Me                        Old Don's Portmanteau Site                          A Portmanteau
          That's me up there. ....but as I feel                                                                                                                             An unashamed personal indulgence - not quite what they call a "BLOG", but it could easily get that way.

Despite its address this site has nothing to do with radar! You can read more than enough about that at my RAF Ventnor site. So don't go there if learning about the few joys and the many indignities that National Service imposed will bore you. However, there you must go in the most unlikely event of you wanting to contact me.

Portmanteau? Portmanteau?....Well it used to mean a big folding suitcase of a type often used by theatricals but now more commonly refers in a less literal sense to a carrier of a variety of objects : in this instance one or two things in my possession which are rather too good to throw away as they just might be of absorbing interest to certain site visitors. Also individual interests, musings and perhaps even a few pontifications and hobby horses. Those sort of things. Although originally intended for family members, this is a good place in which to try out such things on the public, although not the public at large, as the expectation is that those finding their way here will have done so deliberately via Google et al and thus will have at least a casual glance at what is on offer.

NON SMOKING POLICY : However, now is the time for you to X out if you are unfortunate enough to be a smoker as we are completely intolerant towards people intent on suicide while visiting this site, however slowly they are choosing to go about it. Please go and blow your fumes elsewhere and not over my pages!

For starters, the heavy stuff. Information from a technical viewpoint is provided regarding the way in which large scale commercial accounting could be accomplished (by largely mechanical machinery) in the pre-computer era, the author holding the belief that the current generation has little inkling that such methods ever existed, let alone that punched card data processing was an entire industry in itself. This will be achieved by relating the author's own experience in that environment. The following eventually will be described :-

1) The Post Office MATS Units. These were centres for producing Post Office telephone bills during the nineteen sixties which used the above mentioned machines together with two additional unique machines designed jointly by Powers Samas and the Post Office. Information regarding these forty column Mark Scanners and High Speed Summarisers is most unlikely to be found elsewhere.

2) The BTM/ICT 542 and 550 slotted hole calculators. These are probably already well documented but the author believes he may have unique material displayed here.

And then other perhaps less boring things :-

Such as the tribute to my late elder brother. In the form of a complete book, a whimsical and rare volume about pre-war Wireless which you are privileged to have this chance to read.

But if even that is still too technical for you, we have :-

Songs Just a few rarely heard ones which continue to amuse me and which I hope will amuse you too. Oh! And for good measure a couple of poems are thrown in too.

A little about my schooldays, especially at Roysse's Abingdon School.

Perhaps you might care to find out a little about the Isle of Wight?

In Memoriam A Good Cat

HF Holidays Section - a guide for fellow trudgers.

We have :-

1) a stroll up Snowdon ? Here are twenty two pictures recorded during such an undertaking. (n.b. no thumbnails so it's an 8MB file). Go on, they're worth a click or two.

2)An account of a week's personal inspection of a rather esoteric part of Slovenia in 2008. Perhaps inspired by my report, The Queen went to have a look for herself in October 2008 when President Turk presented her with a horse.

3) This unofficial report of a visit to Norway with HF Holidays in 2009.

4) Another unofficial report : our 2010 visit to Adelboden (Switzerland)

5) And yet another unofficial report is now here : our 2011 visit to Weidach which is near Seefeld in the Austrian Tirol.

6) And the one for our 2012 visit to Baska Voda in Croatia.

7) We went to the spectacularly beautiful Mayrhofen (Austria) in 2013

8) In 2014 we tried the relatively unknown Beara peninsula area of Kerry.

9) 2015 saw us venturing to Montenegro and a brief report appears here.

10)This year it was Chinon in the Loire Valley. Review to appear soon.

And to provide a different flavour to the site, we have :-

Recipes. Just a couple for now, first The World's Best Christmas Pudding, to put it quite modestly, also Apple & Date Rock Buns. which are easy to make and very tasty. A recipe for Date Cake has been recently added. And we now also have Malvern Pudding too. Possibly, if I can be bothered, in due course there might be a few other offerings from my wife's well tried collection.

And just to give you a laugh here is my experience of owning an AC Petite three wheeler.

Perhaps an Electric Enfield would have been better?

And another interest is The Cyclaid.

This example of naive art is sure to be of interest to those who believe that they understand art.

And finally a photo of an old wreck (not me!)

Some of this above work is rather open-ended and will be carried out during the coming years, but possibly not in the order listed. The author is well aware that such incompleteness from the outset is a sure recipe for the deterrence of his readership. But there we have it : what is on offer is very much on a take it or leave it basis isn't it? If I do indeed amuse and interest but a single reader for a short while then I will be well satisfied. If you should click off elsewhere immediately then I quite understand and am equally happy for I should hate to have bored you.

Don Adams
Isle of Wight

Merely  site visits but you can add a couple of thousand to that as this unusual counter has twice started again from zero. However I'm rather surprised it's as many as that!">

All text © 2007 D.C.Adams
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