So, it took me two weeks to put the BBC texts I had to translate through Babelfish, sentence by sentence, sometimes word by word. It was horrendously slow but it was very rewarding and, thanks to this new – and much more accurate – way of translating, I managed to meet my very short deadline – again (see More of the same below). Now, after taking a few days off, I’ve resumed my daily struggle with the big book I have to do for next year. I can’t Babelfish it, though: it’s much too long. Shame.
Anyway, I walked down to Hammersmith, the other day: I thought I might celebrate my new-found semi-freedom by buying some tat in TK Maxx, as is my wont. On the way, I encountered a big fridge, plonked in the middle of the pavement. It looked familiar – probably the same one I’d seen on that very same spot several days earlier. A couple of B&Bs along Shepherd’s Bush Road are being refurbished and their front gardens look like enormous skips. On the way back, I pinched a nice piece of new carpeting to use as a doormat sometime in the future. With the amount of stuff they’d chucked out I could in fact have re-carpeted my entire flat. I’m a bit of a scavenger, me. The fridge wasn’t in working order, unfortunately, otherwise I might have taken it too – it was still there.
Apart from that fridge and the lengths of carpet and underlay, I also saw one of those pathetic LOST notices that desperate pet owners pin on trees. That one was particularly heartbreaking: a cute five-month-old puppy had been taken from his owner under threat, in Notting Hill Gate. The fact that the guy was now looking for him in my neighbourhood showed that he obviously thought the villains who’d committed such a horrid deed couldn’t possibly live in upmarket NHG. Yeah, right! Like it’s not full of drug addicts and rogues of all kinds – and I’m just talking about the denizens of NHG who gather at the posh Electric Brasserie...
Still, he’s not the one who deserves to be slapped, obviously, poor man. Losing a pet is bad enough, but having to give it away yourself to criminals must be unbearable. Who would put someone through this kind of ordeal? And for what? Money?