A Travellerspoint blog

iphone schmyphone

First science class on Tuesday. Before I went I had tea (as in early dinner but also had a cup of tea) at a cafe in Canterbury Road. A man sitting on a motorbility scooter asked me if I’d seen the news about the boy who had a hammer in his head. I said no. A tall drug addict I’d seen bum a drag on a cigarette at the bus stop walked in and asked for something, then walked out again, pulling the hood of his hoodie up over his head as he walked down the pavement. I wondered if it was the same guy I saw in the Job Centre who drenched one of the staff in a volley of expletives and insults. Later I took a bus to the campus at Broadstairs. There were 12 students including me, 10 of them female. Turns out it’s only the foundation course so maximum exam grade will be a B. On Wednesday they delivered the Thanet local newspaper to our apartment building and I picked up a copy and saw the hammer in head story. One guy attacked his gay flatmate as he slept. It was quite a colourful story but no less so than the one I’d read the week before. (Judge sections legal highs stalker). I had my first Maths lesson Wednesday. Class was full and this time many more men though possibly still out numbered by women. The teacher kept having to speak over the students at the back, which really shouldn’t be necessary in an evening class. Had my second gym session yesterday, this time focusing on my arms. Some of the weights chosen for me had to be reduced. Shortly after I got back from the gym my Samsung S5 was delivered. I waited until the launch of iPhone 6 to see what it’s spec would be and it’s still using an 8 mega pixel camera with HD video. As video is important to me the UHD video with 16 mega pixel stills you get on the Samsung wins hands down.

Posted by safemouse 02:02 Archived in United Kingdom Comments (0)

Moan day

Had to phone up my fitness instructor this morning and re-schedule my second session because I haven’t recovered from the first one I had on Saturday morning. He seemed understanding, “I did push you quite hard” he said. The fact is, I can hardly walk. I hobbled down to the doctor for my first appointment in Margate, re: my acne- which has been with me for 20 years and flared up on my chest of late. My new GP is still a trainee. She asked me if the acne affects my moods and if I’d like to book another appointment with regard to my moods- i.e would I like anti-depressants. I said I prefer to generate positivity under my own steam. She asked to have a look and I undid my shirt buttons then did my shirt back up putting the buttons in the wrong holes and sat for the rest of the appointment in an odd posture, trying to cover up the fact that I’d done this whilst feeling sure that she was conscious that I had done so and was thinking about it. I met my step-dad at midday at the station. He’d come over to help me sand and stain my shelf. I’ve got to apply the final coat tomorrow and put it up, which will be a first. Whilst we were doing this I got a call from Sue. She is trying to start a paranormal group in Folkestone and I rang her up yesterday to say I was interested, having seen her online ad and we agreed to meet in 2 weeks. Today she was ringing me to ask if I wanted to be a co-founder. I asked her what the entails and she said I would be above the others but below her in the group hierarchy. What others? There aren’t any as yet. I’m a little apprehensive of where this is all going but I've always wanted to join a paranormal group and here is one almost on my doorstep so I think it’s best just to meet and see what happens.
Later, we went into town and the highlight of our afternoon seemed to be a tour of the German cut price supermarket Aldi, though looking at overpriced fridges in the Heart Foundation shop came a close second. We had a nice meal in The Gallery, a cheap gastro pub with 6 HD screens. Well I did. I enjoyed my feta cheese stuffed pepper and garlic bread, David said his steak was too chewy.

Posted by safemouse 01:48 Archived in United Kingdom Comments (1)

Four out of ten

New month, new strategy. I had a tarot reading the other day- my first in over 16 years- and the oracle seemed to be saying that I'd have a girlfriend by January at the latest. But it’s like the joke about God and the lottery ticket, there is some effort that will be required on my part. I must say I have seen some nice looking women recently, that inspired me to seriously consider areas I can improve in over the weekend. When I went to withdraw the rent on Friday in Natwest I was served by a woman of Indian or Pakistani descent, I would guess early thirties. She was very average looking-very non symmetrical- but I was strangely beguiled by her. There was something about the bone structure around her eyes that I found very attractive. She may be married, we may have nothing in common but I would like her to know just for her own sake that she is my Miss Natwest.

Then when I went to the letting agency to pay the rent I met a fair haired woman of a similar age who was plump and ample and is a freelance TEFL teacher. The lady in Natwest was now a faint memory. I had now seen absolutely where the bar had been set for me. She was just exactly the size I like and had a sweet and gentle manner about her. If she was way too high for the likes of me then I’d just have to jump through a few hoops until my Badoo rating rises from the 4.00 it currently rests at when I’m in the UK (bizarrely rises to about 7 when I’m in Prague- somewhere in-between in China). I actually started thinking about what my whole life has been so far. I never really refused many- I didn't have that luxury- to to put it another way I never had strength in depth, as they say about football teams. Now supposing I were a 10 and not a 4 of course this would make things easier. I’d have a far larger catalog to select a (closer) match from.

As things stand, there is a lot of work to do. I’m podgy, spotty, broke, carless, getting on a bit and not very visible either to those who may be interested in my potential. Of course, I don’t envisage bumping myself up to a 10. What is a 10, anyway? A premier league footballer? Matt from Downton Abbey? Colin Firth in his heyday?

Let's put rock stars, actors and billionaires in one group and call these people 10s. We can say that a TV producer, high profile lawyer, property developer, art dealer etc is a 9. They hang out with the famous but aren't famous themselves. At 8 just below these are people who are wealthy but less glamorous. They still drive nice cars and live in big houses. Maybe they run a marketing company or are a barrister or something but they don't quite have the cache of a 9.

