Archive for August, 2020

Tui covid-19 flight TOM6215 Zante to Cardiff

August 31, 2020

Zante to Cardiff the second tui coronavirus flight in as many days.

Two tui covid-19 flights, the first Zante with coronavirus-positive passengers bound for Plymouth,  the second Zante to Cardiff. Is there a third,  a fourth? On each flight at least half a dozen cases.

The Cardiff flight, passengers have complained lack of social distancing at check in, staff handling phones of passengers, on the flight failure to enforce lack of wearing of face masks, passengers not wearing masks walking around the plane to speak to fellow passengers, one lady had someone sat next to her with no mask, it beggars belief tui serving food and drinks on the flight and it goes without saying packed in like sardines.

Failure by tui to thoroughly clean the plane on turnaround. One passenger found wet wipes behind the seat in front.

On public transport, trains and buses, mandatory to wear masks but on tui flights anything goes.

Delta no mask removed from flight, blacklisted from future flights.

Why did the crew not note all those who refused to wear face masks as instructed, pilot radio ahead their details, police waiting to escort them off the plane on landing?

Passengers on the Cardiff flight say the first they were aware they were at risk of infection was when they heard it on the news and through social media.

A lady who was sat next to a passenger not wearing a mask, who said the crew failed to act, has now developed coronavirus symptoms. She hopes it is only a cold, but will have covid-19 test to be sure.

Stephanie Whitfield who was on the tui flight to Cardiff has described how passengers were not wearing masks correctly and just seemed to “disregard the rules”.

She told ITV Wales that she “didn’t feel safe” on board the flight:

I don’t think many of the passengers had been completely educated on the use of face masks.

There were people with their masks underneath their noses, underneath their chins, people were taking them off to speak to other people, taking them off and wandering down the aisle to speak to other people.

I didn’t feel safe and we took the decision before we got back into Cardiff that we were going to self isolate just because we thought it was the responsible thing to do.

I was sat in the middle seat and the gentleman next to me had his mask around his chin so for me to kind of highlight it to someone I would have then had to spend the next three and a half hours sat next to someone feeling very uncomfortable, so I didn’t feel like I was able to do that.

Every single passenger on the Cardiff flight has been instructed by Public Health Wales to self-isolate.

Tui claim they care about the health a safety of their passengers. A sick joke as they do not care about their package holiday clients and their welfare. In 2016 tui was knowingly dumping clients on a building site.

Travelling in a sealed tube in close proximity to other people is a sure plus way to catch covid-19. Passengers wandering around the sealed tube help spread the virus to other passengers.

On the Zante to Cardiff flight, at least three groups of people scattered throughout the plane have tested positive.

Dr Gwen Lowe, consultant in communicable disease control for Public Health Wales has said last week ‘we’ve had about 30 cases in Wales that have come back from Zante’.

Different flights on different days staying in different locations. These are confirmed positive cases and we’re expecting that number to rise.

Up to 30 in a group travelling to Plymouth may have been infected on a flight from Zante. They have subsequently been out drinking in Plymouth.

Greece was already at risk of of being placed on the UK quarantine list.

Greece must deal with the Zante coronavirus hotspot that is spreading covid-19 across Europe. Zante must be placed in lockdown, no travel to and from Zante and as absolute minimum close all bars and nightclubs and anywhere groups of people gather. In an attempt to slow covid-19, across Greece bars and restaurants have to close by midnight.

Tui should halt all flights to Zante. The only flights to bring back stranded clients, who must then face 14-day quarantine.

Update: A third tui flight, Zante to Glasgow had passengers who tested positive for covid-19.  Glasgow has been placed in partial lockdown.

Update: Wales has imposed quarantine for all flights from Zante. Scotland has imposed quarantine for arrivals from Greece.

Update: A WizzAir flight Athens to Larnaca, a passenger not wearing a mask correctly was questioned by police on arrival and fined.

Lincoln coronavirus lockdown day one hundred and fifty-eight

August 28, 2020

Heavy rain forecast, walk out of bus station to heavy rain, luckily did not last long and I managed not to get wet.

Looked in Lakeland, overpriced kitchenware store. Usually devoid of customers. Today at least half a dozen.

Not for quality coffee making equipment, no V60, Chemex, Aeropress, swan-neck kettle, digital scales.

But and a big but, two glasses and a grinder.

The hand grinder CrushGrind Columbia coffee grinder I had not seen or heard of before. I extracted from the box and it appeared to be a quality product. A rare find for Lakeland.

Botanist another crap corporate chain has colonised the recently created square.

Meanwhile indie coffee shops and restaurants have been requesting for years tables in the streets.

