World first – a New Year's Day that didn't include a hangover ! OK, that doesn't count the year I was working breakfast radio with Eldo at the girl guide camp, but then there wasn't exactly hard core booze-like-it's-the-last-day-of-the-year action going on there, either.
The evening's festivities were provided by the highly excellent Polli (should be Polli's, but polli is an Italian plural already) – a delightful binge on some amazing chow freshly brought in from Turin, excellent company, and a couple of halfway decent bottles of vino (for the grape-heads reading, a Moet & Chandon champagne, a Loire Valley rose, a de Bortoli Pinot and a Petaluma Cab Sauv. Merlot).
Apologies also for anyone who received my Happy New Year text message more than once – there was a combination of technology and alcohol conspiring against me, and field reports suggest that some lucky punters got it up to a dozen times. Can't wait to see January's phone bill.
Speaking of bills, we were all greeted with the news that London Underground & Bus fares are going up, AGAIN. The press release on their website starts out “New Year fares will mean passengers can make big savings by switching from cash to Oyster, with many bus and Tube Oyster single fares frozen, and many now half the cost for the same journey if paying by cash.” – what it glosses over is the notion that single cash Tube fares rose from about 2.20 to 4 pounds, and cash bus fares went up from 1.20 to 2 pounds. So that's an interesting spin – double one type of fare, and then tell all the users of the other type how much money they're saving !
“Stop whinging about how expensive Tube fares are Jason!”, you say. “Next it'll be a rant about how it all used to be green fields around here, and you remember when pies only cost 90 cents each”. I guess it just gets to me that (for instance) bus fares have doubled since May 2004, and yet the service doesn't seem to have changed noticeably since then. “Service”, in the agricultural sense, I guess.