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Lawrence Upton

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Bear Grylls Men's Arctic Down Jacket - Black/Black Pepper, XX-Large
Bear Grylls Men's Arctic Down Jacket - Black/Black Pepper, XX-Large

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Warm but a bit cramped, 17 Nov. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Not much to say about this yet. It hasn't been pushed anywhere near its limit by the weather, I am pleased to say, and I spend a lot of time too warm. BUT I suspect that it will do very well when I am in cold weather.

It is extremely light weight!

Really my only quibble is their idea of extra large. I like baggy roomy clothes. Had I gone for my size as I and the other clothing manufacturers I use, I could not have got into it


BAGBASE MESSENGER BAG (GRAPHITE GREY)
BAGBASE MESSENGER BAG (GRAPHITE GREY)
Offered by ETHIC-STAR Limited
Price: £7.14

5.0 out of 5 stars Bagbase Messenger Bag, 27 Mar. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
It is exactly what they said it would be. I ordered it on Sunday and they said it would arrive Wednesday -- in a fairly remote place -- and it arrived Tuesday. It's cheap, appears to be well made, looks good and, as I say, is as described. It won't take everything that my bulky briefcase took; but it wouldn't would it? I don't have to carry so much now, except when I *need the heavier bag. I can't think of anything against it.


Neewer® 3.6V 1200mAh Lithium Li-ion Battery NP-BG1 NP-FG1 NPBG1 NP-FG1 Replacement for Sony H10 H20 H3 H50 H55 H7 H70 H9 H90 HX5C HX7 HX9 HX10 HX20 HX30 W100 W110 W120 W130 W150 W170 W200 W210 W220 W230 W290 W30 W300 W35 W50 W55 W70 W80 W90 WX1 WX10 N1 N2 T100 T20 Digital Camera
Neewer® 3.6V 1200mAh Lithium Li-ion Battery NP-BG1 NP-FG1 NPBG1 NP-FG1 Replacement for Sony H10 H20 H3 H50 H55 H7 H70 H9 H90 HX5C HX7 HX9 HX10 HX20 HX30 W100 W110 W120 W130 W150 W170 W200 W210 W220 W230 W290 W30 W300 W35 W50 W55 W70 W80 W90 WX1 WX10 N1 N2 T100 T20 Digital Camera
Offered by Ultra Sales Global
Price: £6.19

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's ok. It works well, 16 Feb. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
What is there to say. I have yet to find anything wrong with it. It charges quickly enough and holds its charge


No Title Available

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Quite a good tent, 26 Oct. 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I haven't been able to unpack this item yet; but as it is to replace exactly the same item I can write my review.
It does really take two people or more to assemble it; but it can be done by one person. You need to have done it with others first and it is not recommended. With two or more it can be done very quickly.
The frame is strong (but see below) and quite ingenious.
It is well-designed spatially.
It does heat up unbearably in the day; maintaining a temperature much higher than outside; but that's not a problem unless you want to sit around in the tent. It's dry and draught free at night.
My problem with it came in high wind. Around 58 kph.
In fact it should have coped. The material is thick and strong and seems well fastened. There are two problems. There are lots of windows and the glued part is rather thin. I cannot think that they reduce costs much by doing that; so it just seems mean; or perhaps not thought through. If the windows had been better glued, the tent might have stayed up. But one blew in.
The other problem is with the main metal poles. There are two of them and they come in three parts each which themselves come in parts one set of which is connected by elasticated cable. Under high wind, the tent moves. It has to or it wouldn't cope; but it is possible for the parts which are held together by elastic to slip right apart and then their edges tear at the sleeves which hold them. It is also possible for the three parts -- 2 uprights and a cross piece -- to separate; and they are not elasticated. And then the strength and shape of the tent has gone.
Put the two together and there's real trouble.
The window blew one window out and then the wind really got hold of the tent. Slowly the poles separated into their constituent parts and eventually the tent came down.
Fair enough, I was in something approaching a gale. But I trusted the tent because it is outwell. And if there had been more glue and if the poles had been better fixed we might have got away with it.
Not much I can do about the glue; but some tape around the joints of the main poles should stop them separating.
It might seem odd to buy the same thing again; but I reason now that I know its limitations and that anything else I buy will have other faults.
Better the devils I know


The Magic of Reality: How we know what's really true
The Magic of Reality: How we know what's really true
by Richard Dawkins
Edition: Paperback
Price: £4.49

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Dawkins' THE MAGIC OF REALITY, 16 July 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I have read in whole or in part all of Dawkins' books. The equivocation is largely over THE ANCESTOR'S TALE which is rather long and which requires rereading on my part.

