Thursday, 21 June 2012

I seem to have left it 9 days since the last post... god help us all

Ok so i sit here in the common room of my hostel in london contemplating what im actually gonna write about...  cause theres a lot.

after the last relevant post i put up i told myself i wouldnt leave it 7 days to post again and yet here we are 9 days later with only a map and a sob story inbetween.

so the last post left us on the morning of my 21st. (12th June 2012).
now this day was a pretty cool one, although not much was actually achieved haha.

in short, we spent the morning driving out to a large empty field that my friend Bastiaan used to visit alot.

the reason for this is simple. RC GLIDERS!!!!!!!!! :D

now i used to fly RC helicopters quite a bit so i thought i would be alright.... BARP, not the case.

all in all we probably spent a hour or two flying the plane around, bastiaan showing me how and me failing haha. different controls on the remote for a plane, i kept inadvertently putting the air brake on and then trying to pull it up before it nose dived into the wet grassy ground.

the day was ended when one of the 2 planes we took nose dived into the ground and broke on of the struts in the secondary wing. (guess who was flying that one....... moi) i felt horrible.
Bastiaan calmed me however by saying he had all the stuff at home to fix it. So i felt better but still bad.

the 2nd plane we took, was actually the one we were going to fly first but when we left Bastiaans house we had checked that all the parts we needed were in the car, body, wings, rc etc. we just didnt check the wings we had were for the correct body. *facepalm*

so once the first plane was damaged we had to cal it quits.

Me being badass (at flying)
Bastiaan showing how its done

on the LH wing are 2 little grips, you hold these, spin like a discus thrower and then launch the plane into the sky

final resting place. the nose piece is 3" into the ground.....

So as much fun as fixed wing flight is, i seem to find it easier to fly a 6 axis helicopter. I think i will stick to them.

another thing that we did on that fateful day was rockclimbing.
now i used to do this quite a bit way back in grade 10 (6 years ago) but then since then i have probably done it 3 times.

so you can assume correctly that i was pretty damn eager to have a crack at it again.

at the climing place, they have a range of graded walls from ~2 up to 7+
i started with the 3's, did them easy as piss.
tried the 4's, now these ones were pretty easy to start out with, but the biggest issue for me was the overhangs, so your climbing up a wall and then all of a sudden the wall starts leaning out away from where you started, so your entire body weight is on your fingers and toes.

i am actually quite impressed with myself, i was able to do one of the 4's but then after that could only get half way up before i started to lose the strength in my fingers and arms so i sat out for a while and just watched.

one major difference i noticed between australian climbing walls and ones in the Netherlands, is that in australia when you are the belayer, your attached to the person up on the wall, but also to the ground, so any weight differences there may be are nullified.

in the netherlands this is not so.
so we teamed up with one of Bastiaans mates and when i was climbing Bastiaan would belay and Rob would be tied to Bas haha.

towards the end of the night we were mucking around and thought it would be cool to see what happened when i climbed to the top of a wall with Bas and rob beneath me and see what happened when i get to the top and just let go haha. we also got this on video, although in the video i didnt go to the top cause i was shattered from having done it about 4 times before we thought of recording it haha.

L-R   Rob, Bastiaan, Ross

Me at the top of the wall

~half way through dropping to the bottom you can see Bas is getting lifted

Free climbing

So this brings an end to the day of my birth.
It also brings an end to my time with Bastiaan for the next day i was to catch a train to Beilen up near Assen (think motoGP)

The following day i was to go to a friend of mines up in Beilen in the north east of Holland, now the only thing is, she wasnt home yet. She was coming home from london that day on the train so after finding out what station she was going to have to do a transfer at i just met her there, a big thanks to Bastiaan for taking me around and showing me the sights and then for taking me to the train to meet up with Suzanne.

after meeting suzanne at the train we went back to her place where we got ready to go to the pub.
now Beilen isnt that big a town so when holland was versing germany in the european championships that night it seemed like the entire town was in the small pub.

