# Monday, 20 August 2007

Good way to waste, erm I mean spend the afternoon

Whilst doing some real work (gasp), I came across this great web page where you can make your own sand art picture. It's simple, but fun!

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# Tuesday, 07 August 2007

There's no such thing as coincidence, even if you can't work out why!

As we were just setting off on our outing yesterday, one of the children opened the sliding window on the side of the car. For some inexplicable reason, the window exploded into squillions of pieces, leaving shattered glass inside and out.

After spending rather longer than we would have liked cleaning up the broken glass, I then had the boring and frustrating job of trying to find somewhere that would fit a replacement window.

Given that there are plenty of window replacement people in the area, including at least four main Volkswagen dealers, the fact that my eventual choice of company was a Volkswagen dealership in Swansea was by no means a high probability. When I mentioned the name of the dealership to the Mrs, she pointed out that this was the exact garage that had originally registered the car when it was new. When I gave the registration number to the chap when booking it in, he asked me if it was a Swansea number as he recognised it (sad waste of a brain, but that's another story).

So, I was left wondering what this all meant. We bought the car from someone in Kendal (for the geographically challenged, this is in the Lake District, north-west England, and a long way from South Wales), and had ended up taking it back home for a new window. Not just the area where it was registered, but to the exact same garage.

Surely there must be some deep cosmic significance in all of this. Out of all the areas in our green and pleasant land, we could have gone on holiday anywhere. Even having come to this area, the window could have smashed at any time. Even having a smashed window in this area, we could have gone to any one of a large number of places to have it fixed. Why did it work out that we took the car back to its place of registration?

Unfortunately, having contemplated it for some time, I still can't think of anything to conclude from the whole episode, other than advising people not to smash their car windows whilst on holiday.

Bit of a disappointing ending really. Sorry.

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# Sunday, 05 August 2007

Trekking through the forest with a broken sandal

We went up into the Welsh hills today, to visit some important Places Of Great Paddleworthy Significance. We upheld the fine family tradition of paddling, doing justice to the world-famous reputation of our long history of paddling. My Grandfather o"h firmly believed that if there had been an Olympic event in paddling, he and Bim would have won team ribbons for England.

Part of this outing involved a fairly long trek through a forest, climbing towards some apparently magnificent waterfalls. The more observant reader may wonder about the use of the word "apparently" there. It was actually carefully chosen, as we never actually made it to the end, due to the younger yummy scrummies being exhausted after so much paddling. We saw one minor waterfall, but missed the big 'uns.

Part way up, one side of the rear strap on my right sandal broke. This made wearing the sandal a somewhat flappy, if not too uncomfortable experience. Shortly afterwards, the other side of this strap broke as well, leaving me with something more akin to a flip-flop on my right foot. This made walking quite challenging.

Whilst pondering the difficulties of trekking through uneven terrain with a broken sandal, it occurred to me that this sort of footwear was perfectly normal in Biblical times. It's no wonder they spent 40 years wandering in the wilderness to get to Eretz Yisroel if their sandals were anything like mine! Mind you, I don't suppose they bought cheap rubber ones for £1.99 in a bin-end shop, so it might not have been that bad.

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# Saturday, 04 August 2007

Torah - it's the Real Thing!

I had a unique experience on Shabbos morning. For security reasons, the sefer Torah that had been brought to the family camp where we are staying was not kept in the makeshift beis medrash, but was kept in someone's flat. Due to restrictions with the extent of the eiruv, we had most of the davenning in the beis medrash, but the leining in the foyer of the flats. In order to get a good position, I went onto the balcony directly over the bima, so I was not only able to see and hear the leining clearly, but had an unusual view. I have never watched leining from almost directly above before, but it gave a whole new angle (pardon the pun) on it.

When hagba was done, the person who had raised the sefer Torah sat down on a chair that had been placed in the most conveninent position, which happened to be directly between two Coke machines. It was an interesting juxtaposition, the holiness of a sefer Torah, surrounded by the epitome of the materialistic Western world.

It brought a new meaning to the words "It's the Real Thing" - although not the ones the Coke people had in mind!

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# Sunday, 29 July 2007

Three little girls

We went to Leeds to see Grandma and Grandpa. Simcha went flying...

