Archive for January, 2008

Wheelie bin has been secured – check…

Letterbox is strapped down – check……

Draft excluder at the foot of the door – check…….

And I am being serious! Question? Why does the wind blow stronger at night?

Answers on a postcard or email!

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Had a sleepless night last night as storm force winds battered Santon and the Isle of Man. Had a check about this morning and found the wheelie bin at the top of the street! Damage sustained to one of our cars as well! I think the wheelie bin in all its excitement has collided with the wing mirror as it bounced up the street! No slates off the roof, but I have heard that there is a lot of debris and trees down on the roads and conditions are trecherous. Oh well not to worry, worse is to come and snow by the weekend! 

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I have written a few posts in the past about the beloved Isle of Man Steam Packet. I think at times my frustration boils over and I quite often say things that may be I shouldn’t say (or maybe I should who knows)? James Qualtrough seems to give a more balanced view than myself on his post Isle of Man Steam Packet Misery.   I like his blog as well! 

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I am no photographer and I don’t have the best of cameras, but I caught this picture of the sky last evening looking over to South Barrule and and the Sloc from Santon last night.

Evening Sky 1, originally uploaded by nickopmillion.

Winter evening sky over Santon Isle of Man

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I have had such a hectic week at work so far I can’t believe its Friday tomorrow!

And I thought the saying went ‘Time flies when your having fun’. Heaven only knows, it would  probably be Monday again if I was having fun! Aaarrrggghhh Monday again! Shit that cant be right thats even worse!


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I know we are in the middle of January but it just seems to have been raining here on the Isle of Man now for days, and its not just that fine rain thats soaks you through, its been tipping it down! I wonder if its been the same around the UK or if there is a black cloud hovering over the Isle of Man? Roll on the spring and summer! mmmmm just thinking maybe I suffer from SAD?

Or if I am just sad?

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It was great to read recently in the Isle of Man Examiner that the Agriculture Minister Phil Gawne has backed the local producers of the Isle of Man to support marketing and sales with £290k allocated to Pure Produce Isle of Man organisation.

I was privileged enough to go away in November with the Isle of Man Pure Produce group to the BBC Good Food Show at the Birmingham NEC. I was there supporting my mate Tim Croft from Island Seafare who is just one of the producers making up the Isle of Man Pure Produce contingent. It was great fun made even more so by the fact that Tim had arranged for The Hairy Bikers to come along and support the Isle of Man stand even cooking up some great recipes whilst they were there. What was clearly evident from the start of the show was the amount of dedication and passion these producers have for their produce and it was clear that everyone was supporting each other and really believed in what they were doing. Food today is very much a passion for people, we see this with the rise of the ‘Celebrity Chef’, the shear number of TV programmes now focusing on cooking and also more recently The Big Food Fight campaign on Channel 4 undertaken by a number of high profile chefs, bringing to the public’s attention just what is happening in our food industries at the moment, much of which is at the cost of health to not only the livestock being raised but also to our children and much of our western society today with the rise of obesity!

Bringing this back to the Isle of Man. I do hope that this financial backing is just the start of something great for the islands producers, what I think is now needed is business and marketing support to assist with developing new supply networks and promoting the great Isle of Man produce in an effective 21st century way that will appeal to a wider market outside the Isle of Man. And I managed to say something positive about the Isle of Government in this post!

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Over the past few days there have been some pretty horrific programs on the television highlighting the terrible conditions that chickens farmed for meat and eggs are kept in the UK namely Hugh Fernley Whittingstall’s Chicken Out Campaign and more recently Jamie Olivers Fowl Dinner programme. Seems to me that the supermarkets should simply change the way they produce are chicken and eggs and be accountable for the terrible treatment of these birds instead of blaming the consumer for driving the cost and conditions down! What it did make me think was is their anyone on the Isle of Man farming free range chickens? I know that there are several farms on the island supplying free range eggs but not chicken. I would think that there would be an opportunity for someone to enter into this market selling good quality local organic free range or free range Isle of Man birds instead of us having to buy the cheap, cruel and lets face it shit chicken from the our supermarkets!

On less serious note I did love the Ricky Gervais clips before the ad breaks on Jamies Fowl Dinners! Check it out below, quality Ricky in action – love it!

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It is thought that the recent explosion in the house in Port Erin was caused by a gas leak! Lets hope Manx Gas get everything sorted out down there. Lucky that no one was seriously injured.

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I was reading a recent newspaper article about the Isle of Man Steam and Electric Railways, and was pleasantly suprised to hear that the passenger figures were up by 7.1 percent on last year for the steam railway and 9.9 percent up for the electric railway. I must say that I think this increase in attributed to a number of reasons, firstly the hard work that the Department of Tourism and Leisure (DTL) and I would assume Manx National Heritage has put in on bringing the ‘nostalga’ back to the railways with some good events and promotion, secondly the fact that the island had a significant number of extra visitors during the TT 2007 centenery, and thirdly due to the events such as the Thomas The Tank Engine and Santa train days that are held down at the Douglas train station. Both of these events are very well supported by the local families and is certainly a big highlight for many local children.

Despite the great efforts by the DTL I would however like to point out that Mr Earnshaws TT commuter service shouldn’t take any of the credit for this in my mind, it could have been an amazing service, and really should have been funded by the government but once again it fell drastically short of being a good idea for many reasons. All of the credit and success of the manx railways is down to the hard work and dedication of all those who work hard to maintain the wonderful feature of the Isle of Man in the Manx Steam and Electric Railways.

Well done everyone you should all be proud of yourselves.

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