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So, here is the A-Z of the main points of my last month or so. Pictures for most are to follow!

Cut for stuff that might be triggering! )
suzyscottdotcom: (Roary&Me)

I thought of a new way to update the diary, and a twist on the posting style of Busto aka [livejournal.com profile] thebustocrookes ...

 

… so, instead of a ten point random post, here’s what has happened to me over the last few weeks, in an A-Z format. It incorporates previous postings, and if you like it, I will do one as often as I can! I tried making it transport free, but there are a few posts to fill things up! Don’t forget, you can always see my latest transport pictures at http://pics.suzyscott.com and click on “Last” in the bottom-right hand corner. Tell me how you liked that, and I might manage to make it to 26 posts one day!


A is for Addenbrooke’s Hospital, who have cancelled one of C’s appointments for later in the year now twice, in each case moving further down the calendar. The same department also have ran into problems when I tried to change one of my appointments. I tried to change the date, after our plans for August had changed. So, I called, tried twice, eventually got given someone else’s direct number. I called, and got through on 2nd occasion. With a very “how did you get this number” note in her voice, she promised to call me back. As you’ll see under C, it’s already been overtaken by a request to see a dietician – but, being in Hertfordshire, we have the unique situation of being referred to a consultant at Addenbrooke’s, and a dietician who works around from Lister Hospital

 

B is for Barclays Cycle Hire, as TfL insist we call it. I liked Boris’s comments when it was launched – although these were not included in the press release! He said “I'm so thrilled to be announcing that Barclays Bank, after years of taking extortionate charges from me, is doing an amazing and wonderful thing,” he said. “I think there could not be a better sign of Barclays' commitment to this city, to the environment and to a wonderful means of transport.”

 

C is for Coeliac Disease. I’m slowly getting used to this being the resolution that I have sought for so long, and am getting used to everything involved. We went to a “Newly Diagnosed” event in Stevington, Bedford, on Thursday evening, which was well worth the time. I’ve got a dieticians appointment coming up later this month.

 

D is for Depression. I did get really down a few weeks back, but it’s forgotten, because I’ve been fine since.

 

E is for [livejournal.com profile] elaine4queen. We went into London yesterday (see P entry below). After lunch, we went out to Bethnal Green, meeting up with Elaine for the first time – and of course, her dog Poppet. We talked, and then we went out with dorg on a walk through Hackney City Farm and adjacent parks, before walking along the Regents Canal path to Cambridge Heath. From there, back to hers briefly, before going home – tired but happy. See all Saturday’s pictures here – including one of the Dundee Arms pub! (I did leave my memory card in the computer, thus meaning a few were taken on the cameras internal memory, and the rest on the Blackberry, which have came out well!)

 

F is for funding. Got a letter the other day… you remember I went to Charing Cross for one day last Summer, after waiting months and getting two appointments within days of each other? Well… I wanted to use it to get some follow-up assistance, and screenings, etc. They wanted to see the funding before seeing me – not from me, but from the relevant NHS trust. After all, I’d had the policy documents (obtained via Freedom of Information) that said they would… but these letters, for whatever reason, do not include the discussion. Sometimes I just wish they'd get on with it...!

 

H is for Helpline. Wednesday 30th June was the last day of the current arrangement with the Ormiston Children & Families Trust’s tenure on the helpline – the only one of the original seven from the start on 1st January 2003 – ending. The tender was lost to Partners of Prisoners (POPS) in Manchester… I wasn’t aware that the PFH brand and name cannot be transferred, so, it’s now going to be the Offenders Families Helpline… anyway, we had a fantastic “last Supper” evening, in the adjacent Milton Country Park. We were all given thank-you letters to show appreciation from our own boss, as well as one of the Ormiston directors. I took a few pictures, and you can see those here.

 

I is for iPod. Well, I had an iPod touch, and shortly after the original warranty expired, it started having problems with syncing and charing. Well, it was like the internal circuits had gone. Tried to get this replaced by the bank, under the extended warranty that comes with such. £25 excess seemed not too bad, so I tried taking it into the Apple Store at Cambridge’s Grand Arcade. I say tried, but it was the day after the launch of iPhone 4 (when everyone finds the bugs)… After waiting for 20 minutes to see someone, I explained what was wrong. He cut over me three times, trying to second-guess the problem (which doesn’t do much for my confidence!) So, I was then told to book an appointment… from the TV screens, the next one was another 3hours 20mins away, all to book a repair. Decided against waiting, and we stopped in a 2nd hand store in Cambridge, buying a replacement (non-Touch) for little more than the excess, and a lot less than brand new. Well, it didn’t work, and we were about to take it back, when C got it to work on the MacMini... Apple have gone down in my estimation, certainly in their UK Retail business.

 

N is for National Express. I did have a run-in with a 787 driver on Wednesday after work. He took offence that I tried to pay for a £13.90 fare… with two tenners. I had no more change, I took that straight out the cashpoint. I’d planned to be home earlier, but I was working on some BSOG stuff. Anyway, we'll see what happens.

 

P is for Pride. As you will see from E above, we went into London yesterday, Saturday. This was the occasion of London Pride 2010, and we helped to set up the LLGS stall. Did a few hours there, then we went for lunch… then see under E for the rest of the day! . (I did leave my memory card in the computer, thus meaning a few were taken on the cameras internal memory, and the rest on the Blackberry, which have came out well!)
 

S is for syrups. After finding some Monin coffee syrups on holiday, bought a mixed case load via Udal Supplies… Well recommended, and all gluten free!

