February 6th, 2008


The vagaries of public transport

I'm a bit exhausted. Got home from Geneva last night at about midnight, and had to get up for a breakfast meeting this morning leaving the house at 0730. Of course, the trains screwed me over; the 0741 from our local station was just exactly five minutes late. As I watched the 0744 pass by in the other direction, I reflected that if I caught it I would be only fifteen minutes late for my breakfast rather than half an hour; but I would also be depending on not one but two tight connections, and I was not in a risky mood. I got the delayed 0741, thus missing the vital connection at Ottignies and delivering me to my breakfast meeting at 0900 instead of 0830. Luckily the people I was meeting are tolerant and had time to spare.

On the way back home this evening, my careful plan to arrive in Leuven at the top of the hour, and thus get the bus home which delivers me almost to our front door, was frustrated by a "technical fault" on the Brussels Metro; so another half-hour delay and the train rather than the bus from Leuven. I should get home at about ten to eight, almost twelve and a half hours after I walked out the door this morning.

On last night's plane I recognised none other than José Manuel Barroso, the President of the European Commission, sitting in splendid isolation in business class. The Commission website is silent as to what he was doing in Geneva; though apparently he actually studied there, so maybe it was a private visit; or perhaps, like me, he was just there for the day to do a seminar.

(Though I managed to catch up with missfairchild while I was there, which was great.)
doctor who

Kevin Stoney

Like a lot of Who fans, I was sorry to learn of the death of Kevin Stoney who played both of the two greatest villains of the show before the arrival of Davros - Mavic Chen in The Daleks' Master Plan, and Tobias Vaughn in The Invasion; and I watched him just the other week in Revenge of the Cybermen. Alex Wilcock has written a brilliant tribute to him here. those of you who have spotted my activites in certain Doctor Who-related communities on Livejournal will be aware that I have already paid him a special tribute.