Category Archives: Boat

Special Post #23: Top 40 Moments 2009, Part 2

This is part 2 in a mini-series of posts that looks into the best year of my life, two thousand and nine. I’m continuing to look into the best moments.

Make sure you’ve checked out the first part which covers numbers 40 to 31 before you continue reading.

#30: Taking The Adventurous Route Under The M5 On The Boat

Kicking off this 10 is another moment from the boat trip. Becky and I decided to take the alternative route to Merry Hill from Birmingham. It’s another 6 locks, but the canal plays chicken with the M5, which makes for some very arty shots.

#29: Snow Day!

Realising all lectures were cancelled on snow day and joining in a massive snowball fight. One of the best things was just how unexpected and impromptu the whole thing was.

#28: Waves On The River Thames Boat Trip

This was such an amazing day. Seeing all the best sights in London in a very short space of time and from a completely unique view all while fearing for your life! But seriously, it made me realise just how compact London really is.

#27: Drinking Too Much At Jongleurs The Day Before My 20th

A good night of comedy and getting a lot of my friends in one place for the first time. I couldn’t have asked for anything more, except maybe paracetamol in the morning! And the train home was not the best experience thanks to the people sat behind us (people who were there will know what I’m on about!)

#26: Getting Sun Burnt At Wimbledon (And Queuing!)

One of the few times I’ve spent with my mum this year. Such a great thing to do and despite being burnt to high heaven, it was great to watch professional tennis at the best tennis championship in the world!

#25: Royal Ascot With Josh And The Pink Bench Picture

I had such a great week, and I remember coming away from it with a new found respect for checkout staff and people who liaise with the public.

#24: Phil, Julie & I Standing At The Back Of The Boat In The Rain

I don’t know why. I guess you had to be there.

#23: All the dingy fun in Henley

This was comedy beyond belief. Good times like this don’t come along very often, but then they do they can knock you back and make you appreciate just how great your friends are. This was one of those moments.

#22: Phil Almost Falling In At The Lock

As we entered the lock Phil had the job of putting the front rope around the bollard. Phil had had plenty of practice at this, he knew that as the boat crept in I would line him up so he could throw the rope over the bollard.  I’d then put the boat into reverse to stop it, and this would pull the front of the boat away from the side, but because Phil had the rope around the bollard, he could hold the front in.

All was going well, Phil had managed to get the rope around the bollard, but as the boat crept away from the side, he lost the end of the rope. Phil being the man he is doesn’t give up easily, so lent over to get the rope. In this motion, the boat got further away from the side, leaving Phil no option but to jump for the side of the lock. Phil was now precariously positioned hanging from the side of the lock.

Luckily the man on the boat in front had spotted Phil so came running over quickly. But instead of helping Phil out of his predicament, he preceded to grab he dangling rope and help pull the boat back to the side of the lock. Phil’s extreme upper-body strength saved him until I could give him a hand getting up, but let this be a lesson to you – always have large abs!

#21: Seeing My Name In The Credits Of The Fallow Field

Being a Foley Artist for The Fallow Field always seems to skip my mind when I think of things I’ve done this year. It was a great experience and I loved being part of an independent film production.

That concludes the first half of this countdown to my favourite moment of 2009! Come back at 4pm tomorrow to read about queuing, crying and THE END OF THE WORLD!

Special Post #22: Top 40 Moments 2009, Part 1

This is part 1 in a mini-series of posts that looks into the best year of my life, two thousand and nine. In this part I start to go back a remember the moments that have stuck with me.

For the first few posts in this series I’m going to be counting down my top 40 moments of 2009. I’ve put a lot of thought into this list because it’s something I want to get right. But what is a ‘moment’?