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As you will have seen from my Facebook status messages and tweets, we had a busy holiday, but enjoyable.

 

Friday 14th May – we got a taxi to Royston Station, FCC train to Cambridge, Crosscountry train to Peterborough via March (a lovely run!) before changing onto an East Coast train onwards to Edinburgh. Cab to the Learmonth Travelodge and we stayed there the night. We had, for some reason, been given a family room – very big, almost like two rooms in one! No snaps on Friday.


Saturday 15th May – from the hotel with the German-accented lift (you may recall I mentioned this when I stayed here in early 2009), we got a cab to Haymarket for the hire car company Thrifty, before picking up EY 10 OAP, an automatic Ford Fiesta Titanium. The choice of letters was pointed out frequently! Anyway, from there, quick stop at Ferrytoll Park & Ride (snapped my first Nordi Travel bus on the 651, as well as a chance find of the new Fife bus map – first one in ages!) before continuing via the A92 and across the Tay Road Bridge to Dundee. As we arrived with plenty of time before our next event (at 15.00) we stopped briefly for a few things in town – I got some coffee beans and syrups from Braithwaite’s, as well as catching up on bus timetables! We then drove from Gellatly Street car park to Riverside, at a place called the Bridgeview Station Restaurant. This fairly new place was to be the location of Caroline’s mothers 90th birthday celebration. Actually, her birthday was on Monday 17th, but it was probably easier to bring everyone together at the weekend. Some more of C’s family met, and we finished just before 17.00. Turned the radio on to hear the result of the Scottish Cup final, before we drove up to Sainsbury’s Claypotts to stock up on food (including Free From/gluten free stuff for me), and we then went through Wellbank/Kellas and then back roads to Farnell, Angus, where we were staying with C’s brother Gordon, and sister-in-law Lynda. You can see the Saturday pictures here – didn’t take too many in Edinburgh due to the sun glare, but tried a couple as I waited for C to get the hire car.

 

Sunday 16th May – we left Farnell, and drove through Dundee and the A90/M90 to the Kelty Interchange, before going via a back-road to the Scottish Vintage Bus Museum. Caroline did ask me if there were any bus museums or similar that I’d like to go, and we had this day free! So, this event was their annual May running day, which started back five years ago for their 20th. Now, they are celebrating their 25th year (across various locations). We met up with Alex Cunningham for the first time, before snapping a few pictures around the site. After that, I fancied a run somewhere, ideally Dunfermline so I could have another look at the newish bus station. Completely by chance (honest!), former Eastern Scottish Volvo Ailsa VV773 pulled up. Now, you may recall I have a soft spot for these buses, after riding them quite a lot in Dundee. We went into Dunfermline, with quite a nice “thrash” to the engine sounds. I was already happy, but this was certainly the icing on the cake! After a handful of snaps from Dunfermline, back to the Fire Station bus stop, for the bus back to the Museum. A former Western PD3 turned up, driven by Sholto T (former Commercial Director at Strathtay) so a catch-up with him was well in order! We returned to the Museum, and we decided to head back to the car. From there, we ended up stopping at Hamish Gordon’s yard in Leslie, Glenrothes bus station, and Moffat & Williamson’s yard at St Fort (no sign of the ex-Wootten’s Volvo B7 coach, so it must be at Glenrothes).  We entered Dundee via the A92 and Tay Road Bridge again, and back to Farnell. You can see all my pictures from the Sunday here, which include some extra bonus material from Alex, including some snaps of us. Enjoy!

 

Monday 17th May – we left Farnell via Forfar, A94 to Coupar Angus, back roads through Lethendy and Spittalfield to Birnam, then onto the road through Dalguise to Aberfeldy. After filling up the car with fuel, we parked it up, and prepared to sample Caber Coaches Service 91. This is essentially a beginners guide to Highland Perthshire, taking in some streets around town, before heading up for a loop around Coshieville and Kenmore. While I’d done the Kenmore bit before on the Saturday Service 93, I’d never done the rest – remember this route only started in early 1999, and had a very good load! Our bus was a newish Ford Transit, BJ 59 CWM. We then got a few things in Aberfeldy, before proceeding via Amulree to Crieff. We parked the car, before ending up at Gordon & Durward’s sweet shop! From there, onto Crieff Travel’s yard at South Bridgend. After this, we popped into the adjacent Crieff Visitor Centre, including the glass-making at Caithness Glass, before continuing via Gleneagles and Auchterarder to Perth, stopping near The Capital Asset pub for dinner. We then drove back via the A94 to Forfar, then onto Farnell. You can see the pictures that we took here.

 

Tuesday 18th May – we left Farnell returning via the road that we came back on the night before, the A94 to Scone Park + Ride. We left the car there, and I dubbed it at the time as “My Little Park + Ride”, as it has just over 50 car paring spaces. It was my first time on Service 7 since the Goldline upgrade, and we got the “prototype” refurbished Dart 33434 on the first run. Caroline liked the leather seats and high quality interiors! From there, various shops in Perth, before we chanced upon an Indian Buffet called Maza. We went in "on spec", to ask if there was anything gluten free. “Yes, everything’s gluten free!” came the welcome response – well, the vast majority of it was. After getting a lot of good stuff to eat, we walked from there across the Tay via Queens Bridge to Branklyn Garden. I’d not been here for an good three and a half years, and we both enjoyed walking through the vast gardens. As the staff member said, they are at their best at this time of year. From there, we walked back over the bridge via Moncrieffe Island onto Tay Street, back to The Capital Asset for a couple of drinks, before we went to Perth High Street for a bus back to the Park + Ride,  Goldline spec Enviro300 27528. Back to Farnell after a lot of eating and walking! You can see all the pictures that we took here.

