Cleaning Up After Mother Nature…With A Chainsaw

26 10 2014

storm2

Unless you are a lumberjack, waking up to the sound of a chainsaw can be a vaguely unsettling experience. Even more so if you are located on an island that is known primarily for its pink sandy beaches, reinsurance market and rum-based libations of varying strengths.

But for many Bermudians, the depressing sound of nature being chopped into small pieces has become very familiar in the last few days. As most people on this side of the pond are more than aware, this 21-square-mile patch of land was hit by two major weather events in the space of a week – “Tropical Storm” Fay and Hurricane Gonzalo – and while Fay reportedly caught the country with its shorts down, residents were more prepared for the extreme winds that picked up where the storm had left off.

Read the rest of this entry »





Easter: The Truth is Out There

4 04 2010

And Easter here again, a time for the blind to see
Easter, surely now can all of your hearts be free

Taken from the song ‘Easter’ by Marillion

This is the bit of the Bible that often gets overlooked at this time of year, mainly because the powers that be are fearful of us knowing the truth. Or at the very least because nobody buys them any gifts.

 

Following the execution of Jesus Christ on the Friday there was much wailing and gnashing of teeth, mainly from the disciples who hadn’t been devious enough to turn him in for money. Read the rest of this entry »





Your Call Is Important To Us -Seasons Greetings from Delta and Expedia

21 12 2009

Adjusting the volume on the phone earpiece, I asked for the Expedia agent to repeat what she had just said.

Mr Bolton, I can advise you that in order to change the flight to London from Monday 21st December, arriving Heathrow on 22nd December to 7.45 PM leaving Boston on 22nd December and arriving on 23rd December, the additional fee will be $6,890 per person.”

That’s what I thought she said.

Picking my jaw from the floor, and holding my breath for 10 seconds, I calmly asked her how this rather unreasonable fee had been calculated.

She then went into a company-endorsed spiel that factored in the time of the year, the airline requirements for penalty fees in the event of the traveller being required to change his or her flight plans and the procedure that she had followed which calculated the penalty change for my obviously difficult request.

Just under $7,000 to move a flight by one day.

Nearly the same amount of cash that would buy 10 days in Disneyland. For one.

The same amount of money that a pancake waitress can expect to earn from a kiss and tell story about an encounter with a C-List celebrity.

And the reason why I had made this unreasonable request?

Extreme weather on the East Coast of the USA, and a cancelled Delta flight from Bermuda on the Saturday had ensured that we were not able to fly back to Boston before Tuesday at the earliest.

Which meant that we would not make a flight on Monday back to London. Read the rest of this entry »





Bermuda – A Six-Legged Utopia

18 12 2009

“You go to heaven if you want, I’d rather stay here in Bermuda

Mark Twain (possibly after completing a spoiled walk at one of the island’s eight golf courses)

There are many things to be enjoyed at the start of the day in Bermuda.

The probability of another glorious sunrise, the anticipation of dark n’stormys (local drink) in the afternoon and on a Sunday the traditional codfish and potato breakfast.

However for me, it is the brushing away of the first ant from my skin that heralds the true start of a Bermudian morning.

Despite an aversion to most crawling things, I have never really had a problem with these determined little creatures before. They may have been slightly annoying at some picnics, but even then that was normally due to a badly sealed Tupperware box of edibles.

I have even found them to be endearing and cute in animated movies, despite the disconcerting notion of an ant with the voice of Sharon Stone….Basic Instinct with far too many legs.

I have admired their work ethic and amazing ability to carry items far heavier than themselves. But no more.

I hate ants.

My numerous visits to Bermuda have instilled a pathological hatred of these six-legged annoyance devices. No one can deny that this island can be a paradise, but for the ant it is Utopia.

They are even active in December when they are supposed to be sleeping. Rain or shine, the ant is omnipresent. Read the rest of this entry »





Bermuda Shorts – Life In The Fast Lane

18 12 2009

Our island home is 21 square miles of breathtaking beaches, quaint roadways, gorgeous scenery, unique architecture and the bluest waters as far as the eye can see.

Dr. Ewart Brown, Premier of Bermuda, Minister of Transport and Tourism

Driving in Bermuda should be no problem for those of us who are accustomed to using the left side of the road

Of course now that I have relocated to the right-minded US of A, my sense of dislocated driving is on a whole new level.

I used to be confident that the steering wheel would be conveniently located on the right side, and that my left hand would change gears but driving in the US has ensured that occasionally I go to change gear and wind down the window instead.

With this in mind, it is probably a good thing that visitors to the island are unable to rent cars because the roads here are challenging enough without the added excitement of allowing people to drive on the opposite side of the tarmac.

Far easier to just let them rent scooters.

And thats the problem of using the “quaint” roads in Bermuda. Even in the quieter winter months.

During the tourist season (and especially when the cruise ships are “in town”), there are just too many inexperienced riders jockeying for position amongst the cars, trucks, buses and sundry vehicles that actually require four wheels for control and stability.

To paraphrase George Orwell “Four Wheels good, two wheels bad”.

Not to mention the fact that there are thousands of Bermudian scooter and motorcycle owners who are willingly taking their chances on a daily basis in order to get to places of employ, the beach or occasionally their regular sitting wall. Read the rest of this entry »