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Slow to get the message – a colourful day trip to Bristol

Today’s the day when I must take my Volvo in for service. There is a noise like crickets chirping, and various  miscellaneous warning lights reprimanding me from the dashboard. There are times when I tend to be judgemental. Today was one of those times. I arrived to find a scene of some chaos and confusion. There was only one person at the service reception and she seemed to be having difficulty with finding my identity and my booking. All sorts of uncharitable thoughts  went through my mind about the decline of standards, and why can’t they employ more competent people, and she doesn’t seem to have received any training. All this was a complete waste of energy when I discovered later on that one of the two agents was on holiday, the other one was sick  and they had to draft in someone from another department to help out.

Anyway I dropped my car off and went on the bus to go to the centre of Bristol. This time I visited St. Mary Redcliffe Church, very famous and very popular with students so I understand. Anyway here are a few of my photographs with comments when I feel like it.

The theme of today’s photo shoot is “relating to the public”. It is important to draw people in and make them feel part of something and these photographs I  am going to show you do indeed represent this challenge and how it is dealt with. If you want to see details in bigger detail roll your mouse button or use control and +

There seems to be a fashion for huge flower arrangements in public places. This one is by Bristol Temple Meads station
what a truly lovely community idea
St Mary Redcliffe Church on a rather dull day it must be said
the welcome is a mark of a caring church
stained-glass windows often tell a story and it is worth studying them in some detail
lighting a candle and saying a prayer I believe resonates with something deep in most of us
what a lovely thoughtful prayer designed for everybody
this is an alter in the shape of a boat or ark which makes reference to the relationship of the history of the church to seagoing people
John Cabot who sailed to America from Bristol near this very spot
the last time I saw such a selection of keys was in Cologne. This habit has spread throughout Europe if not the world
an art installation called the Energy Tree
explanation
here follows a series of figures in one of the main squares of Bristol
is this a religious person or a money changer
lovely to see vegetables placed there I suspect to encourage people to grow their own
children learning workplaces are
lovely safe playing area. Children love splashing in water
an original antilitter campaign

Off I went to a buffet restaurant called Cosmos. It is in the art gallery district up the famous hill and by the University Church. This establishment is much favoured by students because for £7.95 you can have a very good selection of salads, sushi, soups, all types of currys, roasts and various Eastern foods, lovely cakes and various sweets. I arrived at midday when it opened and found that I was not the first one. There were already about 20 people waiting to be let in. It was quite clear who the boss was and he firmly and politely escorted people to their seating area. I watched him closely and he never became flustered and he was always polite to people. The waiters and waitresses were similarly smiling and polite.  My used plates were taken away invisibly while my back was turned.

From about 12:20 PM the whole place was full and I would say about 100 people were dining.  A 20 min bus ride took me to the Volvo showroom and after various technicalities which I won’t bore you with, mainly concerned with the wisdom of spending money on an older vehicle,  I sped home. The engineer, a Polish chap called Marin, had explained the problems in great detail leaving it quite clear to me where my choices lay. For many years now I have trusted Polish people because I find they are hard-working and give good value for money. I only hope that this Brexit business does not discourage them from coming.

Five o’clock was the time when I met the lady who had announced the demise of her art gallery. I met her in a pub, appropriately called “The Globe” accompanied by a charming male friend that she had invited along. She was very appreciative of the fact that I troubled to write back to her original letter so quickly. We had a very fruitful and mutually encouraging talk and her accent made me realise how much I missed South Africa – which I have visited about 20 times over the years. She was brought up in KwaZulu Natal province which is to the north-west of the country. South Africans are open, friendly and honest plus being tough as old rope and we spent a very joyous time together before I drove home in the rain.

The weather forecast augurs well for tomorrow and it better be good because we have to do some gardening work.