Quivering in Kettering

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With the local residents advised to stay indoors, and the adjacent roads closed or on diversion – it can only mean one thing!

No, not another major crime in Kettering, just Ann and I taking archery lessons! 😁

The coaching is split into two-parts. Part 1 is a class just for us two (as we couldn’t make the official first lesson, last Saturday) whilst Part 2 is where we join the rest of the group to fine-tune our skills. We’d already had a ‘go with a bow’ at our recent Warner Weekend and motivated by the fact we both actually hit the target (and no livestock nor humans were harmed) we’re ready for this!

But are they ready for us? 😉😁

Part 1 – Friday

4.00pm: We met John Bosworth who will be our Coach. He’s pretty well-known rounds these parts for his archery skills being Chairman of Kettering Archers as well many other archery-related activities. We’re in very safe hands then! We spent a generous two-hours with John at the local Cricket Ground, and learned a lot about the art and science of this sport. We also met a lot of other Club members too! A great evening! 👍

Ann with Bow
Double-top to finish!

Part 2 – Saturday

10.30am: We arrived at the local Catholic Church (St Edwards) for the concluding part of our Beginner’s Course. It was a full-house, with around another dozen-or-so willing delegates – all ages, from kids to oldies, like us – taking part. Full-marks to Lee for leading today’s session.

Plenty of Bows on hand to practise with

There were a number of the Archery Club staff there too – and everyone was very generous with their time.

Club staff on hand for 1-to-1 tuition too!

The three hours passed really quickly, and by the end, we’d had plenty of practice-time to develop our technique. Hats-off to all the Coaches offering their expertise! Plus, we got some very professional handout materials too, to remind us of the key learning points from today…

Training materials too!

1.35pm: The Session finished with the presentation of our Certificates… 👍😊

Overall, it had been a very impressive couple of sessions. First-class tuition from some very nice people too! The next stage is to visit the Club (they meet on Fridays and Sundays) to carry on practising! We’re both up for that!

Football’s Coming Home?

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..and Tennis too… well almost… to OUR home anyway…

We, as a nation, didn’t make it to the finals, but that didn’t stop us having the neighbours round for a very late Lunch – to enjoy the World Cup Final and/or the Tennis Men’s Singles Final.

With a record crowds expected at both sporting events, ours was slightly less – 16!!! Some superb planning was required that exhausted most of our cutlery, chairs, oven space and fridge capacity!

Our planning began early – yesterday, in fact, and today’s weather didn’t disappoint! (this warm weather becoming almost regular and predictable).

All our garden furniture in use, including a second table off to the right (just out of shot)

Sun Lounger reserved for Rosi

Bar almost ready…

Table almost ready…

…and a condiment station too!

Wow! Thanks Rosi!

Most of us watched a little of the Tennis before switching over just before 4pm for the Soccer. I think at this stage, most of us weren’t particularly interested in the nations playing (as England were knocked out at the semis), but it was a good sociable atmosphere – and the imaginative range of food on offer (a massive collaboration between us all) made it a feast to remember. Ann had created enough Moussaka for the whole street as well as some delicious hot chicken-wings. Rosi’s very attractive and delicious fruit-salad was certainly the most visual of treats whilst Stella made a Malteser Cheesecake.

With Karen and Trish on Cheese Duty, whilst Jo and Janet took care of pre-meal nibbles, we were all set.

By 8.45pm, it was all over, and with the dishwasher on overtime – and overnight – we slowly returned the house to its normal state. I think every piece of cutlery was used, as well as most of the glasses. Strangely, hardly any beer was drunk and we had a lot of nibbles left over!

What a mega-event!

A Sunday of Two Halves

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A day socialising today – and just like the World Cup, made up of two halves!

First half: 12.30 – Paul and Sue came round for Lunch…

It was a gorgeous day weather-wise and Ann ‘pulled out all the stops’ in the kitchen for a mouth-watering three-courser…

Smoked Mackerel on a bed of Watercress Horseradish Potato Salad & Spiced Beetroot…

Roast Chicken…

Cinnamon Rice Pudding with Black Cherry Compote…

Second half: 3.45pm – Round to Tom and Julie’s to socialise and reflect on England’s match against Panama. The match had kicked-off at 1pm, but none of us (and I don’t count myself as a soccer-expert, but many of the ‘gang’ are!) could have predicted the result! I’m sure I’ll re-read this B|log in years to come and think it’s a typo, but the score finished at…

England 6, Panama 1

Yep, that’s SIX goals by our national side. I can’t recall, if ever, we’ve scored that many before, in ANY match, but especially in a World Cup game!!  I think we’ve even won the Cricket against the Ozzies too! Happy days!

