Monday, September 11, 2017

Emporium of Expensive Epidemiology

There comes a time in a Goat's life when he has to accept that he's no longer young, and really ought to have his body checked in case anything is starting to go wrong with the plumbing.

The Goat's local clinic offers a "Male Executive Health Check", comprising 16 tests plus a consultation, all for the special package deal of a mere one thousand of your American dollars Grand: screening for possible issues with blood, heart, kidneys, liver, thyroid, prostate, bowel...

Except that the Goat's insurance provider will only cover the cheapest five of these. And by paying for the rest 'à la carte' the total cost would be over $1200. Is this price gouging by the clinic? Possible answer below.

One thing that seems certain is that this is an insurance business plan that is nothing to do with healthcare and everything to do with making money. By not covering the test for, say, prostate cancer, which is usually undetectable by its owner, such a cancer would go undetected until later when symptoms appear and "I'm sorry, but it has metastasised and you will be dead in six months."

The insurance company avoids the relatively small cost of dealing with early onset cancer, and is faced with the huge cost of cancer treatment. But the latter is time-limited. A few months following diagnosis they stick the Goat in a box. Win-win for the insurance company.

If the Goat were really worried, he'd pay for the tests. And one of the Goat's diving buddies has indicated where a full commercial diving medical can be had for a fraction of the $1000 quoted above at the Emporium of Expensive Epidemiology. "Believe me," he says, "If there was anything wrong with your body, a commercial diving medical would find it."

Hmmm, $1000 to $1200 versus $400 for a more comprehensive set of tests? We have an answer regarding price gouging. But what of all those who can't afford even that?

Those who are so keen to slag off or even dismantle the NHS or similar government-funded medicine really ought to try living in a country where there isn't one.

They might find themselves dying in a country where there isn't one.

Of treatable conditions.

]}:-{>

Tuesday, September 05, 2017

No Fuel like an Old Fuel

Cough, hack, cough, etc.
Ecological Armaggedon is upon us, and it's all our own fault for using energy. Having spent the past several tens of thousands of years eating raw food and freezing to death in the winter, Mankind was given the gift of fire by Prometheus, much to Zeus' disgust.

For several thousand more years there were open fires and candles, and then fossil fuels were discovered and exploited. Coal, oil, gas. Enter the Industrial Revolution, releasing ancient carbon dioxide into the atmosphere in vast quantities, causing either a new Ice Age or Global Warming. Unless that's all due to sunspot activity and Anthrogenic Climate Change (or perhaps Bovogenic if cow farts are to blame) all turns out to be a politically-driven myth.

What are we to do? The petrochemical industry produces a lot of our electricity; our food (tractor fuel, fertiliser, pesticides); our drugs; our plastics; anything that needs energy to be made (so everything, then); and of course transportation.

The obvious political decision is to reduce our dependence on fossil fuels. In practical terms, this means discouraging private vehicle use. As banning cars would have a ruinous effect on the world even if it were possible, a first stage is to encourage motorists to buy and run more economical - and thus more ecological - vehicles. Tiny-engined cars such as Nanny Goat's Aygo sips petrol, and she is rewarded by Her Majesty's Exchequer with a vanishingly tiny annual Vehicle Excise Duty ('VED'; it hasn't been 'Road Tax' in decades). Meanwhile, gas-guzzling polar-bear-drowning bourgemobiles get hammered by the taxman when they're imported, sold, and annually taxed. Plus, of course, thirsty cars use more fuel and thus the owner gets to pay more fuel tax.

So far, so good. Loads of people cash in on these tax advantages. They get wads of cash under scrappage schemes, buy titchy cars, and pay less VED and less fuel tax. And the environment is saved: huzzah!

But with all these bribes to the motorists, the total tax revenue heading to the Chancellor of the Exchequer is reduced. "Oh dear, I hadn't thought of that," says the Exchequer. "What are we to do now?"

Simple, really. We will increase tax on everyone, so now everyone gets punished for complying with the government's wishes. Consider the huge U-turn in the UK when diesel, the erstwhile environmental saviour, is now the demonised Fuel From Hell.

