A Grim North

Musings from a northerner living in the deep south…

Archive for the ‘Family’ Category

The rules have changed

Posted by Alan on January 15, 2011

Last weekend I was back at home visiting my folks.  We regularly play Scrabble with a fairly inevitable outcome – mum wins – despite various dirty tricks! (repetitive electronic music, gifts of alcohol etc). This year however, Nikki had picked up a special scrabble with trick squares that allow you to bend the rules.

Trick Scabble

Trick Scabble

Sadly it only seemed to polarise further the scores! It was a bit weird breaking the rules – but crazy scores aside it didn’t add much to the game and I reckon I prefer the original. Oh well, best get practising for the next game!

Tiles - new font

Tiles - look they've changed the font too!

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A Transport of Delight

Posted by Alan on August 30, 2010

This weekend my parents came down to see our flat and have a bit of an explore of London. After our narrowboat trip earlier this year we felt the best way to start Sunday would be a trip on the Waterbus from Little Venice to Camden Lock.

Waterbuses pass

Waterbuses pass at speed

The Waterbus provides a daily service about once per hour along this stretch of the Regents canal, with one intermediate stop at London Zoo! Compared to the canals we travelled on ‘up north’ the Regents seems very deep – at least 1½ traffic cones! From here we walked round to Camden stables market where we grabbed some cheap eats. It’s no Borough market but cheap enough not to hurt too much! The market has changed a lot since I last went – with the near completion of a new huge multi-story building.  It was as busy as ever though…

Camden Stables Market, London

Camden Stables Market

From here we headed up to the tube at Chalk Farm and continued north as far as Golders Green where for Sunday only there were old buses running to the RAF museum at Hendon. But en route for Hendon the heavens opened really quite seriously – giving Britain’s finest in stereotypical bank holiday weather!

Britain's finest design

Britain's finest designs - together in the rain!

RAF Hendon museum of course added aeroplanes in to the mix and we enjoyed the first hall of aircraft which included a Eurofighter typhoon and a 3D sales pitch of the Eurofighter. I haven’t been to the cinema to see a 3D film and I don’t think I will unless they can figure it out without the stupid glasses. Just rubbish.  The film itself was OK, except for some reason they missed out the inevitable mindless killing of innocents in their demonstration of the laser guided bombs! I do wonder how long it will be before we just let machines fight it out for us.

Eurofighter at RAF Hendon

Eurofighter at RAF Hendon

As it was getting to late afternoon (and the ancient buses would soon have to be retired to their garages) we had to leave the museum before having fully gone round it – so I think doing that properly will be on my to do list. If I can get round before Cameron cuts free museums anyway…!

From here we headed back on the old bus to Mill Hill East tube – the story of which is told in this excellent documentary, Unfinished London, before continuing east by regular public transport back our flat and ready for tea. It was nice to explore a new part of London for us – though I think we probably tried to fit too much in.  Must learn not to cram together ideas!

Of course there is a full set of photos on flickr.

(Note: post title shamelessly plagiarised, from Flanders and Swann!)

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A bit of nostalgia – Milnrow Carnival, 1992

Posted by Alan on August 23, 2010

Recently I’ve been playing about a bit with some old VHS cassettes to learn how best to convert the old family videos to digital formats before we no longer have devices to play them on! Most of this is family stuff that isn’t really for the internet, but when I found Milnrow Carnival in 1992…well youtube’d it had to be (it’s not a revolution, it’s OK).

On Newhey Road by the card factory.

On Cornfield St outside what was Hollingworth High School… just 18 years go but seems like a whole different world.

For the tech-heads I’ve written a bit more below on the technical aspect.

Read the rest of this entry »

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Back to the internets

Posted by Alan on August 2, 2010

Having been on a narrowboat last week, I gave up all forms of electronic communication. I didn’t miss it much – the main thing was being able to look up stuff to answer questions when were tanking along at almost 4 mph (6.4 km/h) or in the pub!

Weather was largely fine – a bit of rain one day but we did go boating in the North West so you can hardly expect endless sunshine. I’ve loads of photos to upload and much stuff to write – having kept a paper log! As you might expect… all of the pubs will be reviewed on my other blog – East London Drinker plus a few others from a recent trip away. The biggest adventure was taking the boat onto the Anderton boat lift…but I’ll save that for a proper entry. For now, here is us on the way home at Hassell Green – taking a break before tackling the second half of Heartbreak Hill.

Us on the boat

Us on the boat

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A Bride and A Castle

Posted by Alan on June 7, 2010

The Bride on the bouncy castle!

The Bride on the bouncy castle!

It’s going to take ages to sort out the photographs and choose the best ones to show off… (there’s hundreds!) but for now here’s one of the most memorable moment’s from Saturday’s wedding. After the kids had gone to bed, the bride and some of the guests went for a good old bounce.

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