 

Wednesday 19th May – we needed a rest from the day before, but agreed to do a handful of things that we had planned for Thursday, to spread the load. With the latter start, we met a colleague of Lynda’s for lunch at Brechin Castle Centre. L suggested meeting, largely as the colleague is about to go walking the Camino… From there, we drove through Brechin, Aberlemno, Lunanhead and Forfar, then onto Dundee city centre for a bit (stopped at Taste Fresh to buy a haggis for Michael Wootten, and post it, as well as get one, and a spicy Spanish sauce, for C, and then went a few doors down to post it to MJW!)! From there, we drove through Carnoustie to C’s mother’s care home. We took her out, at her request, to the nearby Station Hotel. After chatting, we took her back, before driving back to Farnell. No pictures this day, for whatever reason.

 

Thursday 20th May – bit of a star-shaped day. Started from Farnell, driving direct into Montrose, stopping for some pictures and coffee. We drove back the way we came to Farnell Crossroads but then continuing to Forfar West i.e. Orchardbank. This included a quick stop for lunch, then onto JP Coaches yard for some photos.  From there, back to Forfar, cross-country to Barry Mill. C had never been here, despite living more than once in Carnoustie. We happened to walk in at the start of a tour, so joined in for the look. Took the car back to Sainsbury’s Claypotts for fuel, before driving to Linlathen (the scheme) where my mum, sister Ruth and new nephew Jonah live. We arrived to find Ruth was on the way home with Jonah. Shortly after their return, we went off to see my dad, back in the car past Claypotts then onto Clearwater Park for Linlathen Neurodisability Centre. He is certainly looking looked after in this new location, they had them all out in the sun earlier in the day! We drove back to Linlathen (scheme) – still with me? – before picking up Ruth & Jonah, then off to City Quay Shopping Outlet, to take them to dinner at Indian buffet Taza. This was somewhere that the rest of the family had not been before – but they liked it! Apparently, the owner of Taza now also owns Maza in Perth… Afterwards we drove them all back to Linlathen (scheme) before continuing onto Farnell via Burnside of Duntrune, and other back roads. That was a worthwhile day, and you can see all the pictures we took here.

 

Friday 21st May – trimmed this back a little, so I could get some duties done for Tiger Line early morning. Got those done quickly by mid-morning, we left, and started heading north on the A90 towards Aberdeen. This was my first visit for many years. On the way in, we stopped at Ghillies Lair, Harvester at Bridge of Dee for lunch, before driving the car into Union Square, a new shopping development adjacent to the bus and rail stations, which had been in construction on previous visits. This incorporates a new bus station and shopping facilities. I went first to browse the timetables at the bus station, and offered C the chance to have her eyebrows done at a Brow Bar. When I returned, C said “you’re next!”, and I thought “why not”? It was using a more traditional string method. Anyway, from there, into The Mall Trinity, stopping there for coffee (and another loyalty card for the collection!) at Costa, before onto Union Street. We got as far as the TIC at the end of Union Street, coming across a new edition of the Aberdeenshire bus map in the process!, before going down Market Street to get back to the car. We drove down the A92 to Montrose, then onto Farnell. We went out in the evening to drop off some things that we saw for Jonah (hats going cheap in a sale) as well as dropping off a bag to Gareth C. From there, stopped at Tesco Extra at Kingsway West Retail Park, so I could get Gordon and Lynda some wine, as well as one for C, before continuing via Downfield back to Farnell. You can see all the pictures that we took here.


Saturday 22nd May – we both needed to get our breath back! So, walk around Farnell village early afternoon, before we went out in the evening to Glasgow. We took the car to Montrose Station for the Scotrail train to Glasgow. After parking the car (free parking!), we got tickets for Glasgow. As we were coming back the same day, the woman behind the counter automatically sold us split tickets – an Anytime Day Return between Montrose and Perth, and a Off-peak Day Return between Perth and Glasgow. (There are no peak restrictions on Saturdays, in any case.) This saved us £10 – there is no day return from Montrose to Glasgow, so an open return was what I was expecting, thus pleasantly surprised when the split was offered, without me having to ask! Met up with Bobby B at The Counting House, Glasgow, with an exchange of timetables and dinner, before we took the train back to Montrose, for the car. A hen night party was somewhat loud on our return trip! You can see the pictures that I took here.

 

Sunday 23rd May – a quiet-ish one, but we drove through Forfar, Newtyle (quick stop to nab a pic of my dad’s old care home, now boarded up and for sale as homes), then onto Errol, Cairn O’ Mohr Winery. After drinks, stocking up on fruit wine and Arran cheese again, we proceeded to go back to Maza at Perth for early dinner. From there, back to Farnell. I was somewhat tired by this point, so went for a lie on the bed, dozing off almost right away! You can see the pictures we took here.