You know what I haven't even got to 4 yet and I'm thinking I'm lucky to even have been rated that high. Actually until recently my rating was indeed less than 4. You'd think ratings are based on looks but I just don't think it works that way with girls. They'll be picking up on all sorts of other subtle things, like the clothes I'm wearing and what they can see in the photograph that give an indication of my net worth, self-respect and ambition. So let's forget this talk of how far I might be able to improve and say that significant improvement is the goal.

I went for my induction at the leisure centre at 10.00. Did my back in slightly I would say. Then walked about 500 metres out to sea to where the tide had gone out just for kicks. I read some of Jarvis Cocker’s intro to mother, brother. lover- his collection of lyrics. What may prove more inspirational is the good advice he gives. He says you should exaggerate your flaws and turn them into virtues. An example would be how he often speaks in songs and that has sort of become a trademark of his. At 1.30 I had a skills conditionality appointment that I’d been asked to attend by the Job Centre. The girl who assessed me had 3 tattoos, including one on her foot. They really are quite the thing this summer. She said I seemed to know what I was doing and wasn’t sure why I’d been sent to her. However, I did learn something useful. The government will pay for me to do level 1 of a teaching assistant course. Were I to then stump up the cash for level 2 I might be able to get work as a teaching assistant. I popped into Natwest to get a statement and cash. I was hoping I'd get the lady I had last time but I got the gay Thai guy instead. Ah well. After that I had my hair cut at Groomers. The hairdresser asked me what I thought of the Chinese people. I outlined the pros and the cons. Steve Wright was on the radio. His shows always sound reassuringly familiar if you like that sort of thing. They were talking about the new E.U rule that takes effect today regarding new vacuum cleaners being limited to 1600 W. My upright one is 1500 and that’s loud enough. After my hair cut I bought 2 shirts (every item of clothing one pound) in the Cats in Crisis charity shop and flirted a bit with a Lithuanian mother who was working in the shop and had her daughter with her. My flirting skills are non existent really. I simply talk to someone and if they like the look of me they will be naturally receptive. Judging by her friendly response I might be as high as 7 but it must be a Slav thing, see what I said earlier about Prague.

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The rather unloved basketball court in Huntsdown Park, near the leisure centre

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How far you can walk when the tide is out

Posted by safemouse 11:07 Archived in United Kingdom Comments (2)

Not gloating II

Hello again, dear readers. All 1 of you, if I include myself. I feel as we approach the end of my second month here a petite update is in order. And to prove I'm definitely not gloating today I'll upload some pictures of drab Britain, rather than pics of historic buildings or beautiful beaches.

Now to use a phrase beloved of David Cameron- who gave my blog its title- 'Let me be absolutely clear', I would rather be employed than unemployed and I will be disappointed if this state of affairs drags on for too long. I want a car, I want to travel, I want to live a little. Right, that disclaimer over with let me just say that it's not all bad. In fact, it's really quite good. Recently, I've had free descaling, a filling and a mouth guard paid at the dentist and a new pair of glasses. A saving of hundreds of pounds. My science GCSE course, should I choose to enrol next week, will be free rather than cost me hundreds of pounds (428 if I recollect), as will my Maths which is in fact free anyway because I scored a D last time. Most of my rent is covered, I have an adequate living allowance and if I decide to go to university I'll be given a soft loan that I don't have to pay back unless I get a decent job. To some, this is outrageous and the unemployed should not get any of this. To others, the government doesn't do enough. I think the balance is about right. I have been given the tools to get myself on my feet and I aim to do so. And I hope to pay it all back in National Insurance contributions if Her Majesty's government at some future date. In the meantime, I've used my lowly status as an unemployed loser to get myself a Bronze Membership Card at the local leisure centre, at the bargain price of 20 pounds a month, 6 month minimum membership, induction session tomorrow (Monday).That includes swimming, aerobics (unlikely I'll do them) and gym with 5 personal training sessions included. Not gloating.

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The front of the leisure centre, on the edge of a large park which was mainly empty except for seagulls. Noisy seagulls.

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The back of the centre, built during that sci fi phase of architecture in the 80s perhaps.

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And if you turned round this is what you'd see.

Posted by safemouse 10:21 Archived in United Kingdom Comments (1)

Not gloating

Went to East Kent College's pleasantly situated Broadstairs to do my Maths GCSE and Science GCSE aptitude tests. There were other students, including a chatty young woman with large breasts and tattoos. Not sure if they are permanent but they've very fashionable in Thanet, maybe in the UK for all I know. The teacher said I'd passed and would be contacted in due course.
I turned right outside the campus and walked down to the seafront. It's only 4 miles away from Margate but it's very different. Margate is flatter and is facing Suffolk, Broadstairs descends dramatically and is facing...Denmark? The sea evidently gets deeper quicker because it appeared to have more substantial waves. There was a small funfair and an aerial display over the sea.
I got the train back to Margate and had a drink of cider outside the Barnacles pub. Overheard conversation: “To be honest with you I can’t see beyond Chelsea, Man City- that’s the way it’s going.” Then I walked across the beach back home.
“Could all deckchairs, parasols and windbreakers be returned by 5.30. Thank you.”
I put a tenner on my electricity key. I could do it direct debit and get a 5 percent discount but I wanna live like common people. Some pics of Broadstairs beaches and aeroplane.

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Posted by safemouse 12:25 Archived in United Kingdom Comments (2)

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