Tuesday, 27 October 2015

Too Much (Unnecessary?) Infromation

Rapturous Raptor Return
On Sunday (last) the fbb's and chum returned to Seaton from the Isle of Wight after leading the morning service at their former church in East Cowes. (Passage : John Chapter 5)

Having booked the 1330 departure there would have been plenty of time for post service chat, but, in the end all had left by 1225 and a quick nip round the corner saw the gang join the 1230 sailing as last on - just! The vessel was Red Osprey, one of the three "Raptor" class boats that chug to and fro up and down Southampton Water.
A few years back (is it really as long as that?) all these boats were stretched and made taller by gluing in some extra bits.
Red Osprey used to look like this ...
... and now looks like this. (picture shown here at equivalent scale.)
This made room for more cars BUT the amount of passenger seating was barely changed. There was much sniffiness when, in the busy Summer season, passengers had to STAND all the way from Southampton to East Cowes and vice versa. Well, IN THEORY, they didn't have to stand but the extra seats were on an open deck (labelled "A") so it was either a wet ride or stand. For some unaccountable reason, few chose the wet ride!

At last, the folk at Red Flannel have done something about it. They have glued a extra deck on the top. Technically, the open decks ("A") fore and aft (dig the nautical terminology) of the bridge have been covered over and a new open deck (deck "AA") stuck on the roof.
AA Deck
This is a brand new Wi-Fi equipped sun deck located fore and aft of the ship’s bridge. Accessed via four outside staircases from A deck, the new space features teak style seats and will afford striking views of the Solent. The new deck will be the perfect place for holidaymakers to unwind, enjoy a locally-made ice cream and watch the yachts and ships passing through the Solent.

At the same time the main passenger deck ("B") has been poshed-up with new comfy chairs and, of course, additional retail and catering facilities. Here's a promo video about it.
fbb did like the comfy seats, much appreciated after a busy preaching morning.
The video referred to 34 TV screens. This "exciting" faciltiy ensures that you cannot possibly snooze without being pestered by advertorial material or, heaven forfend, "TV programmes". The usual policy elsewhere is to show the BBC News Channel where, to while away your journey, you can listen to the same piece of news 26 times in a half-hour slot. How lovely!

Fortunately, on fbb's crossing, such delights were not available. But what were these 34 screens displaying? Apart from a pretty red Red Funnel title page, the screens were scrolling through these:-
Road Traffic Info? Useful for onward travel, mayhap; IF it is correct and up-to-date. fbb's lorry driving chum is somewhat disparaging about the work of the Ministry of Whatever broadcasts this stuff. He is often on the phone to tell them that either (a) there is no hold-up, or (b) there is an almighty cloggage which they haven't revealed to the unsuspecting (and stuck!) motorist.
Times of return ferries. Useful if you are making only a brief visit to the Mainland, or if you suddenly decide you didn't want to go anyway. Hmmm
Perhaps some drivers will be intending to park at the airport and catch a flight; but more useful might be arrivals if you are driving to meet someone.
Ditto National Express - no mention of Arrivals.
Ditto Rail - ditto Arrivals.

There is not a lot you can do sitting on a boat half way across the Solent taking in the details of flights, trains and coaches which are departing as you sail.

Overall, this data is being delivered because it can be, not because anyone has thought about how useful it might be. Because, except in a very few exceptional circumstances, it isn't.

And where are the times of the bus from ferry terminal to Southampton centre and station? There is absolutely nothing on the boat about onward travel by bus, mainland or island.

Too much unnecessary information indeed!

Tomorrow. Catching a bus or train in Delhi.

No. seriously folks. The blog is really really about catching a bus in Delhi, India ...
... or train.
From a blog reader and comment writer,
and, notably, a Sheffield resident.
Comment posted at 1600 yesterday.

Despite earlier promises, no printed timetables in Arundel Gate office today. Racks of maps are available on some buses. Kind weather has allowed the survival of the cardboard stop notices at least in places. Buses carry stupifyingly vague posters saying 'Sheffield's buses are changing on 1 November' with no detail whatsoever. For the biggest set of changes in the history of buses in the city, this is pathetic.

  अगले बस ब्लॉग बुधवार 28 अक्टूबर

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