I like this one very much. It's written "for young people" and maybe he should use that method more. One of its vectors is rather similar to that of THE GOD DELUSION although that is not overt.

Where TGD annoyed me and disappointed me in its hectoring, this adopts a more intelligent approach. (Strange to suggest that he is ever unintelligent; but slagging people off gives them a way out and is boring to read.)

Where in that earlier book, he presents illogicality and effectively demands to know why some are illogical; here he presents a logical and scientific approach and leaves it to the good sense of the reader.

His range is wide. His choice of examples always appropriate but often unexpected. Clearly written. Enjoyable to read. Reasonable length chapters.

I'm passing it on to a friend of mine with two children, a friend who is akin to me in frustration at foolishness -- and akin in that to Dawkins -- so that she can give them a leg up in scientific approach.


The Places In Between
The Places In Between
by Rory Stewart
Edition: Paperback

18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A very interesting book, 11 Dec. 2010
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The Places In Between (Paperback)
How to review such a book for a general audience, not least because I am not expert on Afghanistan and so a member of that general audience.

I like to walk and was therefore interested in the story of a man who crossed Afghanistan on foot from East to West by the mountain route in winter. I know when I am outclassed and I felt it by page 2; but I enjoyed the book none the less. I didn't, for instance, think it an odd thing to do make that walk. I found it quite comprehensible.

The more I learned about Rory Stewart, the less - on principle - I liked him. Primarily, he is a Conservative and that makes him deeply suspect to me. Secondly he warms to soldiers and their jolly humour.

After I had read it, I mentioned the book to one who does know a lot about Afghanistan; and he seemed dismissive but in an odd way. After a few exchanges, he said "He's MI6" Really? "Of course, he is"

I had not thought of that.

I can't see any evidence in the text and I can't see a slant; but maybe I am being stupid.

Of the book itself, I cannot speak too highly. I have already spoken of it to a group who meet intermittently to discuss books they have read.

I learned a great deal. I would have learned it more permanently and a lot better if the maps had been up to it. They are good maps but inappropriately presented; and now I really have little sense of the journey in map terms, to use a lumbering phrase. I coped; but I could have been helped.

A substantial part of the book concerns his relationship with the dog Babur; and that was done well. It could have been sentimentalised; but Stewart reaches out in his writing to this animal with something approaching empathy and certainly with respect yet without sentimentalising.

Technically, his writing is very good. It's clear. It'e elegant. It's quite understated and it might be possible to miss his tone sometimes if one were rushing through the text. He's observant. He's critical. He seems emotionally honest though tough. He's quietly funny.

The MI6 remark stays in my head; as does an awareness that such things are often not clear cut. If the security services are going in for writing travel books, this one would be evidence that they are potentially good at it; and that they are becoming less dangerous to us -- I don't think many would be tempted to follow Stewart. It's quite clear how risky his journey was and how fitted he was for it, physically, temperamentally and linguistically. Dartmoore and Bodmin are enough for me.

The inductive conclusion he reaches about the significance of the splendidly titled Citadel of Jam (and you'll have to read the book to learn that significance) triggered the archaeologist manque in me and I still grieve for the lost data as Afghans destroy their history without, apparently, having any concept of what history in our sense is: I do not propose any cultural relativism to alleviate my judgment on the vandalism of separating artefacts from their contexts in order to sell them. On the other hand, I have not experienced the poverty so many of them experience every day.

And I recall that within my lifetime a farmer ploughed up a good part of a Romano-British village in West Cornwall to use the land, having calculated the statutory fine against the use value of the land. I doubt that he has any idea of history either. It's not about Afghans; it's about ignorance there and idiots here.

It's a book I can imagine returning to. It's certainly a book I recommend, more - in my case - for what it tells you both of the country and of human nature - than for the adventure. I haven't spoken of what one learns of human nature from this book; but there is much. Stewart is shrewd in what he sees and in what he passes on.

He is judgmental; but he is not condemnatory; and I find it worth my while now and then to wonder if my slight dislike, or perhaps it is mistrust, reflects more about my lack of broad experience and a narrowness of tolerance in me than any flaw in him.

That questioning, too, is attributable to this book. It has that level of intellectual energy. It will make you think. Don't read it unless you want to think.

Lawrence Upton
11th December 2010
Comment Comments (3) | Permalink | Most recent comment: May 30, 2014 6:57 PM BST


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