Two cat boxes + camping gear = no problem for Qashqai 2014.

Today was all about making sure everything fits in the Qashqai and we managed that task with ease. We packed everything below and two cat boxes with ease. Sadly the cats are not joining us on our adventure to Austria, instead they will be dropped off at the cattery (The Nook) on route.


With the back chairs folded down there is Plenty of room and space available. If we had a pet elephant it would have no problem resting in the back. ;-)



This is the space left after the cat boxes have been removed. Good for snacks, camera bag, phones, charges and for the driver to take a break.


Road trip / The Red Bull Air Race Spielberg.

Later this month the Bowen’s are taking a 2000 mile road trip to Austria via France and Germany and then back home to Kent via Germany, Luxembourg, Belgium, France. The shortest part of our mini adventure will be a short drive to Folkestone, where we will board an Eurotunnel train, which will take us over to Calais.

From there we plan to drive as far as we can before stopping at one of the many Formule 1 hotels in France.  We will be doing a mixture of accommodation along the route (hotels, B&B and even a campsite). We are booked for two nights at the Green campsite across the road from the Red Bull Ring Formula 1 race track.

The Plan:
To watch the Red Bull Air Race at Spielberg.

More to follow soon.

A relic from another era.


I took this photo from the NCP car park at the O2 Dome using my Samsung Galaxy Note 3.

In today’s modern skyline it is quite strange to see an old Victorian gasometer still standing. This one is located at Greenish Peninsula. If one is observant enough, you will see them dotted all over London and the UK countryside, but sadly none are in use anymore after the discovery of gas in the North Sea from the 1960’s, which led to the developments in gas pipe technology.

Most gasometers have highly decorative frames built with three tiers of hollow cylindrical columns and wrought ion riveted lattice girders.

The most noticeable London gasometer is situated next to the Oval Cricket ground in Kennington.

14oval858_2745125bSource: (Daniel Johnson)


Watch “VLOG – My Little Problem” on YouTube

I stumbled upon a great video on YouTube with a very good message attached to it. Every man out there should watch it or listen to it and then act ASAP. The video is about blood in your crap or “the first signs having colon cancer” Not a topic everyone wants to talk about, but should be because it is a huge killer in modern day life.

My Dad died of colon cancer nearly 15 years ago. It is a nasty disease, which is why it is recommended everyone do a colonoscopy around the ages of 35 to 45 if your family has a history of cancer. You want to catch the signs quickly.

I had a colonoscopy a year or two ago for peace of mind. So in the UK they don’t put one under for a colonoscopy (like they do in the US)

Yup they give you the horrible stuff to drink a day or two beforehand, that makes you crap and crap and crap, and then on the day in the hospital they lie you on your side, on a bed in the theatre, there are two or three nurses present and a doctor. One is obviously exposed in the nether regions and a nurse gives you a light sedative to relax you.

digestive-problems_colonoscopyThen they turn on the TV and one gets to see the main show, which stars your arse, and your colon. It is most certainly uncomfortable in many ways especially if one has never had anything inserted into the rectum and that deep, but at the same time is very interesting to watch if one had gotten over the embarrassment and awkward feeling in your backside. It feels like you want to crap constantly. LOL! (Okay it wasn’t funny at the time). It feels like it lasts for eternity, but its over in about ten minutes. 

Fortunately I got the all clear and was told that I would not have to experience that procedure again. I would highly recommend every man in their mid thirties, forties to go and have the test.

Bowen has a new Nissan Qashqai Tekna 1.5DCi.

After seven years of driving our Skoda Fabia 1.1l around we decided it was time for a new car. The little red car had done us proud. It ran and ran without any problems, but it lacked some of the nice comforts that the newer cars have these days, such as heated seats, touch screen navigation, media centre, parking sensors etc.

Jo was always pointing out to me the various models of Nissan Qashqai on the road, so one weekend we went and took a test drive in the new 2014 Nissan Qashqai that had just been released. It was a fantastic experience and the car had some excellent features, which ticked all of our boxes. (cameras and parking sensors all around the car, lane control, sign reading, accident prevention, plenty of space, good boot space, panoramic roof, sexy look etc). We spent the rest of the weekend watching reviews on

So in late February we decided it would be our next car. We signed all the paper work, but were told the car would only be ready in a few months. It sucked waiting for the car to be delivered, but in late April we got the word she was waiting for us.Nissan Qashqai Tekna 1.5DCi Bronze1It is a wonderful feeling walking into the dealership and seeing your brand new car on the floor. We picked the colour bronze because it is quite a unique colour, especially in England where most folk drive grey, black, white or blue cars.

The car is very sexy in my opinion. I love its shape. It looks so sleek and modern, and the 19″ alloy wheels look great. The colour is awesome as well. So far we think we are the only ones on the road with this colour. (well South of the Thames that is).

