curiouswombat: (Travel)
posted by [personal profile] curiouswombat at 05:25pm on 28/05/2012 under ,
I had fully meant to report daily from Coventry - but was too busy doing - and then too tired.

So this is really just to show that it doesn't take much to make me happy, or impressed.

I am updating my journal from the Ben-my-Chree about 15 miles off the island, on our way home.

These days even the boat has Wi-Fi!
Mood:: 'amused' amused
curiouswombat: (Writerconicon)
posted by [personal profile] curiouswombat at 08:08pm on 23/05/2012 under ,
S2C and I are off on the boat in the morning to go to Coventry. I know we are a day early - as a committee member it is nice to be there to welcome everyone, but we can't get any earlier than 16.30. So we go a day early, meet up with fellow committee members Gillo and Daiseechain, have a lie-in on Friday morning and then sort out break-times and things with the hotel staff on Friday morning - before retiring to the bar ready to greet everyone else as they arrive on Friday afternoon!

I will have time on the boat to put together a Powerpoint presentation with my headers on - and possibly the odd illustration... the talk is more or less written.

We will doubtless be blogging more or less live on the community - quite possibly including our thoughts on Eurovision through a slightly alcoholic haze...

If I don't post anything here over the weekend, we should be home on our small island on Monday evening.
Mood:: 'tired' tired
curiouswombat: (suitable job for a lady)
posted by [personal profile] curiouswombat at 07:49pm on 16/01/2012 under , , ,
I can't resist - I'll have to join in. The WIP meme - you know the thing, post a taster of your current Work In Progress...

Under the cut there are a few paragraphs of Immigrants )

It's unbeta'd - so the punctuation may leave a little to be desired!
Mood:: 'full' full
curiouswombat: (Travel)
posted by [personal profile] curiouswombat at 07:58pm on 03/08/2011 under , ,
I'm tired. I've been hectic at work all day and think I need an early night. Especially as we will have to be up early in the morning, to get down to the boat to check in, as we are off to The Event!

In other words we are off to Coventry for WriterConUK. Yes, I know, it doesn't start until Friday evening, but as one of the three person committee I want to be there to greet everyone as they arrive. (We'll be in the bar to the left of the front door...)

Poor old S2C is even more tired than I as he was at work last night and has then been awake all day.

So - the plan is that I put a lot of stuff in a suitcase (I get T-shirts dirty very quickly!), he adds a spare T shirt and his undies and socks - and then he looks after the suitcase so that I can bring my proper laptop as it has useful things like the accounts on it...

He's a good husband!

Looking forward to seeing everyone who is coming - I'll report back about it all.
location: home still
Mood:: 'tired' tired
curiouswombat: (D-d does glam)
posted by [personal profile] curiouswombat at 09:48pm on 28/06/2011 under ,
After my post this morning it occurred to me that I hadn't explained properly just what D-d is doing over the summer - just mentioned it to one or two people. She finished at the College of Law on June 17th - and her new job doesn't start until the beginning of September. Technically she is still a student until the 31st August - and so this was her last long break and also her last chance to make use of a student round the world air ticket.

D-d has the travel bug - and so she wasn't going to let this opportunity pass her by. She has a very good friend who is teaching English in Buenos Aires and grandparents in Western Australia. She has wanted, since she went to Australia as a 17 year old, to explore the Great Barrier Reef, the Australian rain forest and so on, and also wanted to see Thailand as a couple of her friends have been there.

So she decided to put these things together and, if you are interested, here is her planned itinerary - already slightly altered to allow for volcanic eruption... under the cut )
Mood:: 'anxious' anxious
curiouswombat: (D-d does glam)
posted by [personal profile] curiouswombat at 08:44am on 28/06/2011 under ,
So - D-d left the island yesterday morning, and at the moment, 8.35am on Tuesday, she should be within an hour or two of landing in Buenos Aires.

Note the 'Should be'. She is just having breakfast in the Hilton at Gatwick... The Chilean volcano caused her flight to be cancelled. B.A. are putting her up at the Hilton, and the current plan is that she will take off from Heathrow tomorrow (Wednesday) about 7am for Madrid (yes - the one in Spain) where she will get an Iberia flight to Buenos Aires.

I am now wondering what happens if she gets to Madrid and then the onward flight is cancelled - presumably Iberia then put her up in Spain. Good thing many of their staff are likely to speak English as D-d knows no Spanish at all...

And why the Hilton at Gatwick? They'd already filled the Heathrow one - but they do hope to get her to that one for tonight as it would be very difficult, otherwise, for them to get her to Heathrow in time for check-in on Wednesday!

Here's hoping everything goes well this time.
Mood:: 'anxious' anxious
location: home
curiouswombat: (notes from a small island)
posted by [personal profile] curiouswombat at 11:15am on 22/06/2011 under
D-d and I are home. To be honest we got home about 6.45am yesterday - but I only got the laptop out of the car late afternoon and was too weary to think straight in between all the 'doing of things' like unpacking cars, shopping and so on.

