Tag Archives: bowenjohnj

it’s just another day really

Why all the fuss over New Year? It’s only another day after all. Continue reading

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wiltshire wildlife june 2011

The local Sparrow and Starling youngsters are going through 5 or 6 fat balls a day at the moment. The Starlings are just starting to show signs of transition from juvenile feathers to the adult plumage and are feeding themselves, but the Sparrow young still, mostly, need to be fed.

Despite reports of a decline in Sparrows in recent years we have a good crop and can often have as many as 20 flitting around with their complex air traffic control stacking them for a turn on the feeder.

Fortunately we’ve had no sightings of the larger birds of prey that turned up towards the end of last year, but the Pigeons, Gulls and Crows still have spats amongst themselves, uniting against the Magpies and the Heron.

Samantha Squirrel was last seen in August and so we think that she has gone to that drey in the sky. She would have been at least 6 and had been through some hard times. A strange thing though; it was four summers ago that she moved herself and her two babies into our loft and we had to evict them in fear that they would chew up wiring with the attendant risks to them and us. Twice in the last few months an adult squirrel has come down our path, run unerringly up the cherry tree to the corner of the house where Samantha made an entry, looked around and then run back down the tree and left, ignoring the adjacent bird feeder. Could this have been one (or  both) of Samantha’s offspring, following some memory of a previous home? Maybe I’m just being wishful, but why would a squirrel just turn up, check that location and leave?

This is the fourth year that we have not had a fox take up temporary residence under our deck. Having been a regular maternity ward for several years we had enjoyed the spectacle of the youngsters play fighting in the afternoon sun, even if we did not like some of their, shall we say, personal habits.



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john bowen? no, that one isn’t me

Hardly an original title, but since I started to get active on the blogging front I’ve come across all sorts of namesakes around the world and over time.

Just for the fun of it I’ve created a page here to list some of the other JBs with a link to more information about them, or to their web sites if they have one.

It will build over time as I come across ones I think that I’d like to include and, if you are a JB and would like me to mention you here, please let me know and I’ll gladly include you.

To see who’s there, click on the tab at the top of the page, or on this link.

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more on the yes2av campaign – is there a scandal that we should know about?

I am all for a fair fight, good open debate and accepting the results at the end, whatever they may be. My own campaign against the yes2av lobby is, I hope, a good example of putting an alternative argument forward so that people can make up their own minds, albeit that I do hope that my arguments do influence people towards my way of thinking.

And so I am appalled the read via another blog quoting from The Spectator that the Electoral Reform Society, who would have much to gain financially from a Yes2av vote being successful, are sponsoring that campaign. Read the blog and reference to the article here and make up your own mind.

It is old news maybe, having been published in late Feb this year, but was news to me until this morning.


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friday fun in the sun

Well it is a beautiful morning (no I’m not about to burst into a selection from Oklahoma!) and I am having a few moments in front of the laptop checking emails, blogging and passing the time until I have to capture a pair of moggies and take them off to the vets for the annual jabs.

All of a sudden here in Jottings I have got all political again. After GE2010 I promised myself that I would leave the soap box in the shed for a while, but the Yes2av campaign crept up on me and had got the juices flowing in opposition, so apologies to my regular readers who prefer my more whimsical offerings, but there will be a steady stream of no2av campagning for the next few weeks.

I will try to add more of my usual scibblings to water things down though, so please bear with me if you find the politics boring.

So, time to drink my tea and turn into Hunter John and track down the cats. This posting will be filed amongst Wildlife Encounters; they may me domestic animals, but somehow they know that a trip in the cage is coming and are already plotting against me. I shall return later to dress my own wounds and with a lighter wallet.

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more on why I’m voting No2AV on 5th May

Deciding who will represent you in parliament and, ultimately, who will run the country is not a marketing survey.

If someone asks you to rate your top 5 or 10 hotel chains, supermarkets, airlines, fashion outlets or whatever then ranking them in order makes sense. It gives a feel for how people see the market and who they rate as number one. You could do the same with one of those, for me puerile, talent and reality shows to decide who to vote off.

But deciding the outcome of an election this way is, to me, completely bonkers.

Yes, I want to see electoral reform and a better way of representing the people, but I do not believe that AV has any place in such reform, so I’m voting No.

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vote no2AV on 5th May – have you spotted the irony with yes2av here?

Having had more Vote Yes for AV material thrust at me the delicious irony of the 5th May referendum has finally broken through to me: The vote is a first past the post one! If more people vote for it than against it will succeed, and will do so by the very system that it desires to eradicate,

So it 15% of the population vote for it, and less than that vote against, it will be passed by a minority.

Given that a few luvvies are queueing up to urge a Yes vote from their fans (who will no doubt vote Yes without understanding why), and that there is a small campaign in favour, but no apparent cry to oppose, we face the strong possibility of having a political nonsense thrust upon us. As WSC might have put it; “never in the field of politics have so few done such damage to so many” (well, other than New Labour of course).

We need change, but not this one. Perhaps I should take to the streets.


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why I will be voting no2av next month

Despite many of my friends seeming to support the proposed change to the way we elect our politicians I will be voting No on May 5th.

I am in favour of electoral reform, and think that a change is overdue, but this solution is, I think, very poorly designed and unlikely to give us anything better than we have now. In fact I truly think that it could make things worse.

It is a shame that, after waiting so long for there to be a chance of doing something better, all that  is on offer is such an appalling mess. I hope that it does not come to fruition, but am concerned that if my wish comes through it will be a while before we get another chance. Even so, I cannot see the point in voting for change just for the sake of it, especially one that I think is so bad, and so I shall be putting my cross in the No box.

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letters to the editor – disposing of unpopular leaders


So our Prime Minister and his government believe that it is acceptable to have an unpopular leader assassinated. Perhaps they should be carefull of what they wish for….

I think that we should be told.

Yours faithfully

Surprised of Swindon

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No more RingGo at Swindon! FGW you are wrong

I hear that First Great Western and APCOA are ceasing the RingGo service at Swindon (and other) station car parks any day now.

This is a stupid move and I am supporting the campaign to have the decision reversed. If you are with me click on this link to make your protest heard.

Car park machines are a nightmare at somewhere like a railway station. You either need a mountain of change or, if they have a credit card operated one, the patience of a saint as they rarely work. RingGo makes life easy with a simple phone call and, when its a business trip, I can log on later and get a VAT receipt.

All stress free and one of the main reasons why I have started to use the train much more over the last year or so. I want my RingGo back!

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