Nissan Qashqai Tekna 1.5DCi BronzeOne of the awesome features is the park assist. When one pulls up to a space, the sensors determine if the park is big enough and then the car completely takes over the steering, while you provide the backwards or forwards acceleration.  It doesn’t matter if its a parallel or vertical park. It literally parks itself and gets it right every time. It even does curbs. It could make one lazy I guess, but if you know how to park in any situation, then this is just a treat. It is amazing to watch.

We bought it for these reasons.

  1. It delivers a tax-friendly 99g/km CO2, which means there is no road tax (ever).
  2. It can do 74 mpg. (we have so far managed 56mpg and that is stop start driving from home to work and back in mostly heavy traffic. 
  3. It has a five star Euro NCAP crash safety rating.
  4. Full colour cameras front and back provide excellent view when reversing or driving forward into unknown spaces.
  5. Panoramic roof. It is awesome to see the sky especially when sunny.


Chye Seng Huat Hardware (coffee shop Singapore).

Two weeks ago I was in Singapore for business and thanks to my colleagues and friends I got to experience Singapore like never before. Here is one such local place that I visited for food and drink which I recommend you visit.

Chye Seng Huat Hardware (Google+ page)

DD9FC85CA3A132B4741929F985D46At first glance this unassuming place looks like it has a burglary problem with all the security bars, but once inside the large metal gates one sees a very pleasant, welcoming coffee shop that does food, pastries and of course coffee.

It was lunchtime and I was missing some good British food so decided to try their version of Bangers and Mash.

The presentation of the food was spectacular, although my dirty mind turned it into something it was not.

Bangers and mashIt tasted all right, although it was never going to compete with a traditional English meal. I wasn’t too sure about the white sausage though and ended up leaving it.

For desert I had some pastries and a coffee, which was delicious.

It is all about the coffee though and if you are a coffee connoisseur and live in or are visiting Singapore then Chye Seng Huat Hardware is a must place to visit. They even have their own coffee roaster and sell bags of coffee to the public.

Address: 150 Tyrwhitt Rd Singapore 207563

Bowen at Chye Seng Huat Hardware in Singapore

Bowen at Chye Seng Huat Hardware in Singapore

The photo right at the top of the page is not mine.

Ranger Bluetooth Palmtop Keyboard II.

My latest most awesome gadget is a 66g Bluetooth 3.0 Palmtop Keyboard II from Ranger. I bought it in Singapore for $55 at the Funan Digital Store. It connects to anything that has Bluetooth.

Ranger Palmtop Keyboard II Bluetooth Touchpad & laser Pointer

So far I have tested it on my Samsung Galaxy Note 3 and was able to fully control the phablet, and was even able to move the mouse around the screen and click into icons, folders, move forward and backwards, just like one would on a computer. Everything can be controlled with this keyboard and touch pad mouse. If it works this well on my phablet then it must work even better on a Tablet given the size of the screen.


I have also tested it on an iPhone 5S. It only worked on apps where one needs to type. It is not able to control anything else, nor does the touch pad work, which SUCKS to be honest, but then frankly why would anyone bother on such a small screen? It just goes to show how super awesome an Android device can be!


I also tested it on my Dell Latitude E6330, which doesn’t have Bluetooth (can you believe it?), but the most awesome keyboard comes with a USB Bluetooth 3 dongle, which hides underneath the keyboard in its own storage area and once it was placed into my laptops spare USB port it paired effortlessly. Not only that, but I was able to use the same dongle to send and receive files. (Technology is awesome)!


I bought it for my Samsung Smart TV back home in England and have yet to test it out, but will update this post on the weekend when I am back in the land of the rain cloud. It is also compatible with Xbox 360 (although I don’t recall having Bluetooth built-in). It is also compatible with PS3, which again I will test when I get home. If it connects to laptops then it will connect to All-in-One computers as well.


On the box it says it supports the following devices:

  • Windows 2000, XP, Vista, CE, 7, 8.
  • MAC OS 10.2.8 and above.
  • Android 3.0 and above.
  • Windows Mobile 5.0 and above.
  • Nokia Symbian S60.
  • MAC IOS: iPad, iPhone, iTouch, Sony PS3 Player, Linux (Debian 3.1, Redhat 9-0, Ubuntu 8-10, Fedora 7.0).

It has a lithium-ion battery built-in, comes with a USB cable for charging. It measures (LxWxH): 154×62.5x12mm

Finally here is a Keyboard Diagram.

20140304_005556Company website:


BLNX was my first best ever trading experience.

Nothing perks ones interest in stocks and shares when you hear others around you making money. Even worse is when one works in a finance company and everyone around you has a portfolio and you don’t. In fact it is damn right embarrassing when someone asks you how your portfolio is going? Huh! what portfolio?…. Okay moving on.

