Share this page on

red Status red (Level 5/10)



No member profile available. The person you are looking for is no longer a Ciao member.

Reviews written

since 11/06/2008


Pedalite Pedals 28/11/2009

Twinkle Twinkle For yer Bike

Pedalite Pedals It seems that winter is really established now. It’s cold dark and gloomy and often seems just really dismal all day. With such poor light characteristics this is a particularly dangerous time of year for those of us who venture out on bicycles. The law requires that bikes should have a front white light and a red rear light together with a rear red reflector whenever light conditions are poor. Yet, how many cycles have you seen on a dark night, no lights at all and the rider dressed completely in black. It’s little wonder that accidents are all too frequent, and in the majority of all such collisions it’s the cyclist who comes off worst. Pedalite is not a new concept, indeed I can remember seeing flyers advertising them over 10 years ago whilst shopping in a Hypermarket in France, but it has taken a little while to complete the journey across the Channel. These simple pedal replacements offer twinkling red, white and amber lights, with no batteries and really help improve the visibility of cyclists for other road users. They are however not a replacement for the legally required front and back lights, but should be seen as a sensible enhancement. Product Installation Available today from the likes of Amazon and other high street outlets you can expect to pay around £30 for a set of these replacement pedals. Replacement pedals are exactly what they are, you simply remove your old pedals (once you have worked out which way the thread runs, which is actually quite simple ...

Percol Fairtrade Instant Colombian Coffee 22/10/2009

Conscience Coffee

Percol Fairtrade Instant Colombian Coffee I really love the taste and smell of fresh ground coffee, especially from Colombia or Costa Rica. There is a richness and distinctive aroma as you open the pack which just sets the taste buds tingling………..Alas, all too often it is simply not practical or best use of time to indulge in real brewed coffee so instant must suffice. Unfortunately in this sector of the beverage market price is often indicative of quality, and premium brand instant coffees almost always taste better than the standard or economy offerings. Having experienced enjoyable cups of Percol Fresh Ground Colombian Coffee I had high expectations from the instant variety: even more so since it was on offer at just over £2 for a 100g jar making it very competitive against other premium brands. The packaging with it’s familiar green green hue and prominent Fairtrade logo made me feel even more socially and environmentally responsible. Percol and Fairtrade Percol was launched in 1988 with a registered office in London. My guess is that Percol is a combination of Peru and Colombia reflecting the focus of activity in Mexico and Central America. In 2008 there were only 10 UK employees; so this really is a small but ethical business. In fact the business model relies on support for Coffee Kids as a registered charity with elements of profit, staff time and marketing effort going into developing awareness and support for Coffee Kids. Percol is amongst the pioneers of “Fairtade” for Coffee and Tea Growers, which ...

Johnson Duck Fresh Discs 23/09/2009

'Quacking' Clean Idea

Johnson Duck Fresh Discs I really hate ‘iffy’ toilets. This includes both the unclean variety……. and those which are so heavily charged with either chemical disinfectants or overpowering masking scents. Historically toilet blocks or cleaners were either added to the cistern : slowly generating sludge and gunk or lurked under the rim in a cage arrangement collecting germs and other unpleasant looking growths. As the flu pandemic threatens to return in anger this Autumn, so thoughts naturally turn to cleaning, protecting and dare I say disinfecting the smallest room in the house. Consider then ‘Fresh Discs’ a cageless rim block scented gel dispensed into the toilet bowl and effective for up to one week. Should be no more ‘iffy’ growths here then….. Product and Packaging Produced by S C Johnson, the US Company which brings you for example Raid, Pledge, Brillo, ,Mr Muscle and now this latest variant in the DuckTM range and is actually made in Mexico. Packaged in a non-descript predominantly blue or green/yellow box two ‘flavours’ are available, Lime Zest or Marine Blue. This box contains a gel holder filled with a gloopy substance which is remarkably similar in colour whatever the flavour, and undoubtedly both are a shade of green to my eyes. Also a blue plastic handle is included with pre-determined holes to ensure that you dispense just the right amount of gel,; at least in theory……..Each box which should contain enough for 6 gel dispensing retails for about £3.00 full price. This sounds expensive ...

Toshiba NB100 26/08/2009

Twee little Tosh…..

Toshiba NB100 I am really fond of my old Toshiba laptop. It’s big and it’s clunky, only has a 15 inch screen, but it’s familiar: loaded with lots of useful stuff and frankly too valuable to tote about where it might get lost stolen or broken. Furthermore the notion of accessing e-mail or the internet on a mobile phone device is just too fiddly and beyond my ageing eyesight. Yet, when out and about I still want to be in touch, able to access information, data and send meaningful ( not text speak or hieroglyphics) out to friends and relatives. Enter then the concept of a Netbook computer. You will have seen many examples in the high street shops and white goods outlets, and it even seems that some mobile phone contracts offer them as an incentive. (I rest my case then that there is no competition between the versatility and usefulness of such powerful miniscule computers compared to the compromises built into scaling such functionality so far down so that it fits on a phone). I am happy to carry my phone separately and just boot up my Netbook PC when the need dictates. With a plethora of choice for me familiarity and trust in the Toshiba brand attracted me to the mini marvel. I gleefully selected My Toshiba NB100 from Amazon, electronically submitted payment of £249.98 and waited for the postman to arrive. This he did some two days later in April 2009 bringing a simply boxed package containing a Toshiba NB100-12A 8.9-inch Netbook, Intel Atom N270 1.6GHz, 1GB RAM, 120GB HDD, Windows XP Home ...

