 for parking and arrived at the doors of the post office to be confronted with a queue snaking its way to 3 cashiers. I joined the queue and waited a few minutes with no movement. I heard someone announce that the post office would close in 20 minutes. I estimated it would take at least 40 minutes, based on the number of folks in the queue, for me to get to the counter. Assuming that each cashier would take a minimum of two minutes per customer. Needless to say, I wasn’t prepared to wait another twenty minutes and then be told they were closing, so I took myself home

Apparently the Crookhorn Post Office is open until 12:30 ????

The following screenshot is taken from this web page The situation is worse when you look at the Post Offices own website which claims the post office is open until 22:00.

crookhornpostoffice

In my opinion, if the Post Office publishes opening hours through to 12:00 then they should continue to offer that service right to the wire. If there is a reason why they cannot honour the published hours then please amend the opening times accordingly.

Come on Post Office – Get your act together.

 

 

Nature


Over the last few days I have been trawling through my photo archives and thought I’d share a few.

butter

Scarce Swallowtail

The swallowtail was fluttering around the village of Collonges la Rouge in France. It led me a merry dance from flower bed to flower bed before settling long enough for this photo.

meerkat

Meerkat

Loved these little fellows long before they became stars of a certain advert series.

otter

Otter

One of several residing at Marwell, this little guy didn’t want to share his fish.

otters

Otters

More Marwell Otters.

snow

Snow Leopard

Another resident at Marwell and my favourite of the big cats.

snow2

Snow Leopard

View From The Conservatory


Just thought I’d share a picture of these two guys.

finches

Goldfinches

We rarely see Goldfinches in our garden, just maybe once or twice a year, and this is the first time I have managed to get a photo. The focus is a bit soft due to the effect of shooting through double glazing and being at full zoom.

Kalbarri WA


On arriving at Kalbarri we managed to locate our accommodation, despite the best efforts of our sat-nav which was intent on sending us off-road again. We were also confused by the name of the motel. All of my paperwork from the booking referred to Kalbarri Reef Villas. On the same street we found Kalbarri Seafront Villas and immediately behind was Reef Villas. No mention of Kalbarri on their signage but a quick chat with the manager confirmed we were in the right place. So Reef Villas it was and we were soon checked in, car unloaded and ready to explore.

The beach was just five minutes walk from the motel.

5J7A3408_edited.jpg

Kalbarri Beach – Kalbarri, WA

Kalbarri is to be found at the mouth of the Murchison River where it joins the Indian Ocean.

5J7A3421_edited

River / Ocean Meeting Place – Kalbarri, WA

Unfortunately, Gerry ricked her back on our first morning here. This meant that we had to curtail some of our exploring. So a tour of the gorges to see Natures Window & “Z” Bend was kicked into touch. The problem with these attractions is that they are only accessible along some sixteen kilometers of dirt road, not really conducive to reducing back pain.

As an alternative we decided to visit the numerous local ocean lookouts, all of which have paved roads right up to the car parks and also, in most cases, smooth pathways to the lookout. The following are a selection of the photo’s I took. I hope they give you a flavour of this area.

Some of the Aussies were really chuffed to see a car, with references to an English football team, sporting the Aussie flags.

While we were at the Blue Holes, a fellow Brit spotted the Pompey stickers and the rego plate. He was originally from Salisbury and knew all about our home area in Hampshire.

Every day pelicans are fed down on the Kalbarri foreshore. There is a seated arena for the early risers to use and children are invited to feed the pelicans. The couple that run the feed are very informative, with a touch of humour.

After touring the coastline, we returned to Kalbarri and found a site on the foreshore so that I could go fishing.

DSC03893 (2)_edited.jpg

Me Fishing – Murchison River, Kalbarri, WA

Although I did get a few bites, I didn’t manage to catch anything.

DSC03907_edited

Chatty canoeists – Murchison River, Kalbarri,WA

The fish weren’t the only things biting. There were crabs in the river who were taking a repeated interest in my feet. The canoeists were friendly and chatty, interested in how I was doing. I think they were also amused by how far out in the river I was.

Later the same day we were, again, down on the foreshore to watch the Australia Day fireworks.

During our all too brief stay in Kalbarri we were lucky enough to eat at the Black Rock Cafe. Here we had our evening meal on the day that we arrived. Good food and a table to watch the sunset. For our breakfasts, we visited Angies Cafe where they do a really tasty Bacon, Egg and Tomato Toasty as well as filling Tuna Patties (fish cake). Both establishments seem to be very popular.

5J7A3610_edited

Angies Cafe – Kalbarri, WA

Angies was our last stop in Kalbarri, before heading off to Jurien Bay.

 

 

Don’t Forget Your Greens


Greens_logo

Just wanted to put a shout out there for Greens  of Wickham.

We had the pleasure of dining and relaxing in this establishment on Saturday. The atmosphere was warm and inviting. The staff were friendly, attentive but not intrusive. And, most importantly, the food was superb.

Our choices from the menu were all from the Set Lunch Menu, well initially. By accident we selected one of each of the starters. “Soup of the moment” (I’ve forgotten wha it was), Warm Goats’ Cheese, Smoked salmon & crayfish tails (this looked  spectacular) and Pressed ham hock terrine.

All agreed that the food was very tasty and there was ample for a starter,  although some concern was voiced that there was too much goats cheese !! Didn’t see any left on the plate though.

For the mains our selections included a Steak pie (with a proper pastry top instead of the usual puff pastry shrapnel), Pork loin and I had the  Hampshire ribeye which was beautifully cooked.

Nobody had room for a sweet which says it all really.

We had booked for 13:00 and were seated shortly thereafter. Given the current weather it was nice to be sat near an open log fire.  And then it was 16:00 before we knew it. I had asked at the bar if we could have more coffee and was very politely informed that they were closed. Actually they had been closed since 15:00 but had not pressed us to leave. And we weren’t the only ones as there was another group of folks, at the far end of the restaurant, equally involved in their own socialising.

I cannot recommend this establishment highly enough. We will be back.