Review of #LondonPride2017 8th July

I watched the Parade from the sidelines along Regents Street and enjoyed seeing procession.

It was good to see different kinds of organisations getting involved, although it was very much dominated by large, impersonal, corporates like Tesco, British Airways, financial corporations and John Lewis. You rarely see them in smaller Prides. I didn’t see any rural businesses, or smaller businesses either. It appears to be more of a corporate ‘marketing ploy’ and also catered mostly for the urban population. Come on, Pride, where are the LGBT tractor drivers, the LGBT Gritters, the LGBT construction workers etc.

The Army, Royal Navy and the RAF were there which was good because they used to be so anti before, although even then I thought of it has a marketing ploy to get more fodder for the forces. The Coldstream Guards were there, still wearing their bearskins, on an extremely hot day.

I would like to see more types of organisations and clubs getting involved in LondonPride. Needs a bit of freshening up.

The Parade was smaller this year, but I think this was due to people having to register, but I think that is a good thing as it can make a bit a bit safer.

As an Asexual, I didn’t see any Asexual people in the corporate organisations involved. There was a distinct absence of diversity within these companies in that respect.

The Asexual Visibility and Education Network (AVEN) were there as well as the Asexual Podcast team, Pieces of Ace.

Furthermore, I barely saw any disabled and wheelchair bound people and I saw virtually no elderly people. It is supposed to be inclusive, but it really isn’t enough. Perhaps carehomes and the like, are not providing trips to LGBT Pride, I don’t know. It just seems weird. The music is also catered for the much younger crowd. I don’t think Pride is really marketed or equipped for these people. London Pride has been going on for 50 years now, but it needs to cater for the older generation too as time goes on and our body falls apart. Even more seating for them would be helpful. I wasn’t given any survey by the organisers to provide them with any feedback.

I enjoyed the music despite this and the silly antics of those in the Parade, although it was really too hot and crowded to stay watching.

I did see a lone Christian man with a large cardboard with some homophobic comments and quoting the Bible. I just ignored him.

I went to Trafalgar Square and listened to the music and to Sadiq Khan droning on and on, it was good to see Peter Tatchell again. I didn’t see any Asexual speakers though.

I did notice that the LGBT brigade tends to ‘bring out the Scene people’, and according to the forums on social media, the Scene lot, can put off Non Scene gays and they refuse to go to Pride. In some ways, Pride has become ‘too sexual’ if that makes sense. One person I met said that the stuff in the Pride Magazine, didn’t apply to him. I would also add that there was nothing about Asexuality in the magazine either. Some Asexuals said that they were very unhappy about being ‘wiped off the PrideLondon posters.

Despite it being a very hot day, there was a lot of alcohol being sold, which was harmful to people’s health and increases anti social behaviour. However, there was a water fountain which people could use that was great. One blonde woman was so intoxicated that she was sick in Trafalgar Square, which was disgusting and I nearly got sprayed by it. However, generally people behaved really well and warm which was nice to see. Security was ok too.

Many people didn’t pick up their alocholic litter and loads of glass bottles were just left on the floor. There were officials who helped clear it up, but people should pick up their litter and it stops animals getting hurt too. I picked up my own litter.

Though there were dogs around, on a really hot day, the Event Organisers refused to supply any dog bowls, as ‘it was not their problem’. Next time I go to Pride, I will take my own dog bowl. I thought this attitude was poor. People forget to take dog bowls sometimes.

When I got home, I checked the news on social media, and you can see from the comments, that people who are gay are still having abuse in the 21st century, although generally on the Parade I didn’t see much of that other than the man with the cardboard.

REVIEW: 7/10 Generally a very good day, but needs some improvements.

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#UKHeatwave London Wildlife needs Water too

If you live in an area which doesn’t have much fresh water around, particularly in urban cities, try and put out fresh water for the wildlife such as the birds and foxes. Fill it up in the evening too.

When it is very dry and hot, a lot of our wildlife find it hard to find water.

