Staff should be paid for after hours celebratory events

In the UK, from my own experience, organisations, both business and charities are reducing employees work/life balance by having work-related events held at a pub, normally drinking after work. Some of these events can last hours and as far as I am concerned, staff are not even getting paid for them.

Many families are having partners who are working long hours and some parents and non parents alike, are going to after work drinks, and not just on Fridays but throughout the week too. All this adds up to a poor work/life balance.

It is good to have a celebration every now and then, but when it is work related, staff should be paid for it. Organisations need to recognise that staff have a home to go to as well.

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UK: Unscripted Employees – Today: Waitrose Wit

I was at Waitrose today and spoke to the cashier about what my Waitrose card can do, and he reeled off the usual corporate spiel, which was long list of things I can do with it depending on how many points I had.

I asked the cashier that if I got 100 points on my card, does that I mean I would be taken out for a posh lunch by ‘the man at the top’ of Waitrose?

The Cashier, thought for a moment, and said ‘Weeeell, he is not very pretty, I wouldn’t’.

Charlie Gard: Thanks to Great Ormond Hospital

I sent a postcard to Great Ormond Children’s Hospital to thank them for all their hard work, often working very long hours helping all the children at the hospital and keeping their dignity and professionalis in trying months.

It was shocking to hear of protests outside the hospital and of all the abuse they they have been receiving, so much so that the hospital has had to contact the police. Staff are busy and stressed enough as it is, just doing their normal job, without the circus adding to it all. They were not respected at the time, and they are experts in their field. Charlie should die with dignity, but it has been a horrible, media circus and didn’t really go anywhere.

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If you would like to donate to the Great Ormond Street Hospital, and support their charity, the link is here http://www.gosh.org/

‘The Russians’ are reading My Blog

Many of my comments have been viewed by the ‘The Ruskies’. I’m not sure I should be ‘worried’ but I thought I should let you know should I ‘disappear’.

We have had reports of ‘Russians’ invading Kent Airspace, and, according to UK news reports, the Royal Air Force has been escorting them over Kent and there have been reports of Chinese and Russian ships round Britain.

Now they are reading my blog….and this is giving me ‘goosebumps’.

London: Icecream Van in Southwark Park, a ‘Pollution Hazard’

The engine of the icecream van in Southwark Park, in Bermondsey, has been belching out toxic fumes all throughout the summer.

The van has been emitting fumes for hours on end, very close to an outdoor café, which is popular with young children and families and is right by a children’s playground.

The air is so thick that some café users complained to me of headaches, breathing problems and a ‘bitter taste’ in the mouth. Experts say that toxic black carbon is particularly bad for babies (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4503306/Britain-s-ageing-ice-cream-vans-belching-pollution.html).

The Park is owned by Southwark Council, which is Labour-run. Sadiq Khan, the Mayor of London, is keen to reduce fumes in London.

Southwark Park, is a lovely park, but it is such a shame that the air round part of area is so bad.

The icecream van should be moved to a more suitable location.

Watch this space for Updates on the situation.

Review: Yun Hai Chinese Restaurant, Rotherhithe

I popped in as I was a bit late for making dinner in Bermondsey.

The Restaurant was small but packed along Rotherhithe Street. It has lots of Chinese paintings and there was a nice ‘local feel’ going on, with families having a get together. I didn’t see any fresh flowers on our table, but this could be due to keeping costs down.

The staff were quiet, busy, friendly and ‘not in your face’, and food arrived quickly.

Our food was good, and cutlerly and plates clean and the massive sprig rolls are to DIE FOR! My friend was also happy with his food. They have a good range too. Prices are average. We paid for the meal (didn’t get a freebie)

Would I go again? Yes

Review: 8/10

Kitchen Porter News: Food Waste: ‘Eat up your Greens’

An experienced kitchen porter who has been working in smart restaurants around the South East England said today that he has to clear up a lot of vegetables from the plates of restaurant-goers in this country. This is creating a lot of food waste. He currently works in a gastro pub.

He comes from a family whose parents had to eat grass to survive during WW2 when Hong Kong was under the Japanese Invasion.

He said that restaurant-goers ‘are paying a lot of money for their meals’ but they do not eat everything so every day the kitchen has to waste a lot of good food and the gastro pub does not give any food to the homeless. Sometimes restaurant-goers don’t even touch the vegetables at all, very occasionally there is leftover meat.

When I went to a café recently in West Kent, I also noticed people leaving their salads in posh ‘hipster’ cafes despite the salads being very good. You do wonder about their nutrition and whether they are wasting a lot of vegetables at home too.

It’s very sad that people here don’t appreciate their food. Perhaps more people should eat ‘children’s meals’ to cut down on waste.

UK: Introverts being discriminated by Recruitment Agencies and Employers

Many employers are calling for outgoing people to work for them in some jobs, even though this is not always necessary for some of them.

