Necastle on Tyne, and stuff

Trip Start Mar 19, 2007
Trip End Apr 21, 2008

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Saturday, April 21, 2007

Went up to Newcastle on Tyne under the pretences of going to finish off my instructors exams for diving.  Before I left, I knew that the weekend would degenerate into sightseeing and pub crawling.  A reality borne out when I discovered that, unlike every other instructors exams ever conducted on the face of the earth, this one started on a Friday, meaning I was a day late.  AHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!  Looking back, I couldn't have made the exam anyway, Kel needing her car for work on the Friday, so I didn't feel too bad, and decided to make the most of being 5 hours by car from London (7 if you count getting lost and trying to drive in London peak hour traffic).  Already booked in to do the next exams in Whittlesey, wherever that is (they assure me it's closer then Newcastle) later in May. ON A WEEKEND.  I double checked :)  Should have some practice in by then diving in my dry suit too, which makes me feel more comfortable.

Stuff wot I saw and did in Newcastle:
- Hadrian's wall.  Hooray!  Lucky those Romans put it near Newcastle nearly 2000 years ago, eh?  Then someone came along and built a road, a ship yard and a coal factory / mine on top of it.  You can still see bits of it though.
- Newcastle.  It's big.  They have a "football" team (the one with the round ball).  Comes with associated hooligans.
- The beach, and the sea. Finally!  Hooray!  No diving at all though, because the vis is approximately 5 centimetres, so I couldn't get in the drink even though I had all my gear.  Looks like I might be winning c*ckup of the month at the local diving shoppe :)
- Lots and lots and lots of pubs.  All conveniently placed just out the front door of the hotel I was staying at.   I made a point of visiting all of them.  Every. Single. One.  This can be verified by the text message trail some fool left on my mobile phone.
- At one place, there was a man in the toilet.  He kept asking for money, so I gave him some and used all of his smelly products.  Problem was, I couldn't stand my stench after the first visit, so I went back, and used more smelly stuff to cover up the original reek.
- There are no speed limits on many highways in the UK :)  Fiesta pis-o-scheet (It's called a Punto. What were they thinking?) goes up to 185 kph.  You can literally watch the fuel gauge go down at this speed.  It's fun :D  My kingdom for a (hundred and sixty) horse(power V-twin Aprilia RSV).

Other stuff wot's been happening:
- I finally got a real job :)  Working for the Insolvency service (a government organisation) investigating directors etc of insolvent companies.  They pay me lots of money.  Almost enough to live off.  I also had another job interview today that seemed to go OK.  Maybe if they offer to pay me more money, I'll go work for them.  I feel like such a sl*t, putting myself out there to the highest bidder.  How will I live with myself?  By converting the pay back to Aussie dollars :)
- I've found myself a local dive shop, within walking distance.  Might be doing some work for them soon.  Seem like a nice bunch.
- Pickadilly circus.  There's no circus.  I feel robbed.
- Pulled my fists out on a beggar the other day.  Enterprising lad thought he'd follow Kel to the ATM.  Soon persuaded him that this course of action wouldn't aid his longevity.
- Went and saw Big Ben, the palace and Westminster abbey a couple of weekends ago.  Oh, look.  Another church.  And another castle.  So many old buildings over here.  I'm going to steal one and bring it back to oz so that we've got some real history.  Or maybe we can speak to the Egyptians and buy an obelisk.  Everyone else has got one...
- The guards out the front of the palace do actually move.  Especially when some smart a$$ frenchy tourist holds his really hot girlfriend up in front of his nose. hehe :)

Well, that's me done.  Slowly getting photos up.  Will write more when there's more to write!
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