Tweets this Week (2009-05-31)

  • Had a baking day in the sun at a memorial service at the American War Cemetery in Madingley. #
  • BBQ all set to go: rain forecast for one hours time, and I can feel the change in the air. Hurry home @mikeycbg ! #
  • It poured with rain last night and it’s still chucking down. Will take spare shoes and socks for after the cycle to work (water runs down!) #
  • Over half way through *Byron, Life and Legend* at 574pp. He had an amazing life, but I need a break from this amount and density of detail #
  • Gorgeous evening. Almost at the Castle pub to meet up with colleagues and developers from Mumbai, then dinner at a South Indian restaurant! #
  • *RAVE dinner* blog post #
  • Is there such a thing as *slow* charcoal for BBQs. The stuff I’m using seems very laid back. #
  • Finished morning of interviewing: now to write committee papers and budgets for 2010. If I get them finished today, I can I have Sunday free #
  • Mindmapping in the sunshine in the garden: can broadly justify this as getting my backlog of work done. Twitter is unjustifiable though! #
  • Relieved to gave sent off committee papers. Having a break before budgets. #
  • I’ve eaten tooo many peanuts, blurgh! #
  • tea poetry from the early days of English tea: (via @TavalonTea) #
  • Farmers Market here I come: after I’ve finished my cup of tea in bed that is. Planning lunch at the riverbank today after various chores. #
  • Oh no, I think I might end up queing to wait for Marks and Spencers to open: what’s my life come to.  #
  • Made it to the Riverbank Club: cloudless skysndwater is apprently +15oC #
  • The river (Cam) is wonderfully warm today. Lots of dragonflies, punts and small leaping fish to keep me company on my swim. #
  • Rescued two poles for punts as I swam by and not a drop of champagne or a strawberry in sight as a reward: rather weak? #
  • Just bought a new pair of Tevas in < 2 mins. Old pair fell apart! #
  • Great evening for a BBQ with Vit and Jay, then some drinks at the Free Press when it got a bit too chilly to sit out. #

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RAVE dinner

Had a good dinner in Cocum in Cambridge with visiting developers from RAVE. The South Indian food was lovely. After dinner we wandered around a few colleges in town—all were closed to visitors because of exams (or because it was 9.30pm!)

Dinner with Rave in Cocum P5280002

Tweets this Week (2009-05-24)

  • lots of good shopping in Boston. Wish I was there in the Prudential Mall. #
  • First lovely pint at the summer beer festival: Keswick Thirst Blossom, a lively red beer. #
  • Lovely atmosphere at the beer festival-also lucky with the weather #
  • Poured away my pint of gruit: Cambridge 800 Innovation, it was the end of the barrel. #
  • Replaced Gruit with a pint of Wolf, Straw Dog, much cleaner. #
  • RT @jodrell official info on the Cambridge beer festival now available from @cambeerfest [and hashtag #cambeerfest ] (via @samstokes) in reply to samstokes #
  • On my way to the #cambeerfest for dinner and a beer. Got my rug and my glass and a empty tummy. #
  • The #cambsbeerfest doesn’t look like much from the outside. I think it’s going to be packed tonight. #
  • The #cambsbeerfest doesn’t look like much from the outside. I think it’s going to be packed tonight. #
  • Having a pint of Pitfield *Red Ale* made in Epping. It’s good. (Goes well with the Falafels) #
  • Michael’s arrived with my gloves, it’s chilly at the #cambeerfest. Having a pint of Green Tye *Union Jack*, not as nice as my last pint. #
  • *36th Cambridge Beer Festival* blog post #
  • Sunny and blue skies for tonight’s beer festival. Wish I got there earlier. #
  • It’s always the first pint that’s the best: I think I’ve got Tydd Steam Barn Ale, which is lovely. In queue for pork pie. #cambeerfest #
  • Beer round up from #cambeerfest : Bewdley *Old School Bitter*, Concerte Cow *Cock n Bull Story* and Hexhamshire *Whampweasel. #
  • Joined tonight by Vit, Jason, Scott and Jim. Stayed at the #cambeerfest till about 11pm, a warmer night and a great atmosphere. #
  • My new bath alarm wirhed well this morning: who would believe that a bath could fill seemingly so quickly  #
  • Good night of training, time to head to the #cambeerfest for “supper” #
  • Feels too late to be heading to the #cambeerfest hoping to find @mikeycbg somewhere in the crowd, hopefully still standing! #
  • Saw a few bats on Midsummer Common. It’s a few years since I’ve *heard* any bats 🙁 #
  • Michael’s on the Spectrum *Trip Hazard* (6.5%) and I’m back on the Keswick *Thirst Blossom*, lovely. #
  • Keeping with the Cumbrian theme, having a pint of *Lakeland Red* from Hawkshead. Michael’s on the *Hotel Porter* Maldon Brewing Co. #
  • This is the first time in 20 years that I’ve stayed until chucking out time as a customer at the #cambeerfest #
  • Heading out for dinner at the #cambeerfest #
  • Having a nice pint of welsh Nant *Chawden Aur*. #
  • Wow! The #cambeerfest is really busy! The queue for pork pies is 3x longer than it was at the start of the week. #
  • Michael’s bought me a pint of *monkey hanger* and gone to join the RSC group while I queue for pork pies and Scotch Eggs #cambeerfest #
  • Finished off #cambeerfest with an Oude Gueze: very sharp and a lovely way to finish. Had a good goss with Laura and Kathrine too. #
  • I’d like to have said hello, but I’d probably never have found you at the beerfest! #
  • Well, that’s the end of #cambeerfest for me: no time to go tomorrow. This is the busiest and best I remember—congrats to the volunteers! #
  • Listening to Free song from Aidan Moffat: Smash the Mystic Industry
    —amusing! #
  • *Another summer beer fest gone…* blog post #
  • Scooting out to the Farmers’ Market—aside from a limp cabbage our house is a vegetable-free zone after a week of eating at the Beer Festival #
  • Farmers Market was uplifting: full of spring lettuce and orher salad veg. Bought some huge choi-sum with bobbing yellow flowers for lunch. #
  • Enjoying tea in the garden-weather is glorious but have a mortgage appointment later in 30mins. What a mistake! #
  • Hmmm, choi-sum turned out to be quite tough. Feel like a cow grazing on tough grass. Tasty, but chewy! #
  • Planning a BBQ for @mikeycbg still lots of sun left in the garden and Oyster Bay Merlot Rosé in the fridge. #

