ChrisLee

.is

Either

  • Deal with something immediately. It’s finished and out of the way.
  • Push it back to a defined time if you can’t do it immediately. Add a reminder, then action it when reminded.
  • Put it back in someone else’s court ASAP: the onus of continuing the project moves to them.

2016 so far

Based on completed hours of billable freelance work.

Left-most bar is Jan, right-most is June.

Red is 0 hours, moving toward bright green for the upper limit (secret 😉 )

Orange horizontal lines are weekends.

2016 graph


Back home to Cameron’s Britain

My time in Bordeaux finished. A turbulent tailwind whisked our flight over the channel and dumped us at Gatwick 15 minutes early and suitably rattled.

My bike is still locked up outside Bordeaux airport due to a fun and farcical series of events, and I’m yet to decide whether it’s an annoying or funny situation. In one way it’s an excuse to go back soon and collect it (or, more likely, stare lamentingly at the inevitably empty railing where I locked it). In another way it’s the frustrating culmination of a fiercely tedious rigmarole.

Maybe I’ll just leave it there and it can become one of those freaky urban things.

Freaky urban things

Back in Britain, the pleasure of hearing the melodious sound of spoken English again was dampened by the fact that everything people were saying was a complaint. “Why are the security gates so slow? Why are the lines so long? Why isn’t my bag here? Why must I whine so loudly about inane things no one cares about?”.

Attempts at sleep in the airport’s Starbucks were quashed by jackhammering builders and squawking toddlers, although the latter is completely understandable: Gatwick at 2am isn’t the place for a toddler. I gave up and looked elsewhere.

Once, in Brussels, me and Kristian went to a ridiculously grand hotel at around 2am and asked whether they had any discount rooms available this late in the day. We were, of course, met with a resounding no. Rooms were upwards of €500 and besides, dregs like us wouldn’t of been welcome in such an establishment anyway. And rightly so.

I tried the same thing at the characterless cuboid Premier Inn opposite the airport at 3am and received the comforting news that “it’s £95 for a room but they’re all full anyway”.

Predictable. Thankfully the lad on reception (i.e. the lad standing near the row of self check-in machines) let me sit in the Premier Inn’s Costa as long as I obeyed the strict caveat of no sleeping. (“Or the manager will kick you out!”).

This seemed vaguely cruel at first, if not purgatorial (surrounded by beds but not allowed to sleep), but it became increasingly entertaining as the night went on. Probably due to some combination of desperation, resignation to the farce, and realisation that despite fond memories of sleeping on airport floors when I was 19, maybe the time has come for me to upgrade. Most likely to Premier Inns.

Premier Inn Gatwick

Look at that squat, bland monstrosity

It’s 4.45 now – I’m about to get a huge Americano to keep me propped up until my 10am train. Between now and then I’ll chip another few percent off of Les Miserables on my Kindle, and bask in the swag times I continue to live in.


Religious Imagery

Recently I had the pleasure of seeing some unusual religious imagery in Lourdes, which I diligently photographed for your enjoyment.

I do not have training in theology or religious symbolism so apologies in advance if my interpretations aren’t quite accurate.

“Real tired of your shit, Mary. Can’t you walk?

Instead of sitting in my pouch and praying constantly?”

Joseph carrying Mary

Seraph on the right getting ready to bitch slap someone

Seraphim bitch-slap

 

God wringing the apocalypse

while people below are praying and pleading for him to stop, asking whether it’s really necessary. His only response is ‘YES’.

God wringing the apocalypse

 

Big Sister is watching you

Along with a bunch of intense cherubim

Big Sister

 

Jesus offering an intriguing, presumably hallucinogenic, new pill to his disciples


A bad example

 

Heading home after a long night

Tripping Jesus

And feeling like boiled shite the next day

Awful comedown

Big statue is real tired of little statue’s shit

Statue's shit

An interesting angle

makes the bottom statue’s finger location somewhat suspect

Peter's finger


Boris’ Johnson

Alex and I are in Carcassonne, and it’s the most obnoxiously beautiful city I’ve ever been to.

Carcassonne

See? Damn.

Yesterday evening we had a wine-fuelled picnic on the ramparts before returning to a bar themed around Medieval japery that we’d found earlier in the day.

As we paid the owner overheard our accents, then revealed himself as an Englishman and asked for our stances on the EU referendum. When we said we’d be voting in he offered us each a free pint in exchange for a conversation about the issue (“I don’t get to talk to British people very often”).

We’d have been mad to say no.

He took us to a table, the promised pints arrived, and he launched straight into an unsettlingly mad spiel about the referendum being part of an overarching Tory conspiracy to reinstate the serving class, almost exclusively for the purpose of giving Boris Johnson endless sexual favours.

He was also convinced that upon Brexit, Scotland and Wales would become independent and the Tories would  break the country down even further into individual city states, with a Tory as mayor of each one (“they’re great at winning mayoral elections”, he assured us).

But let’s focus on the sexual allegations.

Boris Johnson

The allegations are, presumably, false.

If he is to be believed*, Boris has bought none of his own merit to the role of mayor and is just copying Ken Livingstone’s plans verbatim. His energies have instead been focussed on creating unusually small new-build houses in the suburbs that, when we leave EU and certain laws no longer affect us, will be filled with peasants kept in artificial poverty.

Young ladies within that demographic will be obliged to fulfil Boris’ (and other senior Tories’) every whim.

(A mad glint in the owner’s eye accompanied this claim).

The whole time he was ranting I was searching for ways to escape (the promised ‘conversation’ never materialised). Alex and I were next to each other rather than opposite so we couldn’t exchange urgent glances, and he was too far away to give a subtle nudge. We had no choice but to finish our pints while listening to endless madness.

Attempts to change the flow of conversation were futile, too. Asking about his youth bought tales of an autistic Nazi father who raised 12 children: 6 of whom joined the RAF, the other 6 the Luftwaffe (and who only liked the Nazis “for their uniforms”). Asking his opinion on perceptions of the Irish after The Troubles bought a protracted Islamophobic rant.

In short, it was nuts.

We’re still on the fence as to whether it was worth a free pint.

* Very important note: I in no way condone or endorse this guy’s viewpoints.