Welcome to the Fishtank

The thoughts, ramblings, pictures and doodles of a middle-aged fish.

Posts tagged ramblings

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I see, therefore I am?

Went to the opticians last week to test the old eyes.

Eyes are well enough for an auld geezer, but the optician wanted me to come back and have my pupils dilated by some wonderdrug so he could have a good look at the back of them.

Something about floaters in the eye, age and repeated trauma to the head causing detached retinas (don’t ask - I train combat skills for a living and get beaten up on an almost daily basis by people younger, stronger and fitter than I am) made him want to have a closer look.

So… this afternoon I went down and got some drops in the eye to get meself dilated! they put the drug in the eye, had a good old look inside and, surprise surprise, all is well! Both eyes work after a fashion.

Now I sit here with dilated pupils….. sheesh, I could have done with this a number of times over the years…. I can TOTALLY see in the dark!

I have to stop now as I’m off to commune with the foxes, moles and owls :-)

Filed under 50 Ramblings eyes optician fox mole owl

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Memories of a Djibouti Dive in 1983

Back in 1983 our ship put in to Djibouti in North Africa on our way down to the Gulf and the Far East.

It was decided to do what we used to call a ship’s bottom search, so my dive team was tasked to do just that.

A routine inspection, nothing difficult, and something we had done many hundreds of times before.

However, only weeks before a diver had been attacked in that very same harbour by a shark.

So down we went, a string of four very nervous divers, to carry out what we promised would be the quickest bottom search in history.  The water was very warm but very silty and the viz was minimal - we could just about see an arms length, no more.  The rest was a brown haze, we could see light and shadow, but not much else.

We were diving on SCUBA with no comms, but were all tied together with buddy lines.


Half way through the search my buddy line starts being tugged frantically, something is wrong!  I look around and there are these three shadowy shapes, six or so foot long, torpedoing through the water in and out of my limited vision…. 

SHIT!  SHARKS!!!!!!!

We surfaced like rockets, scrambled over each other into our dive boat and huddled there like a bunch of babies. 

As we calmed down we looked up to the ships deck to see the rest of the ships company looking down at us over the rails and…… laughing!!

Now Jolly Jack does have a strange sense of humour it has to be said, but laughing at an oppo who has just narrowly cheated a horrible death at the hands of Jaws himself, well, thats beyond the pail, and we did shout up to them words to that effect.

Then they (still laughing) pointed out to the small pod of porpoises that were frollicking 30 or so feet away and had obviously been quite curious to see the bunch of humans finning up and down the bottom of the ship, so had buzzed us to have a look.

Honestly… a porpoise really DOES look like a shark in low viz and with a bit of imagination…

it took quite a while for us to live that one down…

Rufty tufty divers?  I think not.

Filed under Memories Ramblings diving humour me nostalgia sea shark

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Priorities, priorities, priorities….

Wow…. this tumblr blogging milarky is a bit addictive.

Went to work today reluctantly, but went. (I find that they seem to insist that I at least attend, or they don’t pay me - very narrow minded attitude in my opinion). Was looking forward all day to getting home and smurfing the interweb to blog and be blogged.


Tonight is the opening night of the Six Nations - and England are playing Wales at rugby… starting at 7:30.

Which gives me just enough time to get changed, get down the pub and watch the match

Tumblr tomorrow methinks!

Filed under ramblings

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Age - Solidarity in numbers.

I turned 50 last November and have become just a tad obsessed with the fact.

My oppo at work turned 50 yesterday and seems a lot more relaxed about the whole thing.  I have, of course, been taking the piss mercilessly and telling him that his mental and physical attributes will start quickly declining.

This morning we met up for a cuppa at work at the start of the day as usual.  I asked him if he felt any different now that he WAS fifty.  He looked a bit sheepish and then told me this story…

"I felt no difference when I went to bed last night.  But I was woken up in the middle of the night by the bloody foxes wailing outside in the garden.  I reached to my bedside table for my mobile and was frantically trying to turn the bloody thing on so’s I could see what time it was.

It just wouldn’t turn on no matter what button I pressed. Honestly, I tried for what seemed minutes, wondering what was wrong with the thing…

until I realised it was a blasted chocolate bar I’d picked up instead of the phone!! No wonder it wouldn’t work!”

I sympathised with him and told him that just wouldn’t have happened 24 hours earlier when he was in his 40’s.

Filed under Ramblings age humour 50

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Was out driving around with a work colleague today, when we passed a local cemetary….

Me: Have you ever been in that cemetary?
Steve: No
Me: There’s a headstone in there with exactly my name on it.
Steve: You’re kidding!
Me: No. Exactly my name, all three names the same.
Steve: Wow! Now that is spooky!

Me: Hmmm, not really, it’s me dad’s grave.
Steve: You are one strange bastard Billy.

Filed under Ramblings

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Didn’t go for a swim today….. in case that 12 year old Olympian was sprinting up and down the pool at mach 3.

Had a glass of wine instead.

Do I feel better?

Filed under ramblings


Swims like a fish….

As part of my denial of hitting my fifties I have undertaken to go swimming four times a week to recapture my youthful vigour and manly figure….

Today I girded my loins and set off down the pool.

I was relatively pleased with myself as I plodded up and down at a slow but steady pace for the first 10 lengths or so, and put the fact that I was being overtaken every 3rd length by a small 12 or 13 year-old girl down to her youth and some rather good technique.

Then a gent who was obviously well into his sixties got in the pool and started overtakening me every 3rd length or so.

I got out and retired hurt to the sauna.

I’m at home now drinking my second glass of wine.

I’ve decided to stick to what I’m naturally good at….

pass the wine!

Filed under ramblings

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Safe Landings

Well, the boy got to Turkey safely after all.

I know this because he just rang…. on a borrowed mobile as his is not on roaming.  He could have used his girlfriends mobile, but it appears that hers is beside a sink in one of the toilets in Gatwick Airport and thus of limited use to them.

My lad is just about the only person I know who has the cheek to ask a perfect stranger on a coach in a foreign country to borrow their phone to make a quick international call!

And get away with it!!!

Filed under ramblings