Steve n Jen's UK adventures

UK and European adventures. Read on my pretties, and discover what two stray Aussies can get up to on their travels.......

24 January 2009

Jan 2009 a

We'll start this entry with a couple of photos Terry kindly provided us, from our trip to visit Kiriel in Geneva.... Thanks Terry!

Wednesday night, 31st December 2008...
Here we are spending a fun evening at Edith and William's place for their NY party.
My goodness, look at the time!

After this, the champagne flowed freely. Happy New Year!

Thu 01 Jan 2009
We dragged ourselves outta bed at about 9am to start chopping fruit, making pancakes and cooking sausages and bacon. Here's a sample of the FOOD:

Above: The annual "all day breakfast" party we run, well this year we hit maximum numbers at about 2pm - with 20 people in our little townhouse all at once! Lots of chatting and boardgames fun. :-)

Fri 02 Jan 2009
Thankfully today we both had off work. In the afternoon we made our way to Heathrow, and found ourselves picked up at Hamburg airport (Thanks Marcus and Bridget!) and driven to Drachenwald Coronation. (SCA event) When we got on-site, we found that a local fighter, Vitus, had been placed on vigil to become a knight the next day. Hurrah! The downside was he had our SCA clothing, and we had to interrupt him so we could get appropriately dressed.

Sat 03 Jan 2009
Coronation events are always packed with activities! Here's a photo taken of us while awaiting Court:

Below: The outgoing King and Queen knighted Vitus, to much acclaim!

Above: Here is Marcus and Cecilia being Crowned.
Below: and the Ladies of the Rose escorted the outgoing Queen, Fiona, to her Rose Party.

Further photos from Coronation: by Edricus

We later found out that this night, back in merry old London town, our good friends Edith and William got engaged. Well done and congratulations all round!

Sun 04 Jan 2009
After packing up, and loading our luggage back in the the Vitus-vagon (thanks Sir Vitus!) we had a leisurely time chatting with Bridget and Marcus in their home. (Not the new King Marcus, a different chap). They were nice enough to see us off at the airport too!

Mon 6 Jan 2009
Steve makes a good start on his study plan, with his first course (a full week long course) starting the last week of February.

Wed 7 Jan 2009
We received news that the company who'd agreed to carry out works on our loft, have cancelled on us due to the "current financial climate". Drat it!!! We were very lucky to quickly find a new company willing to match the excellent price quote we had, and agree to do the work for us. The new dates are Feb 11 and 12. So here's hoping it goes smoothly.

Thu 08 Jan 2009
After work, Jen started to not feel well, and after awhile felt worse. It was either food poisoning or an exceptionally nasty stomach bug. Jen was bedridden for 30 hours, and still weak for a few more days... Steve and Soph were both very helpful and did loads of fetch and carry to help her back to a semblance of health.

Tue 13 Jan 2009
Jen finally made an appearance at work - feeling not 100% but soooo much better all the same.

Thu 15 Jan 2009
Winter is definately here! Its been soooo chilly, with overnight frosts being the norm, and we've had "dustings" of snow every once in a while, like this morning:

Fri 16 Jan 2009
Edith and William came and stayed overnight...

Sat 17 Jan 2009 that this morning we piled into the car at 8:30am and headed West, to Bath.
We arrived in Bath about 1pm and met up with Kevin and Mary. After a good hour in the Fashion history Museum, we visited the Roman ruins and the Baths themselves.

For those of you who've not been to Bath, the old pillar bases and steps into the water are the only orignal Roman bits you see in these photos. The stuff above is Victorian, but lovely all the same. Oh, and the church in the background is of course Medieval.
In the museum they have lovely murals, and the plumbing that is leading the thermal waters into the bath is original and still working. Amazing stuff! They don't let people bathe in these baths as they are entirely lead-lined.

Afterward, we headed back to Kevin and Mary's place, and were really pleased with the outstanding hospitality we've come to expect. ;-) Kevin cooked up a tasty dinner for us all.

The next day, we had a leisurely breakfast, showers, chats, coffee, book-borrowing (!) and eventually moseyed out of Kevin and Mary's place at about midday; and headed back to London.