I’m seeing a moment as a very short space of time. I don’t want any of this “the boat trip was amazing”, that’s too vague (although it was). I want to talk about specific events, small fractions of time, that define the moods we have and the time we call “the best times”. So lets get started:

#40: Building Josh’s Computer

I’m kicking off the list with one of the many great moments of summer. I went to Josh’s house to help him build his computer. It was a geeky evening, but we had a good time slotting everything in and I think I managed to teach Josh a thing or two about how a computer works

#39: Getting My Files Back

You may remember my post back in January about losing all my files. Well it was more than a relief when I managed to get them all back!

#38: Sunday Night Live

Back in February I ran video for a gig in Rubix. We had a total of 10 cameras and 6 people operating. It was definitely the most successful video rig I’ve ever ran and it was amazing fun. There are plans to do another one of these next year, which I’m really looking forward to.

#37: That Afternoon With Three Cakes

The afternoon where Phil and I baked three cakes between us while watching the Grand Prix. Simpler times…

#36: Pimms Next To The Thames With Heather & Lauren

Drinking a pitcher of Pimms with Heather & Lauren at my favourite pub next to the Thames.

#35: Southbank With Lauren After Avenue Q

I love walking down Southbank at night, and it was great to share that Lauren.

#34: Walking Into The House & Knowing I Live There

This is a bit of a weird one, because it happens almost every day. I just love that feeling. And the first time I put the key in the door was magic.

#33: Being At Merry Hill With Sam, Matthew, Kevin & Ben

This is the first moment from the boat trip, believe me there are plenty more to come! This was right at the humble beginnings, the first day, when we went to the cinema to see The Hangover and had a meal, a brilliant film.

#32: Climbing The Trees In Sam’s Garden In Scotland

The first time I’d seen Sam in literally years! So great to catch up.

#31: Messing With Chairs With Josh While We Were ‘Revising’

Wheelie chairs can provide a good distraction from revision, especially when you’ve been revising for over 5 hours straight!

Come back tomorrow for the 30-21 greatest moments, including many more boat memories, snow and a pink bench :O

A little more about the boat

That boat trip was immense!! It was really great to have Sophie, Julie, Lauren and Heather on the boat last week. We had a great time cruising down the river Thames.

We started off in Guildford on Sunday by doing lots of food shopping for the trip. Then we set off after dark for an hour or so just to take the boat for a spin without realising we weren’t allowed to boat at night (woops!) and then we moored on lock moorings which your not allowed to do either, so all in all a good start to the trip!

On Monday we went down the River Wey to the Thames at Shepperton. Lauren & Phil did most of the locks and we’re getting pretty efficient at it too… just in time for the river where they’re all done for us by lock-keepers! In the evening we happened to stop right outside a pub, what a shame!

Tuesday we got to Windsor at about 1pm and had a gorgeous pub lunch. The sun was out all the time which just made everything better! Then me and Sophie went off to The Fallow Field screening in Guildford which was really great to see. I spent the whole film smiling to myself whenever a noise I made came up, which was about every 20 seconds so my cheeks were sore by the end…

With the sun still shining we arrived in Henley on Wednesday afternoon with the dingy fully inflated and ready to be taken for a spin. After a few hours of ‘oar-ing’ we found a Wetherspoons to eat at :)

Pimm’s O’clock and cider time happened often, and I barely needed to touch the oven because the girls we’re taking care of all the meals (except full English breakfast which Phil had down to a tee!)

On Thursday one of my friends, Hugh, joined us at Reading. Hugh was over-excited about being on a boat, and rightly so! That night we stopped at Goring so we could pick up Jake the next morning. Then it was BBQ time!

On Friday we picked up Jake from the train station and set off to Abingdon. Spaghetti Bolognaise on the deck is definitely one of the highlights for me. Jake in the danger seat getting closer and closer to the edge :p

Since we were making such good time we got into Oxford at about mid-day on Sunday. Went to a bar and grill for lunch and had steak! Then the girls left on the train leaving the hard core of the crew: Phil, Jake and I.

more to come soon…

Back from the boat

I think that just about wraps it up…

Today (well technically yesterday, but who’s counting anyway?) I got back from the boat. The last few days we’re really good, lots of locks, but that’s what you get for going into London.