And now the second part. A move to totally electric cars. Ignoring the not insignificant environmental impact of digging lithium out of the ground and turning it into batteries, where is all the additional electricity going to come from? There must be massive investment in power generation - without a corresponding increase in carbon emissions otherwise what would be the point? Renewables, yes, and nuclear fission. Fusion would be better, but we're not there yet.

Somebody is going to have to pay for all this additional infrastructure, and it won't just be the motorist. Electricity prices are the obvious target, so if the Goat charges both his cars and his bike overnight while the little old lady next door boils her kettle for a nice cup of tea while watching 'Strictly' on her gogglebox, we're both paying more for our power because of my desire for personal transport.

Is car (or motorbike, come to that) ownership going to go in the direction of "You may only have a car if you have off-street parking"? If not, expect extension leads in enormous numbers being strewn across the footways of cities. Also anticipate late-night revellers unplugging cars for a laugh to make people late for work.

The answer lies in part with electric public mass transportation. Discourage private car use by discouraging ownership. Who has a car in Manhattan? Or in central London? Or Tokyo? But the system must work well for almost everybody almost all of the time. Not everyone is a commuter into and out of the Central Business District. The Goat is reminded of nightmare trips to and from IKEA Budapest, and he's a reasonably strong and able-bodied pack beast...

Electric aircraft currently seem an unlikely proposition, though. However, wind-powered ships could actually work if some boffins put in sufficient R&D.

Or go back to some Arcadian agrarian society where all two billion of us live, work, and die within walking distance of our birthplace. We have been there and done that.

]}:-{>

Monday, August 28, 2017

This Post is Dark and Full of Spoilers



Thrones! Now Game of Thrones now.
Game of Thrones now. Game of Thrones now.
Gonna watch it. Gonna watch it.
Gonna watch it. Gonna watch it.


There are Lannisters and Greyjoys.
In a pie you'll find the Frey boys.
Little Arya can be Faceless;
Ramsay Bolton's always graceless.

Littlefinger can't be trusted:
He's a slime-ball - that's enough said.
Little Tyrion killed his papa
With a crossbow on the crapper.

Cersei's scheming didn't aim
To have her take the Walk of Shame,
And her revenge on the High Sparrow?
Much more special than an arrow.

Jaime needed some first aid.
Now he's less handy with a blade.
And Ser Bronn just wants a castle;
Quite a lot for hired muscle.

Cross the Narrow Sea to Essos.
Watch the rise of Queen Daenerys.
'cos it surely isn't easy -
Rise from chattel to Khaleesi.

The Dothraki and Unsullied
And her dragons. Are you worried?
Missandrei/Grey Worm are besties:
Such a shame he has no testes.


In the North, at Castle Black
The Night's Watch waits for the attack.
There are doers; there are talkers;
There are zombies and White Walkers.

If they ever breach the Wall
It will be curtains for us all,
Though White Walkers hate to feel
A blade made of Valerian steel.

Plus the dragon-glass, of course,
To knock the Night King off his horse.
When the battle is upon us
Lots of people will be goners.

In the meantime, Samwell Tarly:
He learns who Jon Snow is really.
Will there ever be some marryin'
Of someone from House Targaryen?

]}:-{>

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Watch those Air Miles

Of the numerous loyalty schemes out there, the Goat has stuck with Air Miles for many years. To clarify: these are not the frequent flyer miles dispensed by airlines, but something from https://www.airmilesme.com "The region's most exciting loyalty programme."

Collect the miles by buying stuff or by using the credit card supplied by Red Triangles Bank; the bank that is both local and global. Actually, buying stuff with a VISA card from a shop that does Air Miles doubles up the number collected, so is even better.

Enough with the free advert.

