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Everything posted by BigMouth

  1. The irony is that there is a sign on some of the buses advising passengers to use a their seatbelt, yet you can have passengers standing in the aisle. I don't think that bus passengers are seen as important. The lack of an indoor waiting area at the Lerwick bus station being a good example. It gets bloody cold, and often wet, waiting in the open ended bus shelter in all weathers. A cafe, or the revenue for leasing it (or sale perhaps), was seen as a greater need than passengers being able to stay warm. This was to be fair, put out to consultation before the cafe was opened. Like most consultations the decision appeared to be a foregone conclusion. There are a couple of benches at the bus station to sit on in more agreeable weather, but they are old and the varnish/paint worn away so that they absorb water when it rains. They stay wet for a long time afterwards, but no-one seems to be responsible for them and their maintenance. The trouble is that those who could make a difference, those who make the decisions, don't travel on the buses so they have no idea of the discomforts suffered by the travelling public, and apparenlty little care for the passengers either.
  2. Perhaps the Auto-Pilot in the film Airplane might be an idea that would solve the problem.
  3. Three piggyback on the EE network. I have the joy of 3G at home. That blisteringly fast power is sometimes too much for my excitement levels.
  4. Like the Four Tops?
  5. It's more likely to be someone still on hold for BT Broadband
  6. I should have listened more closely but I heard today that either crypto currencies or perhaps it was Bitcoin had lost $1 Trillion since the first of Jan 22. I am not sure which it was. IMHO it's a Ponzi scheme that relies on the greater fool. Winners are quick to tell of their gains whilst losers keep quiet!
  7. Thanks GR. I bought their remaining stock.
  8. It sounds like you may be undecided then Ghosty!
  9. There seems to be plenty of cheap disposable lighters in the shops and supermarkets, but is anyone aware of anyone in Shetland sell Bic branded lighters? Thanks
  10. That's a cool tour. I have never seen one inside a building before. Thanks for that.
  11. I am just packing my bags for a foot passenger crossing on the Northlink ferry to Aberdeen. It's been a while since I travelled on the ferry. I seem to remember my bags going through an x-ray scanner at Aberdeen. Is this still the case, and is this the same at Lerwick. The reason for asking is that I want to get all the kit that they are likley to ask about in the same bag, or at least accessible in two bags. Do they worry about liquids and electrical items like they do at the airport for instance? I'm not smuggling our finest mussels or Shetland fudge to the Aberdonians by the way.
  12. Thanks George. Whenever I have looked at the website in the past it always says whether it is open at that moment in time, but not what the hours are!
  13. Hello Is the Co-op in Brae open on Boxing Day? Thank you
  14. With the forthcoming cancellation of the islander meal discount on the North boats, I wondered what others are planning on doing for their meals and refreshments; paying up or finding an alternative? I thought that I might apply some time to a thought experiment to seek a solution. On Amazon you can buy a 1 litre deep fat fryer for £25, which got me wondering about having a fry-up in your cabin. Obviously this would need to be done on a calm night or whilst still in port or the lea of Shetland mainland if underway. As far as provisions are concerned you could have a bottle of oil in your luggage, a fresh fish in a bag per person, a spud per person and something to peel it with, or pre-peel/chip and bag them before you leave home. You could knock up some batter at home and put it into a zip lock bag. A plate plus eating irons would be necessary, add salt, pepper and vinegar if required. You might be able to blag some or all of these from the onboard cafe. As you can't open a window in the cabin (who designed these boats for chrissakes?) there is always the risk that the cooking might set off the cabin's smoke detector so it would be wise to wedge the door open with a leg broken off the chair. SERCO might thank you for leaving the door open as the smell of fish and chips wafting in the cabin's corridor might encourage others to go to the cafe, so up their sales. Disposing of the oil might make sense, depending on your plans for breakfast, as you wouldn't be wanting to carry dirty oil slopping about in a deep fat fryer. The best that I can come up with is to fill one of the paper cups with soap solution provided at the sink and the shower, tip the oil down the toilet, and follow that up with the cup of soap liquid before flushing the solution down the pipe. Just add more soap if there is any residue to make the problem someone else's problem. If you are more eco-friendly just dispose of the oil in the waste bin. At least you won't have to share a paper cup with your travelling companion then. Remember to wipe out the cooking vessel with plenty of the free loo paper then flush that as well. Alternatives could include using a chip pan with a camping gas stove, the door must be open for the carbon monoxide to escape. It's probably best not to go to the bar whilst waiting for the oil to heat up in the chip pan. Soak a bath towel in water just in case the oil should catch fire as black smoke billowing from your cabin is something likely to be noticed and may cause alarm amongst your fellow travellers. If you have a taste for foreign foods then the kettle should hold a couple of tins of curry. Obviously drink plenty of liquids first and fill flasks before doing this as the kettle's interior will be sub-optimal after the curry cook up. For breakfast pour the milk that you have brought into the deep fat fryer or chip pan, add some porage oats, salt and sugar, and set it to cook, stirring frequently with one of the "free" plastic spoons. Eat