The house of discipline, and other photos

Friday, April 14th, 2006

I can remember when products were built to last and didn't stop working just because they'd been thrown across the room in a cold fury a few times. I say this because my phone finally started malfunctioning beyond a level I was prepared to tolerate, so I had to replace it.

Having said I didn't want a phone with gadgets, I ended up having to buy one with a camera – and of course I'm now bemoaning the low quality of the pictures it takes. Still, at least it's got me taking photos again.

Here's some recent shots:

Fitters at work roped to the roof
Dancing on the ceiling
The dark shapes of fitters roped to the roof inside the Business Design Centre hang cables in preparation for an exhibition.

Blank exhibition stands
Nothing to show for it
A fitter stands in the middle of blank exhibition stands that will soon be filled with all the clutter and colour of a trade fare.

Islamophobic graffiti on a bus shelter
Why I hate living here
We have equal opportunity bigots here – they hate everyone, whatever their colour or creed. This bus shelter graffito, along with National Front stickers nearby, targets Muslims – but everyone gets it in the neck eventually here.

Sign showing how long before buses are due to arrive
Reflections on a long wait
On a wet, chilly evening, the bus indicators reflected on the ceiling of the shelter – and demonstrated that how cold you got depended rather on where you were travelling.

Bright, blurred lights from a hotel in the distance at night
They've landed!
Not, in fact, an alien invasion – just the old and new Feltham. The glare from a hotel marketed squarely at airport travellers shows behind what used to be a toilet block – and now seems to be an art studio, or some such thing.

Cineworld, Feltham, on a rainy night
Lights, camera, action
Wet Tarmac and sodium lights give the local cinema complex an unworldly look. This view, coincidentally, is exactly the one seen by the central character of my quarter-written novel at a crucial life-changing point in the narrative. Not that you need to worry about that.

Traffic jam at roundabout in Uxbridge
Round and round and round about
There is a roundabout out Uxbridge way that has without a doubt the worst traffic jams I have ever had the misfortune to have to weave a path through. It really is a case of move forward by inches and every car for itself.

Ducks marching across a petrol station forecourt
Ducks in a row
I'm not sure if they wanted the car wash or just to top up with unleaded, but these ducks marched across the forecourt of the petrol station where I was having my lunch in a very purposeful manner.

Painted sign that reads 'House of Discipline'
Do as you're told
This sign is on the garage of a house on one of my regular leaflet rounds during the council elections. There's nothing else on the outside to suggest the place is still conducting whatever dubious business produced the sign – but I'm certainly not canvassing there!

Large guard dog asleep asleep on the pavement outside its shop
Don't even try it
Our local general store has the most enormous guard dog you ever did see. Shame it's usually asleep across the shop door…

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I'm Andy Darley. Sometimes I want to say things. This is where I do it.