The Goat bought his first diving watch when he started scuba diving in 1996. very quickly he upgraded it to a similar model but in titanium. A Casio DEP-610, since you ask. And very good it was too. And then, in about 2003, Beloved Wife gave him a new watch. This Casio SPF-100S has proved to be excellent and the Goat's been wearing is almost continuously ever since. And, incidentally, the guy to whom he gave his DEP-610 reports that this one is still running, although it does admittedly now look rather tired.

But because nothing lasts forever, he's been looking for a replacement so that he can still tell the time when the SPF-100S ultimately dies. Or the irreplaceable O-ring gets damaged during a battery replacement and the watch fills with salt water. Or it gets dropped, lost, or stolen. The story of the Goat's life is that when he finds something that's perfect, it gets discontinued and, sure enough, the only SPF-100S that he can find is on FleaBay priced as 'rare' and 'collector's item'. But new in box, allegedly. And in Brazil.

At around $1300, which is almost AED4800, the Goat can find something newer and cheaper that will do the job.

There's a Citizen Eco-Drive Promaster Aqualand, priced at around AED 4000, or maybe a bit less, in Dubai. The Goat spotted one in Budapest for around AED 2850, and Amazon sells them for about AED 2750 plus shipping  and the inevitable 5% import duty. Solar rechargeable means that the back should never have to come off, and its analogue, so arguably looks more 'professional' than a digital LCD. However, the thing is massive, would do well in hand-to-hand combat, and would probably allow the Goat to dive without a weight belt. Anyway, it went on to the Goat's wish list for when the Casio finally slides down the curtain and joins the Choir Invisibule.

And then at last, after years of the Goat being told by various Casio retailers that "The SPF-100S is long obsolete, and no; Casio does not make a diving watch" the new Casio G-Shock Frogman GWF-D1000 popped on to the local shelves. It is, for practical purposes, an updated replacement for the SPF-100S, having the same date and time functions, the same diving functions and memory, and a whole load of other bits and pieces that the Goat would never use.

But the Frogman (which is a smaller watch than the Citizen but what isn't?) is solar rechargeable so the back should never have to come off. And the compass might be useful under water or in the desert. It's also got the atomic clock radio receiver, so should stay spot on. Except that last bit only works in Japan, North America, and Europe. A bit expensive at around AED 4000 to AED 4300 dependent on the colour of the case: inter alia vile turquoise, nausea-inducing yellow, dark blue, black and silver, black and blue. So another for the list of Definite Maybe on the Goat's wish list.

Then Air Miles dropped the Goat an email that essentially advised, "Dear Mr Goat, You have an absolute shitload of Air Miles accrued over the last several years, and they're going to expire really soon. Use them or lose them."

It turns out that Arabian Centre, one of the shopping malls near the Crumbling Villa, will redeem Air Miles for vouchers that are worth actual cash money to spend in any shop in Arabian Centre. And there's also a Casio G-Shock shop. And they had the range of Frogman watches in sensible colours. And the sales staff clearly knew the casio brand: "That's an SPF-100S you're wearing, sir. They're really good and a shame Casio discontinued them several years ago."

As if the Air Miles vouchers weren't persuasion enough, the salesman pointed out that there was 30% discount until 12th August. Sold. Less than AED600 out of the door.

Happy tenth wedding anniversary from Beloved Wife.

]}:-{>

Wednesday, August 09, 2017

Called it

You called it four years ago, you tangerine gobshite.

]}:-{>

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Handbasket

In the latest of a series of supposedly offhand comments made by Lord Dampnut that are designed to divert attention away from  matters of State, it would appear that he advocates prisoner abuse: "When you guys put somebody in the car and you're protecting their head, ... you can take the hand away, okay?"

That is to say, Lord Dampnut advocates the physical abuse of restrained suspects who are, according to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, entitled to a fair trial, and who are presumed innocent until proven guilty(Article 11(1)).

But then, this is the same Lord Dampnut who advocates that terrorist suspects undergo torture "...a hell of a lot worse than waterboarding", which is in explicit violation of UDHR Article 5.

This from the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave. When the supposed Good Guys are doing this, whatever will the world come to?

