27 May 2010

Gold Member

No not the character from Austin Powers but the name Arsenal FC give to its season ticket holders.  Tonight I renewed again.  Thanks to Alex for his half of the wedge.

And now we've paid, how about ensuring that we get back to having white sleeves.

Operation Dynamo Trip - 30th May 2010

This week is the 70th Anniversary of the "Little Ships" setting off to cross the Channel to Dunkerque to assist the Navy bring back the remains of the British Expeditionary Force that had attempted to halt the German advance into France.

As we are over in France this weekend it is a good chance to go and visit Dunkerque. Our lunch venue is in Bergues a few miles to the south of Dunkerque.

It will be a simple trip to Dunkerque to see  the "Memorial de Souvenir"; a special exhibition of the events of May/June 1940. Telling the story of the  battle for Dunkirk and Operation Dynamo in whick Dunkerque and its harbour were completely destroyed.  Check out the website - http://www.dynamo-dunkerque.com/

The other place to visit is the Dunkirk Memorial and Town Cemetery. The cemetery contains 450 WW1 casualties and 800 from WW2, but also commemorates the 4500 casualties that have no known grave.  The location can be found on the website above.

I have worked out a route to get to all three and have loaded it into the Quest.

Plan A (above) might have to be shelved as I had expected to have a relaxed run along the N1 avoiding the A16 motorway but after a slight misunderstanding with our lunch venue means that we might have to forget the scenic (!) route and use the A16 instead. The ferry doesn't arrive in Calais until around 11am and by the time we get off and onto the road it willbe more like 11.15am at least so we had been looking at maybe a 1pm lunch, instead we are booked for 12.30pm.

The lunch venue was chosen after a trawl around Tripadvisor and we ended up choosing Taverne Le Breugel in Bergues - Le Breugel. 

This should give us plenty of time to eat and ride up to the Memorials and then have time to ride back to Calais to get the boat home.

Report and pics to follow.

26 May 2010

A week in August but where to go?

We have a week's holiday in August and now is the time to start planning where to go. France? Belgium? Both?

After the GS took a tumble on the Shuttle last year, I have had a £50 credit voucher to spend against another crossing. Although not happy at the time that they didn't accept responsibility I suppose that £50 is better than nothing.

The voucher has to be used by the middle of September and so a holiday in August should fit the bill. For a while we have been looking at maybe going down to Annecy or maybe the Auvergne?

Planning starts here.

17 May 2010

Bike sorted

Steptoe has fixed the GS now all I need to do is get the £140 out of the bank to pay him.

Work commitments mean I can't get it until Thursday. I decided to take a flexi-day off to save annual leave and go and get it.

I have a bit of a trek to get it.  As I have a train season ticket with all zones travelcard I'll go up as if going to work, then tube to Putney Bridge and then 85 bus to near to Steptoe's place.

I'll take my camera and satnav with me to map out the return journey.

15 May 2010

GS to Steptoe's

After a false start and a phone call to Carol Nash the GS started the trip across to Steptoe's to have the bearing sorted.

The first guy thought he was collecting a car for a local dealers and said that CN's cover was only local and wouldn't even extend to the nearest BMW dealer that is Cooper's in Tunbridge Wells.

A long call later and CN sorted a specialist bike mover and by 1020 it was strapped down and gone.

Fingers crossed it's only the bearing. Hoping to hear from Steptoe sometime Sunday.

12 May 2010

Arsenal Ladies

Silverware. We've won some silverware. Both the first team and reserves have won their leagues.

Good game tonight at the Emirates. Shame that a few more of the mouthy sections that manage to get there for the Premiership couldn't spend £3 and cheers the girls on.

8 May 2010

A couple of German friends

With BMW doing its best to annoy me, I had to get a few other Germans round...

The Berliner Kindl is the one I had tonight. Another standard German brew that is crisp to the tongue when drunk straight from the fridge.

7 May 2010

After the day I've had...

... these two buddy's were needed.

The Tucher Übersee was very nice. Made to the standard German legal recipe, but all the same a crisp brew with no after taste.


WNR - They thinks it's all over

It is now.

I got into Hythe and there was a sudden graunching noise from the rear end followed by oil.  Rear drive bearing gone.  Luckily (!) not too far from home and not at any speed! I managed to sms Steve to tell him I was out and emailed Andrew.

Now to get it repaired. Carole Nash breakdown said that when I get it booked in somewhere they will collect it and take it for me.  So far have emailed Cooper's and Steptoe. At least there's no hurry now as long as it gets done before we go to Assen!!

See the full trail here:

WNR - Nearly time to set off!

I was a bit late up as I sat up far too late to watch the general election results start to come in.  Time to forget all that and tog up and then off to the M20 services to fill up with petrol, meet Claire for lunch and then head on up the highway.

I've decided to take the Plan B route of M25/M40 as the traffic reports on BBC R2 are horrendous for the Essex section through the roadworks.

Onwards and upwards!

4 May 2010

Allied Memorial Remembrance Ride - July 3rd

I saw this run advertised on the internet and it is being organised by the Riders Branch of the Royal British Legion. After the Wootton Bassett run for Afghan Heroes I thought it was a great cause to support.