Put some waterbowls outside for them, and if you can make a mini pond for the them, even better. The butterflies will also appreciate a bit of fruit.

UPDATE: I have had dunnocks, magpies and pigeons drinking from my waterbowl.

London: Thunderstorm – 30 Safety Tips #ukstorm

In London, we are just about to have a big thunderstorm. We are on Amber Alert and I thought I would put out some safety tips for you.

Some of these were things we did in my own family when there was a thunderstorm, and some of these I found out from other useful weather sites.

1. Mirrors – Cover them

2. Don’t use the phone with a cable. I forgot to remove the phone plug once and my answerphone was damaged and I had a crackly line. I managed to sort out the crackly line from BT though.

3. Unplug non-essential appliances to avoid a power surge and shock.

4. Don’t use a mobile phone outside

5. Avoid windows and doors. Lightning can go through glass and cracks in doors. I have also seen, horizontal lightning, when I was on the farm in Kent.

6. Stay inside, or stay in a car

7. The Met Office advises to avoid using showers, taps, sinks and baths and don’t put laundry in the washing machine.

8. Keep the dog calm, preferably with you. I also used to pull the curtains. For extreme cases, please see your vet, there are safe and effective medications to help with loud noise phobias. Dogs left out in large, open fenced area may have little protection from lightning strike. Shelter in a dog house or under a tree would present greater risk.

9. I made sure I had two ‘escape routes’ in the house, just in case. I tended to stay downstairs in a thunderstorm.

10. Charge your laptop etc beforehand. You can also warn others on social media beforehand.

11. Keep spare batteries for the radio and watch the clouds.

12. Avoid contact with plumbing

13. Avoid electrical appliances with cords. Switch them off.

14. Avoid driving in a thunderstorm, as you could get blinded by lightning and cause a crash and a fatality. Lightning, which can strike as far as 10 miles from an area of rainfall. Make sure windows in the car are shut.

15. Avoid riding on anything metal during a severe thunderstorm with close lightning, such as a bicycle or motorbike. I knew someone who was struck twice, yes, twice, on a bicycle in the UK. And avoid riding horses, who will be scared.

16. Use a suitable weather site showing you where the lightning is such as

http://www.lightningmaps.org/?lang=en#y=52.2137;x=1.5514;z=7;t=3;m=sat;r=0;s=0;o=0;b=0.00;n=0;d=2;dl=2;dc=0;ra=1; or you can calculate where the lightning is ie count the seconds between the flash and the thunder and divide by 5. Lightning can strike 5-10 miles ahead of the storm, so if the lightening flash and thunder is 30 seconds or less, it means the lightening is about 5 miles away. Be sure to seek shelter! 

17. Stay away from trees and open spaces

18. Avoid fishing (one man in the US was struck using a metal rod when he was fishing six times).

19. Avoid water. Boaters and swimmers should get to shore as quickly as possible, as water conducts electricity. Avoid washing the dishes.

20. If you’re with a group of people stay about 15 feet from each other, if you are outside. One of my colleagues was in South Africa, in a school playground and lightning struck them. I think some school kids died. She was about 10 at the time.

21 Don’t stand in puddles

22. Stay away from clotheslines, fences, and drop your backpacks because they often have metal on them.

23. If you see or hear a thunderstorm coming or your hair stands on end and your skin tingles, go inside immediately!

24. Avoid using metal tools and sports equipment, like tennis racquets. (This is going to be interesting, as it is Wimbledon this week).

25. Make sure your house insurance is up-to-date

26. If thunderstorms are forecast, postpone or cancel outdoor activities

27. Do not put up an umbrella during a thunderstorm, even if other people are doing it.

28. Avoid poles

29. If you are outside, choose a low spot and crouch.

30. Be wary of venturing out too soon – the BBC Weather Centre advises waiting thirty minutes after the last flash

IF SOMEONE IS STRUCK, THE BBC ADVISE:

” Call for help as they’ll need urgent medical attention. It’s safe to touch them – people struck by lightning carry no electrical charge that can shock other people.
Check for a pulse and for breathing – if you know first aid, begin artificial respiration and CPR if necessary. If they’re breathing, check for other possible injuries. Lightning strike victims have burns in two places – where the electric shock entered and then left the body, usually the soles of the feet. They may have broken bones or loss of hearing or sight.”

