Monday, January 30, 2006

New forest sojurn, a return.

last weekend we had a great time with good, old friends. The new forest was as beautiful as ever, but I couldn`t live there as my friends do! its too isolated for my taste, Im afraid. We arrived to a riot of Lunch in the form of local cheese ham homemade bread, local vegetables and all the trimmings for a really nice lunch. In the Afternoon, after dragging both women apart, they had so much "catching up to do!" we went for a walk and saw loads of "new forest" Ponies, donkeys and the tracks of Wild Boar which I am told have been released into the area, "wild" Pigs are often seen but Boar are a bit reclusive. We stopped at the local garden centre where we all had enormouse hot chocolates to ready ourselves for the final treck home.

The weather was crisp and ice lay on the ground in places. Arriving back and stood in front of a raging wood fire I could have been "turned" possibly, regarding my feelings about actually living in the forest. We had a lot to chat about both families having two children of similar ages , ours are about 7 years younger than theirs but similar in that they are a senior male and junior daughter configuration. :o)) In the morning , I sat and watched two "European Buzzards" displaying breathtakingly, high above the valley overlooked by my friends house, they were magnificent, grabbing at each others talons and wirling around untill almost on the ground, breaking off just before impact with the ground (30 metres off) like some "Canopy relative entheusiast" in a well trained parachute display team. Countless times they approached each other with the most acrobatic of flight and didn`t connect and when they finally did their swirling decent was really something to be seen, I feel really Privileged to have witnessed their display.

Our friends are now into their seventies and whilst fit are contemplating leaving the forest and moving to Portugal where they already have a place, they say they will keep a flat in the UK and buy a larger property in Portugal. They are keen Golf fans and their house in portugal, as here allows them to play every day, if they really want to (which they often do!) and is actually backing on to a course somewhere on the Algarve. I will miss them when they do move and I know that my wife who`s best friend she is will too, terribly, Ho hum! life goes on.

We had a great time and I feel that we shouldn`t leave it so long next time, spending vast amounts of time on the boat I have neglected our really true old friends! :o(( .

(authors note:- How can it be too isolated for me???? as I will spend weeks alone at sea on my boat, lifes funny isn`t it? perhaps I just prefer my boat)

Thursday, January 26, 2006

she is a lovely boat though! Posted by Picasa

Definitely going back to sail, its a long way from sail to "Psychobabble"

My boats port engine is now partially stripped down, because of an early season, "Clonk" thinking/hoping that it was only a "Diesel knock" I checked the injectors and all were firing OK checked the oil and found that sea water had gotten into the sump (tasted of salt) checked the oil coolers, and found that the ( new last year but one) matrix on the intercooler has failed allowing water into the combustion chambers and from there down the bores and breather pipes into the sump. Eugh! now I have to strip it all out, rebuild and replace a lot of parts. the starboard engine was sompletely rebuilt last year but one. and I lost the whole season doing it, so it looks like its going to happen again this year. Damn it! when its done I`ll sell the boat and go back to sail!

Apart from the above news I am enjoying life, I`m off to the new forest for a couple of days and back at the weekend. My friends have lived in the heart of the forest for eight years having given up sailing for golf! can you believe it somebody prefers Golf to sailing or even boating? incredible :o))

Some years ago whilst on a business strategy course at a famous buisness school I spent some time in lectures appertaining to the "psychology of personnel" and touched on a new form of motivational Tool. This was some time ago (1985) and the American doctor creator of the system was keen to get it accepted in the UK and I guess did the lecture as a sales tool. I was fascinated and over the years returned to his teachings many times in my career in Management. Now the system/tool is more widely known as NLP (Neuro Linguistical Programming).

Over the years since I have retired I have been reading/learning a lot about this subject and have watched with interest as its popularity and use has grown in todays culture both individally and in Industry. Television is now broadcasting many programmes and famous names are advocates of the original methodology. The senior lecturer on my Business course, at one time the head of a multinational company, called it "Psychobabble" the name stuck and is now used my many doctors, to describe it, who are not confident that it works as they have "Psycho something" alternatives to rely on and thats where their real confidence lies .