Most of the gang were there: Tom , Julie , John, Trish, Paul (sans Karen), Dave (sans Rosi), Julie & Al plus Georgina with many of her friends. We didn’t discuss the match much, preferring instead to enjoy a beer, or three in the continuing fantastic weather.

We stayed until about 7.30, leaving most of the others there to soak up the last of the Sun.

Holiday in Denmark – Day 8 (Even More Sightseeing)

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Up until yesterday, the weather throughout our holiday had been almost tropical. Today however, it felt more like temperatures that we’re used to – damp with a just a hint of sunshine! Still, it’s early morning, so there’s plenty of time for it to perk up.

As a quick aside, I see that my conspiracy theory that Curry’s are colluding with all the other countries in the World Cup to ensure they don’t end up paying me much for their ‘cash-for-goals’ promotion seems to be coming true, with just ONE (more) goal scored by England against Uruguay last night. That gives me a grand total of just £20 – and with every sign that we’ll exit the competition at the next game, I can’t see me making a fortune this time around.

BBC Weather forecast for Copenhagen

Still, I digress, so back to the holiday plans. With the forecast looking progressively duller as the day wears on, we decided to make the most of the morning and head to Roskilde, partially on foot (first, the shortish walk to Copenhagen Station), followed by a short train journey to Roskilde itself. The significance of this location is that it has a famous 12th century Cathedral, where most of the Danish monarchs are buried – so, definitely worth the trip!

The Station at Copenhagen

The Station at Roskilde

Just as we got off the train, the weather fulfilled its crappy potential. First, light rain, followed by the persistent heavier stuff. We trekked over to the tourist-magnet Cathedral to find that today was one of the few days when it didn’t open until 12.30 – and it now only 9.45. Bummer!

A perfect excuse to take refuge in a local coffee-shop – Druedahls – and sample a few of their local pastries!

Sampling local wares!

Then to kill some more time, it was off to the nearby Archbishop’s Palace – but that was closed too, due a national schools’ event encouraging youngsters of Denmark to take more of an interest in the Bible. It was all being taken very seriously, with the adults dressed in period clothing looking (and sounding) the part.

The Archbishop’s Palace

Finally, we got to the Cathedral – it was a very popular place (maybe because it was still raining), but as a World Heritage Site, we felt it was worth battling the weather. The layout inside was quite unique in many ways – we were able to climb the stairs onto a second tier and look down onto the main area – I don’t think we’ve ever seen a Cathedral’s overall design quite like this, with red brick on the outside and a gorgeous variety of designs on the inside. And, as we’ve said, they’d made good use of all the available space inside too. The whole place felt much bigger than it actually was. 

Scenes inside Roskilde Cathedral

Then it was back on the train back to Copenhagen, for a quick lunch, before heading off into town to look at the Town Hall. It looked massive from the outside – and once we got inside, like this morning’s Cathedral, felt even bigger!

Copenhagen Town Hall

Our final stop for the day was the National Museum of Denmark. Unfortunately, a combination of no air conditioning/ventilation and a confusing layout made the visit quite hard work, and we were in-and-out within an hour – without really doing it justice!

National Museum of Denmark

By now, we were flagging, so we took a brisk walk back towards the hotel, passing Tivoli Gardens on the way, slightly distracted by the screams from the terrified visitors ‘enjoying themselves’ on the rides! Twenty minutes later, we were back in our room, putting our feet-up for a while, before catching-up with our reading in the now comfortable surroundings of the Bar!

Again, we’re undecided about what to do tomorrow – we’ll see what the weather forecast is like tomorrow morning.

The 2012 Olympics: The Opening Ceremony

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Wow! What an event!!!

Sheep, geese, James Bond, Mr Bean, Mike Oldfield, JK Rowling, The NHS, Mary Poppins, Sir Simon Rattle and a cast of thousands. Welcome to the ‘Isles of Wonder’ – Great Britain. 
























Embarrassing or what..?

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Our national soccer side continued its lack-lustre performance by being thrashed by Germany. That means we’re now OUT of the World Cup

Yeesh! 4-1 – it’s just embarrassing!!!