Saturday, November 07, 2015

Mad Fireworks

I like fireworks. I miss them too.
Those are some from quite a few years ago now, taken at Thornbury fireworks just up the road. Actually a lot of years ago ...

The 5th of November is remembered in Britain for Guy Fawkes, a revolutionary mercenary who almost succeeded in an attempt to blow up our Houses of Parliament. If I remember my history lessons right (they were from more than half my life ago!), he got taken in by a bunch of amateurish noblemen who had been thoroughly infiltrated by the spymaster of the time. The plot got them all out into the open where they could be quietly arrested. Guido was caught under the Houses, close to being able to blow them up. This was in a flour warehouse ... And flour is quite flammable and explosive under the right conditions ...

Yep. Plot failed, although I suspect more than a few people would like to see a contemporary equivalent. There's nothing wrong with our system of government, except for those who sit in the house. The unelected privilege based house appears to have the voice of sanity at the moment, unlike the elected house. Well, a majority voted for the elected half.

Enough politics ! That way lies insanity ...

We used to do an annual meet up with the work-ish mob (CQ, CK and BD) to let off a few hundred pounds worth of fireworks before retreating into the warm with pizza and movies. Those were fun chilled out nights and it's a shame we don't do them any more. Part of that is not having suitable places to let off the fireworks. That brings me to point one :

Pets and fireworks don't mix. All that unexplained banging is really bad for the nerves. Mine too ! Ish. I can put it out of my mind immediately and possibly even look out the window for them (not really fast enough to do that). For me, it's not as unnerving as when the car alarm decides to disgrace itself by going off mysteriously. (It happily hasn't done that since I started turning off half of the alarm system).

But yeah - it's a really bad time of the year for pets with all those noises going off. (This is one reason why one of our firework hosting places is off the list). It's worse than just one night a year though, People seem to think it's acceptable to let the fireworks off for a period of around 3 weeks around the 5th.

That's partly policed by the supermarkets, who will stop selling the fireworks soon. There's scary point 2 actually ...

This time of year, you can buy explosives freely in the supermarkets. (They happen to go up in the sky and make pretty explosions but they're still explosives). And we sell these to anyone, including those who cannot give any evidence that : They can read, Can follow safety instructions*, Are sane, Have any good sense. I'm going by what I see daily on the roads there. There are a huge number of morons out there.

*(Let's be honest, you've read that "25 ft minimum safe distance" warning and followed it every time right ? right ?)

One of my biggest fears around this time of year is hearing a knock on the door, followed by a "TRICK OR TREAT" and shortly after that, a bang as a firework is let off under a car. Yep. I have that high/low an opinion of modern society. Perhaps that's why I'd like to escape to somewhere with less people ?

But being around people can have its positives :
Happy Cookie Place is back and it has Happy Cookie Customers ! Yep. They're expensive. But they taste so good (as well as being massive). There was no one there when I rocked up but by the time I'd started walking away with a bag full of cookies, there was a tidy queue there.

Yep. German Market is back, complete with lots of stalls selling touristy type stuff plus assorted munchies. There's a Cake Place as well but their standard may have dropped somewhat. I'll check again on Wednesday but the cakes there yesterday weren't as good as I remember from last year.

After picking up the cookies (first stop ! VITAL!), I had a lunch of bratwurst and hot chocolate. Word of warning - be sure to ask for your deposit back on the cups. It's a £2 deposit that I really shouldn't have had to do a "And the deposit?" for after handing the cup back.

And then 3 (4) cds walked out of HMV with me. Yep. Got caught by a 2 for deal where I didn't have much idea what the second would be. The cd's are Laura Marling's Alas, I Cannot Swim, Carly Rae Jepson with E-Mo-Tion and Iron Maiden's latest which is a double album. I have to stop buying things now because it's the birthday soon and it wouldn't do to buy anything that someone else might be looking to buy me.

Did I mention cookies ?
Let me take a moment to explain how that picture got taken ... My camera can talk to my phone. You can run an app on the phone that controls the camera. It means I could point the camera without having to look at its display, as the view was being replicated on the phone. So :

A dishcloth that I wish I'd ironed formed the backdrop, dangling from the front of the sofa.
The dwagons and cookies were on a plank of wood that forms my makeshift table (no room for proper table!).
Diorama posed to satisfaction (and then picture retaken as I realised that crumbs from the cookies were on the plank!)
Camera propped up on my knee (as all this was on the floor)
Phone on the floor within easy picture taking reach.

Yep. First time I've taken a scene like this. Perhaps I should have gone for the blackscreen backdrop as I have done in previous diorama type pics ? That's where I put the scene on top of my subwoofer with a black PC box base behind that. I think this one would have been a bit big for that. I also like to pose the light as well, which limits where in the room I can pose it. Natural light is far better than flash light.

Did I mention I'd be checking the German Market out again soon ?

HURRAH ! Wednesday. Looking forward to it because I'll have a little bundle of chuckly smiles along too who I suspect will encourage me to acquire more cookies. Not seen her for ages and it's only in the last week or so where her wounded ankle has improved to the point where she can get out and about again.

Watching Bond too. Am looking forward to a really fun evening.

PS And the dwagon pic drew a comment of "Holy mother of god" from one of the Twitter people. Made my day.

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