We had a nice extra day in York - we went to an exhibition of film and TV costumes used to illustrate clothing styles through the ages - which I will post pictures of sometime this week - and went to one of the 'hidden secret places' for our trunch (if brunch is breakfast/lunch then surely lunch/tea should be 'trunch''? It sounds more like a sort of meal than 'lea' anyway!) We also spent half an hour having our feet nibbled by fish - which was most restful - although to get rid of all the hard skin on my feet it would probably have taken them a month...

There was a big traffic diversion on our route home - I knew from getting lost on it on the way there. So we left York about 7.30pm to have good light for that bit. This was a very good decision. We had decided that it was not sensible to try to travel in convoy - we would doubtless get separated and then, probably, worry about it. So we set off separately and agreed to just meet at the boat, in Heysham, about 90 miles away.

Both of us managed to get lost, in different ways, on the diversion...

It is one of those 'local diversion for local people' things! One that assumes you probably know the way anyway. At one point there were two different diversions - one the main road one we were trying to follow, and one a more local one - both simply signed 'diversion'. D-d says that she reached a point where she had a choice of two diversion signs pointing in opposite directions and neither saying where it was a diversion to or from...

However - both of us had remembered that the diversion led through Harrogate, Otley and Ilkley to Skipton - and so found our individual ways back to the road we knew outside Skipton eventually! In the end, because there was very little traffic, I got to the boat about 10.15pm - miles too early as the boat wouldn't come in from the island until midnight. I was there before the staff came to open the check-in and so on. The 90 mile journey had taken me 103 miles...

About ten minutes late two sets of headlights came into view - one car was one of the check-in staff - the other was D-d in her little Citroen C3. Despite both getting lost in Harrogate, taking different routes from there to Otley, and so on, we arrived 10 minutes apart!

We were stuck there for hours. The overnight sailing is mainly the freight sailing - there were only 15 private vehicles - and they made us wait until most of the freight was loaded. D-d filled some of the time by chatting on her phone to a friend for over an hour (the friend was using up free call minutes...), we both read, ate our supper bought earlier in M&S in York - then drowsed whilst watching the freight load. Watching how they loaded the freight was interesting - for the first 10 or so trailers... but watching almost all of it load was getting a bit like watching paint dry.

Eventually we got on board after 2a.m. - picked up the keys to our cabin, got there, kicked off our shoes and got under our duvets within tn minutes of driving onto the boat. Fortunately the bunks are comfortable and we both slept until almost into Douglas - and three and a half hours sleep just put us on enough that we could safely drive home when we disembarked.

Poor D-d had a dental appointment at 9.15 yesterday morning - so only got another 75 minutes nap when she got home. Me? I went to bed and didn't stir until about 11 am.
Music:: Runrig - Going Home.
Mood:: 'tired' tired
location: Home.
curiouswombat: (Travel)
posted by [personal profile] curiouswombat at 09:48pm on 15/06/2011 under , ,
Tomorrow I am off on the boat again, back to York. This one is a Rite of Passage trip, though. After this S2C and I will no longer be the parents of a student. Yes - D-d will have finished her 2 years of Post-graduate law.

Her final exam is on Friday, she has a ball on Friday night - and then she and I will spend the weekend packing all her belongings into her car and mine. Despite bringing some of it home at Easter, she still has more stuff than fits into one car, after five years in the same city, hence the need for me to go.

We were talking on the phone the other day, her and I, and she said if you had told her, at the age of eleven, that she would just be finishing her full-time education now, at twenty-three, she would have been appalled. Especially as she thought, then, that she didn't really need to go to Secondary school as she already knew everything!

We will sail home over night Monday to Tuesday - she will then be home for six days before she sets off to go around the world in 64 days. Chilean volcano permitting. I will worry about her all the time. S2c will do all required worrying for me when I'm asleep over this period...

Then she starts work as a baby lawyer at Appleby - and yes, we are very proud of her.
Mood:: 'busy' busy
curiouswombat: (D-d does glam 2)
This is a request for help from Daughter-dear. She is planning on buying a smart-phone and has decided that she would really like a Blackberry. She had thought it would make sense to get a contract with one of our two local phone suppliers (Sure and Manx Telecom - we don't have things like T-Mobile here) and then get one cheaply. But to get a free one she would have to take on a 2 year contract at about £40 a month - and still pay extra for the global roaming for her upcoming holiday.

Otherwise, using local Pay as You Go, it is no cheaper than Amazon.

So - the questions are;

1. Anyone have any reasons why a Blackberry is not a good idea and she should go for a different one?

2. If you've travelled through Heathrow Terminal 5 recently, are the prices in the Duty Free there (in for example the Dixons) much cheaper? And if she bought one there would there be any problem bringing it back into the UK later?

3. Would it be cheaper to buy one in Australia? Or even Thailand? Would she have to pay duty on her way back into the UK if she did?
Mood:: 'curious' curious
curiouswombat: (Ivor the engine)
posted by [personal profile] curiouswombat at 09:02pm on 28/05/2011 under , , ,
Ha! Even more about our train trip - well it was a big event, and a long day!

Finally the train was able to start back south - we were so happy to get back into our seats - look at how happy I was...

Train trip - glad to be back in my seat!

And how welcome to see this -

train trip - ready for dinner

Because by 8PM I was well ready for my

dinner... )
Mood:: 'tired' tired

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