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Another summer beer fest gone…

fulllogo-015.gifThat’s the end of the Cambridge Beer Festival, at least for me! We’ve been lucky with the weather, no rain! Great beer, and I think they very well might have sold the 80,000 pints they projected. Need to wait another 12 months for the next big event of the beer year!

Line-up of the latest beers:

  • Tydd Steam Barn Ale—From Wisbeach, 3.9%
  • Bewdley Old School Bitter—A full bodied, traditional flavour with hoppy finish, 3.8%
  • Concrete Cow Cock n Bull Story—Dark amber, malty flavour (named after the two pubs in Stony Stratford where the phrase originated), 4.1%
  • Hexhamshire Whapweasel—A burn in the Shire, a Curlew’s whistle is the origin of the name. A smooth strong golden bitter. Caramalt, Crystal malt and Goldings hops combine to give a smooth mouth feel, 4.8%
  • Hawkshead Lakeland Red—A Red Ale. Bitter-sweet. Malty and spicy, with a long dry finish, using Fuggles as the aroma hop.The red colour comes from Dark Crystal malt, 4.2%
  • Bragdy’r Nant Chawden Aur—lovely welsh beer, from Conwy, 4.3%
  • Poachers Monkey Hanger—Ruby red bitter, monkey hanger comes from a tale about a Hartlepool Shipwreck, 4.5%.

My top beers were all red (of course!): Keswick Thirst Blossom, Pitfield Red Ale, Tydd Steam Barn Ale.

Matt might have some photo’s from his Blackberry yesterday, threatened to put them on Facebook: (and here they are (below) added 24th May

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36th Cambridge Beer Festival

Had fulllogo-015.gifa couple of short nights at the Cambridge Beer Festival, dinner and a couple of pints.

So far I’ve tried:

  • Keswick Thirst Blossom—A golden bitter with a beautiful exotic fruit aroma, 4.1%
  • Moonshine 800 Years of Innovation—brewed in Cambridge and described as “Gruit ale, sweet Gale, Wormwood, Caraway and Wild Rosemary are used instead of hops to flavour this ale. It is said Gruit ale stimulates the mind, creates euphoria and enhances sexual drive!!”. Sadly, it smelt like a drain and I poured it away (it was the end of the barrel mind)
  • Wolf Straw Dog—Pale and refreshing, this clear wheat beer is brewed in the German style. Soft German hops added to the brew give a wonderful aroma and slightly sweet taste to leave the imbiber wanting more!, 4.5%
  • Pitfield Red Ale
  • Green Tye Union Jack, brewed in Much Hadham, “A copper coloured bitter, fruity with a citrus taste and a hoppy citrus aroma and a balanced bitter finish”

The Keswick Thirst Blossom and the Pitfield Red Ale were best so far (both red beers). Moonshine had brewed a whole series in celebration of Cambridge Universities 800th anniversary this year.

