My Writings. My Thoughts.


Not so smart now, are ya?!

August 25th, 2009 -- No Comments »

Well that’s that done: the nice dentist has made me somewhat more stupid and pulled out all my wisdom…
I’m sat here writing this with half my face numb, but honestly it was easy. 10 min for the anaesthetic to kick in, and then 10 min to pop the bugger out. Couple of stitches and viola: no more tooth poking in to my jaw muscle.

Although he did mention that this afternoon it’ll start to feel like someone’s punched me in the face. Oh the memories of high school eh??


Perfect teeth…. still

August 23rd, 2009 -- 1 Comment »

After having been told by our local dentist that she needs a few fillings sorted out, Linda decided that I too should go round for a check-up. Given the fact it’s been about 7 years (my average time between appointments) I agreed and got my teeth checked out.

“You have perfect teeth! No cavities whatsoever!” was the verdict! Although I did have to go to the mean evil hygienist, who after prodding your face with various annoying polishing tools still has the guts to tell me to come round every 6 months for a good cleaning…. pffff… see you in 7 years!

Also, the dentist has decided that I’m way too smart, and intends to remove some of my wisdom through one of my teeth. But that’s Tuesday, so I’ve taken the day off. He reckons it’s an easy 40 min job, so it shouldn’t bee too problematic.


1… 2… done

August 16th, 2009 -- 3 Comments »

Oh the nightmares of camping in France!!! Having about 2 square metres to set up an ancient tent, weighing about 30 kilos and missing all the essential bits, which according to dad aren’t “really needed”….
Going to the toilet incorporates walking down the camping site, with every neighbour (they are ALL neighbours) looking you over, wondering if you are going to need the complete bog roll, or if you’ll manage a dump and still return with 3 sheets of andrex…. and don’t get me started on “doing-communal-dishes”… GOD I HATE CAMPING!!!

But…. if it means I get to see the Formula 1 in Spa, then well… I’ll make an exception. I’ll go camping… But I’ll be damned if I go with anything less than the latest and most technology savvy. Spending anything more than 2 seconds on setting up a tent is just so… well… so… last century!

Introducing Quechua; the throw-in-the-air-and-pop-in-2-seconds tent! Check out this link for the full set of pictures, including folding the thing up again.


My 23rd birthday party

July 19th, 2009 -- No Comments »

It has become a tradition over the last 9 years or so: Lorin and me jointly celebrating yet another year of growing wiser and better looking…. well… I’m sure Lorin is getting something as well with each year.
The camera woman appears to have been drunk
This year we had the BBQ in Putney. Starting at 2 in the afternoon, it only lasted till 4…. but then that was from 2pm to 4am! See here for the full set of pictures.
The morning after
The morning after


OK… so blogging it is

January 1st, 2009 -- 3 Comments »

OK, after having kept up with Linda, Ian, Jenny, Kristin, Twm, and god knows how many others blogs, I decided it’s about time I follow suit. I write this just as about all of the above have stopped updating their blogs, in favour of “twitter” (puke), or simply in favour of lazyness, so I wouldn’t be surprised if this blog too will last about 2 days and no more… After all, I AM the king of lazyness…

That said, I shall do my best to keep this blog up to date. I can’t promise there’ll be many pictures on this blog. I can however promise that, as those who know me, I’ll rant on an on until pigs start flying. That unfortunately does not equate to actual postings that are worth reading however, but such is life…


Weekend in the Big Apple

October 28th, 2006 -- 1 Comment »

After a sleepless night we got up real early to get on the flight to New York. With a stop over in Cleveland and some time-zone differences we arrived at NY in the afternoon.
Its up to you - new york, new york
Since we were flying out the Saturday following, we only had one and a half day in NY. We managed to cram in the most obvious attractions, all in all I really liked NY. A bit grotty (that subway makes the London tube look good!), but that just adds character to the place…
We even saw a live TV set complete with blown up cars, I was attacked by a crazy jumping squirrel, and the last day we got absolutely soaked by some torrential rain storm. (Oh and that Empire State building was COLD)


Very Important Jelte & Linda

October 25th, 2006 -- No Comments »

VIP… stands for Linda & Jelte. We had our VIP tour at Universal Studios today and it was great fun! I highly recommend anyone thinking of going there (and probably any theme park for that matter) to get VIP tickets. Not only are you treated like celebs, most importantly you dont have to wait in any queue! We had loads of fun on all the rides and seeing all the various sets. Not many pictures though; we were too busy.
Who he?
Unfortunately today did not end as good. Since our flight is tomorrow at some god forsaken early hour, we have checked in to the Super8 near LAX. I’m writing this with Linda snoring in bed next to me, whilst the planes (including 747′s) are landing 100 yards from here. The noise is horrendous! and the planes aren’t quiet either! Luckily I have some earplugs.


