The general consensus of received wisdom from the good and the great who claim to know about this stuff, suggests that blogging will never make money. The good and the great, however, underestimate the power of advertising.
This humble blog would never entertain the mercenary idea of debasing itself by promoting goods and services in order to pursue financial gain. The very notion that your correspondent would ever suggest that you part with your hard earned cash to buy a particular newspaper, that pizza (free delivery within three miles) or another lovely set of double glazed windows simply because the company happens to be in the area, is completely ridiculous. Other uvpc contractors are available, terms and conditions apply. This blog remains external to the Temple of Mammon.
However, faced with a crisis, with heavy rain and flooding causing the cancellation of the Vale of Evesham asparagus festival, the hippo resorted to his favourite farm shop up on Barr Beacon. Sadly, no early Worcestershire asparagus was available and the big, fat pink one had to be satisfied with inferior, imported Belgian stems. The asparagus auction has been re-scheduled and will now take place on May 27th at the Fleece in Bretforton and the farm shop on Barr Beacon is open daily offering a wide selection of meat, fruit, vegetables and other home grown produce. This information is given as a public service and is in no way an endorsement of any commercial enterprise. Barr Beacon bacon, though, is simply superb.
On Saturday afternoon, lacking sufficient sour cream for the dill mustard sauce to accompany the baked Scottish salmon or the six cloves of garlic and butter required to pan fry the asparagus, a trip to a town centre supermarket became a necessity. The local corner shop provides an impressive choice of inexpensive white cider but does not, as yet, stock the olives and feta cheese that makes a Greek salad Greek. Walsall boasts a number of supermarkets, all of which are dreadful, so the discerning shopper keen on a pleasant retail experience needs to look beyond the unidentified item in the bagging area for something that will add value. In this case, on a sunny afternoon, the supermarket of choice was determined by its proximity to the excellent Black Country Arms.
This fine old boozer offers a range of cask conditioned ales, delicious bar meals and a friendly welcome. Selecting a pint of fine Somerset scrumpy, experience dictated that the brew is best enjoyed standing up in the open air because after drinking even a single pint, any attempt at rising from a chair and then exiting an enclosed room will result in waking up surrounded by a crowd of concerned citizenry. After two pints, the long, slow climb back up the hill to Chuckery began.
The slight feeling of otherworldliness was expected but the addition of the sound of an egg whisk being applied to a still functioning brain was something new and a little disconcerting. Looking up into a clear blue sky, the increasing noise of little grey cells being blended was explained by the arrival of a bright red, low flying helicopter. Dodging the monstrous Tameway tower, perhaps Walsall`s ugliest building, the air ambulance hovered above Flan O`Briens which provides a wide choice of beers, wines and spirits and live music on Thursday and Sunday night.
There was considerable police activity at the junction where Bridge Street becomes Ablewell Street and Rushall Street changes from lower to upper, just a few steps away from the excellent Eat Well Chinese Takeaway and near to the wonderful Indian cuisine of Shimla Peppers now taking party bookings, all major credit cards accepted. On Warewell Street, there had been a road traffic collision and the helicopter began to descend.
A small crowd had formed and were being ushered away from a small car park close to the accident as paramedics treated an injured driver. With extraordinary skill, the pilot set his aircraft down in blustery winds on an inclined surface with the tips of the rotor blades about two metres from a nearby wall. Forget the Red Arrows, this guy had class. Understandably, the arrival of the Eurocopter EC 135 brought local residents out of their homes to view the scene, especially if they realised that the aircraft has only recently taken to the skies again after being grounded over safety checks to the main rotor hub-shaft flange or the “Jesus nut” as veterans of Vietnam have been known to describe it.
Some of the crowd returned to their houses to fetch cameras to join the onlookers who held up mobile phones. Having captured the moment for posterity, some elements in the crowd began to photograph the casualty as he, or she, was receiving treatment still in the driver`s seat. One rather excitable young man rushed up and asked what was going on. On being told of a road accident, he said: “Oh wow! Is there any blood?” and produced a camera phone. Although wishing to see the skill involved in lifting the aircraft, this ghoulish insensitivity meant that it was time to leave and keep the appointment with a salmon and the asparagus.
Since then, after a few days of searching local news sites, the incident seems to have gone unreported even in the indispensable and comprehensive YamYam. We can only assume, therefore, that the evacuation was successful and can only hope that the casualty is on the way to a full recovery. If that should be the case, then the unfortunate driver was lucky enough to receive the attention of a disappearing National Health Service. In future, “customer interface operatives” from the likes of Virgin and Serco, instead of checking for a pulse, will be checking the credit cards of the injured before summoning an ambulance. At the moment, Midlands Air Ambulance is funded by charitable donation. This information is given as a public service and is in no way an endorsement of any commercial enterprise.
Many of the splendid local companies above (not you Virgin and Serco – you can sling your hooks) might be delighted at the advertising contained in this post which can often reach an audience of as many a ten. Some may wish to offer financial backing or maybe supply hampers of their delicious provender. Please do not. Instead, send a cheque to Midlands Air Ambulance or make a donation here.
This humble blog, unlike the NHS these days, is not run for profit.