 

Monday 24th May – we finished packing up, and got back in the car. Drove via Forfar into Dundee to send a parcel to [livejournal.com profile] thebustocrookes, and we both bought a few items across the road in Disc Depot! Also, chanced upon a snap of the National Express Dundee 23/24 (the 23/24 is about to become the 23, with the rest part of the new 3/3A), and one of their yet-to-enter-service Scania Omnilink single deck buses. We drove out of Dundee via Riverside Drive and Riverside Avenue, passing the call centre I used to work at. It’s now closed up, boarded up, for lease! From there, direct via the A90 and M90 into Edinburgh, filling up the car at Sainsbury’s Craigleith, before taking the car back to the hire place in Haymarket. We then got a cab to Waverly train station, and we had some time before our train (did I mention that by booking online, with Railcard and online discount, we got Royston – Edinburgh for £15.85 each, per direction?), so I went for a browse around Waverly Bridge and the Edinburgh bus station at St Andrew Square. From there, back to the train station for our East Coast train back to Stevenage. We decided to bail out and get a taxi (with all the bags – I think we had 12!) back to Royston. It was a nice end to a lovely, wonderful holiday. You can see Monday 24th’s pictures here.

 

That was it… C liked the hire car, better than the Mazda we have! We got to meet new and old family members, and we both did a fair bit of mileage and shopping. Thanks to everyone who helped somehow with this!

 

Tuesday 25th May – was meant to be at PFH, but tired the day before, so decided to stay home. Wednesday 26th May – got a bit upset on the way to work at Switchboard, so back home. Despite these two days, I did get out to work at Woottens on Thursday 27th and Friday 28th May. We are now having a very quiet three day weekend to relax, and get back to normal, whatever that might be!

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We are currently in the midst of a holiday up north... for the latest, keep an eye on my Facebook or Twitter feed.
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It’s been a busy week, of highs and lows. Lots of highs towards the end of the week! Hello again to everyone who has added me to their LJ Friends, or if I have added them. A random seven-pointer…

 

  1. Firstly, congratulations to [livejournal.com profile] auntysarah for getting elected as a Lib Dem councillor for Cambridge City/Petersfield ward. I will admit that I was refreshing the results page every few minutes, after the count started!

 

  1. Speaking of the Lib Dems, they had two people acting as tellers on the way into the Polling Station. As we left, I overhead “Do you have a number?” “No, I’m the returning officer”. Oops!

 

  1. Mind you, given the current state of the parliament, I was surprised to find Nick Clegg up for sale on eBay. Seeing as [livejournal.com profile] thebustocrookes has Mr C for his MP, will you be looking forward to a bye-election, if this sale goes through? ;-)

 

  1. Times are starting to speed up. Friday 7th saw me working on Helpline, and Saturday 8th saw a day in the office of Woottens & Tiger Line. Keep watching… (Oh, and I fired off some pictures of the exteriors and interiors of the buses & coaches, while putting up the T2 service change posters. You can see all the pictures here)

 

  1. Speaking of which, from Monday 10th May, Tiger Line Service T1 (Aylesbury - Bovingdon) is being changed, with a vey short notice amendment. This is intended to further help reliability to this route, as the April change was insufficient. Times will be changed by a few minutes, and the bus will now run between Aylesbury and Whelpley Hill, with the bit to/from Bovingdon being withdrawn. Two weeks later, Monday 24tH May, Service T2 (Chesham/hemeL hempstead - Watford) will have a revised timetable. Following changes elsewhere on the corridor (mentioned here), the times are changing to ensure we can still get on the bus stands at both ends. A new T1 is now on tigerlinebuses.com with the T2 one going up later today.

 

  1. Arriva’s changes start this weekend, around Watford (and to/from Hemel). I forgot to mention last time, but the 32 (Northchurch – Hemel) is being dropped entirely. Little Jim’s Service 502 is being revised to cover, to maintain a service.

 

  1. Last Spring I sampled the “ghost bus”, a rail replacement bus running in London. one journey on Tuesdays off-peak only, between Ealing Broadway, Kensington Olympia and Wandsworth Road. As you will recall, there was never a passenger service between these points, but to ensure that the track remains covered after the dropping of the Crosscountry bit from Reading to Gatwick Airport. You will recall, at £500 a day, it was hardly value for the public purse (indeed, my sample journey was then subsidised to the cost of £125!) Well, the OlympiaWandsworth Road bit is being covered by Southern Railways, off-peak, with a train spare during the day. The plan was that Southern would pick up the Ealing – Olympia section for a train service, as part of the franchise commitment. But, Network Rail have refused them access to the track around Ealing, allegedly claiming that train types were incompatible. As for what happens now, I’ve no idea. But if you see a TGM empty coach driving around West London on a Tuesday…
suzyscottdotcom: (Roary&Me)
Further to my previous post with regards to new helljay friends, hello to [livejournal.com profile] judo100 .

Forgot to mention last night – you can also find me and add me on Facebook and Twitter. I also sometimes use Bebo, although I’m mostly on Facebook these days.

So, why the username? Well, at the time I chose my LiveJournal user ID, suzyscott was gone. So, the next that I could think of was [livejournal.com profile] suzyscottdotcom  – and that was availbile, which was a good start! You can have a look on SuzyScott.com and find out a little more about me. Beware, there will be buses!

So, why the interest in buses? Never been able to find out why. My father was a baker (when he was able to work) but he did do two weeks as a bus conductor with Dundee Corporation. We didn't have a car, so went everywhere by bus. I get the impression that I must have read a service change notice during a journey, gone in for the new timetable, and subsequently... it went from there.

The picture in my current default icon is myself on the right, with Roary The Tiger on the left. He's the Tiger Line company mascot, and very popular with passengers!

Meme...

May. 5th, 2010 03:39 pm
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... from [livejournal.com profile] misswyoming 

01) Are you currently in a serious relationship?
Yes, I’d say so, with [livejournal.com profile] cmmathieson. Just passed the 37 month mark i.e. three years and a bit.