“Marine Haze”

October 24th, 2006 -- No Comments »

Today was a quite day (Linda recovering from the White Russians). All we did was drive to LA. Remind me never to go to a Travel Lodge again! After a lot of hassle (don’t ask) we left the Travel Lodge in LA for a Best Western. We spent the rest of the evening just looking around LA. Its surprising how run down and dodgy some parts of even Hollywood Blvd are!
Marine Haze my arse
The place seemed very smoggy as well, until we were reliably told that it was not smog but a “marine hase” (uh huh)


Iron, Lion…. Zion

October 23rd, 2006 -- No Comments »

Zion is by far my favourite park of all the ones we’ve seen so far. It’s more of a real park, with trees, waterfalls and animals. We even went proper horse back riding! My horse was called “SB”, and after 10 minutes on the stubborn ‘ole bastard you know why he’s called “Son of a B….”!!
We decided to go back to Vegas for the night and see the Circus de Soleil show that evening. Once we were there though, it turned out only one of the five was showing on the Monday and that one was sold out. So instead Linda decided to get drunk on White Russians….



October 22nd, 2006 -- No Comments »

Our second and final day in Moab we decided to spend white-water rafting. We debated this for quite some time since it’s pretty cold up here, but in the end decided we wont be near the Colorado river any time soon so what the heck. We need not have worried. The “intro” rafting was more like doodling along. Linda got her bum wet once, and that was about it. Still a good trip though with a lot of pretty sights of the canyon walls.
Having seen a LOT of rock now, we’ve decided to skip Bryce and go straight to Zion. This involved driving down a big, wide, empty freeway… When I say empty I mean *EMPTY*…. no-bloody-body on it except us… and… one highway patrol car…. @#$@$@#! $157 that one cost me!!!


Exercise time!

October 21st, 2006 -- No Comments »

A full week in to our holiday and today we finally did some serious hiking. We spent a few hours up in Arches and finished that off with a long hike up to the Double O arches. Linda even ignored her fear of heights for a day and managed to climb over the rock fin which is part of the trail!
Fear of heights?? Not me!!!
We went out to celebrate that evening and found some pretty weird people in the bar. They can’t be all that bad though, since most had t-shirts with
“He’s *still* not my president!”,
“I already vote NO to the next war”, and
“Somewhere in Texas a village is missing its idiot”.


Scenic Monument Valley

October 20th, 2006 -- No Comments »

We had a little revise of our plan today. We were meant to go up to Bryce, then stay somewhere along the Escalante and then on to Moab (Arches) the next day. But that would mean going back the same route, which would be boring. So we went through the Navajo reserve, south of the Glendale canyon instead and drove straight up to Moab instead. This meant we now also have some pictures of Monument Valley (which really is a must on this trip).
Check out Linda's depth of field shot!
Getting to Moab it was quite good to see some civilisation again, and Moab even stays open after dark! (shock horror)



October 19th, 2006 -- No Comments »

Aye skipper!
Power boats rock! Although they are a whole lot more boring than a sailing boat, they have their place. And a carbon fiber, light-as-hell, 19 foot small boat with 150 break horse power (!) can put a smile on anyone’s face!
After blasting around for about 4 hours though, we were bored of all the canyons (sorry, but if you’ve seen one, you’ve kinda seen them all) so we just chilled in the resort. Linda also had her first drive in the big american muscle car! And wow! 25 mph sure is fast innit?! ;-P After 20 min of that, I drove back (in 5 min)


Time for a bit of water

October 18th, 2006 -- No Comments »

Lake Powell was our next stop. A man made lake, and all the amenities to go along with that (kayaking, power boating, water skiing, wake boarding, you name it). We got there in the afternoon and booked a powerboat for the next day. Since we were now a day ahead of schedule we decided to spend that on a boat rather than moving on.
Lake Powel


Cold canyon

October 17th, 2006 -- No Comments »

