The Game Fair 2016

So this weekend we went to the Game Fair at Ragley Hall. And it was excellent. Nearly but not quite 100%.

The scale of the show is vast. Here we are just inside one of the entrances looking out over just a fraction of the show. The fishing lake is to the left, and the main bulk of the show ahead and to the right.

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The delicious city of Hamburg

Apart from our troubled channel crossings, we had a most lovely weekend in Hamburg. We explored a few places off the beaten track with our expert guide aka our son Philip.

Whilst we waited for him on Friday, we started with a gentle stroll around part of the Alster Lake.

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Father’s Day? Segway!

I was given a fantastic Father’s Day present by my son, whom we were visiting in Hamburg. A Segway tour of the city. I cannot describe how much fun it was, and indeed how easy and natural the Segway is to ride.

We were lucky that the English language version of the tour on Sunday afternoon was undersubscribed, so instead of the usual 8 participants, the three of us had a guide to ourselves.

First faltering steps ...

First faltering steps …

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Sorry, Eurotunnel LeShuttle. I thought it was your fault.

We were booked to travel on the Chunnel from Calais to Folkestone yesterday evening, schedule departure around 8.30pm. We actually arrived 4 hours early, since we’d had good weather and the usual traffic jams around Antwerp hadn’t been as bad as usual. So we were looking forward to getting an early crossing and arriving home at a civilised hour.

The first intimation of a problem came when we passed queues of cars bound for the ferry port but stacked onto the motorway. A lorry had apparently had an accident and blocked the main route, so all traffic was being diverted via the town. We felt glad that we’d chosen the tunnel and not the ferry.
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… and Floods

While I was happily making bread, the heavens opened with probably the biggest downpour we’ve seen in all the years that we’ve lived here. I was alerted to the flooding by an ominous gurgling sound from the ground floor loo, as the water overwhelmed the storm drains and foul drains too. Sure enough our little close was under water, and the lowest-lying house was inundated.

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Flour …

I’ve written about the flour from the excellent Stoate’s Mill before. It really is fantastic for both yeasted breads and sourdoughs. We’ve always managed to visit the mill in person for our previous purchases, and it’s worth a detour for its picturesque setting. But this time we have no scheduled journeys anywhere near, so mail order it was.

Very good service from Big Barn, who handle the orders. But to our horror, although our 8kg bags of rye and malted flours were fine, the 25kg bag was apparently wholemeal, not the strong white that we’d ordered.

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A little air rifle target shooting

I haven’t had a session with the air rifles for a while. First up, my favourite gun, a Weirauch HW100tk in .22 with a Falcon Merlin 4-14x56IR scope:

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Hadrian’s Wall

It was dry but windy as we walked to the nearby section of Hadrian’s Wall at Walltown. It was a bit of a hike, since the only sections of the wall that haven’t been completely cannibalised for building stones tend to be in rather inaccessible places.

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Yes, it’s on top of that cliff in the distance. At this point I wasn’t sure that I was going to make it!
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The Roman Army Museum

We left our chicken and leek casserole in the Mr D’s Thermal Cooker, and went out exploring for the day. We started at the Roman Army Museum. I must say that I do admire these modern museum layouts. Plenty of audio and video, and a focus on the life of the subjects, not just the provenance of the archaeological finds. This approach is probably designed to appeal to children, but, hey, it works for me too!

Just a few of the exhibits that caught my eye:



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Mr D’s Thermal Cooker

I think that I mentioned in my post about the 2016 Caravan Show that we bought a Mr D’s Thermal Cooker, saying that we’d try it out asap.

Actually this was the first time that we used it, so no trial run. But I have to say that it worked brilliantly.

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