02) What was your dream growing up?
Various dreams of trying to improve myself, and change.

03) What talent do you wish you had?
Being able to open the twisty door lock without dislocating my finger.

04) If I bought you a drink what would it be?
Something non-alcoholic and gluten free, I’m maybe too boring!

05) Favourite vegetable?

Potatoes, do they count?

06) What was the last book you read?
Reference books 99% of the time.

07) What zodiac sign are you?

Capricorn.

08) Any Tattoos and/or Piercings?
Aside from my ears (which have since closed up), no.

09) Worst Habit?
:-) Can I write that here?

10) If you saw me walking down the street would you offer me a ride?
I can’t drive. So, I’d ask the driver to stop and let you on – either Caroline (my partner) in the car, or whichever bus/train/tram/whatever I happened to be on at the time!

11) What is your favourite sport?

I am not as fit as I should be, for various reasons.

12) Do you have a Pessimistic or Optimistic attitude?

Yes. Optimistic usually, but when it’s late in the day, or I am tired/frustrated, I can get a bit pessimistic.

13) What would you do if you were stuck in an elevator with me?

“Hello…. So, doing anything interesting this weekend…”

14) Worst thing to ever happen to you?

Lots of times!

15) Tell me one weird fact about you.

Caroline and myself both grew up in Dundee, some years apart, but that is not how we met.

16) Do you have any pets?

Yes and no. We have a menagerie of soft toys.

17) What if I showed up at your house unexpectedly?

Put the kettle on and let you in!

18) What was your first impression of me?

Interested to find out more!

19) Do you think clowns are cute or scary?

Both. Sorry, I’m sitting on the fence.

20) If you could change one thing about how you look, what would it be?.

Having changed the first thing already, this time it would need to be chest.

21) Would you be my crime partner or my conscience?

Conscience, I’m too honest!

22) What colour eyes do you have?

Greeney-blue.

23) Ever been arrested?

Nope, but I have been asked to Stop & Account when photographing buses, in obscure parts of London. Been to prison once, but that was visiting as an escorted official guest of the staff member from the same charity that I did/do work for.

24) Bottle or can soda?

Bottles, as I’m less likely to spill them!

25) If you won $10,000 today, what would you do with it?

Assuming it’s the same…do what I'd do with money anyway, try and make everyone happy.

26) What's your favourite place to hang out at?

Depends what you mean by hanging out. Bus spotting – parts of London, Ferrytoll (near Edinburgh), Glasgow bus station gates, Dundee City Churches/Overgate area, Perth Mill St/Bus Station. Shopping – Cambridge city centre, Cambridge retail park, London, Bluewater, Glasgow.

27) Do you believe in ghosts?
Think I used to.

28) Favourite thing to do in your spare time?
A lot of travelling.

29) Do you swear a lot?
Hell no! ;-)

30) Biggest pet peeve?
Unreliable public transport in certain areas.

31) In one word, how would you describe yourself?
Wasted? Or is that too critical? Lets try again, painful? Hopeful probably sums it all up!

32) Do you believe/appreciate romance?
Yes, although for the large part of life, I’d have thought not!

33) Favourite and least favourite food?

Like sweet things and Italian. Don’t like fish, and currently experimenting and investigating problems with gluten (so, gluten-free Italian).

34) Do you believe in God?

I was brought up in a religious house, and brought up as Christian. However, the realisation that, when one has that many problems, there is little that could be done to help. At the same time, being abused at school in the name of god didn’t help matters. Despite all this, I did try it all one more time as a teenager, trying to win support from my family for other things. That didn’t work.

35) Will you repost this so I can fill it out and do the same for you?
Yes!
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Further to my last post where two friends found me via [livejournal.com profile] elaine4queen, I can now add a few more, via Elaine or [livejournal.com profile] thebustocrookes. So, hello to [livejournal.com profile] misswyoming [livejournal.com profile] kittyalex  [livejournal.com profile] rosey_blue  [livejournal.com profile] mo_bheatha  [livejournal.com profile] mellawyrden and [livejournal.com profile] skyekat .

So, if you are new to the world of Suzy, welcome! My LJ profile is a very good place to start. Questions, anyone? ;-)
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Thanks to [livejournal.com profile] elaine4queen‘s friending spree (good idea!) I have today got two new friends – say hello to [livejournal.com profile] aleia_kali and [livejournal.com profile] crackedmoon 

 

As for me, quiet day before C goes back to work tomorrow. It’s been nice to relax for a bit…

 

… Coming up next, will probably be a transport-related post…

suzyscottdotcom: (Roary&Me)

It’s been a busy time of it, with some good times of late.

 

Results of the medical tests were interesting – the most obvious test does not pick up any wheat/gluten problems, but other tests were sort of hinting in that direction. So, it’s still a case to be investigated. After discussions with the doctor today, further referrals are to follow, with more blood tests to be done by me in a few weeks too. I’m still feeling better, with the symptoms slowly disappearing. This has to be a good sign, no matter what is involved, I think.

 

On Friday 23rd and Saturday 24th April, we were out and about on the streets of Hemel Hempstead, Kings Langley and Watford, promoting the new Saturday service (and improved weekday timetable) on Tiger Line Buses Service T2. We had our mascot Roary The Tiger out and around too, as well as a presence on the Intalink information bus in Hemel on the Friday. Lots of good feedback from passengers, some interesting ideas and suggestions (and requests!), and Roary was extremely popular, as I am sure you can imagine! Have a look at my pictures from Friday and my pictures from Saturday. After all that, lots of leaflets and free journey vouchers given out! (My mobile number was transferred to my new phone on Friday morning. The existing one is staying with me).

