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.......

28 November 2011

Nov 2011 b

Fri 18 Nov 2011
Alex of Derlington, Steve's newest squire, arrived late tonight, having travelled down from Aberdeen (known to Alex as Mordor).

Sat 19 Nov 2011
Morning fighter practise session with (His Highness) Robert de Canterbury (Dan), many new things for Alex to soak up.

And after lunch, Dan headed off to the local SCA revel, meanwhile Steve and Alex went shopping for dinner and staunchly did an afternoon fighter training session just the both of them.
Jen decided she simply had to put up the Christmas tree!  In the evening, Steve cooked up a mighty fine lamb dish with roast veggies, which was followed by some drinking and chatting about "chivalry and stuff" ensued until the wee hours of the morning.

Sun 20 Nov 2011
A final late morning training session before Alex headed back up north. Bye Alex, see you again soon!

Tue 22 Nov 2011
This morning Jen took the Porsche in to have a fitting kit inserted, which will allow for a hardtop (car roof) to be put into place and used. Don't have the hardtop yet, but its only a matter of time.
Tonight Steve headed to the other side of town and spent a few hours learning about and practising carving roasts and various joints of meat.

Wed 23 Nov 2011 
Steve headed off to fighter practice to continue the training of Robert and others. Its nice to see "new tricks" being added to people's repertoires.

Fri 25 Nov 2011
So today we had the day off work. We got up early, arrived at Deb and Clancy's for a second breakfast and to car pool with them up to northern Wales for Richard's big 50th birthday bash. Richard had hired a fancy manor house by the sea, for a week long celebration with friends. The Friday night party theme was 70s and 80s David Bowie type attire. Sorry didn't take photos!

Sat 26 Nov 2011
This morning Jen awoke with a sore ankle (must have slept on it funny) and so Clancy and Deb did some sight seeing at the nearby Conwy Castle without us. Meanwhile at the manor house, Richard was gleefully watching DVDs from Steve's Hammer Horror (etc) collection... which included the original Flash Gordon (Buster Crabb), Fu Man Chu, and Hawk the Slayer.
Finally dusk fell and it was time to get changed for the evening's theme of Hellfire Club, which is to say, 17th century attire. Semi-military for the men, and corsetry for the ladies. Here are photos of our hired costumes:

Sun 27 Nov 2011
This morning on the way back to Deb and Clancy's we stopped in at the Wroxeter Roman City and reconstruction of a roman townhouse.

After a mighty fine meal at the nearby Horseshoe Inn pub, we also did a spot of gift-shop shopping at the Attingham historic house. 
Fially, we arrived back at Deb and Clancy's place (near Cambridge) and played a couple of games of 500 (cards) before finally getting ourselves back home in London.

15 November 2011

Nov 2011 a

Wed 02 Nov 2011
Tonight we went and saw Tori Amos live at the Royal Albert Hall. We bought the tickets something like about 3 months ago; and we had the most amazing seats waaay up the front! 
Tori did not disappoint - she's a brilliant performer as ever.

Sat 05 Nov 2011

Today Steve headed out into the miserable cold and made his way to Wembley stadium for his chance to see Lockyer play before he retires. The game was England vs Australia, and yes the Aussies won.

Sun 06 Nov 2011
We took Dan and Elizabeth out to see the new Tin Tin movie. It was a good bit of fun, and was a good rolling together of a few storylines.
Afterwards Dan was kind enough to drill tiny little holes into Jen's two chandeliers, so she can add crystal to them. Thanks Dan!

Sun 13 Nov 2011
A week later on, and there's nothing much to report... except Jen finally got over a nasty headcold, just about when it seems Steve's coming own with one.
Over this weekend Jen worked on "knitting" together chains of crystal and hanging these on the chandeliers. Finally they're complete! (except for bulbs and full wiring that is)

Tonight Kev joined us to see the Sister of Mercy live in concert. Unfortunately the sound quality where we were sat was pretty awful - the whole concert was loud without being crisp, and thank goodness for earplugs. Steve was completely chuffed to get himself a couple of new T-shirts.

The 'Sisters' are renowned for weaving through the mist of their fog machine, so about all you see of them on-stage much of the time are silhouettes. 

06 November 2011

Oct 2011 b

Tue 18 Oct 2011

Here's a photo of the Acelor Mittal Orbit about 3 weeks from completion of the external structure.
This appears to be London's answer to the Eiffel Tower; it overlooks the Olympic Park, and will be furnished and ready for business by mid 2012 in time for the Olympics. This is the view from Jen's work's roof terrace.

