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Marathon update: more photos online!

Virgin London Marathon 2010

I updated my marathon photos on flickr with the official ones

Virgin London Marathon 2010

Colm has uploaded his marathon photos

Virgin London Marathon 2010

Rosie has uploaded her marathon photos


Just waiting for James’ now! They all got such great pictures, I am thrilled! I think you can now appreciate looking at the pictures that I was having the time of my life on that run :)

Photos from Dublin

This weekend I took some time to explore Dublin a little with my camera – there’s plenty more there I’d like to shoot but I did grab a couple of nice ones I think. Check them out:

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I think this one might be my favourite – I’ve wanted to get this shot since I first saw the spire :)

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Breaking in the new flat

Well I’m almost unpacked. 2 more boxes then maybe I’ll share some flat photos with you all… It’s been a busy few weeks getting settled in, but I’m 99% there and feeling good.

Today I finally have broadband – this is a huge milestone! It’s crap broadband, but that’s a long story for another day. I will detail my trials and tribulations getting decent connectivity out of the Poplar exchange in due course…

Anyway, Saturday I will have Sky, so then I’ll be all set. Things are looking good! The flat is nice. Not big, but it’s mine, and it feels good. I also have room to hang all my shirts up and have some of my favourite things back out of storage and I can’t tell you what a morale booster that is!

This week I’ve been breaking in the kitchen – it’s been great having my kitchen stuff out of storage and I got a bit carried away using it all, but as you can see I’m eating well :-)

Bread making! Steak cooking!

The steak I ate tonight was guilt-free, as I did an hour and a half in the gym today, running, rowing and cycling. Nice to eat and drink whatever you like :) There’s still time to sponsor me for my 10k run you know – it’s this Sunday!

Summer catch-up

During my long hiatus from the interwebs, I have been up to various things. Some of them are marginally interesting! Over time I will try to catch up a bit. Let’s start with this summer, because it’s been a pretty good one! Let’s see, what have I been up to?!

SanFran 2009

San Francisco and Vegas - 16th May

16th May - San Francisco and Vegas

This was a great fun trip to Vegas for a week for Colm’s birthday. I flew via San Francisco and took the opportunity to stay there one day and night to explore. I really love SanFran! As you can see I took quite a few pictures there, more than I did in Vegas. I spent a lot of time at the pool and at blackjack/poker tables in Vegas and taking photos in those places is generally frowned upon :)

Highlights:

  • Turning $300 into $2300 at a $10 blackjack table over the course of 2 hours
  • Sitting at the same poker table as Steph and the most annoying British poker brat I have ever met - they really went at each other and Steph gave as good as she got :)
  • Pulling an all nighter playing blackjack with the group (there were like 12 of us there!), then going for a full Irish Breakfast at an Irish Pub off the strip, run by a Scotsman, watching an Irish Rugby match at 10am local time, quite drunk.
  • Endless mornings by the pool drinking Strawberry Daiquiris!

Lowlights:

  • Losing my $2000 winnings on a $100 blackjack table in 5 minutes flat :o
  • Dropping a full Gin and Tonic into my own lap at Parasol Down in the Wynn. Much to everyone else’s amusement!

Glastonbury 2009

Glastonbury 2009 - 23rd June

23rd June - Glastonbury.

Ah, Glastonbury, always a pleasure. This was my second time - with the same crew as last year. I don’t think anything can live up to the religious moment I had at Glastonbury 2008 watching Leonard Cohen performing a legendary set with the sun setting behind him, but this was also a good year. Great weather (bar the odd little shower here and there), a good line-up, and once again we had a good camping spot and no major drama or incidents :)

Favourite moment? Probably Friday night when I was a little tired and emotional and pouring my heart out to Colm and Steph :) I think Neil Young was playing at the time? Or maybe hiding out in a tunnel in Shangri-la during a sudden and tremendous downpour - rain water coming through the ceiling and dripping down my neck - comedy!


London pride and madonna

London Pride then a Madonna concert - 4th July

4th July - London Pride and then a Madonna concert

I remember calling this my super gay summer day :) It was a really fun day. London Pride is always entertaining and this time we got to see One Star (Denise Pearson of the former band Five Star) singing. I even took some video of her and she is standing the test of time quite well as you can see.

Madonna was just brilliant. I was not expecting her to be that amazing. High energy, perfect choreography, great singing, and a tribute to MJ that was quite touching and nicely done. If only MJ hadn’t died, I could have seen both my childhood music heroes live this summer :( A somewhat selfish way of looking at it I know, but I think that’s how we all handle death isn’t it? How it affects us?

After London Pride, we took the Thames Clipper to the O2 for Madonna. This was a really nice jaunt on the river and as a Londoner I must remember to do this more often!



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U2 concert in Dublin - 25th July

25th July - U2 concert in Dublin.

Chance to see U2 live in Dublin? Not to be missed. Having not seen them live before (somehow), I was thrilled to see this show - it was epic, and to the home crowd! Sunday Bloody Sunday was amazing, I could barely hear the band over the crowd!