]}:-{>

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Planned Obsolescence

Again (and again and again) the Goat has been frustrated with the lack of support that seems to be provided for older products. Most recently the extremely bespoke watch strap that is broken cannot be replaced because “It’s an old model and we don’t do spare parts for those any more. We can sell you a new one.”

The Goat owns a fully functional high-end diving computer that is useless because there’s seemingly no way to strap it to his body.

Just one example. Another is the perfect motorcycle tyre that lasts ages, grips tenaciously, delivers excellent handling, and is discontinued in favour of one that causes high-speed wobbles and lets go on damp asphalt.

And a third is the need to fling a recent smartphone with its working display, motherboard, and case because nobody (including eBay and Amazon) has a replacement battery.

Everything I try,
Everything I buy,
Everything I do
Always turns to poo
And I wonder why.

Everything I own
Every mobile phone
If it's bought by me
You can guarantee
That it should be thrown.

If it's bought today,
Then there is no way
To avoid what's true:
“Go and buy anew!”

If I want to keep
Something, then I'm "Cheap."
My opinion's based
On my hate of waste
That's more than skin deep.

Never mind what’s neat.
It is obsolete,
And nobody cares
That you can’t find spares,
So admit defeat.

]}:-{>

Monday, July 03, 2017

Caprine Confusion

The Goat admits that he is nonplussed. The new UAE federal traffic rules were announced on about 29th June 2017 for implementation from 1st July. Some penalties have been increased; others have been decreased; the maximum legal window tint has been increased from 30% to 50%.

But here is where the confusion appears.

It has been normal custom and practice in the UAE to allow a 20km/h over the posted limit. Logical and not unreasonable, given instrument inaccuracy and the known fact that nobody NEVER sneaks, even inadvertently, over the posted maximum. And we are assured that this situation will prevail.  

 
And yet the new list includes a fine of Dh300 for exceeding the posted limit by not more than 20km/h.  

So is exceeding the posted limit by say 10km/h a punishable offence or not?

The Goat was surprised and annoyed to receive a speeding ticket earlier in 2017 for doing less than 110km/h in a 100km/h zone. In Fahrenheit, the Goat got busted for doing less than 68mph in a 62mph zone.Incidentally, just past the first 100km/h sign after a long, long stretch of 120km/h highway.

 
This is in accordance with the old Law 183, but is still well inside Dubai's tolerance level. But it's Sharjah; not Dubai.
 

The Goat suspects that these federal rules apply, but because Dubai is Special, Dubai chooses to ignore speeding less than 20km/h over the limit. Other emirates, it would seem, are not as tolerant.

The Goat also observes 1279 fines on the first day. Obviously this count does not include the speed and red-light cameras because the results from these take a few days to come through the process. Moreover, he suspects that most would have been offences under previous laws. But the fact the we see punitive action rather than compliance rather suggests that the system will take a while to become effective.

Or perhaps the novelty will wear off after a few days or weeks, and we will be back to the highway anarchy that we all know and love.

It is gratifying to the Goat to note that, at last, traffic laws pertaining to the American system of having a STOP sign on school buses have now become official. 
 

Compliance and enforcement? Remain to be seen; last time the Goat stopped behind a school bus with its STOP sign out he was hooted at and verbally abused by a nasty man in a large black-windowed Tahoe.

And finally, Law 155. Transporting inflammable ale is right out.

The complete list, should anyone be interested, is here.

]}:-{>

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Both kinds: Country *and* Western

Not my truck
"With the advent of autonomous motor vehicles," it said on Facebook, "It's only a matter of time before someone writes a country song about my truck leaving me."

So here is one.

I bought an F150
In the year 2019.
I gave it bigger tires
So's to make it look real mean.
It had a pair of smokestacks
Both made of polished chrome,
And a central-heated garage:
Somewhere it could call home.

My wife said I spent too much time
Out polishing my truck.
"It's gonna be the truck or me,"
She told me. Just my luck!

