What Is This Starter? Can Anyone Guess?
This was a starter on a menu in Glasgow Marriott. An unusual option. I chose it and ate it. Delicious . But can anyone work out what it is?
At the back of the Hilton hotel at Anderston around 2 pm there were two fire engines in attendance spraying . It looked like a spillage that was being neutralised. Relating to a lorry parked there presumably .
A group of workers are now clearing up the materials. Clearly folks were evacuated from either the Hilton or from the adjacent building . Around 2.45 pm they were allowed to return .
Anyone who follows my blog, and why would you not, will know my latest interest is photographing around Europe Graffiti Art. I will be posting a lot about Hunter and The Bear in the next few days, but this graffiti art shot from a couple of months ago in Glasgow caught my eye tonight. Could it just be Hunter and The Bear graffiti art?
Glasgow is a city that many people like and love. Host to various international events and museums. But I have never really “got” Glasgow. Maybe I have not been shown the cool places? I had an hour to spend this walk and just walked around central Glasgow taking a few photographs and again found the city not exactly full of inspiration. As usual it was raining and there was rubbish everywhere. Streets were littered with huge rubbish bags and general detritus. I need someone to point me in the right direction and show me the real highlights of Glasgow please. Strange images of jellybabies playing bagpipes, various graffiti, grey streets and Irn Bru.
Irn Bru looked too dangerous to try. As for the Blue Police box, is this serious? The planes had propellers, ok, I exagerrate a little, but not so much. Glasgow airport looked quite dead compared with previous visits. Few planes coming and going. A million shops selling “real fish and chips”.
Now to put the other side of the equation. From
Glasgow has been named as one of the top 20 ‘Best of the World’ destinations for 2016 by influential publication National Geographic Traveler, the city has also been voted the ‘friendliest city in the world’ in a Rough Guides poll and named a must visit destination by leading publications like the New York Times, The Guardian and Wanderlust! Earning its reputation as one of the world’s greatest cities, you can expect a very warm welcome and when you add world-class architecture, a vibrant nightlife, breathtaking scenery and outstanding shopping, you’ll never want to leave!
The SECC is an impressive multi-purpose venue in Glasgow for concerts, congresses and various meetings. The architecture also is impressive. Originally opening in 1985 it has been expanded over the years and is 95% owned by Glasgow City Council. The Clyde Auditorium was built in 1997 and looking rather like an Armadillo, is thus often called that! The site occupies 64 acres, mostly parking for 1600 cars and has its own train station nearby, although with a formidable walk still through one of the most interesting tunnels I have experienced.
A pleasure to travel on this aircraft today from London City Airport to Glasgow. What actually struck me was that the legroom if you sat in seats 2 C and D was phenomenal. They literally were missing a row of seats. This had another benefit, that the trolley that normally wrecked havoc as it went up the aisle with passengers coming down the aisle, could be parked in there, allowing folks to skip happily into the toilet. The two rules of flying that cannot be broken are that firstly one should carry every item from the household onto the plane and secondly that all passengers must visit the toilet at least once.
What however I did not know was that the aircraft series has been in production since 2002, and 908 have been delivered. They seat between 94 and 114 . My one today seated 98 according to British Airways.
There is however a little safety information to digest according to Wikipaedia.
