September 02, 2009 GMT
Eleven Days


Give Me My Eleven Days Back!


What I omitted to say, when deciding on the 14th September to start this trip, is that my calendar is a little bit second-hand - Ancient even.


Here's the page for September:


calendar1752.jpg


Yes, it's for 1752, but I did say it was old and has been recycled a lot.


Today's the Second, so tomorrow's the Fourteenth and we depart on the great adventure.


Hope everyone is ready.


It's lucky that my modern hi-tech pocket diary thingy reminded me to check my old calendar, and also reminded me that in England, in 1752, the Julian Calendar was replaced by the modern Gregorian Calendar, and 14th September came right after 2nd September.
Riots ensued in London and rowdy mobs demanded, "Give us our eleven days back!" outside the King's residence.


So if, on the Dover Calais ferry tomorrow, you hear "Give Me My Eleven Days Back!" echoing up and down the decks, then please buy me a beer.
Thankyou.




elevendays.jpg
Hogarth's painting of a protester on the Dover ferry, 14th September 1752, with his placard inscribed "Give us our Eleven Days."



Posted by Ken Thomas at 01:08 PM GMT
September 14, 2009 GMT
Last Entry



Last Entry in this category, 'UK Preparation'.



The day of departure has arrived after living in oily overalls for what seems like a couple of years. Probably it has been a couple of years.
Preparation is done, luggage is loaded, trial runs undertaken.


Final configuration is here:


13th1.jpg



and here:

13th2.jpg
The last run round the block yesterday.



Today we start tentatively. Very tentatively. A toe-in-the-water trip to Calais for our first overnight stop.
Plenty of time - minimum stress - not far to ride.


Dover here we come!


So, a rundown of the final week with thanks to all who made it a great send-off.


To all at the family fairwell and trip conference on Monday.
A London event on Tuesday by the Scott Polar Research Institute made a nice break from all the oily rags.
Thanks for all the good wishes on Wednesday at one of the biggest reunion clubs going, The TV Network Club.
A couple of beers with old-time Wimbledon Club members on Thursday, who I think gave a vote of approval for my bike's preparation.
And a brilliant breakfast send-off on Friday by the Crystal Palace Early-morning swimmers, complete with a very slick and appropriate music and visuals accompaniment.


After five days of that, and no work to speak of, this last manic weekend in the garage was a weekend not to remember. Spanners spun and flashed, oil gushed and panic reigned.


Now we hope all is calm On The Road (again).




Posted by Ken Thomas at 08:47 AM GMT
September 22, 2009 GMT
First Steps



Welcome to the 'Departure and Europe' category.


We are making our first tentative steps, a little slowly.



We spent two days in Dresden seeing a friend of Caroline's and two nights here visiting Terezin (a nazi concentration camp town) just north of Prague.


Not much time to find an internet place good enough to post photos, and no real photos anyway. Next stop is Prague, then Budapest, Romania, Bulgaria and the Black Sea coast, probably another week away.


We spend quite a bit of time repacking luggage, and repacking again, trying to get everything into easily-accessible places. Haven't started throwing anything away yet, but that will start soon I think.


More news as it comes in (as they say).




Posted by Ken Thomas at 06:22 AM GMT
 



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