I have been toying with getting a formal cert in the subject and find that those teaching it are making a great amount of money from their efforts and that many different associations /institutes are springing up as they are created by those dissatisfied with others . I deduce from this that their may be undercurrents running in the "Psychobabble, now industry" which means to me that perhaps it isnt Prfessionally controlled enough? or that standards may vary.

So, I ask myself, do I really want to obtain some form of certification in an industry where their are tensions and possiby variations in training standards and deviations from the original concepts????? Perhaps I should re think my strategy and go back to the founder and ask some question? Who knows I might really enjoy "getting involved" again! as well as sailing of course!

Friday, January 20, 2006

Chairman Rob at Christmas. The teeth are my own (I`ve paid for them finally) but the mustache is false (really? nah!! your joking it looks so real) Posted by Picasa

Thursday, January 19, 2006

When I read......................

when I read the blogs of the few people that I find I can relate to, I realise just how little I know about life and actually how illiterate I really am. I read in blogs about the trials and tribulations of others, about their political leaning and their everyday experiences and I am in awe.

On one blog a complete life is about to be restarted and turned upside down, another a great journey is about to be taken by an educated person, at mid twenties, who believes men are repulsive and to be demeaned. I would love to be able to convince her otherwise, but it appears that she has been indoctrinated by her minimal experience, and the actions of a few people around her. Fortunately she hasn`t yet fallen into the trap of believing that men are just there to provide for her (althought they may have done so in the past) and reduced her interest in them to reflect this.. Do I hear "Wa*ker! just like all the rest" from her lips should she read this! But then why would she? I never get any reply from her to any comments I leave, two to date.

I retired at fifty two years of age and am about to celebrate (is that the right word) the ten year period since (What is the celebration of ten years after retirement called?? is it "bone, incontinence or Pee? I`m never quite sure. I do know that a golden one is fifty when it comes to marriage :o)) ). The chances of me surviving that length of time were considerably reduced as surveys tell us that not too many of those who retire early survive over the first ten years? I guess that I am lucky, or about to die!!! Te he W.G.A.S. :o) ........ask me again at the time!!

I guess that I have what I would call employed myself in various enterprises and interests and generally kept busy but not to the extent that I would like to have done. As the years go on I lose out even more as I lack interest and ability to do something meaningfull. Only I can change that and I will make an effort in the near future! There I go again putting any action off, way into the future.

Ok I have had my jolts in life that bring me back into the fold and make me realise that life is for living. At sixteen I climbed out of a stuck lift at my school which had stopped with about a twelve inch gap left at the top of the doors so that I could manage to climb out, I forced open the doors, squeezed out and jumped to the floor on the landing. As my feet touched solid ground, the lift proceeded to carry on up, at full speed. I still have dreams about this, not the fact that I could have been cut in half but as I landed I overbalanced and nearly fell backwards, five floors, down the shaft.

At twentyfive and with a young family I ran out of air on a sixty metre dive, before ABLJs and I had to swim back to the surface arriving unconcious and bleeding profusly from an exploded eardrum. Fourty years of age saw me sustaining a "blown perifery" on a training jump (parachute failure) and crashing heavily after fighting all the way to the ground where I lay unconcious but uninjured as worried instructors ran with "the trolley" to scrape me up. I had only taken the jump to celebrate my being fourty and see if I still had the "Cajhones"to repeat what I had done with the military in my youth. (name and address witheld) of my youth that is.......:o))

Then whilst Paragliding at fifty I experienced a " frontal tuck" at approximately one hundred feet, as I approached a landing site and plummeted to the ground with a frightening forward motion , not to mention my downward speed, once again at the last minute I managed to get the canopy to partly fill and survived again without any injury (except to my pride) and the worry of how the hell I was going to explain to my long suffering wife how I had gotten all the grass stains, I hadn`t up untill that time, told her that I was learning to paraglide :o((

The list goes on and I could fill this blog (if I haven`t already??? Yawn!!!) with the details, but I like to think that my purpose for writing some of them down is to assist me in really believing that life is good and that I have been lucky to retain the precious gift and that I should now get off my not too large, at the moment, posterior and do something more productive, something that will give me more satisfation than at present, and drive me on, not too safely ( because that would be booring), into advanced old age.