I signed up to go with my wife, Claire, and my brother, Neill.  I advertised it on the Kent Centre and a few members have picked it up.

Ride to Work

Today was the first day I have ridden to work this year.  The weather was looking better over the last few weeks, with dry warm days.

So after the Bank Holiday and with Friday off to go to Wales, it was going to be very expensive to take the train. Bike it then.

The weekend was miserable with rain most of the time on Sunday and Monday, so I didn't expect it to be that marvellous.  In fact it was cold to the hands and I had the grips on the higher level all the way up!

In fact tomorrow, I'll put my heated waistcoat on. I need to test it before the weekend.

3 May 2010

Normandy Trip - August 2009 - Day 4

Bank Holiday Monday and it's time to pay the hotel and set off.   The trip I planned was to avoid the motorway and take the coast road as far as Honfleur.

Due to a problem with the Garmin not charging on the bike it decided to die before we had really got to where we wanted  which included a crossing of the Greenwich Meridian. As we approached Houlgate I saw that 64000 miles was about to pop up on the odometer, and so I
stopped for Claire to take a pic of me!

From here it was on into Honfleur.  Parking up in the centre of the town where I saw a couple of other bikes. It was okay until we had to get away and I had to ride along the pavement and squeeze through the barrier at the end.

We had a walk around the harbour and took a break in one of the cafes, sitting in the burning heat of the day.

The harbour area is a mass of cafes, restaurants and gift shops.  With the Garmin not working and the deadline of the Shuttle ahead of us we reluctantly set off.

Finding the Pont de Normandy was easy enough as it is signposted, and with there being to wind it was a joy to ride across.

From here it was a motorway run all the way back to Coquelles and onto the Shuttle.  Just one stop for petrol and as it was BH Monday the roads were busier mainly with British holiday makers on their way home. We bought some baguettes and made another stop at an Aire to eat them.  

All in all the trip was very good and the ride along the Invasion beaches is one I can recommend to anyone.

The previous parts of this run report are at  Normandy Trip - August 2009 - Day 3

The full set of pix can be seen on My Flickr Page

Welsh National Rally 2010 (4)

I had a little time today to look at the route up to Coalport of Friday.  Depending on the weather I have a couple of routes. One is mostly motorway M20/M25/M1/M6/M54.  The other runs a little further south that takes the motorways as far as Oxford and then the A44 to Evesham and Worcester before turning north to Coalport.

If the weather is not very good as they are predicting then I'll stick with plan A. If not, then Plan B and maybe a chance to maybe take some pix on the way.

Walk in the Park

Walk in the Park, originally uploaded by Invicta Moto.
As the weather looked like it might stay dry for a few minutes today, we decided to take a run up to Sandgate to have a walk along the seafront.

We were going to park at Seabrook but saw the car-park was empty. The reason? You have to pay now.

The same is true for all the car parks in Shepway that are near the sea! All it will do is fleece the holiday makers and make more cars park along the roads. Let's see the proloferation of yellow lines soon.

We had a turn around Enbrook Park and took a few pics and then after a saveloy and chips we headed off home.

2 May 2010

Welsh National Rally 2010 (3)

The route as it pans out in Tyre (http://www.tyre.tk/). The route takes us in a clockwise direction.

After a few weeks of warm dry weather this BH weekend has turned nasty and cold with the forecast for the week to be cold and rainy. What joy.

May Day BH (2)

Part one went off okay with an afternoon at the football.

Today is a complete washout.  Pouring rain all day and a day of TV and Films.

1 May 2010

Folkestone Invicta - Promoted

Today's game was the Ryman League Division One South Play-Off Final against Godalming Town.

Invicta started off with a flurry of activity and then the game settled down to being fairly end to end stuff and came alive with some interplay on the left, a perfect cross and a superb diving header from Josh Vincent that wouldn't have looked out of place on Sky Sports and the Barclay's Premiership! Invicta 1-0.

They says that teams that have scored are vulnerable and they are right. Godalming equalised two minutes later. The ref gave the Godalming right back the okay to take a free kick nowhere near where it should have been taken despite the howls of disbelief from the crowd. The ball was flung into the box and the centre forward nodded in from close range.

For a while Godalming looked to have the initiative and Invicta clawed their way back into the game and were soon 2-1 off from a corner, the ball dropped to Simon Austin and he banged it home.

The second half saw both sides squander chances and the ref waved away a succession of penalty claims as Godalming's forwards went down far too easily. It was a case of third time lucky when their centre-forward went face down. After some exchanges with the ref he was persuaded to speak to his lino and changed his decision. No penalty.

The game fizzled away with Invicta spurning another chance to kill it off and the four minutes of added time was over and Invicta are back in the Premier Division.

Pivo Herold

Pivovar Herold.

Very nice and only £1.12 a bottle from Asda.

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More Flower Macros

These were also taken down by West Hythe Bridge over the Royal Military Canal.

Dandelion Macros

Took this macro picture of a dandelion clock whilst on a walk alongside the Royal Military Canal.

I saw this one as well.... both are close together on the same patch.

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