Ludicrous in Santander. I wanted £50 notes. I waited and waited. I asked member of staff please ask cashiers to save me wasting my time. He refused. I waited and waited. He then relented. A single £50 note.I said forget it and walked out.

Looked in Oxfam bookshop. Selling off old coffee and chocolate long past its best. Why would anyone buy stale low quality coffee from Oxfam when can buy freshly roasted coffee from Coffee Aroma or Madame Waffle and hopefully soon from Forage and Fill (one of the few stalls worth visiting in Lincoln Central Market)?

The outdoor seafood stall I saw last weekend no sign of. Apparently been and gone. Last Saturday packed up early afternoon.

Hopped on Walk and Ride to avoid walking up Steep Hill.

Friday, restaurants in Bailgate empty.

Elite on the Bail not busy. Haddock and chips. Loud music, apart from irritating, a clear breach of coronavirus  regulations, but no enforcement, no one cares.

All the crass Eat Out to Help Out has done is to transfer businesses from end of the week to the beginning of the week, and overloaded restaurants and coffee shops to the point where they cannot cope.

To help indie coffee shops and restaurants, close streets pedestrianise traffic free tables in the streets, as has happened in Nottingham. But should have happened early summer. Now the weather not good too late.

The Lion and Snake binge drinking pub building an outside bar. Why? If to attract more drunken yobs would be clear breach of covid-19 regulations.

Temperature plummeted. Heavy rain.

Hopped on Walk and Ride back down into town.

Cappuccino at Madame Waffle.

Tempted to pop into Lakeland to pick up grinder but closed at five.

Cold, heavy rain.

Bus defective windscreen wipers not doing a great job wiping windscreen. Why has the bus not been taken out of service?

Lincoln coronavirus lockdown day one hundred and fifty-six

August 26, 2020

A day like Tuesday, pleasant and warm.

It is easy to see why covid-19 on the increase. No social distancing. Two brain-dead morons get on the bus. Sit next to fellow passengers on bus into Lincoln even though seats free away from passengers.

Last week a greasy spoon cafe opened in Lincoln Central Market. I walked past and find packed. No social distancing. I am told people are waiting before Lincoln Central Market opens.

Favourite stall of useless tosser who mismanages Lincoln Central Market stallholder smoking.

High Street very busy.

Queuing outside Madame Waffle. This is the impact of crass Eat Out to Help, distorting trade across the week.

Hop on the Walk and Ride to save walking up Steep Hill. I could have walked, fancied walking, but was carrying groceries.

Bailgate I again notice restaurants busy. White Hart a queue. It will be interesting to see what happens next week when crass Eat Out to Help Out ends.

Oyster for starters followed by haddock and chips #fishnchips at Elite on the Bail. Not busy.

The other side of the street Prince of Wales Inn busy whereas The Lion and Snake empty. At the weekend it will be reversed, The Lion and Snake drunken yobs killing business for Prince of Wales Inn.

Why do idiots think ok to park on the footpath? Why is there never any enforcement but quick to ticket overstay a parking Bay?

Walk through grounds of Lincoln Castle to Stokes at The Lawn.

Last Tuesday Stokes at The Lawn manic, this afternoon not as busy. A cooler afternoon.

A cappuccino, then forced inside when it rains.

On Monday I draw attention to direct up sweet corn sitting on display in M&S. It beggars belief but easy to see why M&S a failing retailer, the same dried up sweet corn sitting on display.

Running Up That Hill

August 25, 2020

Running up that Hill Kate Bush classic performed by First Aid Kit.

Afternoon in Nottingham

August 24, 2020

A lovely warm sunny day.

Train to Nottingham busy. More piled on at Newark. Lack of social distancing. At Newark, guy sits in seat opposite facing me.

When people get off the train at Nottingham, again lack of social distancing.

At fault East Midlands Trains, only two coaches and reduced service.

I have never caught this train before, I would catch the train an hour earlier which is not running, it was never busy.

Outside Nottingham Station I am surprised to see erection of new building beside H Hopkinson.

Depressing to learn the building adjacent to H Hopkinson earmarked for demolition.

Excellent 200 Degrees outside seating overlooking Nottingham Canal.

Interesting chat with barista. I apologised I could not stay and chat longer, but was already an hour late into Nottingham.

New building adjacent to shopping centre.

Intu shopping centre demolished.

No way into town centre. Long detour. Not signposted.

Seating outside Cartwheel Coffee. Inside empty.

Paste not open. They were contacted to ask if open but lacked the courtesy to reply.

Lunch at Ugly Bread Bakery.

They tell me what everywhere tells me, Eat out to Help Out has simply transferred trade from end of the week to the beginning of the week.

Loud music. I explain a breach of coronavirus regulations has to be quiet to enable people to engage in quiet conversation, no shouting. I am thanked and they turn it down.