One day while I was drivin'
The radio was playin'
My fav'rite country music songs:
The best of all, I'm sayin'
I set the truck on Auto
For my banjo I was pickin'
Till I stopped outside a KFC
Where lunch is finger-lickin'

The truck parked up beside a 'Stang,
A fine automobile,
But when I'd had my chicken strips
My disbelief was real.

For my truck left me!
It ran off with a Mustang.
Yeah, my truck left me!
I shouted and I cussed.
My truck left me!
The moral to this story
Is never trust a truck that is autonomous.

Yeah, my truck left me!
It ran off with a Mustang.
Yeah, my truck left me!
I went home on the bus.
My truck left me!
The moral to this story
Is never trust a truck that is autonomous.

]}:-{>

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

"The Boxer"? Rebellion

The Mis-Leader

In an office without corners
Sits a toupee’d tangerine
Where he ought to rule the nation,
But he tweets his indignation
When he’s criticized.

His tiny hands
That he used for grabbing pussies
Though, of course, not Kellyanne’s.
Mmmmmm...

Lie-la-Lie: “Yes, the Mexicans will pay.”
Lie-la-Lie: “I’ll throw Hillary in jail.”
Lie-la-Lie.


“When I want to be elected,
With the Russians I’ll collude.
I’ll get Vladimir to phone me;
If discovered, I’ll fire Comey
And erase my tracks.

Drain the swamp!
And avoid those Nasty Women!
I’m as bright as Forrest Gump
And tell whoppers ‘cos my name is Donald Trump.”

Lie-la-Lie: “I will never take vacations.”
Lie-la-Lie: “And I don’t do tax evasion.”
Lie-la-Lie. 

]}:-{>

Friday, May 12, 2017

How useful is that?

For the forthcoming vacation in Poland, Beloved Wife and Goat will meet Beloved Wife’s aunt and TMIL in Kraków at the end of May.

Travel between Dubai and Kraków is fussy and expensive. The Goat eventually found a reasonable deal involving flying in and out of Vienna in Austria and taking trains between Vienna and Kraków. So far so good. All booked and paid for. The Goat’s VISA card got its customary spanking.

And now the trouble starts.

RailEurope, the online rail booking service that was so keen to take nearly €400 of the Goat’s money during the booking process, discovered a problem with delivering the physical tickets. As the Goat discovered eight years ago, rail companies seem to have a great deal of difficulty getting their corporate minds around the concept of e-ticketing. “You must have an actual paper ticket in order to travel” It’s not only First Great Western, then. Does it occur to these buffoons that people who book online in advance are from Other Countries, and may find obtaining the physical tickets troublesome? Rail companies seem incapable of adjusting to passengers not simply rocking up to the booth and asking for a second-class return; departure ASAP.

To be fair, RailEurope does offer Print @ Home and Print @ Station services. But only for Eurostar and railway travel starting in France or Spain. But not from Austria.

“Allow nine days for delivery” says the website and confirmation email. So with this clock ticking, the Goat receives an email: “Dear Sir/Madam, we can’t send your tickets to a PO box because we use DHL. Please provide a physical address.”

It is well-known, although not by Rail Europe (nor various purveyors of financial and investment services, but that's another story), nothing gets successfully mailed to a physical address in the middle east. Nevertheless, the Goat wrote back with the address of the Crumbling Villa, plus a note that DHL will be quite capable of finding the place. “Just phone me for directions. Honestly; it is really easy.”

“Dear Sir/Madam, We need your postcode.”

Actually you don’t, on the very sensible grounds that there is no such thing in the middle east because there are no door-to-door mail deliveries. DHL, believe it or not, are quite capable of delivering stuff using mediocre street addresses and by phoning for directions. How else does the Goat get his bank cards?

“Dear Sir/Madam, we request you to provide us with the complete address including necessary landmarks for the same. We cannot ship the tickets until we do not [sic] get a complete address.”

The Goat sends the same information yet again, but this time includes major nearby landmarks (An international airport; a gigantic shopping mall or three; a huge mosque. The Goat speculates on the necessity of these, but they certainly do exist) and Lat/Long co-ordinates. He doesn't bother with what3words because of the blank looks whenever he's mentioned it before, nor Dubai's revolutionary Makani geolocation system that absolutely nobody seems to use.

