Saturday, July 31, 2010

July Post

Well, I just made it for this month's post.

Always a bitter sweet feeling - the last day of my favourite month of the year. As so often the sports thing ended in a series of what ifs and maybe next years.

The world cup for England ended in a rather horrifying 4-1 defeat and the usual hysterical over-reaction. Andy Murry got to the semi-finals of Wimbledon before losing to an inspired Rafa Nadal, who is looking more and more indestructible as he enters the peak years of his career. It'll be interesting to see how he gets on in the forthcoming U.S hard-court season, when traditionally he fades, not least because hard courts are so tough on the legs.

Meanwhile the coalition government have settled in, and so far I'm very pleasantly surprised, although the public spending cuts haven't bitten yet, and we're still bogged down in the quagmire of Afghanistan, with no prospect of victory in sight.

A huge cache of secret documents has confirmed what most people had already guessed - huge numbers of Afghan civilians being killed, the conflict has spilled over to the Pakistan border, and hope seems in short supply. Once again, I wish that the U.S had been lucky and managed to kill or capture Osama Bin Ladin years ago. Once that deed had been accomplished we all could have left within 6 months. As it was, the failure to get him led to a desultory and distracted military campaign whose goals seemed to change every six months. I do hope this time next year we're out of there, with or without American approval. I'm still a fan of Obama, but his most obvious mistake when elected was to decide to fight on in Afghanistan 'a war of choice' as he put it. I do hope he's realistic about what can and cannot be achieved there.

Apart from all that, it's been a very good summer indeed - lots of hot sunny days and very little rain. I took a few not-very-good pictures from the train last week, one of which is at the top of this post.

Alas the school holidays have started, which is the normal cue for a cold wet deluge.