Thursday, October 16, 2014

ocean #3

The calm after the storm...

seaside

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ocean #2

The fun thing about the ocean, is that the waves can come quite a while after the weather. So, while the storm had blown over the day before, the sea was just getting going.

storm

storm

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ocean #1

Some rain stopped us mountain biking on the way over to Scotland's east coast, but it had stopped by the time we got to the seaside.

seaside sunset

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Tuesday, October 14, 2014

autumn

My memories of autumn from when I were a lass are of slipping about on mushy brown leaves on the ground, and of wind, rain and days so dark you can barely see across the school hall. There must have been some climate change because we now have some sunny days with little hints of yellow and orange on many of the trees. It's nothing like Japan, obviously (many more degrees of climate change to go before we get there), but still...

Autumn

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Tuesday, September 30, 2014

running man

In light of recent events, it seems appropriate to post these pickturs.

Spot the marathon man...

runningman-1


runningman-2
The second photo shows James running towards our house, with Settle and Giggleswick in the middle distance, the two metropolises have merged together into one big conurbation, like Tokyo and Yokohama. And Ingleborough hill, like Fuji-san, lies further beyond. Perhaps I was hallucinating. At this point I was in a world of pain, having fallen off my bicycle about 40 minutes earlier. I carried on riding, as I decided that, as I was going to be in pain anyway, I could distract myself with a nice bike ride in the sunshine. The worst thing about falling over on gravel is the bath afterwards where you have to scrub the dust out of the wounds. The best part is the rolling about on the loose stuff which means that many parts of the body absorb the impact. So today everything hurts, but nothing too much.

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Saturday, September 27, 2014

Pen-y-ghent

Not sure whether to go backwards, forwards, or randomly in time with my backlog of unblogged photos.

This one was taken yesterday.

Sun continues unabated. Well, OK, so there is the occasional heavy rainstorm, but this is upland Britain for goodness sake... Sunday is the 3 peaks cyclocross race, traditionally a cold and rainy mudfest. After the driest September in forever, perhaps it will be a pleasant roll over the hills. This is the third peak - Pen-y-ghent - as seen yesterday, from the back of a high-speed tandem.

Pen y ghent

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Friday, August 8, 2014

High Street

Decided to go shopping so yesterday we headed for the High Street near Ullswater in Cumbria.

Getting there was a bit harder than expected, as there was no railway station, and it involved a 700m climb from the car park. Views were nice though.

Cumbria-1-3
Cumbria-2-2
Finally got there only to discover that the Vikings had torn down all the shops in the centuries after the Romans had left.
Cumbria-3
The other shoppers seemed almost as lost (see their little silhouettes on that rocky outcrop!). Germanic and Australian accents asked us if we were "doing the coast to coast". Just a day trip we answered.
Cumbria-4
It was surprisingly pleasant especially considering that this High Street is so far from those more desirable parts of the UK.
Cumbria-5
Here, James is looking for the Apple Store. Sure it was supposed to be here somewhere...
Cumbria-6
The street side planters were flowering nicely. This is heather, probably imported from the soon to be foreign country of Scotland.
Cumbria-7
We never did find Harvey Nicks, but a couple of hours later we were in Patterdale (named after St Patrick Patterdale) where there are pubs that serve food and beer all day long. hicc.
Cumbria-8
Best High Street ever.

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Friday, August 1, 2014

The Thames Valley

Londinium has, to me, always seemed alien to the rest of the UK, but the Thames Valley has become another country too. It is so polished that it seems more like a theme park than a real place.

Palaces and pleasure boating...

Goring greenery-2
Goring greenery-1

Perfect bijou gardening...
Thames-2

Hand-knitted designer bricking and flinting...
designer bricking-1
designer bricking-2

For those who don't know their UK geography, the Thames is the big river that runs right through Londinium. Thus, anywhere along its banks are the most sought after places to live, as you can easily commute in to the city.

Thames-3
Thames-1

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Monday, July 28, 2014

Londinium

We used to tell our Japanese friends that certain things were Better in Britain. One such myth we accidentally perpetuated was the value of stricter planning regulations. Japanese cities are, on the whole, an awful jumble of buildings. Not so in the UK, we told our friends. We clearly misunderstood completely. During our decade long sojourn overseas, Londinium has been reinventing itself as a poor replica of some chaotic south east asian mega-city.

Londinium-3
On the other hand, one myth the British choose to believe is that working conditions in places like Tokyo are undesirable. And yet here you can see all the little Londoners toiling away in their open plan glass skyscrapers. hmmm...
Londinium-2
This one is perhaps not quite as bad on the eye, but still, it could be anywhere... I don't see the point of all the planning people, if the result is just a boring version of one of the less exciting bits of Yokohama.
Londinium-1

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Thursday, July 3, 2014

The Holy Church of St Bicycles

A new religion has taken hold of the town of Skipton. It is the yellow faith of St Bicycles.

St Bicycles-1
But - could it be that one or two remain skeptical - both to the power of St Kickball and St Bicycles?!
St Bicycles-2
Despite being quite religious ourselves - we sit upon 2 unicycles, 4 single bicycles and 3 tandems - we have somehow managed to be away for the big event and tomorrow we will be heading down to the grim south, to give seminars in Reading and London!

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