Posts Tagged ‘Traffic’

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19 July 2017

AMSTERDAM

Amsterdam

Doing the miles this week.

It all started on Sunday when we had to vacate our gite in Southern France to return to England for a night so that we could repack and head to Amsterdam the next day.  This mammoth trip involved 12 hours on the road using rental car, taxis (2), trains (2) and the underground in Paris.  Like some military exercise, we knew how many minutes we had between rides and thus the pace was picked up when necessary and with much gesticulating, the 5 of us agreed long enough on which direction was probably the best to head to catch our next mode of transport.  We made it though.

The next day involved a simple drive to the London City airport on the banks of the Thames.  Due to traffic snarl-ups, we ended up driving on and off a car ferry that went from one side to the other and almost at the airport.  By this time we just wanted a sit down but and hour later, we were able to check our voluminous bags and head upstairs for the usual immigration and security regimes. It appears the Brits are more than a little gun shy currently, both V and I had our bags emptied, items of clothing removed and rescanned and rescanned. I had to remove my belt and shoes and place them in to a plastic bin held by a bombing suspect family member.  As I did, he moved the bin and a shoe fell out.  So I picked it up and as I went to hurl it in he moved it again.  Luckily my shooting was better than his catching. He then looked up at me (he was also vertically challenged from the weight of his bomber jacket I suspect) and asked if I was alright.  I acted all grown up and told him it was but wanted to tell him that he would never make my football team as goalie or did he need a hand to hold the tray? Allah my arse.

Amsterdam also gave us a wait at both ends.  The KLM ground staff need to take a clog up their arses. Over an hour to check in and over an hour to produce our bags at the other end.  This meant our taxi driver had to wait around also but he charged us so he was at least placated.  Even tying a tie for him for his next job didn’t seem to help.

V and I are about museum’d out after today.  We hit the Rijksmuseum at 9.30, the Heineken museum and tasting at 12, the market at about 2, the diamond museum 3,30 then the Van Gogh museum at 4.30.  Probably a record but we are so smart and so enlightened as a result of it.  Very much enjoyed learning about Vermeer (Girl with the Pearl Earring etc) and Rembrandt. Seeing these paintings that are so old and famous sent shivers down my spine.  Just about got the hang of avoiding being collected by cyclists and scooter pilots.  Not only do the trams that run up the middle of the road have the right of way, if you stray on to the clearly demarcated bike lanes, you will be lined up and bowled by these two wheeled projectiles….and they ride on the wrong side of the road so come at you when you are right-left-righting when you should be left-right-lefting!

There is the smell of dope everywhere and dope products for sale next to the souvenir t-shirts and clogs in the numerous shops including some in a museumwinkel we went into today,  Pot flavoured chupa chups for god’s sake.

Going to see how to make clogs today.  With the management structure at work skewed towards those that chew tulips, I feel it will be a good career move to learn such skills or at least purchase some.  Take care,

V and Me (Hans)

Pirates and London

Posted: July 1, 2017 in Honeymooners
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31 June 2017PadstowMarina

Padstow Harbour

 

We all heard it.  V was taking the piss out of a West Country person’s accent on the telly.  Having repeatedly told me off for doing so, even when being served by them, she had succumbed.

We jumped in Gloria the Golf and headed for the West Country the morning after getting back from France so had to quickly drop the outrageous French accent for the one that Poldark used to use or those that make great ciderrrrr from tha own arrrples if you follow the drift.  We were heading to Padstow.  A seaside town made famous by Rick Stein and smugglers and pirates.  It is a quick 5-6 hour trip usually.  Gloria’s GPS was set to tourist mode and we set off.  After an unintended 21/2 hour sightseeing trip through London and its glorious traffic queues and diversions, we made it to something that resembled a motorway but was more like a carpark!

Finally on our way, we hit traffic jams like I haven’t seen in a long time.  There were accidents and people out of their cars lying on the road and on their cars.  We thought those lying on the road were taking this terrorist pedestrian attack prevention measures a bit far.  The traffic whilst mainly going in the opposite direction was caused by those leaving the Glastonbury music festival that finished up the night before (think hairy armpits and smelly).  We did drive past Stonehenge but there was no way we were stopping as we would never get going again.  The perimeter fence at Stonehenge must now be over a kilometre from the stonemason’s unfinished project so the public get the same view that we did….from the road.

We arrived at Padstow some 8 plus hours later and tried to find our hotel.  Tucked down a side street only wide enough for a small car and no parking provided, it took a bit of work to get checked in and then park the car out of town on the top of a hill.  Walking back down was a breeze.  Tomorrow will be unpleasant to say the least.  The old fishing village was quaint and Rick Stein had his name on about 20% of the buildings.  There were cream teas and pasties and fish and chips for Africa and pubs for the rest of the world. I have refused to eat my chips with a little wooden fork that they give out, preferring my stubby little fingers every time.  Everyone sounded like a pirate and within minutes, V was giggling at them and I had become fluent Johnny Depp ….aye Captain, eyell ‘ave a ciderrrr and a pastie.

Dinner was a honeymoon treat at one of Rick’s eateries….Rick’s Café.  He was not there that night but we didn’t starve.  The next morning we went to the south coast and had a look at the Eden Project, where in an old quarry, gardens from across the world had been planted under these gigantic domes (like golf balls).  This was fascinating and like a real version of the film about life on Mars. We stayed at an old home built in 1860 that night.

A quick trip into London on Thursday saw us at the Borough Market as were thought it safe from terrorists now.  Did see a lot of cops and ‘undercover’ security personnel though.  An obligatory stop at the Hard Rock café was made before we quickly scurried off before the rush hour idiot’s session started.  V’s suitcase is filling.  Her wardrobe will be quite fresh by the time she gets home.  Party Saturday night, special brunch up some tall building Sunday then we have just two more days in London before we hit France for 11 days.

Ohhhh arrrr, take care.

V and Me