It has been a few months sinceI was last here and I always enjoy visiting. Coming in to land it was clear that there was no drought here. Many fields were waterlogged and rivers on the verge of flooding. The airport seemed quiet until one approached the taxi queue. Posters advised and indeed almost entranced me to use Glasgow Airport Taxis. Listings of wondrous reasons why. The sad reality was that the plane was full and around 100-150 people descended onto a taxi rank where there were no taxis. Each minute a few would arrive, take a single passenger and off they would go. Two things struck me. Firstly the sole man in charge of masterminding the entry of a person into the taxi ( would enjoy reading his job description) might well have considered for example saying ” this taxi is going to SECC, anyone up for sharing?”. My guess is that there would be relatively few places folks were heading. He did not, so each taxi departed with a solitary fee paying passenger having spent upwards of 30 minutes waiting in a queue. Secondly, the taxis were all mini buses. Most were designed to hold 7-9 people. Again these would depart with one passenger. Ludicrous. The alleged reason for the wait for an accident on the M8 ( I saw nothing of the kind) and a breakdown ( again nothing seen by me). What I suspect is poor planning. Clearly plane landings are predicted, clearly things can go wrong, but in general terms if you have a monopoly on a service you should be able to either provide that service or amend the service you do provide. Waiting for the taxi for some people was longer than the length of their flights. So I am afraid Glasgow Airport Taxis, you have failed on your commitment but I guess in your own way have provided an exceptional customer experience.
The taxi driver was an interesting character. I made the mistake of talking football with him. He then talked at me the whole journey and was still talking to me as I entered into SECC. The reason was his unhappiness, if I might tone it down, about Glasgow Rangers and their punishment being banished to Scottish League 3 with a transfer embargo until 2014 ( he said). I said what happens if all the players leave and you have none, surely then you can sign players? He skipped answering that one, but it was a sad tale. Whatever one thinks about the alleged crimes that Glasgow Rangers have committed, these have not been done by their fans.
One of the more unusual presentations at this years BSR congress ( the annual rheumatology congress in UK, usually devoted mainly to illnesses such as Rheumatoid Arthritis etc), was a nice presentation from Phillip Cooper describing the epidemiology of sporting injuries amongst elite football players. This was a study conducted at Southampton football club from 2007-2010 and included all 272 players. As expected most injuries were muscular or ligamentous, but of interest was the time that they happened. There was a trend to slightly increased frequency in the latter parts of each 45 minute half and in the last quarter of a training session in the first-team players. My question to the presenter related to whether injuries were worse in any one division as Southampton have been up and down the leagues over that period. A great talk and a real surprise to find this on the agenda.
The SECC is also a great venue just outside Glasgow, two stops down from Glasgow Central. Travelling there this morning in the rush hour and on the platform at 8 am I was expecting just that, a rush but found myself to be the only person on the platform. Bizarre. I was the rush hour and at a cost of 1.40£ return was not single-handedly funding Scotrail.
This is becoming like a mantra. Each time I visit I forget how foul the whole experience is. This ranges from the awful signage, the expensive food, the sour-faced staff, the delays but mostly the cynicism of it all. Today I saw a huge advert outside a currency exchange bureau that said ” great exchange rates”. This intrigued me as in the pharmaceutical industry where I work, this kind of claim would firstly not be allowed but if it ever were watered down, there would have to be clarity over what exactly ” great” meant and compared to what. On my I-phone I have been following the euro exchange rates as soon will be heading off to Spain. Recently the rate is around 1.22 euro to the pound. This “great” exchange was more akin to the great train robbery, if I were to give them 1.38 euros they would kindly repay me a pound. However if I were to give them a pound they would give me 1.11 euros. A disgraceful exchange rate that does not even stop there as there would be a minimum £3 commission. This equates to something like a 20% mark down in their favour. This is not great and in fact should be considered illegal practice. The end result as usual is that not only would I not ever make this exchange at any UK airport but feel the need to stop others. It is the same story with the food, expensive prices for ordinary dross. Long queues to get what most travellers want, a cup of tea and sandwich, but no queue for the silly restaurants with stupid names like ” giraffe”. The staff generally are miserable and unfriendly, the queues for security are somehow always longer than their alleged BAA surveys claim. Today there was a grand claim on the departure boards that 95% ish of people clear security within 5 minutes. This is clearly not true. The only way to achieve this would be to pole vault over the top. End of rant. In contrast today, Glasgow Airport. Civilised, tidy and what I wanted was readily available. Result, I spent money there.