Thursday, 23 August 2012

Olympic Holiday- Day 2

On day two of our holiday it was time to go and see our first Olympic event.  The beach volleyball tickets advised that we arrive at the venue 90 minutes before the start time.  Seeing as the start time was 9am I refused to believe that we needed to be there from half 7.  There had been warnings in the news of airport style security causing gigantic queue, which, I could well believe for the Olympic Stadium but not for the Beach Volleyball.  So we rocked up at 8am and by 10 past we’d already got inside the venue. 

The arena itself was quite impressive.  I’m not sure I’d thought it would be quite so big.  From the outside it looked like a huge amount of scaffolding however once we got to the section we were sitting in it, it seemed huge. We sat ourselves down in row 37 as was indicated on our tickets. I’d been afraid that the English weather would let us down once again, however, this time it surprised me. I was even starting to think we should have bought some sun-cream!
Panoramic View of the Stadium

As more people arrived to fill up the seats near us it seemed there was some sort of dispute over the row numbering.  This didn’t seem too much of problem though and people seemed to be sorting it out amongst themselves….. until the over keen volunteer showed up.  She was on a mission to make sure everyone was in the correct seat.  Unfortunately it seemed that we were all sat in the row behind the one we should have been in.  At first she wanted to get us all out and then resit us down, however, there would have been nowhere for us to stand whilst she did this so she seemed to give up.  But then, she came back for a second attempt.  She got everyone to clamber over the seats in front and so by halfway through we were actually in the right seats.

We were up near the back in the cheaper seats that were all full.  It was disappointing to see that a lot of the more expensive seats remained empty.  However with my long zoom lens I still managed to get some good photos of the action…

Germany in action

In the afternoon we went to the Natural History Museum as Lea has a fascination with dinosaurs.  We spent a good few hours there looking round all the exhibits.

I only found out a couple of months ago that Lea has some sort of morbid fear of whales, due to their size.  I had to practically drag her into the part where there was a life size model of a whale.

The big scary whale!

That evening we met up with one of my old school friends who has recently moved to London.  She suggested that we go for a curry on Brick Lane.  We got to the first restaurant on the strip and were talked into the door by the owner.  The restaurant was fairly busy and they had a banner up saying they had won some award.  He also offered us a free bottle of wine which was enough to win us over!  The food was extremely nice, I had some sort of selection dish-

My Brick Lane Curry
However, if you ever go to Brick Lane my advice to you would be-it certainly is the place to go if you're in London and you fancy a curry but shop around and don't get sucked in by the first restaurant.  It seems every single place has a banner up saying they've won some prestigious award.  I was surprised we didn't happen upon a banner printing shop because they would be doing a roaring trade!   

Alex x

Friday, 17 August 2012

Olympic Holiday- Day 1

I’d been looking forward to the Olympics since they made the announcement 7 years ago that they were to be held in London in 2012.  Back then I was convinced that I’d be able to get as many tickets as I wanted-  however I came to realise this would not be the case.  I luckily managed to get tickets to the beach volleyball and sailing so I thought we should make a holiday out of it! Normally I wouldn’t dream of taking a two week holiday in the UK, due to the unpredictable weather. However, the London Olympics won’t happen again in my lifetime. Lea was convinced that this holiday wasn’t for her, she wouldn’t really enjoy it and she was just coming because I wanted her to so I was on a mission to prove her wrong.  It was also to be our first holiday together!

We took the train down to London on the 27th July.  I’d managed to book a Travelodge right in the centre of Covent Garden for a reasonable price and, even if the hotel left a lot be desired, the location was absolutely perfect.  We had nothing planned for that night except to find a pub to watch the Opening Ceremony in.  So eager to get out of the hotel and start our holiday we had a wonder down to Leicester Square and spotted a Chinese place where we thought we’d get some dinner.  After having our food plated up from a fast food like counter, we were sheparded downstairs to where there was some free seating.  Downstairs turned out to be a windowless basement that could have been used as a set for a horror film, however, the quality and quantity of the food made up for it!

Lea with her Chinese (I'm sure she won't be thanking me for putting this picture up!)
Even though the opening ceremony didn’t start until 9 we thought it was best to go and find a pub and get some seats with a good view, so we made our way to a nice looking pub we’d passed earlier.  We went to the bar and ordered a bottle of wine to get us going.  I then turned around to look for somewhere to sit, but to my horror ALL of the tables were reserved.  I checked the barman if they were any available tables and he said there may be some downstairs.  So we went downstairs only to find ALL of the tables down there were also reserved.  Lea spotted a woman with a clipboard and went to ask her if there was anywhere to sit seeing as we’d already bought drinks.  It turned out she’d asked at exactly the right time as some people hadn’t turned up to their reservation upstairs so she showed us to the table.  It only went and turned out to be right in front of the TV and the absolute best seats in the place. 