Scandinavian News: Icelanders are fed up with some Tourists’ anti-social behaviour

Icelanders are experiencing several instances of anti-social behaviour from some tourists staying their country on a holiday break. Though they need tourism for their economy, they don’t need disrespectful behaviour.

The beautiful Scandinavian country of just over 330,800 people has been left reeling by these shameless visitors and local media is getting behind them.

Some inconsiderate tourists have been leaving litter, including plastic, which can last over a thousand years, whilst camping, and in South Iceland they plan to clamp down on nuisance behaviour by banning wild camping on public land completely. Litter can also harm farm animals and their unique wildlife and other animals.

There also have been reports that some holidaymakers have been killing farmers’ sheep whilst on camping trips.

Rural locals have reported tourists feeding the famous Icelandic horses despite being told not too, whilst others have been seen defaecating in public.

The British Foreign office has been informed (though I don’t have details of the actual nationalities involved).

As an huge fan of Iceland, its people and its environment, I hope to do my bit to Keep Iceland Tidy, even though I am far away in the UK. It is a great country, let’s all look after it and be a positive ambassador of your country when you visit it. If you are there, keep a look out for tourists who are spoiling the country, and contact your tour guide or hotel, who can help signpost you to the right people who can deal with such anti-social behaviour.

If you are a hotel, holiday company or connected with the tourist business in anyway, do encourage people to pick up their litter and respect the country. We can all be the change and I would love to hear what you do to help prevent this.

40 Good and Bad things about Living in England

Not in any order….

GOOD THINGS

1. NHS – Generally free treatment (although I think if rich people can afford it they could buy treatment). A bit of ‘free and private’ can be good so the system isn’t ‘clogged’. It doesn’t make sense that overseas people also get free treatment as well, after all, many haven’t chipped in.

2. Generally they are animal lovers, though I think things are changing as we live in more urban and sanitised areas. I have met people who don’t like dogs and lots of animals in England are being dumped. Then you get loads of people here leaving their dogs in cars, sometimes even their babies. I don’t think people are very educated about animal care sometimes. They don’t like people ‘telling them what to do’ as they say ‘they know all about dogs’ etc. It is nice to know that there are good rescue homes about, even ones for wildlife.

3. English Food – I love traditional English cookery, and I love learning about food history round the counties. It may not always be good for you physically, but mentally it can be good and it brings a bit of togetherness. I love going up and down the country trying local breads, cakes and buns from regional areas. I am a huge fan of the real Bakewell Tart, not the one we have in the South of England, which isn’t a ‘proper one’. I am a big fan of the London stick Chelsea Bun and Kentish Gypsy Tart. Brits like food and trying new things, but they make good ‘armchair cooks’. The English are excellent picnickers, and they always to choose ‘the right foods’ for a picnic, from a beach, to a demo of some sort and to a posh music concert. My friend from Maidstone in Kent always takes his fresh salmon, salad, cream cheese and black pepper brown bread sandwiches when he goes on a political demo, along with his favourite coffee or homemade soup with vegetables from his garden. Nowadays our picnics seem to be a weird jumble of English and Foreign foods. An outdoor picnic isn’t complete without midges and wasps. It is all part of the ‘spirit’.

4. Art – I think we have a great selection of art and if you want to be an artist, people don’t frown on you when you are an artist, although, parents will say ‘Art is not a proper job’. Once you have actually sold things, you are respected.It can be educational and fun. I also like the Outsider Art scene. You can never be bored here if you enjoy art.

5. Crafts – We have a great selection of crafts and we are always learning new things which is exciting. People from all age groups can talk and mix together. We have a lot of expertise in England you can call upon, such as those from the Royal College of Needlework.