Suzanne introduced me to her little group of friends, who were all around my age actually which was nice.

throughout the game rounds were bought and consequently drunk and this process was repeated.... apparently a bit too much as i found out the next morning when i woke up back at the apartment with no memory of getting there.

apparently there was another 8-9 drinks that i dont remember before i ended up getting carried home haha. and the girls i was out with were still going.
can you say SHAME!!!!! i can and i am haha.

now before you start blowing me off as a lightweight, i have a few points i would like to make before you judge,

i quit tour guiding over 4 months previous, so that meant i havent been drinking for over 4 months cause now i was no longer getting mates rates i couldnt afford it so i was outta practice.
i had a slight cold so was taking meds before it turned into the dreaded manflu, the package was in dutch so i couldnt read it but apparently those meds were not meant to be mixed with booze, and finally we didnt have anything to eat for dinner.

so a recap,

outta practice, on meds, no dinner.

thats my excuse and by god am i sticking to it.
i now have to go back to beilen though and show the girls up haha.

so after the nights pleasantries which i cannot for the life of me remember, thursday was spent vegetating on the couch haha.

which going by all accounts was a pretty common place to be for most people that day so it wasnt just me.

the following day was a friday.

this is the day that i caught up with one of my ex passengers that i hadnt seen for the longest.
today i went from Beilen to Breda, which is essentially eastern holland to western so across the country. and it only took ~4 hours haha.

So it was here in Breda that i saw Tom.
Tom was a dutch kid that was on my very first ever tour. which i still consider to be one of my favourite groups. not cause it was the first but the group was just brilliant every single aspect of it was great.

so i was pretty eager to catch up with tom.

so theres not really that much in Breda to be honest haha, walking around with tom we had a beer at a pub and walked around for a while. At one point tom yelled out "TWINGO" and then punched me. i was trying to figure out what was happening and apparently my confusion showed so he explained the game.

if you know of punch buggie then its the same, except whenever you see a renault Twingo, you punch instead of a VW bug.

so needless to say i was quite pleased when i saw the next twingo and then tom called it quits haha.

a big thanks to Tom and his parents. although we didnt really do anything it was really nice to just sit back in a family setting and be included. made me think of home.

i was slightly annoyed though at that nights soccer game, it was sweden vs england. I was backing sweden to win 3-2.

until the last 20 mins it was even looking good haha. but then england came through and the final score was 3-2 but not in my favour. bugger.

the next 2 days went pretty quickly, it began with saying bye to tom and his family, and getting back on the train to Amsterdam.
It was the night of my birthday party. of course i was gonna have a good time. however after the previous wednesday it wasnt gonna be a massive one.

it was a brilliant night out to be honest drinks with a few good mates.
Big thanks to Bastiaan, Elias, Martijn, Jelle, Danielle, Sophie and Eline for coming out.
Eline, Danni, Ross, Sophie

Eline, Elias, Sophie, Ross, Danni

Very happy and slightly drunk Ross
Sunday afternoon i caught up with 2 passengers that were on my very last tour with heading Bush, Fons and Steph.

i had received a phone call from fons saying he was going to be in Amsterdam on sunday afternoon.
so in true spirit of the dutch, we went to a pub to watch the game against portugal.

i was wearing all the orange gear i had, socks, jocks and a scarf but alas holland lost the game
it was awesome catching up with fons and especially with steph cause shes actually from switzerland and fons never told me she was coming so it was a pleasant surprise.



Steph Decided my Dutch gear and sunny's suited her better.
A swiss chick wearing dutch colors.

The next day, monday i caught a train to London.
now some may wonder why i went the train route instead of the flights.
long story short i would rather pay less money and sit on a train for 6 hours then pay double to get the plane.

plus i dont mind the trains. its more comfortable for lengths of time then a plane is, the train also stopped closer to where i am currently living so it was a bit easier albeit longer.

So london.....

Its a pretty cool city, but i will say right now it hasnt grown on me.
So far i have seen Big ben, Trafalgar Square, Oxford st, the London Aquarium, and the London Dungeon and although they were all pretty cool i must say the city is too busy and big for me personally.

i havent quit on it yet though, theres still a heap i want to see but im waiting for better weather (london eye etc)

Jelly Fish at the Aquarium

Lion fish (i think)

Massive turtle

London Eye in the afternoon

Trafalgar Square Monument

London eye and Big Ben

Big Beg

Big Ben

Double Decker bus

As i think i have said previously i prefer seeing places as a local, i will do the touristy things but i want to see a place as a local and that takes a combination of either knowing locals and going where they go, or just being in a spot for a while and pacing it out yourself.

so london is going to get a bit more attention then what its currently received.

a few of my highlights so far though have been catching up with mates,
First was Lauren, myself and Lauren went to school together way back in primary school. She left the school in grade 5 when we were 10 but through the magic that is facebook since resumed contact.

the others so far have been pete and then Sheryl.
Both of these people i met when i did my stint in a Cairns backpackers hostel as part of my isolation.
both helped me out so much through that period without realizing, it was quite awesome to see them again.

I know that the above is written badly, but its my fault for leaving it so long between posts and doing so much

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