Shayna Brocho and Simcha

In case anyone is wondering, Grandma and Grandpa's flat isn't all pink and fluffy! That was a background I added as it suited the pink and fluffy nature of the two girls. Wonderful what fun you can have with an image editing program!

To complement the earlier picture of Simcha in the fancy chair, here is one of Chana Liba...

Chana Liba
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# Friday, 20 July 2007

Beware of the penguins

I just love this picture!

penguins and polar bear

Whilst we're on the subject of polar bears, anyone care to dance?

Fancy a dance?
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Sometimes it pays to be old

No one believes seniors... everyone thinks they are senile.

An Elderly couple was celebrating their sixtieth anniversary. The couple had married as childhood sweethearts and had moved back to their old neighbourhood after they retired.

Holding hands they walked back to their old school. It was not locked, so they entered, and found the old desk they'd shared, where Andy had carved "I love you, Sally."

On their way back home, a bag of money fell out of an armoured car, practically landing at their feet Sally quickly picked it up, but not sure what to do with it, they took it home. There, she counted the money. There was fifty-thousand dollars.

Andy said, "We've got to give it back."

Sally said, "Finders keepers." She put the money back in the bag and hid it in their attic.

The next day, two FBI men were canvassing the neighbourhood looking for the money, and knocked on the door.

"Pardon me, but did either of you find a bag that fell out of an armoured car yesterday?"

Sally said, "No."

Andy said, "She's lying. She hid it up in the attic."

Sally said, "Don't believe him, he's getting senile."

The agents turn to Andy and began to question him.

One says: "Tell us the story from the beginning"

Andy said, "Well, when Sally and I were walking home from school yesterday . . "

The first FBI guy turns to his partner and says, "We're outta here."

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# Thursday, 19 July 2007

Levels of alert in various European countries

The English are feeling the pinch in relation to recent terrorist threats and have raised their security level from "Miffed" to "Peeved." Soon, though, security levels may be raised yet again to "Irritated" or even "A Bit Cross." Londoners have not been "A Bit Cross" since the blitz in 1940 when tea supplies all but ran out. Terrorists themselves have been re-categorized from "Tiresome" to "A Bloody Nuisance." The last time the British issued a "Bloody Nuisance" warning level was during the great fire of 1666.

Also, the French government announced yesterday that it has raised its terror alert level from "Run" to "Hide." The only two higher levels in France are "Surrender" and "Collaborate." The rise was precipitated by a recent fire that destroyed France's white flag factory, effectively paralyzing the country's military capability.

It's not only the English and French that are on a heightened level of alert. Italy has increased the alert level from "Shout Loudly and Excitedly" to "Elaborate Military Posturing." Two more levels remain: "Ineffective Combat Operations" and "Change Sides."

The Germans also increased their alert state from "Disdainful Arrogance" to "Dress in Uniform and Sing Marching Songs." They also have two higher levels: "Invade a Neighbour" and "Lose."

Belgians, on the other hand, are all on holiday as usual, and the only threat they are worried about is NATO pulling out of Brussels.

The Spanish are all excited to see their new submarines ready to deploy. These beautifully designed subs have glass bottoms so the new Spanish navy can get a really good look at the old Spanish navy.

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# Wednesday, 04 July 2007

An Israeli Tourist in London

An Israeli recently arrived at London's Heathrow airport. As he went through passport control, the customs officer asked him, "Occupation?"

The Israeli promptly replied "No, just visiting!"

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# Tuesday, 03 July 2007

The computer swallowed grandma - a poem

The computer swallowed grandma.
Yes, honestly its true.
She pressed 'control' and 'enter'
And disappeared from view.

It devoured her completely! ,
The thought just makes me squirm.
She must have caught a virus
Or been eaten by a worm.

I've searched through the recycle bin
And files of every kind;
I've even used the Internet,
But nothing did I find.

In desperation, I asked Jeeves
My searches to refine.
The reply from him was negative,
Not a thing was found 'online.'

So, if inside your 'Inbox,'
My Grandma you should see,
Please 'Copy,''Scan' and 'Paste' her
And send her back to me!

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