6. I think we are good horsemen and women, if they are into that and nowadays it is not ‘classless’. Everyone can have a horse if they can afford it, some working classes have horses. We have had a lot of knowledge handed down, in some families anyway.

7. We have an amazing range of cuisines to choose from, from Indian, to Ethopian and we’re pretty close to Europe if we want a weekend away and a change of scene. European travel is quite cheap.

8. We are getting into coffee now with so many coffee shops springing up. I was never really interested in the ‘pub culture’.It is nice we are getting into all kinds of fruit and herbal teas now.

9. You can’t beat a rhubarb crumble in a ‘greasy spoon’.

10. We have a variety of weather, it is not always the same. Personally I love a good storm, and lots of rain, rather than a heatwave. Rarely it is extreme.

11. We have some great Ecology Parks and Nature Reserves, with decent hides and knowledgable staff.

12. We have good museums and exhibitions

13. We have good libraries

14. Many English people have a dry sense of humour, although I think we are starting to take life too seriously now. Things are changing.I find that the older generation seem to have more of a dry sense of humour

15. There are lots of free things to do, particularly in cities.

16. You can always get free water in a restaurant or café.

17. We have decent ‘posh places’ if you want to visit for tea like Fortnums and Claridges

18. We can be eccentric

19. We have a variety of countryside with different kinds of wildlife and flora.

20. If there is a disaster, we pull together.

BAD THINGS

1. People can be negative about petty things and they can go on, and on about. I don’t think we make good hotel guests, or flat mates!

2. People can be very passive aggressive and ‘fake’. It can be very difficult to trust people here. It takes a lot of time. You always to be on the look out for ‘people gathering information’ as they could ‘use’ this later. I am quite wary of new people in the workplace. It can be a very judgemental society.

3. At work, people form cliques a lot. This can be frustrating and ‘hard to get into’.

4. Too many people have cars and it causes traffic jams, road rage and pollution. They spend far too much money on smart cars, I prefer to put my money on property.

5. The class system.

6. People not saying hello or smiling at you when you see them in the street. Your work colleagues, neighbours could well ignore you. I find this strange, as I have more of a friendlier ‘American’ attitude. I try to change this, every so often. This should be ‘challenged’ as England can be a very lonely place. I have met lots of people by talking to them more.

7. Crime – you have to ‘nail things down’ in England. At work, even colleagues can sometimes steal from you. One colleague of mine in Kent stole my colleague’s credit card and tried to make a loan in her name! Even the last people you would expect would steal from you, given the opportunity and we are talking, in my case, a group of ‘mature business ladies from Kent’ who nicked things from the company I was at. I have had people steal my bag in a café once and a bike by my home, in a shed. There are also those ‘bookkeepers’ in a company that need to be ‘watched’ as they can take advantage of their employers if they could. I think there’s a lot of jealousy in this country and greed. I think some criminals take stupid risks, but they do end up caught, because they give away a lot of traceable clues. It is a bit foolish but some people think they can get away with it. They even forget that their mug could be on display in national and local media too.

8. They buy children lots of presents even though they rarely play with them or talk to them about ‘real things’. They often have nannies or dump young kid in ‘childcare’. I was very lucky not to have a nanny or have ‘early childcare’, but my mother looked after me instead, rather than a stranger. Quality time is very important for kids I think. I have met several English people who hardly know their parents as ‘they’re always at work’ and ‘come home too late’.

9. Family gatherings – Famillies only meeting up a few times a year for ‘show’. It can be very false and you get superficial and awkward conversations. I have had more formal conversations with family members than people at work. You always feel uncomfortable with your family and look forward to going home. One hour is far too long with them. I wouldn’t even call them ‘family’ if they are like this really. I have had to stop seeing some of my families because they are so ‘superficial. I focus on the ones that do care, though it is mostly my friends now!

10. Supporting the Monarchy even though it is very expensive, unfair and class orientated. Fortunately this is also changing, as young people find it hard to get on the property ladder and you get these people who have no problem whatsoever.

