London Visit

February 20, 2009

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Today was the last (week) day of Miss Fleet’s half term. Mrs Fleet decided to bring Miss Fleet and Rothmans to London for a day out. They came up on the train and I met them for lunch at Ultimate Burger on Glasshouse Street just off Piccadilly Circus. (It’s a great gourmet burger place, and their Satay burger is to die for). After lunch I went back to the office while Mrs F took the girls to London Zoo, where they had great fun (Miss Fleet was amazed and delighted to discover that Komodo Dragons are in fact real and not a figment of Daddy’s imagination).

After their fun time at the Zoo they came and met me from the office and we did our traditional visit to Banana Republic on Regent Street (my third favourite store in the world after the Apple Store on Fifth Avenue in NY and any Ruehl 925 store (Abercrombie and Fitch’s grown up elder brother – they don’t have them in the UK). Miss Fleet loves BR because the name amuses her and because the store is generously provided with comfortable chairs – she migrates from one to another as we move through the store. I bought a very nice purple sweater. Amazingly Mrs F didn’t partake, but I gather there is a dress she has her eye on for my brother’s nuptials later in the year.

All in all a nice day out for the girls, albeit an exhausting one for Mrs F!

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Saab Trouble

February 20, 2009

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Photo © Martin Bergstrand

Very sad news today. GM owned Saab has filed for protection from it’s creditors – the Swedish equivelent of Chapter 11. It appears that GM plan to try to spin Saab off as an independant company, although it’s difficult to see how it could survive, given it’s performance in recent years and the general collapse of the car industry since the credit crunch. Certainly the experience of MG Rover isn’t exactly promising, although hopefully the management team at Saab will prove more capable than the people who steered Rover to it’s untimely end.

I’ve had two Saabs in recent years, a 9-3 and a 9-5, and I loved both although the 9-5 eventually had to go as it cost too much to run. They managed to retain some of their individuality even through 20 years of ownership by GM and didn’t seem to suffer the unfortunate image issues which have plagued the likes of BMW and recently Audi. Hopefully they will survive in some form.