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Blog : Posts tagged with 'holiday' : Page 1

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In The Wild

In which we spot someone camping without a camp site


Not having chance for a Proper Summer Holiday for the second year running, we’ve been thinking what we can do with a long weekend away, or even a short weekend away. A bit of wild camping seems like it might be in order. It’s illegal just about everywhere in England,* but “just about everywhere”, for some mysterious traditional reason, doesn’t include the Dartmoor Commons. So, we can zoom off to Devon on a Friday, find somewhere to park the car then hike off into the moors until we’re out of sight of a road. Pop up the pop-up tent, make sure we’ve got food and a trowel, and enjoy a couple of nights in the wilderness.

Ambling around Bristol, though, we’ve noticed recently that not everybody bothers to go that far. The other evening, we noticed somebody camping in Totterdown, on St John’s Lane. Well, we assume that’s what they were doing: a tent had popped up in the bushes. The following morning: someone camping on the Portway, underneath the gorge’s cliffs. Either it’s one person moving their pitch, or inner-city wild camping is the latest trend. Personally, I’d rather travel a little further from home; but presumably, they’re not that local. I think we’d still prefer a pitch on Dartmoor, though.

* Insert “Get off my laaaand!” here

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Photo Post Of The Weekend

In which we remember Latvia


All that snowy weather we’ve been having – almost all gone now, apart from the enormous pile of snow cleared from the office car park – reminded me of the holiday we took a couple of years back, to Rīga, Latvia. “Make sure you wrap up warmly,” said The Mother. “Get proper thermals. Lots and lots of layers.” “You’ll need to take sunglasses, too,” said Dad, “or you’ll get snow-blindness.”

All of which we ignored, fortunately, because we’d have looked bloody silly. Rīga in February was not too dissimilar from Britain in February, being grey, damp, and largely snow-free; it shouldn’t really have been surprising, because it’s on about the same latitude as Dundee. We took plenty of photos; but for some reason they never appeared on here.*

Baltic Revolution Memorial, 11. novembra krastmela, Rīga

View of Rīga

Museum Of The Occupation, Rīga

Latvijas Zin?tņu akadēmija (Latvian Academy of Sciences), Turgeņeva iela, Rīga

Daugava river and railway bridge, Rīga

* Unlike the above anecdote about the snow-blindness, etc, which definitely has.

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Synopsis

In which things are described, briefly


Underground; wandering; the Ministry of Truth; Trafalgar Square; bridges and cabmen’s shelters; a model home; inspirational food and drink; black and white photos; tourist crowds; Soviet badges; gay icons; the wrong pizza; a missed film; gin and vodka; a walk in the park; strange inflatables; shopping streets; more photography; a nice cup of tea; long queues; very big pancakes; even bigger plaster casts; and another cup of tea.

And then, home again. I should write some of it all down, before I forget it.

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Anniversary

In which FP remembers things that happened on this day


On this day last year, we spent most of the day travelling, in the car, on planes and in airports. We drove from Yorkshire to Manchester; hopped from Manchester to Denmark and from Denmark on to Latvia. I spent quite a few blogposts beforehand writing about how excited I was; but only a couple, afterwards, talking about how great the trip had been.

Today isn’t going to be nearly so exciting. The Parents are coming to visit for the day; and we are spending the day shepherding them around, letting them take us out to lunch, trying not to get too annoyed with them, before taking them back for their train home.

Nevertheless, for me, this is a bit of a special day. It’s the first birthday that I’ve had since me and K have been living together properly; so it’s definitely going to be one to remember.*

* My 0x1fth birthday, if you must know. I have asked K if next year I can have a cake with “20” on it, and she looked at me suspiciously.

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Photo post of the week

In which we visit Cornwall


This week, still from my summer holiday uploads: castles and derelict mineshafts.

Walls, Restormel Castle Gateway, Restormel Castle Archway, Restormel Castle
Cornish country lane at dusk Cornish oak tree at dusk Passage, Restormel Castle
Abandoned mineshaft near St Agnes Towanreath Engine House, St Agnes Graffiti near St Agnes Head, Cornwall

The engine house in the bottom row is the well-known Towanroath engine house near St Agnes. The name probably isn’t that well-known, but as it’s perched halfway up a cliffside over the Atlantic, it’s a stock location for Cornish landscape shoots; so much so that it was on the cover of one of the guide books we took with us.* I remember it appearing in the 1980s children’s horror film Haunters Of The Deep, which starts with two of the characters looking down the grated-over mineshaft next to the engine house and listening to the sound of the sea coming up it.