12. Poor transport at weekends and absolutely no transport at Christmas and Boxing Day. This is so frustrating.

13. Alcoholism, Drugs and Junk Food – they don’t seem to care about their own health, until the doctor gives them a ‘harsh warning’. There are too many places that sell alcohol.

14. Easily led. If someone says to do something ‘they will do it’ even if it is bad. They at not very good at thinking for themselves these days. They will do very dangerous or stupid things ‘for the banter’.

15. Obsession with bad pop music and diabolical melodies. However, when we ‘do music properly’ like opera or make original music like The Beatles we are very good. We have really good classical music around.

16. We can be marketed very well like sheep. Just look at the hipster craze. Everyone looks the same. Sometimes we can be marketed to go to ‘cool things’, even though, the more people who do it, it stops looking cool anymore. Now the Craft Beer craze is one of them. In Bermondsey, beersheep go round Breweries because they think it is cool to have a Craft Beer, but they all stand out looking the same and talking shop and superficial things. They look those people who go on Harry Potter tours. Guys, it is not cool anymore. Booze is unhealthy too, so it is not doing you any good.

17. In England they can be very dirty. Many people think nothing of chucking fag butts outside shops and chucking beer cans, coffee cups and crisps in cities in the rural countryside. They look at you, as if you are weird, if you pick it up for them. They say ‘the countryside should have bins’ or ‘it can be someone’s job’. It is very lazy, many have no conscience.

18. There’s a lot of ‘nasty stuff’ behind closed doors such as domestic violence, abuse, financial, spiritual and child abuse. It can very sad living in England for some people. There’s a lot of controlling behaviour around. Many of us have been touched by this in some way, at home and in the workplace.

19. Brits don’t tip enough. You can do the ‘extra mile’ but it is not appreciated.

20. At work, you often don’t get a thanks. It can be hard to feel motivated or appreciated. There is a lot of ‘demotivation’ in the workplace and henpecking at home too. I think England could benefit more from a more positive attitude.

Heatwave: RSPCA: 724 motorists in the UK caught leaving their dogs in a hot car

The RSPCA stated that during the five-day heatwave in the UK recently, 724 dog owners left their dogs alone in the car and they had to be rescued.

In Kent, I found two dogs in a car during a heatwave, two retrievers, the owner had disappeared to a coffee shop. One of the dogs was in a bad state. I called the RSPCA, but they were eventually rescued by the local PSCO.

The RSPCA said that one dog was rescued after one and an half hours, according to the parking ticket in a shopping centre car park so passers by ignored the suffering dog for a long time. In my own experience, there were several passers by but nothing was done, they did not notice or seemed interested, it takes a dog lover to notice suffering dogs in a car. Supermarkets have trolley marshalls who should have noticed dogs earlier, why does it take one an half hours for a dog to be rescued?

In parts of the US, they have now passed a new law that if members of the public sees an animal in distress in a car, they can smash the window open. Unfortunately, in the UK, members of the public cannot do this.

Contact your local RSPCA https://www.rspca.org.uk/utilities/contactus

The Loneliness of Flat Sharing in London

One of my friends lives in Bermondsey and I visit him occasionally round on his ‘flat-sharing journey’.

I don’t know if it is a ‘London thing’, but people who share houses do not want speak to each other, other than to say a weak ‘Good Morning’, talk about rent, the rota to tidy the house, talk banally about work, discuss getting stuff for the garden or to communicate by passive aggressive notes scribbled on the communal table. There is no other variation. I have had this ‘conversation’ a million times.

You would think that you would learn new things from other flatmates, learn about the area you have moved in, maybe be taken out to somewhere local, have some friendship perhaps. Have some laughs would be nice. I suppose one reason why conversations are so fake, is that there are often no communal living rooms any more, and people just watch TV or do stuff in their rooms.

