The magnificent Crane Melon

I’m lucky enough to be spending a couple of months in Sonoma County, California – a mecca of food, drink and scenery. What’s more, it’s harvest time here, which gives me the opportunity to sample many local delights – from sumptuous fruit to fresh dairy produce to palate-burstingly delicious wines. It’s a hard life!


One of the most wonderful of these discoveries has been the Crane Melon. I’d heard a lot of good things, but although I’ve been here several times before, it’s never been in season during my stay. Last week I finally managed to eat one. Everything they say is true! Sure, it’s full of flavour and freshness, but what really got me is how refreshing the fruit is. Also, you can eat a lot (!) and feel all the better for it.


If you’re ever in Sonoma County, make sure you get your hands on one. You’ll find them at the Crane Melon Barn on Petaluma Hill Road.


Happy eating!


Same sandwich, different day

This article from The Guardian struck a chord with me. I’m a sandwich lover. In fact, I’m more a sandwich addict. I’m not sure I can remember the last time I went a day without bread. Or ham. Or cheese. Or all three together, under one roof.

As such, I can relate to pretty much every word of this. I do eat the same sandwich every day. The staple diet. I work from home a fair bit and that makes the habit even more prevalent. A number of reasons for this repetition are postulated here, but for me it’s simple: I’m busy, and it’s easier to make something I know I like, and don’t have to think about. What a terribly sad, 21st Century technology answer. But the repetitive sandwich is testament to our work/life balance today. And it makes proper meals taste all the more sweet.


‘Keep Calm…’ posters actually intensely irritating

I loved this article from The Daily Mash. Initially I was a fan of the ‘Keep Calm’ genre and even celebrated its popularity. But now it seems that anyone who can read and has an English relative is peddling some gutter aberration of the original design. It’s become a bloated sell-out, an insult to the thing that once made it appealing.

And surely it will get even worse with the impending Jubilee.

Therefore – I’ve got to say it.

Keep Calm and Fuck Off.


‘Keep Calm…’ posters actually intensely irritating




The rise of charity shops

Now, this is good news. Charity shops are apparently bucking the trend and booming in these tough economic times, while other shops are closing.

It’s not hard to see why. But it’s a lovely story. As someone who has taken 9 dustbin liners of clothes to the local Cancer Research and Air Ambulance outlets this year, I’m pleased my threads are going to a better place. Don’t like to talk about it, mind.


Rural broadband: coming to homes not that near you

I wait with anticipation to see how this funding stacks up against performance. I live in a town surrounded by rural areas, and my broadband service is pretty poor. Like many other punters, my promised speed is in a different universe to that which I actually experience:



Regatta time again

As a Henley-on-Thames resident, this is a funny time of year. A nice time to live here. On the cusp of the regatta, the tents up and billowing, Americans wandering the streets, oars populating the river, the restaurants more full than usual. It does make for some engaging photography. This twitpic being one of them, showing the competitor tents from the river at dusk. Thanks Regatta Radio.