* the Rough Guide to Devon and Cornwall, 2007 edition.

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Photo post of the week

In which it’s still summer


As it’s Friday again, some more summer photos

Sleepy dog, St Ives "Arthur" communications dish, Goonhilly earth station St Ives harbour
Foghorns, Lizard lighthouse Lizard lighthouse Tourists, Lizard Point
Fishing boats, Polpeor Cove, The Lizard Old lifeboat station, Polpeor Cove, Lizard Fishing boat, Polpeor Cove, The Lizard

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Photo post of the week

In which we photograph the deep blue sea


I grew up not far from the sea. I didn’t go down to the beach or the seafront very often, but I was close enough that you could see out to sea from the top deck of my school bus. I’ve always felt good by the sea.*

On the other hand, I grew up in an area where the sea is the colour of weak milky tea. So it’s always nice to go somewhere and find that the sea can, actually, sometimes be storybook blue.**

Mouth of the Carrick Roads, Falmouth Gyllyngvase Beach, Falmouth Porthminster beach, St Ives
Boat, St Ives St Ives harbour Boats, St Ives

In other sea-related (or, at least, tidal) news: the mystery words on the shore of the Avon, which we spotted last weekend and posted about, have been identified: an artwork to highlight litter in the sea, by an artist called Pete Dolby. Thanks to Liz for writing and letting me know.

* You could argue some sort of genetic memory, because my mum’s family’s descended from a bunch of 19th-century Cornish fishermen (and smugglers, no doubt), from Looe and Polperro. On the other hand, my dad’s family’s from Derby, which is as unsealike as you can get.

** Pure water is, as a matter of fact, very very slightly a pale blue colour. You can see it, just about, if you run a bathful of water in a white bath. That’s not the main reason the sea can look blue, though. And different cultures have seen it different ways; the Homeric adjective for it is “wine-dark”, and you know how dark Greek wine can be. I’ve heard that the ancient Greeks didn’t quite distinguish between blue and green in the same way as we do; but I don’t know enough Greek to tell you how true that is.

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Photo post of the week

In which we go to Cornwall


Not only have I been behind on updating this site, I’ve been getting behind on posting photos online. I generally stick to posting 6 to 8 photos per day, partly because uploading them is such a slow and tedious job that I can’t be bothered doing any more. This, however, means that I’m still only at the start of posting photos of our summer camping trip, down to Cornwall. That was: August. It’s now: November. That’s some delay. Here, though, are some examples, of hot, sunny, summer Cornish weather.

Derelict picnic bench, Falmouth Falmouth Docks Falmouth Harbour
Sign on pier, Falmouth Harbour Truro Cathedral Derelict hotel, Falmouth

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It’s all in the timing

In which we are not as wet as we might have been


Last weekend, feeling like we needed a holiday, we went away and pitched the tent. And it rained. The tent, fortunately, didn’t leak, but we ended up with great puddles round the door, a wading trip whenever we wanted to go in or out. Our last morning, we looked out to see ducks sitting and paddling in the water.

Still, it could have been worse. For no particular reason, we’d decided to visit Somerset. If we’d gone a week or even half a week, we’d still be there now, camping by a river. And we’d be rather deeper in the water.

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Everyday life

In which the truth gets told


The last couple of years, I’ve posted “guess which bits are true” posts on April 1st.

I didn’t particularly feel like trying to fool anyone this year. Things have been a bit too stressful, lately, for me to spend much time writing here; for me to spend much time writing true things, never mind about making things up.

Work has been rather busy lately; a lot of upheaval. I’ve heard it said that when you see people under stress, it can bring out new qualities in them. It hasn’t seemed true, to me. It’s pushed people to become more extreme versions of their ordinary selves. The tetchy people are tetchier, the people who flap around panicking panic more, and the arse-lickers use their tongue ever more often. And, on the other hand, the nice friendly people are just as nice and friendly as ever.

At least everything else is going well. And we didn’t get too snowed-in, camping. I could tell it was a good sign when K – who had never been camping before – started saying “the next time we go camping, we’ll have to…”

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