We took Ben and his friend down to the ski centre today for a couple of rides on the toboggan run. As they are under 8 we have to take them on with us. As we were about to set off on the first run it started to drizzle so the guy had to swap over the sleds for the wet weather ones. I took Ben on with me and Sarah took his friend Tommy with her. As we were queuing for our second go I overheard the man behind me saying “you’d better get ready because this time we’re going down really really fast” – I didn’t see who he said it to but presumed it was a child.
As Ben and I came down the second time we caught Sarah up so we slowed right down in order to let her get ahead. Then as we continued I suddenly felt a bump from behind where this idiot had come screaming down the track, as he said he would, and crashed into us. Now it wasn’t a massive crash but the principle of the thing meant I said something to him – his response was simply that I hadn’t been going fast enough, basically shifting the blame from his reckless behavior. When I continued to argue he suggested to me that it wasn’t appropriate for me to have an argument with him in front of our children – apparently though it was ok for him to endanger my son and his much younger daughter but driving recklessly!
The incident had an effect on me, not just because of what happened, but because to me it is symptomatic of what is wrong with our society. This whole attitude of I’m all right Jack, sod everyone else. That and the refusal to accept responsibility for your own actions and find someone else to blame. The whole weekend to me had been dismal, and not just because of the weather, because it highlighted the differences between the cozy, wealthy parts of our society and the other less affluent people. One of my Facebook friends was constantly posting about how great it all was that everyone was behind the Queen, which was so different to what we were experiencing in our area. Looking around you wouldn’t have known anything was happening – down here in the real world it didn’t seem to mean that much compared to out there in his comfy, country, wealthy part of the world – and to me that’s a problem because his wealth insulates him from what is really happening to people under the Government he vehemently supports.
The story that broke over the weekend about the “work experience” stewards being abandoned in Central London at 3am with no where to stay also made me angry. It seemed to be another example of our taxes appearing to be used to help people get back into work but in reality it all being done on the cheap so that someone can award himself a nice big bonus when he hits his targets. I’m not saying this is what happened here but it still stinks. Apparently there is now a statement from the company saying it was the bus drivers fault as he got to London 2 hours early. I would argue that given these people were meant to be undergoing “training” then there should have been someone from the company to say to the driver “I know we’re early so you’ll just have to park up somewhere so these people can stay on the bus and get some sleep before they start work” – don’t you think. Apparently £1.5m was spent on stewarding for the River Pageant – where did it go if these people were getting less than minimum wages?
OK Rant over!!
We were amused this afternoon while back at the launderette when we were looking at the flyer we found for Lounge on the Farm. A couple of years ago it was the hip festival to be at and we fancied going but last year it changed. They booked bigger bands and got all commercial – my daughter worked there and said it was the worst organised festival she had ever been to. We had thought about going for one day but were put off when we discovered that on top of the ticket cost the only way to get to and from the site was by using their bus shuttle service to and from the car park. This would have added a substantial sum on top of the tickets and made it not economically viable for us at the time. In the end there were various reports of trouble so we were glad we stayed away.
This year it clashes with my Summer of Love event so we couldn’t go anyway but it didn’t stop us being amused by the ticket prices. We spotted that they offered a “Family ticket” for £229.75 – which is for 2 adults and 2 children. When we saw that the regular adult price is £115 and that children get in free anyway this meant that the “Family ticket” represented a massive saving of 25p over the regular ticket price! Generous eh?
Anyway the line up is crap!!