So I started to read up on stocks and shares, but to be honest I didn’t have a clue where to start. There were a few guys in the office that were trading AIM shares and always willing to offer tips or advice, but I was hesitant as I didn’t want to lose my money for the fun of it. One day a colleague of mine asked me about a company called BlinkX (LON:BLNX). At the time BlinkX did video indexing and had a patent or two for some fancy technology they were using on the videos they were indexing. Back then video was just taking off on-line especially on websites such as Youtube. I remember looking at the share price and it was trading around 60p and I told me colleague I was going to invest £100 in BLNX. He told me to wait until the share price dropped back down to 50p-55p as I had missed the boat. I went back home and read everything there was on BlinkX and I was convinced they were onto something big and the chances of the price going down was slim.

blinkxAnd so on the 6th of August 2010 I bought 160 shares in BlinkX and started my portfolio. As small as my share count looked it was an incredible feeling watching the price rise.

From the outset it was a great share to be invested in. I bought when I could afford it and sold when it was peaking. I quickly made a profit and reinvested it back into BLNX. When my colleague told me to sell I would hold on for a little longer before selling some for a bigger profit and it worked out brilliantly.

BLNX Success

A year later I was headed to Spain to walk part of the Camino with my Mom and I knew it would be difficult to keep an eye on my shares while I was away, so on the 16th of September 2011, I sold everything for 153.15p, a few pennies short of BLNX highest price. It was an excellent end and I made a tidy profit. It closed on 152p that day. The price briefly rose a few days later to a record high of 156p before going into a free fall. It was a great time to be out of BLNX. :-)

BLNX Sell All

When the dust settled in April 2012 I got back into BLNX at a price cheaper than when I first bought them (46.20p). The fundamentals were there, people on the forum were all bullish and confident and I believed BLNX could reach those record highs again. It took a while to rise, but when it did, it was worth the wait because in mid 2013 it took off in a big way. It was awesome being in BLNX again. :-)BLNX buying back

At 189p I sold everything having made almost four times my original investment. At the time of selling It was my best investment ever. The share price carried on and recorded a high of 234.75p before crashing in a spectacular way by no fault of its own. (DYOR). BLNX is currently trading at 102.06p :-( but when it has found its bottom I will be buying back in.

My next post will be on Quindell Plc or QPP. They have just become my best investment ever and not just in shares but that is another story for another time.

Frustrating iPhone 5S.

Work CrapBerry or iPhone.. that was the choice. The iPhone was ordered and it arrived last Friday, which was perfect timing considering I had the entire weekend to figure it out, not that I was expecting to figure much out as this phone was made for the masses. :-)


Just to be clear… I have never owned an iPhone and NEVER will, but this post just reiterates why?


  • Oh frack, I can’t use my standard USB 2.0 cable to connect the phone to my PC. The plug is different and as a result I have to buy another cable, so then I can charge next to my bed or at my computer or at work PC (mmm, that gets a bit expensive).
  • Why is the phone so heavy when it is so small? It must be that long lasting battery!
  • Wow! The icons are so dull and boring, but it seems I am unable to change them anywhere. How crap is that?  
  • Damn, I can’t change the desktop background from the desktop in a quick easy manner, instead I have to tap through at least four screens in the settings to change the background. How BACKWARDS is that?
  • I installed Google Hangouts, BBM  (ha ha) because they are awesome chat apps. I wanted to share a photo with either, but it only gives me options to share to ‘Message, Mail, iCloud’ and Twitter, Facebook and Flickr, which are not currently installed on my iPhone.
  • Why are every letter on the keyboard in CAPITALS?
  • Why are the keys so small? Even a person with small fingers could experience “fat finger syndrome”.
  • Why is there no choice to change the look and feel of the keyboard? I mean come on, the keyboard is the most frequent used tool on a phone. For example I would like to see the numbers and punctuation on the letters instead of having to tap into a key to select them and then another key to go back to the letters. All these extra keys means a total waste of time. Also typing in passwords become a right royal pain.
  • I guess it would be asking too much to be able to theme my phone and I mean all menus, the notification bar and the pull up bar. Yes it would be!
  • In the App Store if I search for something and find it and then want to search for something else, I have to first clear down the search bar before I can search again.
  • Some Apps do not have a back out option or a back link so the only way of getting out of the current screen or back to the beginning is to double tap the menu button, close the app and re-open it (BBM app is a good example). I was told to not blame the phone for this, so I am blaming the OS because if Apple had stricter controls over their software they would insist all applications are standardized.
  • In Albums at the bottom of the screen are three icons (Photos, Shared and albums). If I am in Albums there is no way to go back one screen unless I tap on the other icons at the bottom.
  • I want to add a clock and weather widget – Oh! there aren’t any widgets. My bad!
  • On the strange pull up menu, I don’t use the torch or the crappy calculator, can I add my own icons or at least change these icons?
  • How do I change the rainbow effect on the pull up menu? It is so bleh!

Fortunately all I am going to be using on the phone is GOOD enterprise for email and the phone function and nt much else to be honest as it is quite simply sh*t, ah, so that is what the S stands for in iPhone 5S.

Clickety Click Dad would have been sixty six today.

Today would have been Dad’s 66th birthday. Always in my thoughts, tragically taken from us on the 23rd June 1999.


I hope the angels are throwing you a big party where ever you are. There will be no rest in peace today.

Miss you lots and lots
Love Mick