05 January 2009

Dec 2008 b

Fri 19 Dec 2008
Tonight Steve left his work Xmas party and headed over to meet up with Jen for her work's BIG Xmas party - and it was a masked party!

Above: Jen went peacock themed, while Steve has a large-beaked mask which he received many many compliments on.

Above: one of many entertainment pieces at the party - this juggler balanced a spinning basin atop an umbrella, on his head.

Sat 20 Dec 2008
Steve drove off to Cardiff for the weekend, taking Dan and Elizabeth and Tom with him. They went and took part in a fighter practice there, and its nice to turn up and help out with training and merriment.
Meanwhile, Jen worked on Steve's purpoint for the weekend. Here it is pinned together before the quilting of the layers.

Mon 22 Dec 2008
Christmas shopping continues....

Tue 23 Dec 2008
...and just the last few things to be bought for Xmas. Jen was pleased to come across some real actual Mistletoe! It's now hanging between the lounge and dining rooms.

Wed 24 Dec 2008
Christmas Eve. In the morning Soph and Steve did lots of food shopping! Deb and Clancy arrived and stayed overnight. Late in the evening we made various calls to Australia, as relatives were already celebrating (time difference) and opening pressies. Here's Jen's family Xmas shot....

Above: we heard and now saw that our niece Alex enjoyed her colourful jigsaw, made up of her name.

Thu 25 Dec 2008
Christmas Day! This morning saw the usual frenzy of unwrapping...
Below: Soph loved the new high heels.

Above: Steve in happy horror at the "Arkham Horror" boardgame he had wanted for Christmas last year.
Below: Jen with and wearing her booty (scarves, heated footwear, handbag, W&N oils, tang). We also discovered that Deb and Clancy can get "Tang" at their Commissary store.

Present unwrapping over, it was time for cooking and FOOD. Game hens, roast veg, pork, sauces, pineapple, cheesy potato-bake etc etc! Yum! Lunch courtesy of Soph and Steve, dinner thanks to Deb and Clancy.

Later in the evening Jenni B came over and joined us all for another gift exchange and dinner :-)

Fri 26 Dec 2008
In the afternoon, Jen and Steve flew off to Geneva. Well, the flight was cancelled, so instead of arriving at a decent time like about 7:30pm, it was two flights (via Zurich) rather than direct, and we touched down around 11:30pm. At least we didn't have to pay extra for the re-booked flights.

Sat 27 Dec 2008
Kiriel drove Terry and us, to Chateau de Chillon - famously written about by Lord Byron. It was a really fantastic castle sat on a rocky outcrop near the edge of Lake Geneva. Would LOVE to have an SCA event there!

Unfortunately at this point, the camera ran out of battery power, and Kiriel ran into the gift shop and got us a disposable film one. Using it, here's a view of the lake from the Chateau's bridge.

Above: a bit hard to see, but there were heaps of turnings and passageways to explore.

Above: the best shot from the disposable camera - the view facing north and west, along the shoreline.
In the evening Kiriel drove us to a wonderful modern bath-house come spa centre, where we swam about in lovely warm water, lazed in the bubble-jet area, the sauna, and swam round and round the whirlpool, etc. Terrific!

Sun 28 Dec 2008
Today we spelt in terribly late again (ahhhh holidays) and visited a town market in France. It was pretty darn cold (-3C) , and we stopped into a cafe for lunch and hot chocolate at the end.
Back at home in Geneva in the evening, Kiriel introduced us to the TV show The Tudors.

Mon 29 Dec 2008
A relaxing day. Kiriel took Steve to the big Spice Shop on the other side of town.
In the evening we had a cheesy fondue for dinner before being dropped off at the airport. This time thankfully the flight was straight forward.

Tue 30 Dec 2008
Today was the great Lord-of-the-Rings-athon! Extended DVDs, all three movies played back to back. Not for the faint-hearted! Here's a photo Nick took of Steve with his hair up - how cute!

Wed 31 Dec 2008
Steve and Soph did lots of food shopping day for tomorrow's New Years Day party which we run every year. We welcomed in the New Year at a cosy party at Nick and Jenny's place (William & Edith).