Telehouse days

These are going back to the time me, Steve and Dave were working in the server mines of Telehouse, shut away from sunlight and forced to consume bad vending machine food and Balti mix, washed down with endless cups of tea. Occasionally we were allowed out, blinking into the light of day and have a beer on Dave’s boat.

Just an intresting wall at Telehouse.

Me looking a bit cross, you would too if you had to work shifts in a gigantic secure data centre painted a uniform battleship grey, and huddle round a rubbish convection heater on freezing nights.

Sometimes the only excitemint we got was pressing the button and speaking at the same time as the operator.

The other thing that kept me going was liberal doses of Healthy Boy chilli sauce, I do not think you ought to feed it to babies as the label implies, even if it is healthy it is pretty fierce stuff. Given that babies cannot even handle simple things like bacon sandwidges and lager, I think feeding them lethally hot Wow-Wow sauce might create more problems than it solved.


Well as I have given my bike its Spring Cleaning I thought I should probably get it dirty again. If there is one thing that engenders deep suspicion in the cycling fraternity it is a nice clean shiny bike. It is a bit like those people that have a really expensive bike hanging on the wall of their immaculate designer flat, and you know in your heart that they never take it down, or indeed dream of soiling their crisp, dazzlingly white yachting trousers.

I went on a big adventure down the Dollis Brook where there is all sorts of birds, trees, and especially MUD. This is Hendon Lane Weir where the Dollis flows underneath the Great North Way and you can bikle through a sinister dark passage into a mystical land of wonder, populated by unicorns. (I did not see any of these in fact, so the guide book may be out of date.)

Some super Canada geese that I saw. It is grainy cameraphone photos sorry, as I did not bring the real camera and I do not have magic computer eyes like the Terminator. This is a shame in several respects.

This is a pond near Bell Lane with wizzo coots and moorhens ekcetera, the brilliant thing about this is that you can enjoy the peaceful idyll of the lake ruffled only by gentle zephyrs (good writing) while a few feet away, hundreds of cars and lorries thunder past along the North Circular completely unaware that any of this is here. In a way I suppose that is why it has not been built all over.

The most curious things end up stuck in a weir! This is a shopping trolley if you cannot tell. Obviously someone was walking home with their weekly shop and was just overcome with fatalistic or existential thoughts and realised, what is the point of it all basically? So they chucked the trolley in the river and went home. I feel like that some days.

I do not know what this is, but have decided it is a sinister witch’s cottage. There are a few clues which give it away to a trained eye, eg traces of gingerbread, but the main one is probably the sinister witch (not pictured).

The river path goes down about as far as where the A502 Brent St crosses over the North Circular, and from there you can bikle along the pavement as far as the dystopian concrete lacework of the Brent Cross Flyover. There our journey must end as it is the gateway to Brent Cross itself where only horror, madness, and surprising winter bargains await.

High above the North Circular itself at the Brent St junction. I was on the pedestrian footbridge in fact although it would be great if I had a magical flying bicycle like E.T. For one thing it would represent a considerable saving on tyre wear, and possibly get me closer to Drew Barrymore.

Your intrepid correspondent. On the way back I took an intresting detour via the River Brent up to Henleys Corner and the muddiest path I have ever found! It was flooded out in some places and the surrounding grass was heavily waterlogged; at several points I was pedalling super slowly in bottom gear and the back wheel was still sliding and sliding. It is a good job I was wearing my nice new Caterpillar boots (do not laugh it is obvious they are not made out of caterpillars; that would create more problems than it solved) as I had to get off and push the bike through lakes of mud occasionally. When I got back there was no question of even bringing the bike indoors; I had to get a bucket of soapy water and wash it down outside for fear of basically redecorating my flat in mud.

I had a super day out though!


It is just some of my favourite pictures of people that I have taken. This is Matt relaxing at his simple North London home, in fact he looks quite sophistercated in this one given that we were actually glugging wine and laughing like bastards at a Bill Bailey DVD.

This is Steve the Sheep of various extinckt journals and one of the most super chaps ever. I love the way he is looking over his half-moon spectacles like a slightly censorious building society manager. In reality he would not make a very good building society manager, as he is really nice so would lend everyone money, even if they were actually wearing a cartoon style mask and a striped jersey.

I think this is a lovely one of Lucy, and even though I am not in the picture any more, in all senses, I still am quite pleased with it. There is an even better one where I accidentally jogged the camera so she looks like a ghost eating a boiled egg. But I better not publish that one as I still value her friendship.

Angela. These photos still make me feel a bit sad inside. I do not know why some things keep hurting for so long. It is still a great world though, if you do not look at too many old photos.

Dave the now-legendary lost member of the Archway Guitar Quartet and formerly of Duncan Idaho, North London’s only hard-rock band united by their admiration for the science fiction author Frank Herbert.