Once we hit Uxbridge last night we went out for a pizza at Pizza Express and then made brownies!

I’m glad to be back home and have spent most of the day just catching up on all the various blogs I read and getting the news on everything I’m interested in. Still got stuff to read, but I’ve made a sufficient dent in it for now…

The next two weeks look to be filling up nicely. I was kinda hoping to get some things done that I’ve been putting off for ages (see the list I made several posts ago), but things have come up. This is what I’m in for at the moment:

  • Sunday. Say hey to people at church. Finish washing everything from the boat trip
  • Monday. Swimming with James in the morning
  • Tuesday. Going to the cinema to see “Taking Of Pelham 1,2,3” with Ben, Kevin & Murat
  • Wednesday. Back on the boat for the fun part down the river Thames
  • Thursday. Working with Tote at Sandown racecourse
  • Saturday. Working with Tote at Ascot racecourse
  • Following Friday. Seeing “Avenue Q” at the theatre
  • Following Saturday. Clothes shopping. Barry’s birthday party.
  • Following Sunday. Back to the boat for boat trip 2!

I’m gonna also try and get as much done from this list:

  1. Produce centenary video for St Stephen’s Church
  2. Continue to build website for Quondam girls society
  3. See my neighbour
  4. Get a monitor sorted for Victoria
  5. Copy Olu’s tapes to DVD
  6. Plan my birthday party
  7. Get contents insurance for my stuff
  8. Further plan boat trip two
  9. Do some stuff for MadTV (hard to explain)

There’s nothing quite like being home :-)

  • Happiness. 7 out of 10
  • Tiredness. 4.5 out of 5
  • Last Meal. Samosa’s with tuna, egg and rice (A James original dish – and very nice too)
  • Song of the day. Chris Brown – Forever
  • Thought for the day. Sitting down…there’s nothing quite like it
  • What I’m Doing Now. Just finished writing his 3rd poem in 4 months, and now off to bed. A proper bed at that.

PS Check out pictures from the boat trip

PPS There might be some pictures you haven’t seen here as well

3 guys, 1 boat

Been on the boat since last Monday so I haven’t really had time to post. I just want to get something short out to say that I’m having an absolutely brilliant time.

I’d forgotten just how fun it was to spend time with Ben and Kevin. There have been several times in the last week where I’ve laughed so hard my stomach hurt. Seriously, this puts a whole new take on the last year at uni. I can only think of one or maybe two occasions in the last year at uni when I have laughed so much I’ve cried, and both of those we’re when Josh and I were revising.

Lots to talk about… last week we had 5 of us on the boat. Can’t say how good it was to catch up with Sam, and he was really great to have around. Once they’d left on Thursday it was just the 3 of us.

So far we’ve been to the cinema three times, broken a rope (twice), had the headlamp fixed (thanks super Steve), had the propeller shaft fixed (thanks again super Steve), boated in the dark (thanks to the broken boat), lost the tiller pin and bought a new one (my bad), celebrated Ben’s birthday over three days in Rugby at Frankie & Benny’s, over listened to Michael Jackson, not cooked birthday brownies (tomorrow for sure…), over used Tesco toilets, abused McDonalds free wifi, been through 3 epic tunnels, been rained on too much (although today was sunny) and had too many inappropriate conversations…

I’ve got plenty of pictures to share once I have time to upload them and they’ll probably tell a better story than I could.

Looking forward to the boat trip with my university friends in a few weeks and after that it’s not long before uni starts again :)

  • Happiness. 9.5 out of 10
  • Tiredness. 2 out of 5
  • Last Meal. A Chinese take away from a Leighton Buzzard
  • Song of the day.  The King Blues – I Got Love (seriously, I love this song beyond the bounds of usual lust)
  • Thought for the day. We are dangerously close to talking about the thing we’re not allowed to talk about.
  • What I’m Doing Now. Relaxing after a hard day’s boating!