Mood Matching Monochrome

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Cabaret with String Quartet

One size fits all

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Evening at a cabaret. Four gentlemen, Grupa Mozarta, entertained us with classic snippets, classic renditions of rock/pop classics. They were funny, self-deprecating and obviously accomplished musicians with a cheeky sense of humour. Even the rain couldn’t dull the evening. Bravo, encore!28579443133_67500f834c_o

Whitby Goth Preparations

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As  posted earlier, in late October we are off to Whitby. ‘’Where is Whitby, exacxtly’’ asked my lovely wife.

I replied ‘’Coordinates: 54°29′09″N 0°37′14″W / 54.4858°N 0.6206°W / 54.4858; -0.6206.’’

She smiles by way of reply.

Whitby is a small coastal settlement in Yorkshire, just up t’ road from Scarborough.  Picturesque cottages have been redefined as lovely from their former status as ‘mean’ hovels for the lower classes to live in. Picturesque it is, cold it certainly can be! Along the coast another worthwhile place to visit is Robin Hoods Bay. But this is Yorkshire I hear you exclaim, go on, exclaim. Better? Good. Well in fact, as much as we can glean from history, Robin was a Yorkshire man. Which explains a few things!

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Anyway, Whitby is going to host a Goth rock music and general dressing up weekend to tie in with Halloween.Should be nifty. Wife planning clothing. What do I go as? Anyway, simply have to fly into one airport, hire a car, drive on the wrong side of t’ road, with steering wheel on wrong side of car, at night. Party and parade whilst trying to stay warm, go to the gig, drive back in t’ dark to another airport. Pay extra for the privilege and all in one weekend. Not so dusty.

(t’ = the).

I haven’t told anyone yet, but they must learn the words to the following song before being allowed to leave Yorkshire. A one, a two, a one two….

Wheear ‘ast tha bin sin’ ah saw thee, ah saw thee?

On Ilkla Mooar baht ‘at

Wheear ‘ast tha bin sin’ ah saw thee, ah saw thee?

Wheear ‘ast tha bin sin’ ah saw thee?

On Ilkla Mooar baht ‘at

On Ilkla Mooar baht ‘at

On Ilkla Mooar baht ‘at

Tha’s been a cooartin’ Mary Jane

Tha’s bahn’ to catch thy deeath o’ cowd

Then us’ll ha’ to bury thee

Then t’worms’ll come an’ eyt thee up

Then t’ducks’ll come an’ eyt up t’worms

Then us’ll go an’ eyt up t’ducks

Then us’ll all ha’ etten thee

That’s wheear we get us ooan back

 

I foresee no foreseeable problems.

 

Karlskrona Sedate or Sedated?

The ferry was okay, well it didn’t sink. It also had reassuringly expensive prices. Up at the crack of dawn, and off we go. Well actually we had one holdall that was to be stowed in a locker at the port. This meant we could not cycle. Just as we approachd the gates, they shut. Closed. Locked. I had to shimmy around to the entrance gate, explain the problem and were allowed to exit via the in gate.

Off we went in the sun. Just over 11km into Karlskrona along good cycles paths. Actually it took longer than anticipated. Children stopped for tired legs, aches unspecified or to argue that one has got something better on the their siblings bike, and off again, and again. Karlskrona is pretty in an understated kind of way. A large bay spotted with small bridges and people doing indefinable things with small boats.Some of the houses are very colourful and all is clean. I don’t know whether to say whether Karlskrona is sedate, or sedated? Cue the Ramones!

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A wonderful marine museum was enjoyed by all. We scurried over ships of varying vintage. Inside a hall one can scuttle about the former Swedish subamine Neptune. At around 1,100 tonnes submerged, it confirmed my love of claustrophobic tiny spaces. How 19 officers and crew spent time at sea in such a craft is beyond me. But they certainly deserve respect.

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More cycling and more expensive food and an amiable cycle back to our waiting long ship. Here to be boarded first and haul our oars back to Gdynia. Would cycling be more fun in Gdynia, Sopoat, than Karlskrona? Wait for the next thrilling instalment of…carry my backpack, pleeeeze!

Arles

I never try to put too much trust in technology. Brought up pulling plugs out at night has kind of stayed with me. My point, well, purchasing a GPS is a point in question. In the old days I would lift my quill and scratch directions, turn -offs (politics, curtain shops) and have all to hand in my grubby little mitts.

Resplendent  on our dashboard was a GPS. It kept slipping off so it was put on the windscreen, ”No, not here dear, I need to see the road.”

And this device with its purple thick line seductively led us successfully from Avignon to a small roundabout outside Arles, we could actually see Arles. But it was but a tease. GPS went into meltdown, or as far as I’m concerned. Up a narrow street, that then became narrower, twisted, turned almost back on itself. Look, we’ve already seen that cigarette pack already. Just in case it wasn’t narrow enough the locals had planted bollards. We we’re close enough to pass the time of day with an elderly lady leaning through her window. Wonderful shutters. Blue. Must get a picture later.

I protested about the route, then spied a sign from history to the village/town centre. Back and round, and round and back. Finally onto a road wider than a bow legged women doing the splits. Breathe. The road, not the bow legged woman, you understand??And the good news, the GPS took us out the same way out. I still know somewhere there is a proper way into Arles. Park and debuss amongst calls from the children for food, toilets and drink, but not necessarily in that order.

Hey, well done Arles. Why?  For they had a delightful young lady wearing hint of Goth,  in the information centre, who spoke English, was helpful and actually suggested what we should visit. She was doing great until she mentioned the football;-)

To walk around and see the buildings painted by an Gogh was amazing. The cafe where he stood and painted with a pencil behind his ear, no the other ear.

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The ancient arena a delight and the prices frightening, and outside the arena a  dog with all  real talent. Bless it!IMG_1761

Wonderful to visit, but don’t trust the technology.

 

Annecy

Annecy is situated at the northern end of Lake Annecy. Their has been a setttlement their since at least Roman times. And this is very important. The roads are flat and normal, such a relief after the Alps;-) IMG_1545

This is the Palais de l’Isle which stands on the river Thiou. To me it is reminiscent of the bows of a boat. The scaffolding dates back as far as a few months ago! IMG_1526

A (flat) canal wends its way throught the town which is wonderful on the eye.

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Well worth a visit with a lovely atmosphere.

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Upwards and upwards Chamonix

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Today my wife reminded me that we were going to take in Chamionix on the way down to Grenoble. This did not really get properly processed, and the light of my light did not  elucidate on the subject further. I sould have been warned As we came down the motorway towards a range of daunting mountains, I pointed out a tiny little road, set at a bizarre angle, snaking up the mountains. Still the darling I love said nothing. As we came off the motorway it slowly dawned on me that we were heading directly for that narrow slice of building technology clinging to the ever growing mountain. My wife knows that I love mountains, and heights, the higher the better;-)

With hands starting to feel a little sweaty I pointed the car up the narrow road, trying not to look down at the precipitous sheer drop off to my right. Switchbacks and steep climbs – I was in heaven. Hats off to the motorcyclists who shot past, good luck to them. And still upwards we climbed past tiny hamlets and lone houses. Who can live in such a place? Finally we started to slowly ascend, again via switchbacks and narrow ways of course, until we pulled over in Chamonix. Across from our eatery my dear pointed out a mountain top, with a giddy cable car heading to the summit. Smilingly she asked if I wanted to go up there. My answer has not been recorded!

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