The magic roundabout

The magic roundabout

You can find roundabouts in most countries. It’s a simple way to allow traffic from different roads to move into other roads.

Back in 1972, the British Road Transport Department created an experimental “multi-mini” roundabout, which consisted of 5 mini roundabouts connected together. They say that anybody who survives this roundabout deserves a medal. Here is is.


Click here for the Swindon Magic Roundabout page !

Please like & share:
The fab four

The fab four

In March 1957, John Lennon was sixteen and formed a group with some friends from Quarry Bank school. (A ‘quarry’ is a place where you extract large rocks and stones for construction). They first called themselves the Blackjacks but then changed their name to the Quarrymen. In July of that year, fifteen-year-old Paul McCartney joined as a rhythm guitarist. In February 1958, McCartney invited his friend George Harrison to watch the band and George, who was fourteen at the time, auditioned for Lennon. Lennon liked George’s playing but initially thought that he was too young to join the group. However, they finally enlisted him as their lead guitarist. By January 1959, Lennon’s Quarry Bank friends had left the group, and he began studies at the Liverpool College of Art. The band was now a group of three guitarists and they played under the name of Johnny and the Moondogs. They played rock and roll whenever they could find a drummer, and when Lennon’s art school friend Stuart Sutcliffe, joined the group in January 1960 as a bass guitarist, it was he who suggested changing the band’s name to Beatals, as a tribute to Buddy Holly and the Crickets. In May, they became the Silver Beetles and in early July, they were the Silver Beatles.

Finally, in August, they were officially the Beatles.

Clich here to visit the fantastic Beatles site.

Please like & share:

  I found this interesting article about the expression “Bless you!” on an American site. The link to the full article is just after the text, in case you want to learn more …

Atchoo !

Many people have become accustomed to saying “bless you” or “gesundheit” when someone sneezes.         No-one says anything when someone coughs, blows their nose or burps, so why do sneezes get special treatment? What do those phrases actually mean, anyway?

Wishing someone well after they sneeze probably originated thousands of years ago. The Romans would say “Jupiter preserve you” or “Salve,” which meant “good health to you,” and the Greeks would wish each other “long life.” The phrase “God bless you” is attributed to Pope Gregory the Great, who uttered it in the sixth century during a bubonic plague epidemic (sneezing is an obvious symptom of one form of the plague).

The exchangeable term “gesundheit” comes from Germany, and it literally means “health.” The idea is that a sneeze typically precedes illness. It entered the English language in the early part of the 20th century, brought to the United States by German-speaking immigrants.

Please like & share:

In Japan, it is traditional for women to offer chocolate to the men in their lives on Valentine’s day. Different types of chocolates exist for different relations, raging from “obligatory chocolate” for a boss or a work colleague to “true feeling chocolate” given to a husband or boyfriend. Men reciprocate one month later on White day, March 14th, and offer gifts and chocolates in return to the people who gave them chocolate on St Valentine’s day.

The tradition is the same in Korea, with the addition of “Black day” on April 14th. On that day, single people who didn’t receive any gift or chocolate either on St Valentine’s day or White day, meet in restaurants to commiserate and eat white noodles in black bean sauce. In South Korea, in fact, the 14th of each month is being marked for a special celebration such as Rose day on May 14th or Kiss day on June 14th.

In Taïwan, the tradition is the opposite with women receiving gifts on St Valentine’s day and men on White day.

St Valentine’s day is celebrated in Denmark and Norway with funny little poems or rhyming love notes given anonymously by men to women. The only clue as to the name of the sender is represented with a dot for each letter of the name. If the woman guesses the name of the sender accurately, she wins an Easter egg on Easter day. If she doesn’t, she owes the sender an Easter egg.

In Slovenia, if love is celebrated on St Valentine’s day, it is actually on March 12th that most people celebrate love.

Finnish and Estonian people celebrate friendship rather than love on St Valentine’s day, exchanging gifts and cards with friends. It is however a popular day to get engaged or married.

In Wales, the patron saint of lovers, St Dwynwen, is celebrated on January 25th. On this day, men traditionally present the woman they are interested in with a carved spoon symbolizing their love.

This is an extract from the following article found here.

Please like & share:

Traditionally called “Pancake day”, Shrove Tuesday (from the verb “shrive” meaning “confess”) is the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday, the first day of Lent.

On that day, it was customary for people to consume richer, fattier food, before the 40 days of restrictions and fasting associated with Lent.

So in honour of Shrove Tuesday, here is a simple recipe for pancakes.

Makes 8 pancakes


125g flour

¼ teaspoon of salt

300ml milk or water

1 egg (beaten)

A little melted butter

Vegetable oil (for the pan)


1 Sieve the flour and salt into a bowl and make a well in the center

2 Add the egg and milk and whisk vigorously to make a smooth batter.

3 Add the melted butter.

3 Heat a little oil in a small frying pan.

4 Spoon in 2 tablespoons of mixture and swirl to cover the base of the pan.

5 Cook for a few seconds, flip over and cook the second side.

6 Repeat to make 8 pancakes in total.


You can double the quantities to make more pancakes.  They taste wonderful with sugar and a little lemon juice.  How do you eat your pancakes?





Please like & share:

Each year, on the 14th of February, people send cards, flowers, or gifts to their special person. That day, St Valentine’s day, is named for a Christian martyr. St Valentine was captured and tortured by the Romans on the 14th of February 273 AD and this date was adopted as his name day. In the Middle Ages, the day started representing romantic love although many people believe that the Pagan fertility festivals had a large influence on this.

Traditionally, people bought gifts or revealed their love with hand written notes until the Nineteenth Century. Commercial cards became popular and widely available. Sending cards is still part of the tradition today. The cards usually have some sort of message, poem, or code. Sending a card allows people the opportunity and courage to show their true feelings to the person they love.

Popular gifts include boxes of chocolates, flowers, jewelry, perfume or more personal presents. Sometimes, people prefer to go out for a meal, go to the cinema or spend the evening together instead of exchanging gifts.

And you? How do you spend Valentine’s Day?

Please like & share: