Friday, November 30, 2012

Lips That Touch Liquor - Demotivational

When I heard about butt chugging on the radio I immediately thought of these ladies. Of course I had to make a meme about it.

Farewell Ricky Ponting

I saw Ricky Ponting's Test debut in 1995 vs Sri Lanka at the WACA in Perth - scorecard. He made 96, was given out to a very high LBW decision and was clearly robbed of a century on debut. He's turned out to be a marvellous and, at times, dazzling batsman for Australia. Sadly, the time has come to retire. Actually I consider that he should have retired about two years ago.

In a match which he was obviously hoping to make his swansong I find it rather ironic that at the end of the first day's play the coach has decided that Nathan Lyon, genuine no. 11, should come in as nightwatchman in front of Ponting. Ricky had better make a swashbuckling 75 or more tomorrow. You'd hate to see Lyon actually go on to make more runs than him.

Farewell Ricky - well played. Go back to Sheffield Shield for a few seasons and give something back to the lower grade. Vid on YouTube showing his debut and the horrible decision to rob him of a century on debut.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

More Memes

2012 Holiday To London-NYC-Niagara - Day Four

Brekkie - scrambled eggs, cereal, juice, tea, bacon, tomato and toast. I could get used to this. Rang Jason, old school friend, to see if he was interested in seeing Buckingham Palace with us. He was but I had great difficulty in obtaining tickets. Arranged to meet at the changing of the guards. Bought ourselves tickets for the big tour.

Caught a bus to Hyde Park and wandered around for about an hour and a half. Found it to be a little disappointing. Walked over to Knightsbridge to H&M and promptly there was a fire alarm and an evacuation. So The Boy and I went to Harrods whilst the missus went elsewhere. So many expensive items. I took a photo of a Louis Vuitton bag costing £10,700 and was told immediately that I wasn't allowed to - deleted it. Found the toy section and we were surprised that PC games weren't sold there. Bought the missus a Paddington Bear. It was on special!

Together we visited a few more clothing shops before catching a no. 14 bus back to the hotel. An Australian couple asked me for directions at the sop and I made sure that they found their stop - Piccadilly Circus. Had to do this for some French girls when they asked me for directions to the Victoria and Albert Museum - they'd caught the bus going in the opposite direction and it was only quite a bit later that they realised their mistake. What am I, a walking directions guy? Whilst on the bus my friend Martin rang and we spoke about plans to visit him on Saturday night. Great to hear from him.

Grabbed lunch from a sandwich shop called Eat. Nice food. Getting late and we needed to catch the tube to Waterloo Station and a train from there to get to Hampton Court Palace. Purchased the additional section tickets for the train, picked up a book with 150 2-for-1 offers, and then had to argue with the ticket clerk who said that we wouldn't have enough time at the palace because the train would arrive at 4:20 and the palace shut at five o'clock. My guide book said that the palace shut at six and I had to meet Ben anyway for dinner.

Uneventful train ride but and on the way I discovered that the coupon book offered a 2-for-1 offer for Hampton Court Palace - great! The palace was a short walk over the bridge next to the train station. Got the cheaper tickets and in we went.

Talk about wealth, opulence, grandeur, extravagance - you name it. Massive place and so well decorated. Unbelievable. Better than the Tower of London. The apartments were huge, the chapel covered in gold leaf, the maze (oldest in UK) was great fun, the gardens were enormous - totally awesome. Definitely recommended.

As we were on our way out, after seeing pretty much everything except the gardens in-depth, Ben rang. Perfect timing. Haven't seen him for probably eight and a half years - met his wife Jules and son Xavier. There was a pub next to the park, Blubeckers, and we had dinner there. The Boy finally got his first fish and chips, haddock, and I had a fish house pie - salmon in a pie. Chatted away for two and a half hours until Xavier became tired. He was quite well behaved for a three year old with nobody to play with. Very shy until the time we were leaving and then he opened up - isn't that completely normal for kids?

Got to the train station and the guard was blowing his whistle as we reached the platform - perfect timing again as we ran and jumped on the train. Back to the hotel in about 40 mins. Quite a tiring day for all.

Photo Album Vol I
Photo Album Vol II
Photo Album Vol III
Photo Album Vol IV (Final)

Saturday, November 24, 2012

2012 Holiday To London-NYC-Niagara - Day Three

Woke up aroung 4:30 this morning and we decided to go for a jog at five o'clock. Up Gower Street, down Tottenham Court Road and rounded the British Museum. Showered and had breakfast just after seven. Booked tickets online for the Tower of London. Thankfully I didn't have to print the tickets out and could collect them from the venue.

Hard to believe that I lived in London for seven months in 1994 and never visited this tourist attraction. Great service at breakfast - English breakfast, juice, tea, toast and cereal. Never experienced such friendly service.

 Bit more shopping for groceries at Tesco. One hundred grams of chocolate only 30p (roughly 45 cents - normally $1.50 or so back home). Much of the food in the supermarket is two thirds of the price I'm used to. I'm amused that my credit card needs to be scrutinised so much by the staff when I'm making a purchase of only a few pounds.

Caught the bus downtown (24 or 29) to Trafalgar Square. Had 45 minutes to kill so wandered around the place. It seems that nothing opens in London until 10am. First stop was the National Gallery - Constable, C├ęzanne, Van Gogh, Turner, Gauguin, Monet, etc. Even The Boy recognised a few of the paintings. What a stunning gallery - no photos allowed though.

Caught a no. 15 bus to the Tower of London. An old French couple on the bus pretended not to understand English when found to have the wrong bus ticket. Protracted argument with the conductor ensued. As soon as I had collected the tickets we decided to eat lunch. Walked past a pub called the Hung Drawn and Quartered. Lasagne and jacket potato for me at the City Coffee Lounge. The name doesn't quite leave the same ring to it. Walked back to the magnificent looking tower. It is a fabulous old building steeped in history and captured the attention of all of us. So much to see in the way of towers, weaponary, fusiliers, a torture chamber (disappointing), the White Tower and the Crown Jewels. I liked the Crown Jewels but thought that the silver and gold objects - spoons, punch bowl, basins, plates, etc, were even better viewing.

Guard at the entrance, a Spaniard it seemed, paid me out about, "Someone has to support them," in reference to my West Ham shirt. Spent some three hours there and were quite tired from all the walking. The spiral staircase from the top of the White Tower to the bottom was something else. Of course the missus had to buy a souvenir bear.

Wandered over to Tower Bridge for a few photos. Another magnificent structure but we were too tired and not willing to pay the entrance fee of £8 for a tour. Caugh the no. 15 bus back to Trafalgar Square, which was very slow due to the heavy traffic, and gave Ben (uni mate) a call regarding catching up tomorrow night.

Hotel for a rest and had a bite to eat at Subway - needed to eat some veggies. They don't prepare the sandwich in the same manner as back home - no asking your preferred cheese type, whether or not you wouldl like it toastaed (or using the tray for the hot oven) and no carrots available (corn instead). The guy insisted that I purchased a drink too as it made the meal 59p cheaper for a 6-inch sub. Weird.

No. 14 bus into Piccadilly Circus an walked down Regent Street. Some of the big name shops were closed. Hamleys was on the itinerary and, I have to say, that the biggest toy store in the world was a bit disappointing. Lots of toys but not much that we were willing to buy. Shopped at Lilleywhites and bought clothes for The Boy and West Ham gear, on sale, for me. The official merchandise was much cheaper than from the vendors on the street. We were very tired by this time and caught the bus back to the hotel - it was around 9:30pm.

The White Tower, circa 1080

Photo Album Vol I
Photo Album Vol II
Photo Album Vol III
Photo Album Vol IV (Final)

Saturday, November 17, 2012

2012 Holiday To London-NYC-Niagara - Day Two

My screen rebooted all through the night. Hand controller stopped working so I couldn't use the light or call an attendant with it. The only suggestion they could make was to swap seats - almost two hours after reporting the problem. Then I asked about purchasing a universal adapter and the attendant discovered that the plane hadn't been set up for duty free shopping - you weren't able to purchase anything - duty free or not. Tried on the eye shades to get some sleep but the chemical smell from them was a bit overwhelming. Swapped seats with The Boy and managed to get some shuteye.

Earlier I had to wait for nearly 15 minutes for some Asian chick to use the toilet. The floor was really wet and there was toilet paper stuck in the toilet. Some people shouldn't be allowed to fly.

Meals were quite nice - omelette was great. Spent much of my time watching rom-coms from the seat in front of me - without sound. Not very entertaining.

Interesting that the plane from Perth to Singapore had 55 rows of seats and we were seated in row 54. This plane we're in row 52 but it goes all the way back to row 88. And from there it goes upstairs!

Just picked up $100 in duty free shopping vouchers for my inconvenience although they did give it to the guy in front of me and put the name of the guy who had the seat originally on it.

UK Border took some 20-25 minutes to clear - and there were certainly a lot of people entering the country. I was a little bit confused in locating the underground station at Heathrow. Bought two adult tickets but was told that a child's ticket had to be purchased from King's Cross Station. Took a 45 minutes tube ride into London and changed trains once before getting to Goodge Street. Our hotel, the Ridgemount Hotel, was only a few streets away.

Too early to check in so we left our bags in the lounge room and walked around Tottenham Court Road, bought some lunch (nice sandwiches at Pret-A-Manger) and went to King's Cross Station. They informed me to go upstairs to purchase The Boy's ticket. I went upstairs and they told me to go downstairs. It turns out that 12 y.o. children can't purchase a 7-day ticket anymore, unless they are residents of London, so I ended up buying an adult ticket for him. At least we can travel before 9:30am if we want to. Noticed some cops with some kind of high powered weapons at the station.

Back to the hotel for check-in and showers. The missus wanted to have a sleep so The Boy and I went to the British Museum after purchasing a universal power adapter and some 3-Mobile sim cards for only 15 pounds each which gave 15 days of unlimited data, 3000 texts and about 300 minutes of free calls. Couldn't get over the fact that dual-sim mobiles could be bought for less than 10 pounds. The British Museum was fascinating - for both of us. Great way to spend an hour and a half - after The Boy's first ride in a double-decker.

Returned to the hotel again to collect the missus and go out for dinner. At at The Jack Horner - a 20 y.o. pub on Tottenham Court Road. It used to be a bank. My beef stroganoff was nice, Miky's soup was great and The Boy's Jack Horner house pie was superb. Music was nice, decor was lovely and the setting was great.

Caught a bus down to Trafalgar Square. Miky caught sight of Big Ben so we walked down to the Houses of Parliament. Many photos later, including the London Eye, it was time to head home. The Boy was zonked before our stop. That's what you get for not sleeping enough on the plane.

Great start to the trip.

Photo Album Vol I
Photo Album Vol II
Photo Album Vol III
Photo Album Vol IV (Final)

Monday, November 12, 2012

Disappointing Sports Journalist

Very disappointed to hear the following on News Radio when I woke up and an hour and a half later on the way to work;
"Adelaide Utd and Perth Glory played out a 1-0 draw yesterday..."

Where has the professionalism gone in journalism? Surely somebody could've tapped the sports reader, who was obviously without a sporting bone in his body, on the shoulder and corrected the script.

posted from Bloggeroid

Friday, November 09, 2012

Richie Benaud Would Have Been Excited

Could imagine that Richie Benaud would have been wetting himself in excitement at this scoreline.

Thursday, November 08, 2012

Fuel's Not Cheap In Perth

Quit complaining about the price of fuel where you are and think about we poor buggers in Perth - check out the price this morning! Oh, by-the-way, there wasn't anybody filling up either.

Saturday, November 03, 2012

2012 Holiday To London-NYC-Niagara - Day One

Been on holidays with the family recently hence lack of posts. It was a big trip. Hate to work out exactly what it cost either.  

Day One

Stayed up late last night to prepare for the upcoming time zone change. Well, that's my story. Bit of a sleep in and then took the dog for a walk with the missus for the final time for the next month. He was jumping out of his skin for walkies. Once home I grabbed some brekkie and completed an online check-in. This had to be done three times as we had separate bookings. Bummer. Meant that I was unable to choose the seating arrangement without coughing up $20/seat to sit together. Not. bloody. likely. Following brekkie we drove the dog to the kennel and dropped him off at his new home for the next four weeks.

 Bit of a tidy up and making lunch, complete with me doing my packing, before we were ready for the taxi. And the taxi was bang on time. Still needed to tell him the best direction for the international airport from our place. The driver does mainly shopping centre and domestic airport runs.

Immediate check-in for baggage due to the online check-in. Recommend it. As I said, we won't be seated together though. Coffee at Dome was $4.40 and there was an extra charge of $0.60 for takeaway. Only $3.30 at the other coffee shop. Welcome to Perth. Welcome to Perth International Airport. Whilst waiting they decided to have a test of the evacuation siren. I thought that it would be interesting for people who don't understand English. One bloke had a bit of a look around and appeared puzzled and that was about it.

 Only one officer at Customs and Border Protection when we lined up but they quickly increased it to three. Both of us, adults that is, were frisked after our carry on luggage had been screened. Arrived quite early at the waiting lounge - plenty of time for lunch and duty-free window shopping. No doubt we'll forget the bargains to be had in Perth for when we return. Our plane to Singapore is called Barrossa Valley.

It's 14:55 - not long till we board. And there's the announcement we've all been waiting for. We were one of the first to board, i.e. seated right up the back of the plane. Hopefully no screaming babies. The missus was seated three rows in front of us. I was going to introduce myself to the guy seated in our row but my missus asked if she could swap seats and did so after takeoff.

Good couple of movies on teh way to Singapore - Snow White and Men in Black 3. Very nice meal of lamb. The Boy ate all of his and then asked for another one not long before we readied for landing.

Wandered around Changi Airport for an hour. Prices seem higher than in Australia for electrical goods, cosmetics, books, watches, etc. Not as many shops to look at as I expected. Singaporeans call pens "writing instruments". Bit worried by the fact that I have chewing hum in my bag and I'm in Singapore where it is banned. Our flight from Singapore to London was on an Airbus A380-800 which is massive. And the waiting lounge was bursting with people. Our seats were split once again so I swapped with the missus so that she could sit with The Boy. She asked a flight attendant, and the guy seated alongside, if he would swap and if I could join them. Had a three-way swap - lady in my aisle, who had the window seat, had to swap with the guy who insisted on his window seat that he had been allocated. The lady was going to be rewarded for giving up her window seat. Missed the extra leg room that I had had though. Great - a touchscreen. Better than the last flight.

Whoops, spoke too soon. My screen crashed and despite being reset a number of times would not stop trying to reboot. Not pleasant (#1stworldproblem). Very bloody disappointing to say the least. Very smooth take-off in the A380-800 - most impressed.

Photo Album Vol I