 

Monday 26th April, C had an appointment at Addenbrookes Hospital. No problems, just routine.

 

On Tuesday 27th April, I went out on an Intalink Explorer. Centrebus Solo 305 took me on the 90 to Baldock. As you may recall on my previous posts, Cozy Travel took over operation of Service 391 (Stotfold/Baldock – Stevenage) from Herberts, from 29th March 2010. This was my first travels on the route since the change of hands, and I had what I think is a former Go-North East bus, X733 FPO, from Baldock to Stevenage, Lister Hospital. From there, it was Arriva Service 301 to St Albans, stop for lunch (stuffed again, believe it or not!) before continuing on the Service 300 to Hemel Hempstead. From there, uno Scania 352 on the 634 to Hatfield Galleria, where the change of bus gave me enough time to stop at Thorntons and the Paper Mill Shop! From there, Uno Dart 100 on the 341 to Hertford, and then Arriva Solo 2463 on the 331 to Royston, where C was waiting to pick me up! Pictures here.

 

Today, Thursday 29th, out to the doctors this morning (see above). Now watching out the window, as rain threatens to return, just in time for the bank holiday!

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Yesterday (Tuesday 20th April) was an interesting day.


Firstly, I ordered a Blackberry Curve 8520 over the weekend, and it turned up shortly before leaving for London. To illustrate this, my current mobile (the Nokia 5000 that David bought me almost a year ago) keeps turning itself off when on screensaver mode. I pay £10 a month for a SIM-only package with o2, which is 150 any network minutes and 300 text messages. I do, however, use a lot of mobile internet data. On the days when I don’t want to take my laptop with me, I use my mobile phone to check my email (and sometimes other sites i.e. National Rail) via WAP. This uses about £5 worth of data a month, so you can see why change was needed. Well, o2’s Blackberry plans (just like those for the iPhone) are rather expensive, so I had a look at T-Mobile.

I had the offer of getting the 8520 for £27 and paying the same as what I am currently paying i.e. £15 a month, for 100 minutes and 100 text messages, plus a flexible booster to add something of value i.e. unlimited text messages, plus all the data the Blackberry can eat. So, I can get all this for the same as what I’m currently paying, plus being able to fix the cost. In the end, I decided to splash out another £5 a month i.e. £20 in total, to increase from 100 to 300 any network minutes, and this got me the brand new 8520 for free. That’ll do. I like the keyboard layout having letters and numbers in QWERTY format, as opposed to pressing each key up to seven times! Feel bad about leaving o2, but, they’ve had quite a few years of money out of me! The Nokia 5000 will be kept as a spare phone, alongside the other handsets that I am now collecting.

 

So, aside from that, I went into London, to do my first “solo” shift for Switchboard. Before hand, had arranged to meet Malc in central London for lunch. Before doing so, I stopped at Kings Cross Post Office, to send an envelope up to my mother & sister in Dundee. As I was queuing, I could see some small photo printer boxes. I’ve been looking for one of those for a while, and could not see them elsewhere! This one is an AGFA AP-1100, and I went over to that part of the shop, and asked to see it. The person behind the till took one down, blew the dust off it, apologised, then got a cloth and cleaned the rest of the dust off! It’s a little thing that prints 6x4 pictures. For the times when I need one, I normally get prints made online. Well, the supplies (paper and ribbon) for this thermal printer work out around 30p each, which is the same as I’m usually paying for small numbers of prints, plus, no waiting! If you are thinking “more extravagance”, well, it was only £19.99. Result.

 

We went for lunch, then towards the top end of Tottenham Court Road. While I was waiting, I spotted an unofficial campaign to get Londoners off the buses, and walking. You can read more about this here. I’ve taken a few pictures of the slogans, and you can see those here.


After all that, to work! It was a good afternoon, once it got going, and I went home into the evening peak, very happy with all that I’d done.

 

Today and tomorrow (Wednesday 21st and Thursday 22nd April) is a day working from home, and deliveries.

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Further to my last post about the first half of the holiday weekend, I forgot to mention what we got up to on Friday. We left Royston, via Saffron Walden, before the satnav sent us on a Z-shaped tour of the back roads of rural Essex, on route to Braintree Freeport Shopping Village. Got there, but it started lashing with rain, and it’s not indoor! So, from there, onto Colchester, before returning back to Royston.

Yesterday, windy, so we went to Newmarket for lunch at Pizza Express. We stopped briefly at the car park of the Imperial War Museum, Duxford, so I could snap up one of the new Stagecoach Cambridge Enviro400 double deck buses. This batch of 50 are entering service across the citi network and beyond, and you can see the resultant snaps here.
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Further to my last post, it’s been a busy time of it in the last eight days.

Thursday 25th March was a run from Royston via Centrebus Service 90 to Baldock, then Herberts Travel 391 to Stevenage. I’d not been on this one for  bit, and they had lost the contract (last day of operation to be 27/03/2010) to Cozy Travel. So, one last journey perhaps on a Mercedes 709D, and it does show how bus design has came on since the days of the Alexander AM (original)/Sprint (later – ones with raised blind boxes) design. From there, uno 634 fast to Hemel Hempstead, lunch, before Arriva 52 to High Wycombe, where it got rather wet. Arrived at HW with the rain pouring down, and piled on Woottens/Tiger Line 106 to Princes Risborough. Quick look around the town, before continuing to Aylesbury on Arriva 300. After this, waited for an hour before continuing on Service 16 to Bicester via parts of rural Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire. From there, back home on an X5 to Cambridge, where C picked me up. It was a fun day, and you can see the pictures here.

