I blog when I go abroad, and occasionally when I do stuff in the UK too. There's a nicer interface over here.

Monday, October 30, 2006

Rage against the machines

Last but one day of freedom today. Got up late :-( but still managed to get out of the house at just after midday. Only 2 hours or so after I had originally planned, bah.
First machine rage: my new Karma. Volume control works. Scrolly wheel works. Sound only comes out of the left earphone. Tried a couple of pairs to make sure it's the Karma's fault. Fucking hell. Means I don't have a proper mp3 player any more :-(
Figured I'd go for another walk today. I'd decided to go to Kew Bridge and pick up where I left off on Friday. So after leaving the house I bought 3 drinks, a lottery instant, and got on a 281. The bus dictated the route and I thought I'd stay on until Twickenham and then get a bus or train to Kew Bridge from there. It also gave me a nice long journey so I could get online.
Second machine rage: my phone was fucking playing up. ssh connections were being proper shit, and when I finally got online the phone then crashed and rebooted after I SMSed Loz (ironically enough about the ssh client I was using). Grr!
Off at Twickenham and onto the platform. Actually I failed to read the signs and went down to the wrong one.
Third machine rage: damn trains. I went up/across/down to platform 3, by which time they'd made a platform alteration, and I had to go up/across/down back to platform 5. Gah!
So here I was. On the devil's side of the river, I made my way back to the south and set off Chiswickwards. Today's weather forecast said it was going to be 18 or 19 degrees celsius, but as of tomorrow or Wednesday it's going to be a few degrees lower. "Welcome back to work!" temperatures, innit. Anyway with weather like this and still no work, I figured this was the last time for a while I had no excuse not to (a) walk a decent distance (b) wear shorts.
Kew railway bridge

Kew Bridge. Chiswick Bridge. Barnes Bridge. Hammersmith Bridge. Putney Bridge. Wandsworth Bridge. That was my route today, all on the south side of the river and mostly on the Thames Path. Actually it may all have been the Thames Path, but there's a bunch of it between Putney and Wandsworth that isn't actually by the Thames. Bah.

The whole route from Kew to Putney is really nice. The bridges themselves are quite cool, the greenery is great, there's the Harrods Furniture Depository and the Stag Brewery and Craven Cottage to look at, and a bunch of pubs to stop in if you're so inclined. I imagine it's great when the sun's out but I wasn't that fussed. It seems to me that walking is just, well, fun. Really. I mean I guess I'm a latecomer to this but I've discovered, realised, whatever, that walking as an end in itself is really quite enjoyable. It's all liberating and stuff, not trying to get somewhere specific by a particular time or anything, I have the freedom to just stop wherever and whenever I want or, more often, just keep going and see how far I can get. Today I really only thought in advance of getting as far as Hammersmith. But once there I just though, fuck it, carry on to Putney and get the bus home. And at Putney I thought, why stop now?

Mind you the answer to that question is actually "because Wandsworth's all shit and stuff". The walk between those two bridges is barely next to the river and fairly unpleasant, especially towards the end with all the timber yards and civic amenity sites and all that nonsense. When I did finally reach the bridge I decided against going on, 'cos it was getting a bit dark and I'd stopped for a few minutes to stare at the flocks of birds flying around like swarms of bees. Quite a cool sight that. But it was the first time I'd stopped for longer than it takes to take a photo and when that's done, fuck it, I'm not starting again.
Harrods Furniture Depository

Oh, and Wandsworth to Battersea is a shit walk 'n all. I did get halfway across towards the north thinking I'd pop in the nearest enemy territory pub, but turned back after being overcome with a "north of the river? Are you fucking mental?" revelation/stench. So that was it really, I made my way to Wandsworth Town station (rather circuitously, because I got lost) and got a couple of trains home.
Fourth machine rage: there was another power cut in my flat. Thankfully only for 2 minutes, I was almost out of the door and off to the pub when it all came back on.

Fifth machine rage: when the power came back on -- not when it went off, when it might have been more understandable -- my laptop crashed and rebooted.
Once the power came back I again sought out gmap-pedometer.com to work out how far I'd walked. Turns out it was just over 8 miles. Not bad that. It means in the last 4 days I've walked a marathon, pretty much. Not quite 3h30m but still...

So, Mastodon, Blood Mountain. What a fucking odd album that is. Only given it a couple of listens so far, but I can't really categorise it as metal, or in fact as any one genre. It jumps all over the fucking place. In fact listening to it is like eating with chopsticks: you can get into it for a few seconds at a time, sometimes even half a minute, but then it all goes totally wrong and you can't get a grip on anything at all. Everything goes all over the place and you're left wondering when you'll next get your teeth into something.
In December 2004 I posed the somewhat rhetorical question on my old blog "What kind of fucking road name, or word, is Yeend?" after having come across a road called Yeend Close in Molesey. Well colour the question no longer rhetorical and me enlightened, because as of yesterday I know exactly what kind of road name and word it is. In West Molesey there is a church called St Peter's and for 53 years the Reverend John Yeend was its vicar, and the aforementioned road was named after him. The name/word itself dates from at least the 1500s, is from the Gloucestershire area, and possibly dervices from "Ye Ende". I know all of this thanks to an email from a guy named Dave, in whose direction this part of this blog entry constitutes a doffed cap.

1 comment:

auswomble said...

those are some magic boots you've bought bro. You're-a-walking, yes indeed...