Once again, my apologies for the extended absence. However, news at this stage is good and my dad is making a good recovery. I’ll be heading back to Oz on Monday and picking up all the things I had to drop in such a hurry. For my students and clients, I’m very grateful for your patience and forbearance. For my readers, I’m sure you’ve enjoyed the brief period of peace and quiet (but thank you for your patience too.)

Until I can get properly back into things, I thought I might share a few interesting moments of recent weeks with you. One of the standout things for me was a toilet. I had to get a last minute flight out here to England, which meant getting any flight available. I ended up having to take an overnight stop in Japan. The airline was kind enough to provide a hotel room for my stay (thanks JAL!) The hotel room contained this:

Well, obviously the ensuite bathroom contained it, not the actual room. That would just be weird.

Notice the control panel on the side? Here’s a close-up:

The +/- scale at the top determines the power of the water jets. The Bidet button presents a wide upwards shower that washes your entire butt. The Spray button, as the picture suggests, causes a spray. Now let me tell you, that is one accurate spray! Quite an experience. However, the most important word on that panel is one I hadn’t noticed at first. It’s the one under the orange button that says STOP. There was a few seconds of panic until I noticed that one.

The silver lining to these unexpected trips is the opportunity to catch up with all my friends and family that I see so rarely otherwise.

Here’s my bruv Jo, with his little girl Carmen:

Here’s my good mate Hamish and his family (Jacqui, Sam, Robert, Katie and Noodles):

And here’s Graham feeding the pony:

There you have it. Enough of my self-indulgence for now. By this time next week things should all be back to normal.