the portage straight out of the cooking vessel, but be aware that there may be smoke produced as the remnants of the porage sticks to the bottom. Take the deep fat fryer or chip pan into the shower with you or just abandon it for the staff to have if they want it. If you are determined to keep it then use one of the towels to rub vigorously on the inside to try to leave the burnt bits behind with the towel. If you haven't binned the oil you might have had the forethought to bring a rasher of bacon, a sausage and an egg each, which could be fried in the cooking vessel of choice, using the same safety measures as detailed above. The meat could be kept cold overnight by putting them in the sink and running the cold water over them all night with the plug out. If you need to use the toilet in the night it will be important to lower your hand hygiene standards for one night and forego the sink. Other considerations should include putting your luggage and any clothing into bin bags so that they are not soiled by the deep frying/curry/porage cooking aromas extravaganza. SERCO will be washing the bedding anyway, and wiping down the woodwork, so no need to worry about those things. If the chip pan didn't catch fire you will have saved them the trouble of having to repaint the cabin, so everyone is a winner. Let me know if you come up with better solutions. Bon voyage! Biggy
  15. I have little sympathy for the haulage industry not being able to get enough drivers. Like many other industries they see training as someone else's problem and therefore cost. I have goods vehicle licence, but no CPC, which I believe that I need, and I was told would cost me about £2,000 to get. I wrote to every employer who had trucks a good few years ago about work, even offering to come in at short notice if a driver didn't turn up. I got one response from Streamline, who said they had nothing going at the time, but would keep my name on file. I never had a spare £2k to get the CPC qualification on the offchance that I might get work, so I didn't bother. I never heard from Streamline afterwards, and I ended up with an muckle sphincter job elsewhere. Hospitality is a dead end occupation with plenty of exploitation available in most cases, so it's hardly surprising that the locals vote with their feet. By the laws of supply and demand, these industries, short of workers, need to offer better terms and conditions. Until they do they will battle to recruit and retain staff. The bosses aren't willing to have a little less so that their staff can have a little more though in my experience. I saw this when I went for an interview with a car hire firm. I totted up my income from the job versus my outgoings, I would have needed a car to do the job, and I would have been left with about £20 a week. I couldn't afford to work for them. They suddenly improved their offer, but I saw it as underhand that they hadn't offered that in the first place, so declined their "generous" offer.
  16. We don't really need an incentive to work. Before long automation will have pushed a good few of us out of the workforce. UBI might be an easier way of paying benefits as well as keeping us off the streets.
  17. You'll never get UBI under a Tory government in Westmonster. They hate anyone getting anything for free unless it is them and theirs. The hospitality industry has always been one for exploiting people, and my experience of it here was no different. I was living in Hoofields and applied for a job at one of the hotels here. The owner seemed keen, and even suggested that I should move out of Hoofields into one of the staff rooms in the hotel. He certainly wasn't offering that to benefit me. He obviously wanted me living over the shop so that I could be on call 24 hours a day. If I had a share in the business it might have had some attraction, but as a minimum wage flunky I was definitely not interested, and let him know that the job was very much a stop gap until a proper job came along. Hard work, poor pay, long hours, tied accommodation, little thanks, who would be queueing up to work in such an industry?
  18. Only a fool would lecture us on our carbon footprint and then spend his time jetting around unnecessarily. Although I assume that he thinks us the fools as perhaps we either will not notice or forgive him for his hypocrisy.
  19. Royalty seem to love to lecture us on green issues, but they are the absolute worst for creating greenhouse gases. Anyone could have opened the fish markets, so why didn't someone local do it? Instead some fool from London flies all the way up here for the day.
  20. I won't mention the place, as I don't want to embarrass them. The other half and I went out for lunch, which was superb, followed by two coffees. We asked for flat whites. What we were served were white americanos. We drank them nonetheless, but pointed out the error to them at the end. They were convinced that a flat white was made with water with a splash of milk, but we know otherwise so we told them that it should be made with a vast majority of hot milk and the only water should be in the one or two shots of coffee. They wouldn't accept it. We spoke to a cafe proprietor today who told us that we were right, flat white is mostly hot milk.
  21. Am I alone in thinking that the water in Lerwick tastes like bleach smells? Mine is altogether different in the north mainland.
  22. For those with Twitter https://twitter.com/AbChav/status/1380575375290421248
  23. Just noticed this on the David Davis Downside Dossier Shellfish. The European Union has told the UK shellfish industry that thousands of tonnes of oyster, mussel, clam, cockle and scallop exports are banned from the bloc indefinitely. British fishers, who had been told by government to expect the ban to last until spring, are warning this will be a fatal blow to their businesses. Perhaps this should be in the Brexit thread, but I think that this will be important to the local fisherfolk in an independence context.
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