An avalanche of social media and ‘how to survive’

‘You are only as good as you are at the moment people are listening’, wrote pianist Max Levinson in 2009. By which measure, I might well have peaked last week. Because, last week, people were definitely listening. I know this thanks to the verging-on-obsessive, mesmerised eye the Gremlin and I kept on the rapidly mounting…

Sir Chris Bonington, mountain rescue and misrepresentation in the media

‘Rival mountain rescue teams are competing to get to stranded climbers’, said Sir Chris Bonington on Friday morning, in both The Times and The Telegraph, adding that he considers mountain rescue ‘a sport’, in which the volunteers engage because they ‘enjoy the thrill’. None of these contests have ‘quite got to fisticuffs’, he said, despite getting…

Staying sober and sugar-free in Vasiliki. As if.

I go away for five minutes – okay, twenty thousand one hundred and sixty minutes, give or take a couple of hundred – and what happens? Those pesky health experts get cracking again. It’s been a bit hit and miss with the internet but, in between sun salutations, sunshine and sleeping off the odd carafe,…

Is that taperitis? Or my half-imagination?

Taperitis, I learned this week, is a condition which afflicts extreme athletes, during the ‘taper period’ leading up to whatever totally bonkers activity it is they’re about to undertake. It largely manifests as half-imaginary aches and pains in the feet, legs and lower back. In extreme cases, it can result in a repetitive strain injury…

Killer Hamsters return in a hail of ‘fire and furry’

Well it looks as though the KN-08 waving has escalated after all, what with the most unlikely set of identical twins since Danny de Vito and Arnie Shwarzenegger taking their Killer Hamster act on tour for the summer. Killer Hamster Un brags his newfound ability to nuke the US — although let’s face it, that’s…

Senior moments and lost credit cards

Ever lost a credit card? Turned the house, car, garage and multiple handbags upside down searching for that lost credit card? Forgotten password? In fact, just ‘enjoyed’ a good old fashioned ‘senior moment’? Well, join the club!

Girl jobs, boy jobs and Doctor Who

‘I want a bin fairy too’, said my friend, in her best mock snivel, in between slurps. Wine or tea, I can’t recall now which stage of the evening we were at. But there was definitely chocolate, I do remember that. Considering we’re all supposed to be ‘gender-fluid’ now (yeah right), it shouldn’t be an…

Snapshots of the Rockies

So that’s it then. Final day. And outside the window, as I blog from our hotel room in Canmore, the mist and rain – make that sleet – has rolled down yesterday’s stunning view of ‘the three sisters’, the town’s iconic mountain peaks, like a curtain gently but firmly coming down on our three-week adventure….

Where’s the bear?

If I imagined for one moment that our second week in the Rockies would be any less frenetic, I was wrong. So wrong, my Fitbit thinks it’s found a new owner. The tourist tick box checking continues apace. Fresh from the train, it was off to Jasper Mountain Park Lodge, and a lengthy walk round…

Rocky Mountaineer

I’ll be blogging all the way, says I, handing the house keys to Helen, charged to keep a watchful eye on the postbox and plants in our absence. ‘Blogging all the way’, it transpires, was a boast too far. For the first seven rapid-fire days, we barely had time to draw breath, let alone write…

Secretary of State says ‘maybe’

Given that nuclear war hasn’t yet commenced, despite a further attempt to launch Mr Kim’s deadly KN-08, and that Orange Bloke just generally being one, this week I’m back focusing on Strawberry How. Well, if we’re not about to be nuked any time soon, may as well concern ourselves with pasture-pillaging property magnates closer to home. And there…

Rise of the killer hamster

So. Nuclear war, it now becomes clear, will not be triggered by anything as inspirational to post-Armageddon film-makers as an archduke getting himself shot. Or a bunch of uniformed yobs goose-stepping down a quiet, hitherto peaceful country lane. No, nuclear war will, I am now confident, be triggered by a ‘my willy’s bigger than yours’ contest,…