Thursday, August 31, 2006
Monday, August 28, 2006
Notting Hill Carnival
We went on an outing to the Notting Hill Carnival yesterday, it was a perfect sunny day. The parades were great, it was like being in Rio. The beers were also pretty cheap which was great considering we havent started work yet. It was absouletly packed and there were people dancing on balconies and rooftops. We met up with Paul Wintor, Adam and Michelle and took in the sights. We left the carnival in the afternoon and headed to the Shepards Bush Walkabout for some snakebites and Aussie atmosphere. We then headed back to the Mansions and kept the party going till late.
Its a long weekend and I dont start work till thursday so am planning on making use of the last few days of not working :-)
About the Carnival
The Notting Hill Carnival has been taking place in London, on the last weekend in August, since 1966. The arrival of Trinidadians in Great Britain, remembering their great Carnivals back home, provided the spark which ignited Notting Hill Carnival. From a small procession through the streets with just a few people in costume and carrying steel drums in the 1960s, has evolved a huge multi-cultural arts festival, attended by up to two million people. It is a great tourist attraction that brings life to London during the month of August.
Saturday, August 26, 2006
We arrived 6am in London after a very painful ferry ride from Brussels. We were lucky to met a nice Aussie guy called Greg from Brisbane on the ferry who's cousin was working at a pub in Putney so we had a place to crash for a couple of hours. We got up at 11 am and headed to acton to check out the mansions which we found on http://www.gumtree.com Our viewing wasnt till 5 pm so we hung out in the huge park across road feeding the ducks. We then went up for a look, loved the room and got it straight away. It was great considering we had no where else to go. There are six flats in the Mansions and we are on the top floor in flat 5. There are about 50 people in the complex and most are Aussies or Kiwis but there are a few Saffas hanging around. The whole place has a party amosphere and there is always something going on. There is a nice BBQ area out the front and a huge park across the road to kick the footy round in. There a few good pubs close by including the Red Back aussie pub which has some great specials on Sundays.
We have survived the first week so hopefully we will be able to handle the place ;-) I got a job the other day as well as a web administrator and start next thursday, so will finally be able to start earning some pounds.
I got the broadband connection online as well so I will be on messenger a fair bit from now on.
Thursday, August 24, 2006
We arrived in Brussels in the miserable rain, we finally found our hotel but were drenched. After it stopped raining we went up to the shops to get some samples of local beer, I came back to the hotel with about 10 different beers ranging from 12% to 8% alcohol, they sure do make them strong here. The next day I had headache to match the percentages. We walked around the city and saw most of the sites including the Mannequin Pis. We also visited the cartoon museum, Brussels is the home of Tin tin etc.
Saturday, August 19, 2006
Everything you have heard about this city is true and more! We arrived and were greeted my miserable weather. Our hostel was right in the middle of the Red Light district and filled with 18-19 guys there to sample the typical Amsterdam goods. Didn’t meet to many people other then a group of Italian heavy metal stoners in a coffee shop fresh from a heavy metal festival. The red light district was crazy, you could walk 5 metres without being hassled by African drug dealers selling everything under the sun. The hookers in the windows are a sight to be seen to be believed. There are all types, blacks, Asians, fatties, trannies, grannies etc. They occasionally bang on their windows to get your attention, its pretty full on. Single girls don’t even think about walking around this area at night! Food is ridiculously expensive so we couldn’t eat out at a restaurant, only maccas and kakabs were within our price range which was horrible for the diet. We also went to the Marijuana Museum which was great, they even have about 10 huge plants growing inside! You can get away with anything here. They even have these shops called "smart shops" which sell hallucinogenic mushrooms, they have about 6 types ranging in strengths and features which they will helpfully explain to you at the counter. We also went to the Van Gogh Museum which was great. We did a river cruise and caught a train outside of town to see the windmills and the country side. Our photos will be up soon
Friday, August 04, 2006
Hamburg is a port city and our hotel is just near the wharf and is pretty decent for once. On our first night we headed to a street called the Reeperbahn, it has the best clubs in the city but is also the most seedy area in Germany. There is about 100 strip clubs and sex stores. We found an Irish bar in between some strip clubs and it had some live music and decent prices. There was also a fair just near our hotel, it was kind of like the Ekka. I won Mel a world cup lion after some hard work on a side show game. We also went on the Ferris Wheel and the batteries on the camera ran out just as we took the first shot. Today we walked around the city and to the major historic buildings, we then went back to the Reeperbahn and a Ramdom old German man bought me a beer and kept talking about how much he loved Midnight Oil, that was about the only word we understood. We left after about 30 mins, funny stuff. Talking about old men we saw our first fight in Berlin outside a kebab shop at 1pm in the afternoon. A 50 something guy from Naples asked if we were Americans we quickly said no and then he loved us when we said we were Aussies. He then started badmouthing Berlin in a mix of English, German and Itailian. After about 5 mins a 60 something year old Berliner came out of the shop pushed him then kneed him in the balls. The Italian then crash tackled him to the ground. The fight was then broken up and we finished our kebab and walked back to get our Laundry.