I had a great time, and sang myself hoarse, along with everyone else :)


August was very hectic indeed - check it out:


All Points West, 2009

All Points West in New York - 1st August

1st August - All Points West in New York

When a work trip lined up with the APW weekend I couldn’t believe my luck, nor turn down the chance to attend. What a line-up! Jay-Z, Vampire Weekend, Arctic Monkeys, Tool, MGMT, Elbow, Echo and the Bunnymen, Gaslight Anthem and Coldplay! Oh my!

Festivals in the US are funny - especially this one, with bizarre and annoying rules about a) how much alcohol you can drink and b) which areas of the site you can drink it in. Most of the weekend was spent finding creative ways around these rules :)



Amsterdam, 2009

Amsterdam Weekend - 7th August

7th August - Amsterdam Weekend.

I’d never been to Amsterdam, so when Rick and Colm suggested it (primarily as a means to get air miles and tier points with BA via a discounted business class return), I couldn’t say no!

It was a weekend in Amsterdam, so about what you’d expect really! i.e. lots of museums, culture, and canals, of course (what did you think I meant?!)

We stayed in a 3 bed private room in the Bulldog hotel (hostel really) - good location and atmosphere. Good value too - recommended.


U2 in Wembley, 2009

U2 in Wembley - 15th August

15th August - U2 in Wembley.

They were so good in Dublin, I couldn’t resist seeing them again in Wembley. Amazing concert - in Wembley it was fully a 360 degrees layout (unlike Croke park in Dublin where it was about 270 for safety reasons). This was the 360 tour so I’m glad I got to see that :)




Cannes and Monaco

Cannes and Monaco weekend - 21st August

21st August - Cannes and Monaco weekend

Summer drawing to a close - must go somewhere hot and beachy stat!! Managed it. Cannes was beautiful, I spent the whole weekend on the beach sunbathing, eating and drinking :) Popped into Monaco for lunch on Sunday “on the way” back to Nice airport.


Reading festival, 2009

Reading festival - 28th August

28th August - Reading festival

I really needed a weekend at home at this point - what a month! But what the hell, it was Reading festival and I’d not been to that before. Rick scored me a ticket and even got there early to score a good spot for me so all was set for a great weekend :)

Reading had an incredible line-up this year. Kings of Leon, Arctic Monkeys, Kaiser Chiefs, Bloc Party, Vampire Weekend, Yeah yeah yeahs, The living end, Gossip, Glasvegas, Gaslight Anthem,The Maccabees, Florence and the Machine, Faith no More, Prodigy, Radiohead, among others!

That said it wasn’t all roses. I must say having been to Glasto twice Reading was a shock. A much younger, more hectic, rude and “nasty” crowd. Some scary moments of pushing in dense crowds, people throwing stuff into crowds at gigs, and the absolute craziness of the last night….

It was like ‘nam - I’m telling you man, it was crazy! You weren’t there man, you weren’t there!!

…breathe. Okay, so anyway, picture a campsite at 2am on the last night. Groups of young kids roaming the site looking for trouble like something out of Lord of the Flies.. Flares and fireworks going off horizontally (occasionally hitting tents). Mushroom clouds on the horizon from kids throwing camping gas canisters and aerosol cans onto bonfires (!) Fire engines hurtling around… Crazy!

I’m not going to reading next year. (Unless the line-up is awesome again…)

Anyway - that was my summer. Not a bad one eh? How were yours?!

The 2009 Maggies London Night Hike

Last weekend myself and six friends/colleagues took part in the Maggies London Night Hike, a 20 miles sponsored night hike around the streets of London, to raise money for Maggies cancer centres.

We started out at 9pm from City Hall, near Tower Bridge, and walked until about 7am, with various stops en route to drink coffee and visit London Open House weekend buildings, such as the Royal Geographical Society, the Channel 4 building and Horse Guards.

We made it pretty much intact, although we picked up a few blisters between us (I was unscathed, thankfully). It was fairly tough with the distance and the fatigue (we’d all done a days work already that day so walking all night was tiring stuff). A couple of team members were certainly a little grouchy towards the end – but then we all have our ways of coping with sleep deprivation :-)

We raised in total just under £5000 for the charity, which is the most important thing, and something I’m very proud of. We also got to accomplish something, and see some cool sights, some of which I documented through the monumental struggle of lugging my SLR along the course of the route (!)

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Our motley crew ready to get going.

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Our little jaunt on the London Eye.

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Some of the sights we saw on our journey.

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Some of the rest stops we took on the way (love the last pic of Fash looking bleak – that was at mile 18 or so) :)

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Arriving at the finish line!

You can see the full flickr gallery of the hike, or even view the annotated route on everytrail below:

Maggies night hike 2009 at EveryTrail

Holiday postcards

From me to all of you, merry christmas and a happy new year :-)

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See the full xmas photo album on my flickr profile.