Valentines Weekend break 2008

Weekend of the 18th February 2008 we went of for a short break with friends. We had a super holiday with lots of fun, laughter and relaxation.
We went to Callander which is in the Trossachs, a part of Scotland which has some of the very best scenery that Scotland has to offer.

Click here for a small selection of photographs taken during the weekend.

A dying breed!!!!!

A picture of a simple telephone box taken on a recent trip to Callendar in Scotland.

Why bother to take this photo you might think?

It is an example of an authentic telephone box which has in it, as you might expect, a public telephone. It has been vandalised and not repaired. What is does not contain is a person using the telephone 😉

However, prior to taking this photo I was walking up the high street in Calendar and saw about 5 people with a mobile phone to their ear – one of whom was driving a car at the time
(illegal!!!!). So I take this to be a sign of the times.

Technology is progressing at an unprecedented rate and the increase in the use of mobile telephony is I think one measure of this situation. Today there are few children – let alone adults who do not have a mobile telephone. I can recall in my life time having to make calls through the telephone operator – there was not even a dialling device on the phone in my childhood home. The line was also a ‘party line’ which means that it was shared with the house next door. So it was not unusual to pick up the phone and hear our neighbour in mid conversation with someone else. Of course in those days we accepted that and simply put the phone down again. No real worries about privacy in those days ( approx 40 – 45 years ago).

The telephone box in the picture above is an original one painted in post office red! I have also seen these in people’s gardens as ornaments but this one still survives in its original (0r near) state.

Puzzle – Doors to nowhere!

During the course of my travels this week I passed through Schiphol Airport in the Netherlands twice. Each time I visit that airport I am intrigued by the doors which you find in various parts of the terminal building. See below!

The interesting thing about this is that the doors do not prevent access or permit access to anywhere! They are are positioned in the middle of the terminal corridor and are not aligned across the corridor but are in line with it! So if you pass through a door you simply move from one side of the corridor to the other! So why are they there? If anyone knows the answer please comment and let me know the answer!

I have thought about why they are there and the only explanation I can come up with is that the whole door assembly can be rotated through 90 degrees so that they align cross the corridor to act as fire doors or to isolate the terminal corridor from the main terminal building ( for security or fire prevention purposes). But is this right????? I intend to research this further when I next pass through Schiphol Airport as it buggs me each time I come across them! Of course I am usually in a rush and only recall this source of irritation when it is too late to investigate!

I do hope that there is a simple and logical explanation!!!!!

Any suggestions or explanations welcome 😉

Passenger Transport Washington Dulles Airport

I was interested by the passenger trasport system used at Washington Dulles.

See below,
The ‘bus’ can either take passengers on board by means of direct entry from a terminal building or people can enter from ground level. Apparently this might be the only airport in the world that uses this system. I am told that the system is soon to be replaced by a new system involving an underground train system.

Travel through the time zones – jet lag.

Today is my first opportunity to meet the rest of the team of which I am now a part. For this I have travelled to Washington DC. Trip was uneventful – all flights on time – but a rather long queue to get through passport control at Washington Dulles. It is currently 6.15am and I have been awake for a couple of hours already! I suppose this is to be expected as local time here is 5 hours behind the UK. On arrival it was snowing here – nothing serious – so weather very similar to that in Scotland. This morning – the weather channel is predicting 1.5 – 3 inches of snow here by tomorrow morning.