 

Friday 26th March was a morning on the Helpline, and it was originally to be my last, although a stay of execution has been granted for now. It was also a day of several purchases, some cuddly, some edible, some wearable, you get the idea.

 

Saturday 27th March was an early evening on Switchboard, back home in time for a late dinner/early supper.

 

Sunday 28th March ended up being a quiet one, aside from lunch out.

 

Monday 29th March was a day working from home.

 

Tuesday 30th March was a late evening shift on Switchboard, which takes me up past all the tallies to complete the minimum requirement for a trainee volunteer, which means I’ll be able to have a ratification interview over the coming weeks, to remove the word trainee from my title!

 

Wednesday 31st March was our 3-year anniversary! We initially went out for lunch, although it wasn’t our fault, we ended up with a long wait, and inedible food. Never mind, onto Helpline, where it was intended to be our “last day” drinks. Although now it’s no-where near it, plans had still been made! So, after a last day that wasn’t, and a lunch that hadn’t been either, but we more than made up for it by visiting The Golden Curry on Mill Road, Cambridge. This is, of course, the restaurant that we attended three years previously, the day I fell in love with Caroline (and we visited then with [livejournal.com profile] auntysarah and [livejournal.com profile] the_local_echo ). After a really lovely dinner, car back home.

 

Thursday 1st April has been a day at home, with lots to do!

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Tuesday 23rd March was a day out on an Explorer! Taking Richmond's market day Service 23 from Royston to Hitchin, driver was excited as it was the 2nd ticket he'd sold that week! From there, Stagecoach Bedford Service M2 to Bedford, then the same back to Hitchin, Arriva 97 to Letchworth, and Centrebus 91 to Royston. See all the pictures here.

A few notables - bought several items in Hitchin Market, mostly card and a largeish craft items store box (flat packed!) Beford Borough Council's timetable book has been reissued from Februrary in a slightly revisevised style - new front, and upright A5 pages. Around the same time, Central Beds reissued their Biggleswade guide in current style. Speaking of books, there is a new bookstore in Letchworth, called Buy The Book - wasn't that the bookstore in Ellen's sitcom?

Today, Wednesday 24th March was at home, working. One interesting site, Stagecoach Cambridge brought down some timetables in their publicity van...! In the past they've stuck them in the post.

Tomorrow, who knows? Have plans, but see how I feel.
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You may remember last week, I introduced you to Merton. You remember, the guy who plays the piano to random strangers via online chat?

Well, Ben Folds (of Ben Folds Five fame I think) has started doing the same at gigs. See here - link contains strong language. But hey, at least they removed the penises!

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On the evening of Friday 19th March, we went into London to see The Vagina Monologues, at The New Players Theatre (opposite Heaven nightclub off Villiers Street in the railway arches) which was a benefit performance for V-Day. Believe it or not, it was the first time I'd seen this very enjoyable, but sometimes moving, production.

 

On Saturday 20th March, went out for a day of shopping and more! We left the house, first stopping at The Factory Shop in Royston, mostly looking for a new handbag or two. Found, then down the A10 to Ware. After stopping at a new shop on me, Magika's Kitchen (deli that sells a variety of American foodstuffs alongside the usuals!), we proceeded via Hertfordshire Display (stationery shop – only spent a few quid this time!) before treating us both to lunch at The Navigator. We then went back to he car via Greggs and back to Magika's, to get some not-sold-in-the-UK-normally A&W root beer and peanut butter M&M's. Will go back there – like lots of shops, you could easily spend a fortune in there!

 

We then proceeded to Hertford, parked the car, and went out via the Bus Station (loo stop) and some of the market stalls. As the rain started to lash heavy, it was almost time for my hair appointment that I'd booked at Saks. As you will remember, I went there in October 2009 for a rather different hair style, and it's worked well. With this in mind, and the fact that C coloured it earlier in the week, I felt it did not need a restyle, but instead had it back to the same length it was when it was done 6 months ago, a couple of inches, and keep it easy to maintain. Joanne (the woman who did me last time) did well. We then left Hertford via a few things at Tesco, before heading for home.

A few pictures of me, and a few bus shots, can be seen here.

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Thanks to [livejournal.com profile] thermalsatsuma  I found this Toyota Simulator.

Haven't Dennis Darts (buses) got a habit of doing something v.similar, then jumping into flower beds? ;-)

Pictures

Mar. 10th, 2010 10:02 pm
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What do you think of the new picture, taken with the camera of Heather Martin, on Saturday? Caroline is leaning on my shoulder!

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Friday 5th March was a day working at Helpline. There is a slight glimmer of hope in a meeting being held on Monday 15th to discuss plans, but beyond that, no-one yet knows what will happen, or how, with regards the transfer of the service. Back home in the afternoon, bought a few things in Cambridge to make dinner, and then prepared for Saturday. I took a few pictures in Cambridge, and you can see them here.

Saturday 6th March was the 2010 Million Womens Rise – and Switchboard had a presence in Trafalgar Square! So, we went into London, had breakfat at Camino (near Kings Cross) before continuing. Lots of fun, although cold and a bit tired towards the end! We then continued to a Spanish resturant C liked the sound of in Portobello Road, so we went out west, but (as we went in spec) we didn't realise they were closed for a private party! So, back to town on a 23 bus, until we spotted Star Of Bombay on Westbourne Grove. Good food, although I was a little tired and didn't properly enjoy it. Cab back to Kings Cross via Edgware Road and Camden Town, before a ride back to Hertford North, for a rail replacement bus back to Royston. You can see the pictures that I took here - a mix of rally/march pics and some bus stuff!