I eat outside, though a little cool in the shade.

Everywhere outside seating. Contrast with backward Lincoln.

Shocked to find Outpost Coffee closed.

Outpost Coffee one of the best coffee shops in Nottingham, and they were excellent coffee roasters.

Looked in on Luisa’s at Sneinton Market. Luisa has been rushed off her feet during lockdown with on-line orders.

Luisa is featured in latest issue of Cacao, but I imagine the circulation very limited.

I picked up a couple of bars of chocolate, limited stock due to demand. Will have more later in the week.

I would have picked up cans of craft beer from Neon Rapture. But no beer. Asked to return on Thursday.

Shocked to find Wired closed, interior gutted.

Speaking to tattoo artist, was told Wired had never reopened following lockdown closure.

The Thurland Hall a stunning building, shame about the drunks hanging around outside.

Cutting through Market Square, a tacky bar, fake grass and a funfair.

Few people around.

I find The Specialty Coffee Shop not open.

Interesting conversation with lady who I meet outside who tells me excellent coffee shop, not open on Monday.

Excellent cappuccino sat outside Cartwheel Coffee. Pick up a bag expensive Ethiopian coffee.

As I pass 200 Degrees I see closed, closed at four.

Just make the train. A lovely sunny day, tempted to stay longer, maybe go for a walk along the Nottingham Canal, but do not wish to travel on a crowded rush hour train. Train less crowded that train to Nottingham, which is a relief.

Lincoln coronavirus lockdown day one hundred and fifty-two

August 22, 2020

Passing by Everyman cinema I was asked would I like to have a look around?

I accepted the invite and climbed and climbed and eventually found myself in a bar which led onto a rooftop terrace worth the climb for the view.

Walking into Lincoln Central Market I noticed a seafood stall outside.

The useless jobsworth who mismanages the market, having destroyed the footfall and damaged business, now seems determined to destroy the fishmonger.

If we lose an excellent fishmonger we will know who to blame.

High Street busy.

I stuck my head in a Jamaican restaurant. Loud music. When I explained a breach of covid rules. The guy thanked me and turned it down.

Bailgate restaurants empty. Tuesday busy. Eat Out to Help Out distorting trade.

Excellent haddock and chips Elite on the Bail. Not busy. Tuesday it was very busy.

Opposite on the other side of the street The Prince of Wales Inn empty The Lion and Snake busy. Tuesday it was the inverse.

Walking down Steep Hill, tiny tea shops, people packed in like sardines. Not safe.

Down in the High Street gangs of drunken yobs roaming around. The binge drinking bars rowdy.

Once again Walkabout the worst. A gang of half a dozen pressed close together as they walk in.

A cappuccino Madame Waffle.

Also tried Yirgacheffe as inverted Aeropress. Aroma great, brewed not good. Tried adding milk. Yuk, it was even worse. At a loss what is wrong. It should be great. It was not.

Inside Everyman cinema

August 22, 2020

Everyman cinema opened on Friday.

Passing by I was asked would I like to have a look round.

I walked in, climbed and climbed and eventually found myself in a bar with a rooftop terrace.

The bar empty, the rooftop terrace every seat and table taken.

I noticed food being served.

Stunning views from the rooftop terrace. Interesting to see Sincil Street from an entirely different perspective.

The inside quite plush.

I took the lift down.

It then occurred to me: Where was the cinema? I had seen no cinema.

I asked. I thought hoped maybe one large cinema, one large screen, takes seats sloping down from the top of the building.

Sadly not. Four cinemas.

No mention of what was on, no ticket office.

Have to check on-line.

Were they to show the same commercial crap screened elsewhere? Sadly yes, not commercial otherwise, but they also hope to screen indie films.

The building is out of character with Sincil Street but an improvement on the eyesore that was demolished and a vast improvement on the eyesore on the banks of the Brayford.

Tickets £13-50 (concessions £11-50).

If coffee commercials were honest

August 21, 2020

Brilliant spoof of promotion of crap undrinkable commodity coffee.

I like coffee, I enjoy coffee, but I am not addicted.

Coffee contains a psychoactive substance, caffeine.

The coffee plant is closely related to qat (there are many variations of spelling for example khat) often referred to as coffee’s evil sister. Qat is highly addictive and as a more profitable crop has replaced coffee in Yemen where for generations coffee grew on terraces and the port of Mokka grew rich on the export of coffee beans. WHO has a separate category for qat, US classifies as dangerous as heroin. Qat contains the alkaloid cathinone. The leaves are chewed or used as an infusion to produce qat tea.

Unlike it’s evil sister qat, coffee is a legal psychoactive drug.

I am bombarded every day with offers of coffee and coffee equipment I do not want.