I had an experience recently, when a flatmate that I say a Good Morning to, didn’t even say anything to me whilst I was in a communal area, as ‘if I was not there’. Automatically I thought I had done something or he hated me!

When I travelled round the world, particularly in Australia, if we were congregating round the kitchen, we generally would speak, make new friendships, learn about the town we were in, and that sort of thing. It was like a ‘family away from family’. And in America, we would talk too. But no, we’re in Britain, and we have to be cold and unfriendly.

Now, I can understand a ‘neighbour-like’ experience when you live in the same tower block, and share communal stairways and live very privately, you have a kind of ‘distance’, but when you are in a rented flat, and you share bathrooms and kitchens, which is more ‘intimate’, one would expect a more friendlier, homelier feel.

In my experience, the lack of conversation is particularly noticeable when you get couples sharing a flat. Couples will appear to pretend the other couple is not there. Maybe it is a case of one person may be inclined to ‘fancy another flatmate’ which could be a problem to someone. Of course, in most cases, the couple in question is very happy as they are.

You could think perhaps that some couples, as often they share similar hobbies perhaps, could go out on a foursome round London and do something together, make lasting friendships. But no, in London, couples appear to refuse to mix with other flatmates. It feels like they want all the house to themselves, and we are a nuisance.

So, in this flat, we have this kind of ‘superficial relationship’, the ‘superficial hellos’ and the lack of real conversation. It is not just lonely, it just feels unnatural and inhuman. For people in a flat on their own, with other couples, it can get very lonely and/or boring. Many of us are far away from our own family and friends too. I tend to get on better with single people in flats, rather than couples, who seem to be locked in some kind of narrow ‘couple zone’.

And of course, when flatmates go, they never even leave any contact details. You are just nothing to them. The place they live in, is not a home, it is just a ‘base’, and that is it.

Maybe this is yet another British thing, that it is ‘not done’ to mix with other flatmates, even if you have loads in common. Right now, I don’t want to go back in the kitchen and have yet another ‘fake’ experience. I wonder what other cultures think about this behaviour.

London: Visit to #Grenfelltower Rest Centre

KENSINGTON: I dropped off some donations to the Rest Centre to help the trauma victims’ mental health. The Red Cross volunteers were still there, manning desks, as well as several Grenfell Fire staff in Hi-Viz who were very helpful and friendly.

PHOTO (below): Wellbeing donations to the Rest Centre:

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The whole street had tributes and flowers. People put posters on postboxes, trees, by cashpoints, on rails, on shop windows and telephone boxes in order to ‘communicate’ to the community, as there appeared to be no proper community noticeboard, as far as I could see. Several members of the community had provided Offers of help by the Rest Centre on a wall which was nice. There was a really warm community spirit. Some people offered accommodation and food, while others offered help with free grant applications and legal advice. A stall was set up to give drinks and food to people, but though they gave some to us, we turned it down so that people who really needed it could have them. The Methodist church had many tributes by it and there was a marked boundary on the road by it, saying ‘press ban’.

You could smell a little bit of the burned building in the air.

There were many posters of missing people on shops and on windows outside houses. Some also had a photo of a missing long haired black and white chihuahua that was lost in the Fire. A young child who had survived the fire, was desperately looking for it and asked the public for help. (I have contacted various animal centres to see if they have seen it.

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Below: GRAFFITI spotted in the area

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UPDATE: I came back later in the Saturday evening to find out that, once again, a council flat in Bethnal Green had caught fire and I could see smoke from it in the air.

Kent: Passengers on South Eastern Railway take their dogs to work today

It is National #Takeyourdogtowork day which is great for mental health in the workplace, and gets the dog out too, and, of course, immensely spoiled.

I was pleased to see some railway passengers taking their beagle to work this morning, on my way to London Bridge. The lady took the dog after 10am and avoided the crowded rush hour so he was quite comfortable.

Hope to see more and more people take their dogs to work, perhaps more often than a day, to help animal welfare charities and reduce workplace stress and sickness. It also makes the workplace more fun and ‘human’.

