D4D

The choice of a sweary generation ®

Archive for the category “Travel”

Overtaking – On the decline

Over the last few weeks of driving, I’ve been noticing more and more that other drivers seem to be quite averse to overtaking, even with miles of clear and visible road ahead.  I don’t quite know why it is – maybe it’s about how generally risk-averse we’re becoming – but it’s bloody annoying.

I do overtake – so long as it’s safe, and the road is clear. (That should go without saying, but still) But I now seem to be in the minority.

Of course, the irony is that when you’re then on a multi-carriageway road, every single one of those motherfuckers is sitting in the outside two lanes, overtaking fuck-all. But I digress.

The thing is, if you’re behind five or six – hell, even two or three – vehicles who aren’t overtaking whatever’s holding everyone up/back, then my own overtaking manoeuvre becomes difficult, if not impossible. So you just end up sitting there, because no-one else is prepared to do anything.

It’s an odd state of affairs – and sometimes bloody annoying. But there’s not a lot that you can do, except accept that it’s just going to be one of those days…

Edinburgh Trip

All told, the Edinburgh trip was fantastic. Thoroughly enjoyed all of it, even though I’m knackered by the end of it.

The travel itself was exceptionally smooth – and all on-time, which made it even better. Coasting past jammed traffic on the M1 (which I would’ve been using otherwise) was a particular high point.

The hotel was great (with the minor exception of a 2am fire alarm on the Saturday night, but these things happen) and everything generally went well.

Over the weekend I walked about 25km around Edinburgh – including being too lazy to wait for taxis and buses, and walking from Leith to the City Centre (and back) – as well as visiting two galleries, which was the kind of thing I wanted to do with the weekend.

Finally, the restaurant was absolutely brilliant. I really enjoyed the entire thing, and really want to go back (as well as going to other similar places) for a different menu and different choices. It also helped that the first person I saw as I went in was Tom Kitchin himself, which I figure is a pretty auspicious start.

So yes – a great weekend, and a great break. More will follow.

Travel Time

The trip to Edinburgh this weekend is also pretty much the first time I’ve taken a long-distance train journey since I lived in Manchester. I was considering driving, but looked at a minimum of six hours each way, as well as the consideration of fuel costs etc., and thought “You know what? Eff that”.  (Which is pretty novel in itself)

So I checked out the train costs – the journey’s about 5 hours each way by train, and the ticket price is pretty much on a par (within £10 or so) of the expected fuel costs. Plus it’ll mean I get to read, write, or just look out of the window, rather than being stuck having to concentrate on driving the entire way.

All told, it’s really been quite a sensible decision.  I’m not sure how it happened – I normally see a sensible decision and run in the opposite direction.  I’ll write more about it once I’m back, and know how it all went.

Month of Madness

This month is actually quite busy for me outside of work.

Last weekend, I ended up doing a daytrip to Somerset.

This coming weekend I’m in Edinburgh – I may have mentioned that before

The weekend after, I’m in Manchester.

The weekend after, I’m in London.

And then it’s May.

I’m not quite sure how that’s all happened, but it’s going to be fun.

Whitstable Day-Trip

The day trip to Whitstable was thoroughly pleasant, and much needed.  Among other things, I’m coming to the conclusion that I really need to have more sea and seaside in my life – it’s something that’s been missing for way too long.

Having written last week about feeling down/flat, wondering what’s going on and so on, I found myself feeling far, far better as soon as I got out the car and heard the noise of waves on the beach. I don’t know why it works like that on me, but it does.

Anyway, as a result, I walked along a large length of the seafront. What the hell, I was there early, and most places weren’t even open, so it was pleasant – and I got to meet a huge Irish Wolfhound as well, for added bonus points.  Mainly though it was about just walking and appreciating the noise of the sea. (Such a bloody hippie)

The BeachThere’s also a load of beach huts along the front, all different – not just in paintscheme, but in style – and I ended up taking photos of a number of those, too.  Again, no-one else around, and it was a pleasant way to spend a morning.

Whitstable Beach HutsIt was just what I needed as a ‘day off’ activity, and I ended up walking 5km along the front, taking the odd picture, and just relaxing.  I stopped off at a few places as well, and also spent some time sat in wind-free areas – of which there were few – just reading amid the sounds of the waves.

More Huts at WhitstableThe weather wasn’t perfect – it was grey and blowy – but that didn’t bother me. I wasn’t going there to soak up sun, but instead to just have time out from lots of stuff. And I got that in swathes.

Groynes on the beachWhitstable’s definitely one of those places I’ll be going back to, and could easily consider as a place to live. It’s not ideal – some of the travelling would be more problematic than it is currently, for example – but at the same time it’s a place I like. It’s on the list when I finally do decide to move on, and let’s leave it at that…

Too Long

While writing stuff last week, and looking back through D4D™, I realised it’s now very nearly seven years since I was last in Ireland.

That’s too long – I feel the need to return.

Something else to organise as a break for this year, then…

Slowtime

Following on from yesterday’s notes about being a bit flat/tired, I’m taking this weekend as being a bit slower, a bit calmer – well, by my standards, anyway.

Saturday is going to be a cinema-day. There’s a couple of things I want to see, the timings gel nicely, and the weather forecast is mediocre, so sod it, that’s the plan. An afternoon of cinema.

Sunday though is likely to be a bit sillier. Because all I want to do is curl up and do nothing, I’m going to do another day-trip. I’m unsure of exactly where yet – the main options being Reading, Whitstable or Brighton – but all are within a two-hour drive.  I’m quite tempted by Whitstable, to go and sit by the sea and generally chill out a bit.  I used to work near there many moons ago, so a bit of a revisit too. I did go back there a while back – although a site search has revealed that ‘a while back’ actually means 10 and a half years – so it’ll be interesting to see what’s changed (and what’s stayed the same) in that time.

And that’s the plan for a quiet weekend…

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