In the Long Acre Pub
The pub kept getting busier and busier.  Once the ceremony had started there were people crammed in the doorway, craning their necks to see the TV, and even people standing outside watching through the window.  The atmosphere was electric.  We both thought the ceremony was a hit.  Danny Boyle had done the UK proud.  I loved Rowan Atkinson’s bit, and as for the Queen parachuting, well that was hilarious.
On our drunken way home we stopped to take some photos…..

It had been the best start to holiday, and I think I was beginning to convince Lea that our Olympics was going to be fun. 

Alex x

Thursday, 16 August 2012

Rabbit Update

I’ve been absent from blogger for almost 3 months now, for which I have absolutely no excuse.  It’s not that I’ve had a lack of things to write about or even no time to write.  I’ve been meaning to post about this and that and just haven’t got round to it.  But I’m going to try and be a better blogger now…..we’ll see how long this lasts!!

So, lot’s has happened.  We moved house, bought two new rabbits (one unfortunately died a few weeks after we’d got her L), went on holiday, saw the Olympics and got one more year older.  I feel like I couldn’t possibly write about all of these important events in one post so I’ll take one at a time. 
Let’s start with the rabbits.  We bought Bonnie about three months ago now.  As usual we’d gone to the pet shop to buy rabbit food and gone to have a quick peek at the rabbits for sale.  Once I’d set eyes on her there was no way I was going to leave without her.

While we’ve been away on holiday, Lea’s best friend Megan has been looking after her, and it seems while Bonnie has been staying with Megan she’d decided to take up blogging herself. To see Bonnie's blog posts click on the links below:

Then about two months ago Lea did exactly the same thing as I did when I fell for Bonnie.  She couldn’t leave the pet shop without little Sooty.  Unfortunately we thing when we bought Sooty she was already ill.                            She had three happy weeks with us until she passed away.  
R.I.P. Sooty. 

Alex x

Monday, 21 May 2012

Horrible Bosses

I thought this film was hilarious and I just got to thinking…. I wonder if bosses like this actually exist.  I mean I have plenty of complaints about mine but in the grand scheme of things they aren’t that bad.  My boss situation is as follows:

There are only five of us in the office- two others (with the same job as me), our boss, and the owner.  The boss and the owner are in a relationship, which makes the office environment… interesting.  We all sit in one small room for 8 hours a day and although they don’t act ‘coupley’ at work you just know that they go home and bitch about us.  Sometimes, with no warning, they like to pull us into a meeting to list all the things that we do wrong.  The complaints they have are more personality based than job based- such as you’re too quiet and don’t ask enough questions, or you’re a very private person.  Well I’m sorry but I don’t feel like pouring my life story out to my bosses!! 

As I said we all sit in one small room and they have complained about me being rather quiet. Even though I sit 8ft away from my boss she would rather email me with simple questions/ tasks for me to do, than ask me across the room.  How does she expect me not to be quiet if she communicates with me via email??

Our contracts say the company promotes flexible working hours and working from home. To help with this the contract states that the company provides laptops to all employees.  I have been there for 5 months and have had to use my own personal laptop at meetings and for business abroad.  Another of my colleagues asked if she could start half an hour early in order to leave half an hour early on a Tuesday and Thursday and she was met with a no.  Is that promoting flexible working hours?   My boss of the other hand uses and abuses the flexible working hours.  She was stuck for childcare for over two months and so arrived at work half an hour late and left two hours early + took all the school holidays off for over two months.

I have many more complaints but I don't want to come across as a complainer :P 
Do any of you have any stories of horrible/ just plain irritating bosses?

Alex x

Thursday, 3 May 2012


I was driving home yesterday and was stuck in the usual ultra-slow moving traffic when I saw a strange sight coming towards me.  It looked like a 'granny-mobile' (those funny vehicles that old people like to drive around  far too fast) with a roof over the top of it.  This thing had a number plate though, and it was on the road in the flow of traffic. It got closer to me and I saw it had no sides/ doors.  Taking into account that it was raining pretty hard, and does quite often round here, this didn't seem like a very sensible vehicle to be driving around.  As I drew alongside I saw there was a bloke in his 60s, wrapped up to the nines to protect himself from the weather, driving this thing.  When I got a good look at the back of this vehicle I learnt that it was a Renault Twizzy:

Apparently you can actually get two people in these things and you shouldn't get wet so long as you don't stop.  So lots of driving through red lights then.  I'd also like to see someone try and fit the weekly shopping in there, it'd be falling out of the sides.  Has anyone else seen these genuinely being driven around??

Alex x

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

Parking Dilemma #2

Yesterday I got back to the car park and all of the cars once again had notes on them.  The message these notes carried on them was this-

'No parking this week as we are cleaning the drains and your car may get damaged' 

After the clamping warning last week why are they now being so polite as to let us know ours cars may be damaged by drain cleaning.  To me this doesn't add up.  I have two theories- that the employees of the bed shop just think it's hilarious to wind us all up or that someone else that parks in the car park is winding us all up.  Yesterday the car park was pretty full but this morning, after the mysterious notes of yesterday, there was only a couple of cars in there. No doubt by tomorrow we'll all be back and I shall be on tenterhooks waiting for the next note.....

Alex x