To take part next year, keep a note of this website: https://bringyourdogtoworkday.co.uk/ for details.

England: “Because it’s Tradition”, we do weird & stupid things.

LONDON:

I always find that State Opening of Parliament fills me with nausea. We have this cringeworthy spectacle for an unelected woman to make a speech in Parliament, a supposed democratic institution. (hello?) Is it just me to thinks this is weird?. The mass media never talk about this. It is like the elephant in the room.

Then I also get annoyed that the soldiers in their bearskin hats are outside Parliament in a 32C heatwave, and are not being allowed to take them off ‘because of tradition’. It is just ‘not good form’ to do that. So soldiers are expected to faint instead. What kind of culture are we in? The class system is plain stupid. What kind of army leaders do we have? What, a ‘real soldier’ doesn’t take his bearskin off? The Queen didn’t seem bothered at all that they were very uncomfortable. Well, she is of a different generation. After all these years, they still make soldiers keep them on. Why don’t soldiers stand up to this nonsense – they are probably court martialled if they do, or bullied.

Even 91-year-olds like the Queen should not be out in a heatwave, on the ‘hottest day of the year’ and the NHS encourages us all to ‘check on their neighbours’ and to keep out of the sun from 11-3pm. Haven’t we forgotten that we are human? In countries like Spain, they have siestas for times like this, but no, we English go ‘out in the Midday Sun’ as the song says. And a lot of the time, we don’t even wear hats either to protect us from the high UV levels, which again, the Government warns us out. Some Brits have second degree burns because they don’t even use any sun protection, unlike people in other hot countries.

What about the emergency services who are inundated with people ignoring Government public health heatwave advice? Why don’t public health warnings apply supposed old people like the Queen? Why couldn’t the Queen just get Prince Charles do her job, at least she wouldn’t be out in the heat getting roasted? No, the Queen has to be out in a heatwave at 91 years old, ‘because it is tradition’, and even then, she’s stubborn enough to be out there during this time because ‘she wants to’.

I understand that the Queen’s husband, Prince Philip, has been taken to hospital yet the Queen would appear to be at the State Opening of Parliament, instead of being with him during the day. And, after that, she even went to Ascot in the heatwave. All because she cannot upset ‘tradition’.

Horses should not be racing on the hottest day of the year either, and she is supposed to be a horsewoman. Horse.com advise “Know your horse and signs of heat stroke. Heat stroke can happen anytime your horse is exposed to excessive heat that his body cannot handle. Heatstroke can happen if exercising in hot conditions, but be aware that it can also happen if standing in a hot stall or trailer.” I am at a stables, we keep our horses cool, and none of them have even been out riding in the heat today. The racing industry can be appalling and greedy. The Queen should not be encouraging racing in this weather too. Why not have race times only in the cooler part of the day, or would that ‘not be tradition’? I would rather ‘blow tradition’ than have a sick horse to attend to. I don’t hear anything from the vets at Ascot, maybe they are gagged or are ‘enablers’ of the greedy racing industry in a heatwave, after all, they get a free day out at Ascot.

There comes a point in life that doing the ‘right thing’ is taking the time off work for family reasons, health reasons and animal welfare, this is more important than ‘being on show’. Some traditions are plain stupid, and even more so, in a heatwave. Being a younger generation than most of the old fogies who carry on making these stupid rules, I make my own stamp, by standing up to it and questioning it.

Some people who do ‘challenge things’, actually comes from kids. Recently a academy school banned kids from wearing shorts during a heatweave, so the boys wore skirts as a form of protest and got lots of media coverage. Why can’t boiling soldiers all together, in a band of brothers’. and make a stand, why can’t horse grooms make a stand for their horses? Even the journalists are made to wear suits in a heatwave, ‘for show’, which is ridiculous too. Sometimes were Brits are a bunch of wimps and won’t say boo to a goose!

We have to question our culture, but adults never seem to learn, and that’s a tradition too!

++ Note I am typing this in a library, keeping cool with fans.