Sunday 7th March was a day to catch up and relax!

Monday 8th March was mostly working at home for Woottens, and lots of work done on the Tiger Line page on Facebook, plus promoting the service changes from 19th April. Happy International Womens Day all!

 


 

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I've been extremly busy with many things over the last 12 days since my previous LJ post.

Wednesday 17th February was quiet at home.

Thursday 18th February was an afternoon out. Caroline had the afternoon off work, for an evening social with LLGS Womens Group. So, we travelled into London, dropped off a package for Malc, before continuing to the West End to get some new jeans at Evans for me (as well as some shoes!), partially following Tesco no longer stocking the sizes that they used to (except online). From there, we had dinner at Pizza Express, before continuing to Elephant & Castle by taxi (a gap in the 148's in lashing rain!). While the rain deterred some, we had coffee before browsing an exhibition "Another Side Of The Rainbow", placed in the shopping centre for LGBT History Month. We then continued by Tube to Angel, before going for a couple in The Castle (pub in Islington), back to Kings Cross, then home by train.

Friday 19th February was in Cambridge, doing a day on the PFH, before back home via The Grafton.

Saturday 20th February, first of all, was subject to railway engineering work between Hitchin and Stevenage, so I decided to avoid this by getting C to drop me off at Whittlesford Parkway, taking the National Express East Anglia Cambridge – London Liverpool Street line. Bonus – a new route for me! On the outward journey, I took the train to Tottenham Hale, before changing there onto the Victoria tube line. I was heading to a building near Victoria, for an away day organised by the Womens Group of LLGS. It wasn't work, it wasn't a social, but a mix of both. Additionally, I am now one of the four co-ordinators (below the two co-chairs) of the group, voted in on the day. From there, a couple in an adjacent pub, before I took bus 11 home from Westminster to Liverpool Street, changing there for a train to Whittlesford Parkway.

Sunday 21st February was a day at home.

Monday 22nd February was an essential day out. However, a couple of snags before I got the chance to get out the door! Snow had fallen, quite a bit of it, which naturally needed attention. Secondly, the weekend railway engineering work on the First Capital Connect Great Northern line had over-ran, so my plan of getting an early morning train to Stevenage turned into a train to Hitchin, then a coach belonging to Hamilton's of Uxbridge to Stevenage railway station. The coach was nice enough, but naturally extended the journey time somewhat, before joining slow traffic on the M1, and (minimal) roadworks through Coreys Mill to Stevenage. From there, the journey plan started to slip. I had intended to change there to the 635/634 uno bus to Hemel Hempstead fast, but no. Took Enviro 3550 on the Arriva SB8 to the Bus Station, had breakfast before going for 3562 on the 301. We started losing more time, and were told to turn short at St Albans, instead of continuing to Hemel. However, it got worse before it got better. The virtually new bus was struggling in the snow, up and down hills, and with other slow moving traffic. We were 41 minutes late at Welwyn Garden City bus station, 69 minutes late at Hatfield railway station, but by then the roads were starting to improve, and less hills to negotiate, so we ended up 62 minutes late at St Albans. The first bus that was taking me close to my plan was a 321 to Watford, so piled on Mercedes Citaro 3562 for a good run to Watford Town Centre. From there, early lunch (!!!) before continuing on Tiger A12 WTN of Woottens/Tiger Line on the T2 to Hemel via Cassiobury Estate and Kings Langley, Arriva Dart 3500 on the 550 back to Watford Junction via Nash Mils and Cassio Campus, Arriva green Solo 2492 on the W30 to Watford town centre, then Woottens/Tiger Line A15 WTN on the T1 back to Hemel via Cassiobury and KL again, before taking uno Scania 352 fast back to Stevenage via the M10, Hatfield and A1[M] on the 634, which continues as a 635 to Stevenage railway station. Train back was also delayed, but only by around 20 minutes. The one day where I had to go out... anyway, you can see the pictures here.

Tuesday 23rd and Wednesday 24th February at home.

Thursday 25th February was an evening out working at Switchboard. So, a quiet day in, before travelling into London against-the-peak-flow and having a few hours on the phones before coming home. Made the last train before the engineering work rendered everything turning back (from both directions) at Hitchin.

Friday 26th February I felt a little tired and under-the-weather, so stayed in.

Saturday 27th February was a day out and about, with shopping. Feeling a little better (but very tired at the end), we went from home to Stevenage via the A10 and A602 for lunch at Toby, before stopping for some items of clothing on special at Sainsbury's. continuing back up the A1, A505 and then onto the A10 north as far as Shepreth, picking our way through Haslingfield to Barton. Couldn't find any shoes suitable in a wide-ranging store, but we were planning to go into Cambridge retail park anyway. Found a few things in Evans (but less than purchased in Sainsbury's) before back home via Staples. 100 miles done in the car in the day, and tired but happy at the end!

Sunday 28th February is a quiet day, catching up. It is also our 35 month anniversary today (another reason for going out y'day!) We always celebrate it somehow, but now we are at the 35 month mark of our relationship, 31st March sees three years, or 36 months, together. We'll see what happens that day!

Additionally, on my last post, I made a closing reference to some extra good news. With a bit of luck, I'll be able to tell all this coming week.

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