Have never been so happy to leave Old Blighty. Losing the Ashes hurt. Big time. I was in the Oval on Sunday, surrounded by 24,000 chanting Poms (three of whom had a vocabulary limited to c**t and f**k) and would have loved their chants and fanship if I wasn't such an Australia supporter. I can't read any papers or see Freddie bloody Flintoff and way too many colleagues mention it. And to top it all off, Liverpool lost to Villa. Not happy. Not happy at all.
But...in 12 hours I will be in a cab to Heathrow, on my way to DC. Then New York. Then Seattle. So life ain't too bad after all. Holiday!!!!!!!!!!!
Tuesday, 25 August 2009
Monday, 17 August 2009
A bit of stalking we did too: we 'happened to' go for a pre dinner drink in the players hotel. No swimming pool scenes (as my footy focussed brother asked immediately) but enjoying the Viognier with slightly better views than normal. Bit starstruck I was!
Will have to go back to Canterbury another time, as I think the town deserves a bit more attention than I gave it. Staying in the friendliest pub, the nice little shops and the impressive cathedral are reasons to go back for more.
Sunday, 9 August 2009
We sort of did a tour, and were told a lot about Oxford's history and famous ex students (Bill Clinton and Tony Blair amongst others). Hard to believe the uni was founded in the beginning of the 13th century - it's just so old (potential pub quiz answer: only Bologna and Paris were earlier).
The colleges are incredibly pretty, it must be amazing to study there. The one in the pic is Christchurch. I recognised it from Inspector Morse. The dining hall of Christchurch was used in the first Harry Potter film so it attracts loads and loads of tourists. Still nice to see.
We had a lovely lunch by the river, then headed back into town for some more sightseeing and lazing in the meads. My new camera and I still need to get to know each other. Having limited eye sight due to losing a contact last week and being a bit hungover meant I had my camera on auto all day. Small print manual has to wait till next weekend. Canterbury cricket ground is on the cards for then!
Thursday, 6 August 2009
With the yank bank team I went to the Great British Beer Festival last night. Never really having looked beyond lager, I had come to the conclusion British beer sucks. How wrong I was.
450 ales, stouts and bitters could be tasted at this festival. Leave it to a bunch of accountants to quickly do the math and come to the conclusion that's 450 1/3 pints at the minimum, so 150 pints in four days. Totalling about £ 400. An achievement. We tried six or so, and I really liked the ales. Light, dark, bitter, fresh, they were mostly nice and properly cold (as opposed to the lukewarm lagers). Great way to spend a Wednesday night!
Monday, 3 August 2009
And another weekend in the Dam has gone by. Stuffed with fun stuff. Dinners, bbq, drinks, baby visit, you name it. Staying with dear friend Mary on Prinsengracht meant I was in the midst of things, in general, and on Saturday in particular when the Gay Pride Parade took place on the canal. Not that I saw much of it: I was too busy waiting for the cricket in Birmingham to begin at Coco's. Damn rain - no cricket. Highlight was the BBQ at Pete's place on Saturday night. Good food, good company, and very educational: I now know the differences between the Cockring, Ego, Arc and Prik (all gay bars in Amsterdam). You never know when that piece of info comes in handy.