Sunday, 20 March 2011


Adrienne went to an 18th birthday party last night. It was fancy dress, myths and legends theme, so she went as a pixie. What sort of pixies wear corsets I don't know, but never mind. She looked good. If you look closely you will see she even wore purple contact lenses.
We waited up for the phone call to taxi her home. She arrived back saying she had a good time. Her friend certainly did. She was sick in my car on the way to her house. Adrienne cleaned it up.

Sunday, 13 March 2011

London - again!

I love London. So when the chance came to spend the day there without 45 children I jumped at it. My friend Sarka, from the Czech Republic, came over for the weekend and asked me to be here guide. She wanted to see the sights.

So our first stop was Madame Tussauds, which I haven't been in since I was a student. The first room was a melee, the one with all the most famous celebrities, but a distinct lack of teenaged girls meant I had no trouble at all having my photo taken with Robert Pattinson. Unfortunately Taylor Lautner wasn't there. Sarka had to wrestle through a huge crowd to have her photo taken with George Clooney.

After a coffee break at Covent Garden we went on 'The Grand Tour': Big Ben, Houses of Parliament, quick glance at the Thames, Downing Street, Horse Guards Parade, Trafalgar Square, Buckingham Palace and Piccadilly Circus. My feet were killing me, but Sarka didn't complain. I hope she's not feeling it too much today.
London conspired against us on several occassions. Everywhere you go they are digging up, so roads you expect to be able to cross suddenly become impassable. At least half the tube lines were only running a partial service. And the Subway sandwich shop in Trafalgar Square seemed to have disappeared off the face of the Earth.
Then I was not quite the guide I should have been in the afternoon. We stopped for a drink in a pub in Victoria and Sarka spotted a bus to Paddington. A better option that the tube, we'd see more sights. So we leapt on one without bothering to check in which direction it was going. Stupid me. It was going south, we wanted to go north. Never mind. We switched buses at Vauxhall, so we got a nice view of the Thames again, London Eye one way, Battersea Power station the other, the MI6 building right behind us. For anyone else wanting to see a few sights this is a good route to take. We drove up Park Lane, with Hyde Park to our left, and past Marble Arch and Oxford Street.
Then the day was done. Sarka has promised me a day in Prague. I am looking forward to it. I hope she had as good a day in London as I did.

Sunday, 6 March 2011

Bideford Half Marathon

Today was the day Carl ran his first half marathon. (He's the one in the Oompa-loompa coat in case you were wondering.) Ian stuck with him throughout and did a good job in moral support. This is the before shot, just as they were lining up at the start. There were 1200 runners.
Here they are after about 400 metres.

And at the 2.5 mile mark, struggling a bit and going up hill, but still smiling.

And they finished the race!
They did it in 2 hours and 42 minutes. A good time for Carl, who has only gone about 8 miles in training up until now. Carl thinks he was 1198th.

This is the after-shot. Apart from being slightly pinker, they look pretty much the same.
Well done, boys.
(And not an ambulance in sight!)
Post Script: Apparently there were less than 1200 runners. Carls official position was 1042, more than 2 people finished behind him, and several did not finish at all!