The Goat has attempted to speak to an actual person at RailEurope, and even found the gethuman.com website. Hilariously, the 24/7 phone number results in a recorded message: “Our office hours are 0900-1930 Eastern Standard Time Monday thru Friday.”Clearly a very special interpretation of “24/7.” Special as in tasty crayons. RailEurope has, it would seem, offices in the United States and in India. One wonders if there are actually any in Europe…

One of the Goat’s friends, who visited Budapest over Christmas, had no such issues. She was able to book a stupidly cheap train ticket from Budapest to Prague using her US credit card, collect it from a machine at the railway station, and travel without fuss. So the Goat is forced to conclude that the Fates simply don’t want him ever to use rail travel, and have this time decided to steal €400 in order to make that point.

]}:-{>

Monday, May 01, 2017

Hephaestus

Remember back in April 2010 when the Eyjafjallajökull volcano in Iceland pushed a load of ash into the atmosphere? Remember how the ash cloud grounded aircraft in and out of Europe?

I was very, very affected by this, being trapped in the UK and unable to return to my job in the UAE for over a week. I was deeply unimpressed with Hephaestus, the Greek god of fire, blacksmithing, volcanoes, and other hot things. And you don't get much hotter than molten rock. Presumably I wasn't the only one railing against the gods in general and this one in particular.

I was even more unimpressed when I got back and was, within four days, made redundant. Hephaestus, you really can't take criticism, can you?

And being made redundant from my new job eleven months after that left me as dischuffed as a broken-down steam locomotive. You have had another sense-of-humour failure haven't you, Hephaestus?

Fortunately, I landed a further new job in Qatar, but as it turns out I'm allergic to working for arseh- crazy people that particular post lasted a year. This was the firm that promised me a No Objection Certificate and then later when I asked for one told me ('told me' is a euphemism for 'lied') that they'd never promised an NOC and therefore refused to issue one. Consequently I was banned from working in Qatar for two years. Oy, Hephaestus, this has now got really old.

Despite trying, I ended up travelling, taking the occasional odd job, and generally being a house elf for two years. The novel I tried to write ended up being 50,000 words of unreadable shite, so making my fortune writing best-sellers does not seem to be an option.

After two years, I landed a job in Qatar (again) and took leave of my senses. I thought I could stand it for six months, but the contract dragged on for two years. Not funny any more, Hephaestus.

And when that contract finished and I was released from the Job From Hell, I went off to Budapest to work for Beloved Wife and myself.

And here I am now, back in Dubai and looking for a job. Déjà vu all over again.

Hephaestus, I officially hate you.

]}:-{>

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Caprine Peripatetic Perambulation

A summary of some of the many inane things I've been posting on the Book of Faces.

Having arrived in Budapest, I discovered that I'd accidentally brought a little stuffed goat that Beloved Wife bought for me the first time we visited Cyprus. I took a picture and entitled it "Goats Do Roam".

This is far from the first idea on the blogosphere in which some form of mascot features in travel blogs. Nevertheless, I ended up carrying this little mascot in my backpack throughout my travels around Budapest. It's the alternative to Yet Another View That Looks Like A Postcard and neatly sidesteps the Souvenir Selfie. I don't know why I didn't think of doing this years ago.

Suddenly confronted by some random stranger who demanded to know the animal's name, I blurted out, "Caesar," and now it's stuck.

So the pun works on several levels:-

Goats do Roam all over Budapest, Frankfurt, and the UAE.
Goats do Roam is an acceptable wine, itself a pun on Côtes du Rhône.
Goats de Rome is why he's called Caesar.