With the onset of summer, the boating season and of course the dissapearance of S.A.D I will Bloom (if that`s the word) but I would like to try something else this year, something that I could master and maybe use for the generation of a small revenue (not that I need it of course!!!)........... (liar!!! more money to spend on the boat would always be welcome) answers on a postcard please. Please note that, the first person to suggest that I write a book after my efforts here will be "discumbobulated". Yea, Yea!! I am still trying to do that too, butI am stuck at the sixth Chapter of about three attempts at different sorts.

I guess that I am just a great starter and never a good finisher and OK maybe she is right perhaps I am as she may say, like most men. I do hope not!!!!!!!!!.......................:o((

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Roll on summer!

I went to the London international boat show on Monday in Londons Dockland (supposed ponsey up an coming area in londons old dock area) upon arrival we were greeted by a young overweight (I can talk) security gentleman who directed us to the potters bar park and ride as "thats all I can offer you" for parking (wasn`t really Potters bar which is about 25 miles away but it might just have been) so we ignored him and drove around him and parked in the exhibitors car park followed my much shouting and threats but he didn`t bother to follow us as the exertion probably would have finished him for the day.

The Excel center (where the boat show is held ) is massive and much bigger that the earls court centre where it used to be held. (most people prefer Earls court). As we entered the show there was a well dressed young man with a placard saying something about the evicting of house boat owners on the Thames somewhere (a sign of the time I`m afraid) and he had a policeman talking quite sharply to him. I felt sad that a solitary person appeared not to be allowed an opinion in front of a show where money isn`t really a problem to the visitors, and this guy and his family were having their mooring taken away what is the UK coming to? I split from my mate as he had other priorities and we agreed to meet up later for lunch. I strolled around looking at the same equipment as I had seen at the southampton boatshow and rather boored I sat down and out designated meet place and my mate rang me to ask where I was as he was at the meeting place, I explained to him that if he looked five degrees to his left and down to the floor he would see me. I was sitting in front of where he was standing he could have placed his hand on my shoulder :o)). We laughed and discussed the real futility of coming to this show any more. we ate beef sandwiches which cost £13.50 per head and were joined by a couple who turned out to be the Managing director of an international electronics company and his Pa we had a great chat about how the show was going downhill and how he thought that when the agreed five year period was up it would move back to Earls court. he told us that he is represented at most of the boat shows around the world usually wisiting them all during each show at some time (what a job) We ate up and bemoaning the catering facilities we left to explore a Royal navy frigate.

Being searched first we climbed a long boarding ramp and was greeted by a 12 year old sailoress who very kindly directed us to the bow where we were allowed to visit the rest of the ship over five floors with access up and down almost vertical ladders. I should have rememberd these from previous experience. That over with we chatted about how young the sailors were and how they didn`t deserve to be injured and killed until they were at least out age :o)) so it was back to the carpark and sit in traffic for two hours. It doesnt change in london. it took us an hour to get over the queen Elizabeth bridge and another hour around the southern stretch of the M25 motorway to where I live.

A long and booring day was experienced! but it had to be done! I dont think I will go again, I will however visit the Southampton boatshow which is very similar but more outdoors although very weather dependant.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Is this sensible advice?

Buy a house on "Interest only mortgage" and with the use of minimal "value addition" increase its value and remortgage it to get back your initial investment. Now buy another house having rented out your first house, and do it again and again and again etc. Insure for your losses with a Landlord/tennant policy and sit back and enjoy the freedom as your empire grows.

Never sell the properties as a Capital tax will be attracted and only use any profit made to reinvest or pay the directors a fee (and then some tax will have to be paid but minimal considering)

Given that Property values rise (or have done expenentially in the past in the UK) the equity will be considerable in a few years? Sell empire and retire or leave it to the kids/partner.

Wheres the problem? Is the insurance too costly, don`t houses let easily where you live, wouldn`t it work for you, if it would why aren`t you doing it? Just a thought!!

Sunday, January 01, 2006

Friends for more than Forty years

I met these guys and ladies some forty years ago when we were all "young Blades" and members of the K.O.T /BSAC Diving club. Last night we celebrated our entry into a Happy new year.

Happy new year to everybody!!!

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