Eurolite Beam Deflectors 23/07/2009

Bend those Beamers

Eurolite Beam Deflectors Over the course of many years I have driven on the Continent numerous times in both my own vehicles and hired cars. Each time I have driven a hired car (once I have finished complaining that the gear stick is on the wrong side) I have been struck by how much better the night vision and headlamp performance seems than when I dive my own car abroad. This is undoubtedly due to the fact that I used to insist on creating my own beam deflectors from black sticky tape rather than purchasing adapters, and the blacked out bits were very effective at cutting out the light rather than just directing it away from the centre of the European roads. Moreover living on the .south coast and near to busy cross channel ferry services I am very critical of foreign drivers who come to our shores, do nothing to adapt their headlamps to be suitable for our roads and proceed to blind and dazzle me with what feels to be full on beam headlamps. I appreciate then that notwithstanding the legal implications that doing nothing to adapt my headlamps whilst overseas is simply not an option. On previous vehicles working out which bits of the headlamp needed to be blacked out was always very simple from the prism type patterns on the headlamp glass. No longer is this the case, when you next bother to look in any detail at your lights you can find all manner of different configurations and projection systems which make our modern day lights so much more efficient. Enter then a universal headlamp deflector ...

Sikkens Cetol Marine Teak Varnish 10/06/2009

Garden Bliss

Sikkens Cetol Marine Teak Varnish It’s the English summertime again. Whimsical notions of al-fresco eating and luscious strawberries, bathed in gentle sunshine makes outdoor furniture an essential must have for many households. Any trips to the local nursery or DIY chain will have displayed settings of golden coloured durable wooden furniture as the perfect solution enticingly placed since well before the Easter holidays. Many hardwoods are used for such purpose today, lots from sustainable sources but teak is always the crème de la crème in any such display. The fact that it is a hardwood (so not pine or other coniferous wood), with a high natural concentration of oils and resins means that it is not prone to rot, shrink or distort, withstanding the elements au-naturel……….or so they claim. The Reality When first purchased the teak feels smooth to the touch, not oily but with an unmistakable rich musky smell. The golden colour is streaked with interesting grain and the whole ensemble feels warm and inviting. The literature would have you believe that you need do nothing to this magic material it will naturally weather to a silver grey patina, and in some respects this is absolutely true. Without care or attention, your teak will lose its rich colour and turn grey, go dirty and then shabby looking. Eventually turning green and covered in mildew. The image of forlorn park benches in winter immediately springs to mind for me. This is certainly not the prospect portrayed in the shops, nor does it mention that ...

Getting around in Paris 30/03/2009

Cheap lowbrow tour in a Day!

Sainsbury, J. 16/03/2009

A Proper Job……..

Sainsbury, J. My brother has Downs Syndrome, which in these politically correct times is quaintly described as a learning difficulty. The reality is probably much closer to the historic descriptors of ‘mentally handicapped’ or ‘mentally retarded’. However he is fortunate in that he does go out to work independently to a proper job at a local Sainsbury’s supermarket. Indeed he has been working in the retail sector for most of his working life, although it has only been at Sainsbury’s for the last few years due to TUPE transfer from Safeway via Morrison‘s. His employment experience also includes Tesco and Marks & Spencer. Job Role He is employed as a General Assistant, competent grade within the checkout department, working 24 hours per week spread over 4 days. This competent grade is important since it determines that his hourly rate is paid at a premium over a new team member or someone who has not completed all their training. His current rate is £6.08 per hour which is above the National Minimum Wage rate of £5.73 per hour meaning that Sainsbury’s are actually rewarding him above the minimum they would be obliged to honour. Although he works within the checkout team, there is no way he would be competent to be left unattended on a checkout. Whilst he could operate a scanner and count money, he would be slow with change, and any complications would completely fluster him, whereby the queue would be snaked back to the car park. Consequently his role is based around collecting baskets, ...

J D Wetherspoons (Restaurant) 19/02/2009

Breakfast = Pub ....... surely not!

Pukka-Pies Chicken & Mushroom Pie 10/02/2009

Comfort Food

The English Provender Co Very Lazy Ginger 27/01/2009

Idle Ginger

Frank's Ice Cream Diabetic Vanilla 15/01/2009

At last a diabetic ice cream which tastes good..

Philips DA1102 13/01/2009

Peace at last…until they score that is!

Nestle Quality Street 08/01/2009

Quality Treat

Jacobs Ritz Crackers 16/12/2008

Classy Nibbles

See more reviews Back to top