February 2015


I was on the top deck of a bus to Shipley earlier this week. Two lads in their early 20’s got on and sat at the back. They seemed quite pleasant, and both thanked the driver when they got off at Shipley, but they spent the whole time loudly discussing the best ways of stealing, selling what they’d nicked, and the best drug deals they could do with the money they’d got. It were like listening to a seminar! Some points I noted:

Prison is not what it was. It’s proper s**t now, and they half starve you in Armley.

The drug of choice in Armley Prison now is ‘spice’ (artificial marijuana), but neither liked it, it being so full of dodgy chemicals.

They were both on ‘scrips’ (prescriptions, probably for methadone) and 2 ‘whites’ a day. Whites was a word for all the hard drugs (heroin, cocaine, speed &c) but the way they talked made it seem like a common term for a particular drug, and they seemed to be tablets, but I don’t know which drug.

The best deal is from a bloke at the top of the Canterbury estate. 2 for £20, and if you score every day of the week he’ll give you a special offer on Sunday. It’s a bit of a bus ride, but the more talkative one often walked there, especially on Sunday, so that’ll be keeping him fit.

The best place to sell stolen jewellery is the ‘top of the Kirkgate’. This could mean the street, or the market in the centre.

The best place to flog stolen phones is in ‘John Street market’. Although the bloke is getting a bit hot with i’d’ing.

The best way of getting drugs is finding out where the dealers hide them for other druggies to collect. Loose stones in stone walls are a favourite place.

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It’s been a bit of a grind this week, but I did change energy suppliers with Martin Lewis’ Money Saving Expert. It’s a collective switch, so gets bulk discount, but it ends at 10 tonight. I would urge you to change, you’ll almost certainly get lower bills. It’s very quick, but you need at least a rough idea of your energy usage.

Bobby Singh, electrician, drove us down to Crawley. We then went for beer (and whiskey in his case), and went through the house while I noted what it needed in terms of new plugs and hardwired extractor fans, and general advice about decorating, and a new kitchen and bathroom.

It’s fiddly work to sort, and I still don’t know if I’m doing work or selling, but I have a clear idea of the stages and needs now.

Bobby enjoys driving, but it felt really odd to be back in my own house in just over a day, and not be totally knackered.

Down on the A1, which is a more interesting road for a passenger, but made annoying by the useless Government website to pay the toll across the Dartford Crossing (cash payment was abolished a while ago). Bobby would have preferred the M1 as a more relaxing drive, if so much of it wasn’t 50 mph for road works, where there was no working for all but a couple of miles.

I have a free app called Plane Finder. I It shows aeroplanes in the air. I like aeroplaes Yesterday there was one flying due south near Bradford going to Birmingham from a place I’d never hear of called Kiruna.

It turns out Kiruna is in the far north of Sweden, near a jaw droppingly big, open cast iron mine (that supplied much of the Nazis need for high grade iron). The hole is so big they are moving the entire town 3 km further away from it to stop it falling in. I like big holes in the ground.

I want to have a long, over land and sea, trip to see Finish and Swedish cousins. I got quite excited at the prospect of being able to fly back from Kiruna. Disappointingly it turns out the flight was by a Polish business charter company, and I cannot buy a ticket.

I’ve just realised that the photo on the last blog is of a bench mark, a mark of height, not a trig point, a mark of place. I wonder if there is a group for bench markers?

I am reading a great book about the history of Britain’s Orinance Survey and their maps, called Map of a Nation by Rachel Hewitt. In it I was delighted to discover there is a group called Trigpointers who search out triangulation stations, or trig marks.
I saw the one below at Jay House Farm (map ref SE158241). I cannot remember seeing one on the apex of a porch before.

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The half flat football was by the farm track. I obviously dribbled with it. I am a bloke.

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