No, I do not want Nespresso. Coffee from a Nespresso machines is vile undrinkable coffee. That is not to say the machine cannot make decent coffee, it can, just do not use Nespresso pods. A €60 Nespresso machine will make excellent espresso, but only if use third party pods.

I used to be bombarded daily by CoffeeJack, but since highlighting the many flaws, gone very quiet. They blocked me and deleted my critical questions. Er, blocked me, it was they trolling me with their promotions.

Nor do I wish to buy coffee from roasteries I have never heard of, that not once have I ever encountered in a coffee shop as guest coffee.

For me coffee is a drink to be enjoyed as would a good wine.  To be enjoyed at leisure served in glass or ceramic.

Good coffee does not need sugar or syrups or to be carpet bombed with chocolate. The over-roasted cheap commodity coffee served up by corporate chains does require to mask the vile taste of what would otherwise be undrinkable.

Fair Trade is a marketing scam to make middle class feel good and to never delve deeper into the exploitation surrounding coffee.

Fair Trade pays a tiny premium above the commodity price. There is no incentive for farmers to improve as they will not get a higher price for quality.

Talk to your barista, buy coffee that is Direct Trade, where farmers get a higher price for quality, where there is traceability back to origin.

And of course we never mention tax dodging that we structure our company across borders to avoid paying tax where we make money.

Imagine honest advertising for what masquerades as a bar of ‘chocolate’.

‘Chocolate’, a bar of fat and sugar, it would not be every palatable, nor sound too good in our marketing, so we add a little cocoa powder, though if we wish to be real cheapskates it will be flavouring, then we add palm oil or soy but keep quiet about the environmental damage, may be listed as emulsifiers, added to improve the texture, we could use coca butter but the alternatives are far cheaper and we have to have margins to pay for the advertising for you suckers, then additives as it kinda does not taste too good a bar of fat and sugar.

Next time you buy what you think is a bar of ‘chocolate’ please check the list of ingredients. If it ain’t cocoa solids, sugar, cocoa butter, maybe vanilla, but nothing else, then it ain’t chocolate.

Sausage pepper and pasta revisited

August 19, 2020

Improvisation of Jamie Oliver recipe revisited.

When have a recipe, do not follow slavishly. Then think about it, how can it be improved upon.

I did not brown the sausages sufficiently, choose a different pasta.

No olive oil, use extra virgin cold pressed rape seed oil.

Large pan, rape seed oil, sausages sizzling until start to brown.

Layer in runner beans, peas, cauliflower, red pepper and red onion.

Sizzle for ten minutes.

Add ripe and over ripe cherry tomatoes, hot water, balsamic vinegar, pepper.

Simmer for twenty minutes.

Pour into casserole pot. Oven 180C for 25 minutes.

Pasta fuselli simmer six minutes in boiling water.

Serve, pasta with sausage pepper from casserole dish.

Do not skimp on ingredients.

Lincolnshire sausages chipolatas from Redhill Farm shop.

Vegetables from garden and local green grocer.

Yirgacheffe Ethiopian coffee

August 18, 2020

Opening the box from Coffeelink two bags of coffee from Ethiopia, Yirgacheffe and a wild coffee from Zege Forest.

Aroma incredible.

A visit to Stokes at The Lawn.

As always I let Mike decide.

He chose the Yirgacheffe, as already ground for Aeropress. He noticed which I had not noticed ground for Aeropress. Why? I had specified whole beans. Maybe as complimentary bag with Aeropress to save me grinding. Always grind coffee fresh, and invest in a high quality grinder. A cheap grinder a false economy.

We decided V60.

I learnt during cupping at Taylor St Roasted roastery, no correlation between aroma and taste.

And so it proved to be. After the initial impression of the aroma, the V60 proved to be a disappointment.

Why? Maybe because not ground fresh?

We agreed maybe better as espresso.

Put beans through EK43 to get finer grind for espresso. I tried cappuccino, Mike an espresso.

An improvement over the V60 but still sadly not great.

Next, as ground for Aeropress, I will try Aeropress, Mike recommended push through fast, but first order a Hario digital scale. Using the scoop lacks accuracy and consistency and thus not recommended.

I have also picked up a bottle of spring water from M&S. No, cannot make coffee with tap water. Can try, but the coffee will be dreadful.

A visit to Madame Waffle. Miriam tries as inverted Aeropress.

  • 15g coffee
  • 140g hot water
  • stir
  • infuse for two minutes
  • extract

The coffee was not good. Hints of liquorice and fig.

Tried adding milk. Yuk.

This coffee should be far better. What is wrong? Pre-ground not fresh, grind too fine for Aeropress, poor quality beans, roast profile not good?

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