Sat 22 Oct 2011
So today we went back out to Henley-on-Thames, and picked up our "new" 11 year old Porsche Boxster. Steve's grin was stuck on his face the whole way driving it back home! Here's some pictures driving past Westminster and the Tower of London, and finally, safely parked at home.

Jen finished packing and we headed out to Heathrow where a weepy Jen went on through Security alone.

Sun 23 Oct 2011
Jen's still in the air at this stage; meanwhile Steve used his Laurel powers for evil, concocting a hideous mess known as EPIC mealtime - "fast-food lasagne". This thing has a bottom layer of 6 Big Macs, then a layer of Jack Daniels meat sauce and bacon strips and cheese, then a layer of 6 quarter pounders, the JD meat sauce again, bacon and cheese. Definitely a heart attack with every teaspoon! Apparently very yummy, so the work-mates said.

Mon 24 Oct 2011
Jen finally touches down in Brissie, and sleeps much of the day. In the evening, Giles was good enough to play chauffeur for Jen while she's jetlagged - and she surprised many of her old SCA friends by appearing at the local Fighter Practice.

Tue 25 Oct 2011
Jen wandered about South Bank parklands and beach overlooking the city. Wow, absolute paradise in the heart of the city!

Her high-school best friend (Kylie) picks her up and they spend the afternoon chatting, then a fab dinner and overnight stay at Kylie and Tony's place. Best to visit a few days out from their wedding (the purpose of Jen's visit) rather than only a day or two before.

Above: Tony, Kylie, and their "fur children"

Wed 26 Oct 2011
Mmmm, Red Rooster..... say no more!

In the evening Jen brought along fish and chips dinner for her in-laws. Here's Steve's mum outside the family home where he and his 7 older siblings all grew up.

Thu 27 Oct 2011
After over sleeping, Jen headed off to her sister Kathy's place to hang out. It was great to catch up! Then onward to Stanzi and Gab's place, (thanks for the Red Rooster dinner guys!) where Liza, Leisel, Morde and Giles also dropped in to say hi and catch up. We all left feeling it was too soon to leave, but everyone did have work to go to tomorrow.

Fri 28 Oct 2011
This morning's mission: to buy twisties, mint slice, and assorted other tasty aussie treats to bring home to London. 
In the evening, Jen had dinner at a restaurant n Bulimba with Liza, Leisel, Morde, Giles and Buzz, then headed off to the movies and watch "In Time" together. A good thought provoking film, actually fairly well acted too.

Sat 29 Oct 2011
The big day has arrived! Jen enjoyed being the cool person who turned up from the furthest away (other side of the planet), and had several compliments on the speech she gave too. The wedding seemed to go quite straight forward, and the reception was a relaxed affair too. Kylie and Tony of course had very sore cheeks from smiling after all the wedding photos of them were done.

Bridesmaids Michelle and Summer got up to mischief with Jen, at the reception

The reception wound up quite early, about 7.30pm, so Jen made her exit and freshened up and changed at home, and headed out to a Halloween party while the night was still young. The party's host, Nemain, was completely gobsmacked and speechless for the first minute or so, not believing her eyes. "I was in the area and thought I'd pop in" maybe not the most original line, but fun to say anyway. Great fun to hang out with old friends!
Meanwhile, Steve drove up past Cambridge to attend a proper American style Halloween party with Deb and Clancy.

Sun 30 Oct 2011
Worryingly, this was today's newspaper headline in Brisbane.

Jen spent a couple of hours trying the ascertain whether her flights home to London, scheduled for tomorrow, would be affected. But there was simply no getting through to Qantas' switchboard which had a meltdown with this major action.
Tonight Jen enjoyed a traditional Sunday night dinner with her family, as part of a final farewell before (hopefully) jetting off back to London tomorrow.

Mon 31 Oct 2011
Jen's mum took her to the airport a bit early so we could ask what the deal is.
As it turns out, Jen's flight would be the first international Qantas flight to depart Bribane in 2 days. It was delayed for an hour waiting on the CASA to give the go ahead for Qantas to resume flying, but that still allowed for a leisurely 2 hour transfer at SIngapore.

Tues 1 Nov 2011
Jen's flight touched down at Heathrow pretty much as scheduled. Steve had the day off, and we were very happy to be reunited, and to catch up with each others' adventures (and unpack the twisties).