Archive for May, 2009

The writing WAS on the wall . . .

Monday, May 25th, 2009

Where ever you go in Chennai, elaborately painted on every single wall (apart from ‘P James Magic Show’) are political slogans. On some walls are very good murals depicting the leading politicians.

But as it was election time when you would expect to see political slogans (at least in the UK) all walls have been whitewashed, leaving me with a very unimpressive photo of a wall, which was a piece of art a few weeks ago.

Its a whitewash

It's a whitewash

Tokyo Amour

Thursday, May 21st, 2009

(Google it)

Last of the holiday snaps – must be time for another holiday.

My photos from Tokyo on Flikr

Leos photos from Tokyo on Flikr

The writings on the wall…

Thursday, May 21st, 2009

I make no secret of liking writing on walls and wherever you go in Chennai you will see “P James Magic Show and Balloon Event 9841072571” He has blitzed the city.

There are a number of things which amuse me about this.

  1. I didn’t realise that Chennai had much of a Magic Show scene (dont worry Bergy I’m sure your magic show was much better)
  2. I didn’t realise that Chennai had an underground magic show scene,
  3. The graffiti is carefully numbered so if ever the police were to catch him they would know exactly how many counts to charge him with.
  4. He’s left his name and mobile number so the police should be able to catch him pretty easily.

Where are you Mr Potato Man when Chennai really needs you!?

Number 319 . .

Number 319 . .

I’ve just realised this is a different phone number – so maybe P James has competition – or one phone simply wasn’t enough for all the calls he was receiving !!


Monday, May 18th, 2009

Corruption in India is everywhere, I have heard a number of stories:

  1. My drivers brother had to pay a years salary to get a job as a bus driver – a state job.
  2. I saw police stopping people without crash helmets at the intersection of a busy road. I am told you are given the choice of 100rp official fine, or 50rp to the policeman and he will let you go.
  3. Supposedly a new restaurant which doesn’t have an alcohol license not only pays the police so it can serve alcohol – but employs someone who gets arrested every month. (I am not sure this one is true but i like to believe it is)

Now, when I heard these stories, I couldn’t believe that’s how Indian society worked, I wondered if it would ever be possible to stop and I thought how much better the UK was.

And then I realised, as MP’s expenses claims have proven, the UK is probably just as corrupt – at least in India it is much more in the open

Highs and Lows

Wednesday, May 13th, 2009

New High

Housekeeper bringing me cold beers and crisps to my hand as I sit on my sofa watching the 20/20 cricket.


New Low

Housekeeper walking in on me as I am naked, having a shit.

Not so nice.

Gotta take the rough with the smooth i guess.

Hawaii Photos

Monday, May 11th, 2009

Its been quite emotional looking at all these photos again – its sad to think I haven’t seen anyone since . .

My photos from Hawaii on Flikr

Leo’s photos from Hawaii on Flikr

Wedding Pics

Saturday, May 9th, 2009

As i said before – if Carlsberg did weddings . .

Dan and Jessie’s Wedding on Flikr

What goes on tour, stays on tour . .

Saturday, May 9th, 2009

For a while.

Dan’s stag do photos on Flikr.

Tokyo textures

Friday, May 8th, 2009

As Leo and i wandered round japan, snapping photos (ironically, just like Japanese tourists) we started taking pictures of patterns and textures that caught our eye.

It became customary to shout “teexxtttuuuurrreeees” when you found a new one.

Here are some of the best.









Err some thing..








Temple Roof

Temple Roof

Street Tuff

Sunday, May 3rd, 2009

On of the nice things about Chennai (and probably the rest of India) is that I feel completely safe walking the streets whatever time. The most uncomfortable I feel is when approached by a beggar, but 100rp soon sorts things quickly enough – or asking my driver to drive on (joke!)

So why are the streets so safe, is it cultural? Or is there a mythical crime fighter, Chennai’s answer to Gothams Batman?

Step forward Mr Potato Man, instilling fear into the criminal underworld of Chennai, keeping the streets safe for everyday Chennaites.

We wanna be . . Smiths Crisps

We wanna be . . Smith's Crisps

Lok Sabha Elections

Sunday, May 3rd, 2009

The last National elections were in 2004 when 647 million people voted, this time the figure is predicted to be more than 750 million – a staggering figure.

In the interest of impartiality, it is good to see that the ruling party erected a huge 30 foot illuminated sign above the polling booth, complete with iconic image of their leader (complete with de-rigeur sunglasses) for all the floating voters out there . .