"..a bardy view!"

A Peculiarly British Forecast….

This morning here in the barangay (barrio, village, take your pick), I listened to the BBC Shipping Forecast through their Radio 4 i-player. It's given me a sudden urge to jot down some thoughts. 400px-UK_shipping_forecast_zones

I stumbled upon it by chance without realising the hour in British Summer Time. The soothing music of Sailing By is perfect for just after midnight when surrounded by the North Sea and cold Atlantic – but extremely odd when the sun is up and the cocks are crowing, with the South China Sea on one side and the Pacific Ocean on the other!

So now the evocative names are broadcast: Fitzroy, Forties, Cromarty, Shannon, Rockall, Malin, Dogger, Tyne, Trafalgar etc. familiar words emanating from the comforting, lilting tones of the announcer. A timeless and unique ritual as British as the Royal Mail and Routemaster buses.

Whoa! (Screech of brakes!) Reality check! The former is almost defunct, and the latter most certainly is!

If I sound homesick for 'ol Blighty then nothing is further from the truth – I possess no romantic notions of a bygone age of England's green and pleasant land  as invoked by Milton's Jerusalem. Which if it ever existed, has surely been systematically destroyed, and never more so than by the current inept and impotent shower in power right now. May they all hang their heads in shame!

This time next year (maybe sooner) they certainly will. If not I'll eat my Palm Buli (Filipino hat)!

No. The truth is I always said the one thing I would surely miss when I finally slung my hammock here in the Philippines, would be Radio 4. I doubt there is another medium anywhere that has such an eclectic mix of news, documentaries, drama and comedy – which credits the listener with at least half a brain, and doesn't wither the senses with inane and puerile advertising every five minutes.

Well , the wonders of streaming audio, even through the most poor internet connection, still gives 100% better reception than my old short-wave radio of which I can only ever listen to the World Service and can barely distinguish it through the static and swamp of the Chinese hogging the airwaves.

It really is like searching for a wonky needle in a haystack. I've even been known to listen to Radio Australia once or twice, such was my frustration!

Being able to access wifi here in this particular area for the first time since the facility was invented is akin to a a lotto win for me, such is my joy.

Having increased my online writing output these past twelve months, the timing couldn't be more welcome. Whether my readers will be so equally ecstatic remains to be seen!

Yes – that's "readers" – I do have some you know!


May 6, 2009 - Posted by | United Kingdom

1 Comment »

  1. Right up my street and right on the button. I think I called this fiasco a few weeks back on one of my infrequent posts. Why oh why can so few people see the perfectly obvious?
    Loved the poem by the way, ” Ah dear old England, whatever happened?”


    Comment by Spook Moor | May 15, 2009 | Reply

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