In some job ads they are calling out for ‘bubbly and outgoing’ people. Introverts, can be Extrovert Introverts and many Introverts can ‘also put it on’ if they have to. It is up to them if they can do the job. Introverts can be friendly, kind and talented but no, some employers want loud people.

Employers, not only want people to have the right experience, and qualifications, but they want ‘the right personality’ too. This makes it very hard in, an already very difficult jobs market.

Employers need to recognise the contribution of quiet and introverted people in the workplace, rather than discriminate against them. In a country that is reknowned, for its reserved introverts, it seems a bit bonkers.

Successful Introverts http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/08/15/famous-introverts_n_3733400.html

Why workplaces need Introverts http://www.creativitypost.com/business/why_every_workplace_needs_introverts

Introvert Pride on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/introvertpride

Scandinavian News: Asylum Seeker falls into popular Icelandic Waterfall

The Iceland Monitor reports that a man, reported to be an asylum seeker, has fallen into the freezing waterfall of Gullfoss, a popular tourist hotspot for short day trips from Reykjavik.

Gullfoss, which means Golden Falls in Icelandic, is on the ‘Golden Circle’ of popular tourist destinations.

Reports do not state how he fell in, whether the conditions were windy, or he that got too close to the ravine. No crime had been reported.

Years ago, there was speculation that the beautiful waterfall was going to be used to generate electricity but Sigríður Tómasdóttir, the daughter of Tómas Tómasson, who owned it at the time, was determined to preserve the waterfall and even threatened to throw herself down it. However, Gullfoss was eventually sold to the State of Iceland where is currently protected.

The government’s cap of asylum seekers is just 50 asylum seekers a year, according to The Independent recently. A large search and rescue team, of at least 145 people, has been going on for several hours but so far, they have not found him.

Link:
http://icelandmonitor.mbl.is/news/nature_and_travel/2017/07/20/search_goes_on_in_tricky_conditions/ free

My Frugal Birthday Experience Idea

People are spending far too much money on gifts, and so much time hunting for them. Also birthday gifts can create even more ‘clutter’ in your house.

We are in the era of families not meeting ‘properly’ and ‘talking’. People can be very isolated now. I find when people meet at birthday dinners people don’t ‘really talk’, and some of them, don’t find birthday dinners fun, perhaps they hate mingling. Some of us feel ‘forced to go’ if relatives are more distant. Also, there is not much to do, and introverts like me, find them uncomfortable. Birthday meals can be very pricey for everyone.

I thought that instead of having a ‘proper’ birthday gift or dinner. I would have an experience, and I am not just talking about an experience that is just for me, ie those Red Letter Days type of experience, which also can be expensive but something everyone will generally enjoy.

I wanted a more frugal and Scandinavian ‘hygge’ experience. So what I thought was for me and a few of my friends and relatives to visit a wildlife rescue centre – that way it would be interesting and educational and it would make a difference to the animals there. It maybe a bit ‘sad’, but I think the fact that all of us will being doing something to help, will really make a ‘mark’ on everyone.

They could make a donation too, and even a small donation, can make a big difference with several people going. There maybe a ‘shop’ there or they could bring in food and bedding for the animals. People with children can also go along, so it would be good for them too. They will also see how much damage cars can cause with our wildlife, that will be an eye opener too. You never know, the trip may mean that the charity will get more donations in the long run, and even new volunteers. The trip could inspire people to do good things. Birthdays can also be ‘serious too’ but I think it is important to have some light bits in it, to balance things out.

Afterwards, we would have an informal picnic somewhere, and people would bring their own things to share. People will be able to talk more ‘normally’ than in a formal, restaurant setting. I am a huge fan of picnics. They remind me of my childhood and I don’t see why we can’t have more ‘picnic birthdays’. My birthday is in July so I’m quite lucky in having reasonably good weather, though we will need a ‘back up’ if it rains, of course!

I was lucky to discover that there is a good dog show nearby as well, and suggested we go there afterwards, if they wanted to. That would give them a bit of flexibility too so they didn’t have to stay if the couldn’t. Most people in my family are animal lovers and I think animals and birthdays are a ‘great frugal mix’. There is something to do too, not just talk.

I already I have had people saying they want to ‘swipe my idea’ which is great. I am not celebrating it until in two week’s time, but if you want to have a ‘frugal birthday’, and one where you can ‘make a difference’, you don’t have to celebrate it on your day, as there may be things that are fun that are around on a different day, perhaps in your own area. My experience can be great for ‘keeping things local’ and reducing air miles, if your friends and relatives are local.

I really like this the animal charity birthday idea as this will make a difference to the animals too, and I hope my relatives and relatives will talking about this ‘birthday experience’ for years to come. Maybe they will do something similar too?

Just for your info, I will be going to Folly Wildlife Rescue, in Tunbridge Wells http://www.follywildliferescue.org.uk/ and keep you posted.