Budapest

The window of Bedroom 1 just before the renovation started
IKEA arrived

Budapest and the Danube from the Citadel


Glühwein is basically Christmas in a bottle

Christmas snow outside the Gellert Hotel
Outside the New York Café,
where there are several winged satyrs holding light sconces
And opposite the New York cafe, another satyr
In the central market, USSR-era military hats
that were all Size Tiny
A piper. I briefly busked nearby
and made precisely zero money


And it seems to be cake o'clock
And at Budapest (petting) zoo

Frankfurt

Christmas markets. We went to Frankfurt this year rather than Munich,
and spent a long (UAE National Day) weekend drinking
Glühwein and eating junk

Dubai

One of those 'notorious' Friday brunches
A break from Budapest, and I managed to get the bike out

Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge


I got back from Budapest just in time to be an ADDC marshal. Caesar called shotgun

Caesar became the Finish Team mascot
As the name seems to have stuck, I wonder if I should make him a toga? In time for my next visit to Historical Italy, perhaps.

]}:-{>

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Budapest XIII

Thirteen. Unlucky for some.

It seems that actual completion of the project is dragging, and more than a little. Fundamentally, the builder has new work and would rather direct his resources in that direction rather than completing the snagging list over at Grumpy Goat Apartments. So he's getting frequent nags about the snags, and (mostly polite) demands to know the justification for his tardiness.

Today, at last, someone came with a rope and a bo'sun's chair to fix the incomplete concreting in the light well that is beyond the reach of a normal humanoid from within the building. Having declared it finished, I leaned out of the bathroom window and loudly proclaimed that the mortar work under the windowsill had not been addressed.

"Why do I have to keep doing this? You tell me that it's finished and it takes me about three seconds to ascertain that it isn't. Please deal with it. Yes, now."

Apologies and rectifications immediately followed, but the problem remains: I can and will check that work has been completed to my satisfaction, and after several months he must know this. Yet he continues to ignore it, or allows himself to be lied to by his employees.

I am still, yes still, waiting for a much-advertised security grille to go over the window above the front door, and on the subject of front door, there remains a massive gap that lets in draughts and - given the opportunity - chess, backgammon, and Jumanji...

However, I am assured - again - that everything will be done by Friday, at which point I shall sit down with the builder and thrash out the final account: the inevitable part of project completion.

The letting agent came last week and took some pictures. Assuming that it isn't let by the time you read this, the advert is here:

http://clarkeandwhite.com/listing/newly-renovated-two-bedroom-apartment-rent/

The project has dragged to nearly the end of the month, so I might as well stay one more week and entertain Beloved Wife as she transits through Budapest on her way to a Gurlz Nite Out in Amsterdam. And I shall be heading back to Dubai and looking for a proper job.

]}:-{>

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Budapest XII


 It is almost finished before March. The bar is yet to arrive, and IKEA needs to be chased for delivery, and a cupboard around the gas meter will go in after the gas inspection just in case the Gas Inspector turns out to be more of a Bottom Inspector.

I also need to put some translucent paper over the circular window in the pantry, and there remains a substantial snagging list.

But here we are: two pictures of each room.

Entrance Hall, looking at the Pantry
Entrance Hall, looking at the Front Door
Kitchen
Kitchen
Kitchen and Living Room
Living Room
Bedroom 1
Bedroom 1
Bedroom 2
Bedroom 2
Bathroom: Shower
Bathroom, Toilet, Laundry
Pantry with Boiler and Storage
Storage shelves
]}:-{>
 

The opinions expressed in this weblog are the works of the Grumpy Goat, and are not necessarily the opinions shared by any person or organisation who may be referenced. Come to that, the opinions may not even be those of the Grumpy Goat, who could just be playing Devil's Advocate. Some posts may be of parody or satyrical [sic] nature. Nothing herein should be taken too seriously. The Grumpy Goat would prefer that offensive language or opinions not be posted in the comments. Offensive comments may be subject to deletion at the Grumpy Goat's sole discretion. The Grumpy Goat is not responsible for the content of other blogs or websites that are linked from this weblog. No goats were harmed in the making of this blog. Any resemblance to individuals or organisations mentioned herein and those that actually exist may or may not be intentional. May contain nuts.