I found the canyon!
So the next two days were planned in the Grand Canyon. It’s an amazing sight this huge canyon, but from when I was a kid that is all I remember: a big hole (that and the fact that some idiot had driven his car down the edge when we were there! -did that really happen or have I watched too many movies?). Linda specifically wanted to spend two days here since there is SOO much to do. I wondered about that, but what the heck.
It took exactly 3 minutes and 23 seconds at the edge of the south rim for Linda to decide that two days might actually be a bit too much. Sure it is pretty, but DAMN IT’S COLD!!! 38 degrees Fahrenheit plus a blazing wind!
On top of that the hotel was crap, the steak house appalling, and the breakfast consisted of one (old) muffin… time to move on


Time to heat up

October 16th, 2006 -- No Comments »

The one and only tree in the whole of Death Valley
Time for some heat! Today we spent driving through death valley. TomTom is one wonderful piece of kit! No worrying about roads, crossings or any other nonsense. Death Valley, and all the detours we took became easy navigating. Just go where you want, and by the time you want to head off to your end destination, let TomTom do the work for you.
So apart from the tech endorsement, Death Valley itself was beautiful. I had forgotten about the salt lakes in the valley (I thought they were only in salt lake city!). But I had remembered how deserted it was… or rather how deserted it *was*. No longer. Tourists *everywhere*, including a complete luxury resort right smack in the middle of it!
Once we’d seen enough, we took off for Vegas, which oddly enough was a bit of a disappointment. The last time I was there, I was nine. Apart from the big neon signs, I didn’t see much (anything) that time around. We had both expected big, glamorous casinos. And although the exterior of some is impressive, inside they are all the same: tacky and non exciting. We spent exactly 0 dollars…


Middle of nowhere

October 15th, 2006 -- No Comments »

After spending four hours last night reverse engineering the TomTom’s inner workings, I have got the US maps to work! (note to self: write a long email to those TomTom boys). That was a good thing too, because we went for a trip around Santa Barbara. It’s been 20 years since I lived here, and although I went back for a bit a few years back, I honestly would not have been able to find anything without TomTom.
In the afternoon we set out to Ridgecrest. We knew there wouldn’t be much there, but it was to be our pitstop before we head into Death Valley tomorrow. However, when we got there we realised just how little there was in Ridgecrest! 20 trailers, 2 gas pumps, in the middle of nothing, some people with three eyes and some married people looking distinctly like brothers and sisters…
My opinion of Ridgecrest

So since we made some good time with our muscle car, we decided to keep going to a little town called Lone Pine. We had no idea what it would be like, but it’s great! A very small, sweet town, which seems to have some film history. We stayed in the little motel that John Wayne used to stay in, which the whole town seems to advertise as if the man himself had built the whole country… by hand!


Pimp my ride!

October 14th, 2006 -- No Comments »

After flying for about 11 hours we arrived in LA. And after having spent close to 300 quid on a TomTom sat-nav system with maps for the US, it has failed on us already. Although it worked fine in the UK, it seems to have developed a general disliking of Americans. It simply wont boot.

Fast and Furious!

But even without it, we found our way to Santa Barbara and the hotel without any problems. We even did it a whole lot quicker than expected, but that could have something to do with the fact that we spent a little extra to get an upgraded, pimped up, monstrous car :-)


A fine end

June 10th, 2006 -- No Comments »

A fine end
Final day on the seas… Taking a quick trip across the shipping lane took us back to Kalamaki marina. After cleaning up, fuelling and packing, we were off in to Athens for some final drinks before catching our flights back home. Our waitress providing one of the most viewed online images of this trip!
Daily statistics:
•Wind force: 3
•Calm sea
•Total nautical miles: 13 NM

•Total nautical miles of trip: 145 NM


Alcohol is your best friend

June 9th, 2006 -- No Comments »

Please....please...just let me die
After a heavy night of partying, the crew was not feeling great today, and that’s an understatement! The winds picked up to a strong Northerly force 5 as well. So rather than trying to reef and tack through that with a crew ready to puke out last nights fun, we decided to motor up North.
The plan was to head up all the way back to Kalamaki, but at reaching N.Aigina we decided to anchor up in the leeway of the island, getting a well deserved rest from the swells.
At this point we also learnt our speedometer had been off by quite a lot during the week. According to the calculations we were about 10% faster than the instrument told us! We would do the last stretch to Kalamaki on Saturday morning instead, allowing a nice night in the bay rather than the polluted Athens.
Body bag
Daily statistics:

  • Wind force: 5
  • Moderate sea; high swells
  • Total nautical miles: 22
  • PHVsPjwvdWw+