From my diary

I’ve had a cold for the last few days, and so I have been lying on the sofa reading a rather low-grade Christian novel.  Nothing much is happening here.

One interesting thing is that I popped into the Premier Christian Radio forums.  Sadly the administrators have allowed them to be hijacked by atheist trolls.  It was bedlam in there.  Until the owners take charge, posting is futile.  It’s telling that unmoderated fora are now, to all intents and purposes, impossible.  That wasn’t so, once upon a time.

Long ago I read a post in a usenet newsgroup describing how a group of trolls could deliberately take over a news group and make it their own.  I wish I had it now; for the techniques, far from becoming marginal, have become mainstream.

I’m looking forward to getting back to scanning Theodoret’s commentary on Romans. It’s going much better than it might have done, in the second half.  Can’t do much today, but maybe on Thursday!

I have an event in Oxford on Saturday, and I was contemplating booking into the Randolph Hotel for two nights, rather than drive up on Saturday morning.  This is the grandest hotel in Oxford, in a great location, and it is where important people always used to stay.  However it’s ridiculously expensive — around 400 GBP –, and I simply don’t propose to throw money away like that.  A look at Tripadvisor reveals that it is about as good a standard as one might expect — swanky public rooms, but poorly maintained bedrooms and bathrooms.  It is the great, traditional, horrible British hotel experience, in other words, avoiding which made Premier Inn into a massively successful business.

All the Oxford town centre hotels are pricey, and indeed I have never stayed in any of them.  Who does, one wonders?  The Oxford Spires wants 300 GBP for two nights. 

The Holiday Inn Express looks better value — 150 GBP for  two nights — but is far away.  Maybe that would do.  But of course then one has to factor in car parking.  Oxford is really a mess, at least as far as visitors are concerned.

Maybe I will just drive up that morning.

12 thoughts on “From my diary

  1. Says who?! You need merely look at this thread that I started to see trolls hooting and capering and baiting and throwing personal abuse all over it, starting with Firebird’s deliberate troll of “arrogant”.

  2. The journey from Ipswich to Oxford by train would involve taking a taxi to the station (because you can’t park there), time half an hour; an hour and a half to Liverpool Street in London; an hour (carrying bags) to get to Paddington station; an unknown journey to Didcot; a change there for Oxford; and then another taxi to … somewhere.

    Oxford is horrible to get to by train.

  3. Public transport is impossible if you are not on a main route. Great pity tho’, one meets such interesting people when travdelling by train.

  4. Interesting to know about OxfordRooms. Although the only match I got was a so-called “executive suite” in Keble for 105 GBP a night!

    I’ve booked a night in the Holiday Inn Express (at 65 GBP) instead.

  5. Hi Roger,

    You are correct to highlight this issue. We’re attending a wedding in Cornwall in April, and in the end gave up any hope of finding a hotel room in Fowey at a decent price. We’ve concluded that the only solution is to drive down (early) on the day, and then drive back (late) the same day.

    When we come up to Cambridge for Christian Heritage Trustees meetings, we’ve taken to using ‘University Rooms’ in order to locate centrally-placed and reasonably-priced rooms for a couple of nights.

    Hope you’re feeling better today. Why not volunteer your services to PCR as a Troll Exterminator?


  6. You’re not going to find anywhere in Fowey — hey, just parking would be a nightmare! But there’s no need to drive to Cornwall and back.

    Why not try the Premier Inn in St Austell? It’s up on the hill, with a spectacular view over St Austell bay, and the prices are no worse than usual with that chain. And … it’s cancellable until 1pm on the day of arrival (unless you take some discount — I wouldn’t), which means that there is no down side on placing the booking.

    The Premier Inn at Carnon Downs is also a good place, but it’s rather further away.

    I had to go down to Cornwall suddenly for a funeral in November a few years back, and had no choices. I ended up in a hotel — the Cliff Head, I think — in Carlyon Bay, which was very expensive and utterly dismal; the British hotel at its worst. I asked for a quiet room, drove 400 miles, and was stuck in a room on the stairwell under a set of noisy pipes. I asked for a change, and was put in a garret room with mould on the walls. But of course they have got you, and they know it.

    When I worked in Cambridge, I stayed in Ely. Ridiculous, and not very practical. UniversityRooms is a good idea.

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