IMG_0246 IMG_0247

Tweets this Week (2009-05-17)

  • Going to Northallerton today: it’s a pretty bitty journey by train, via a long detour south to Stevenage #
  • Awful sounds coming out the Tram Depot: turn the music off! #
  • Getting ready for my parental visit by lying in bed, eating cornflakes and reading tweets. Must tidy, NOW. #
  • Just got a gift in the post from my husband: gizmo to stop me overfilling the bath whilst distracted by email! #
  • *Bruce’s 40th on Mersea* blog post #
  • David tried to charge £39,000 for lunch at the Free Press. It was good, but not that good! #
  • Portugal-very mobile hips! #
  • What’s with the big Disney-princess dresses this year #eurovision #
  • Iceland-like the dolphin. Has she got car-dice hanging from her shoulder? #
  • Greece-love the music and the little flashes of belly! #
  • Greece-dangerous levels of hair gel spotted. #
  • Armenia: wonderful! Vampish, camp, perverted-traditional. Love the fallen maiden look. #
  • Russia-blurgh! #
  • I wish I could dance like the Azerbaijanies! #
  • Azerbaijan-I’m not convinced he’s *really* addicted to her. #
  • Bosnia: good time to hang my washing out. Ipregerred the real Adam and the Ants #
  • Malta: lovely voice, she reminds me of someone, perhaps a character from South Park! #
  • Have there been any male backing singers yet? #eurovision #
  • Estonia: this is something I would actually listen to. She’s really stylish too. Quite dramatic. #
  • Denmark: he forgot the rest of the boy band! Doh! #
  • Germany: we WANT those trousers (he should vacate them first!) #
  • Germany: Going off the pants: want the basque #
  • Having a light blush Lindauer champagne, perfect for #eurovision #
  • Albania: is her mom on the side with the hair curlers: miss congeniality! #
  • Albania: the little dancing pixies are a good laugh #
  • Norway: like his stick-on eyebrows. He’s a bit of a camera whore. #
  • Norway: he can’t sing for me but I’d let him fiddle #
  • Ukraine: she’s wonderful. Love the boots and the power disco-diva song. All sing : “You are sexy bum!” #
  • Romania: after the dirty old men vote! #
  • #eurovision UK! Stylish (except for Andrew Lloyd Weber!). Bit dull, time to step up a gear. #
  • Finland: if I couldn’t see the screen I’d really enjoy this song. #
  • Spain: “take me”, “shake me”: LOL #
  • Really impressed with the quality this year: maybe I’m just missing Wogan’s sarcasm. #eurovision #
  • Armenia, Estonia, or Ukraine for my vote? #
  • UKRAINE!!!! #
  • Wow, I would live to play in those pools! #eurovision #
  • Ouch belly flops #eurovision #
  • Thanks #eurovision twitter chums-great fun sharing the night with you. #
  • Now I know how to Put People First #
  • In the cinema to see the new Star Trek, on the spur of the moment. #

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Bruce’s 40th on Mersea

Michael and I drove over to Royal Harwich Yacht Club on Friday last week, to meet up with Nick and John on yacht Retriever. We had a nice meal in the club house and a restful night on board before setting off at 5am with the falling tide, for a day sail to West Mersea.

Royal Harwich Yacht Club

We had a great sail over, with good wind, close hauled most of the way. Nick and John provided breakfast and lunch en-route, and we arrived in West Mersea at about 1, and moored up on the piles that we occupied last time we were there with Graeme and Bruce. Shortly after we were arrived we were joined by Blue Streak, Telemon and Bright Oyster, and we all rafted up for company. Nick, John, Michael and I had a couple of bottles of wine to celebrate our arrival, then a snooze for an hour to sleep the wine and the early start off!

Retriever and Blue Streak, Mersea Piles Brigth Oyster and Telemon, Mersea Piles

We’d met up for a surprise 40th birthday party for Bruce. Graeme had arranged for us all to appear to have gone sailing for lunch at the excellent Company Shed, but in fact he’d bused in Bruce’s friends and family for a suprise party at the Packing Shed. We were meeting there before 4, when Graeme and Bruce would arrive by tender. The Packing Shed is a lovely, historic shed, on stilts, in the middle of the channel, surrounded by water with tidal access. A bit late from our snooze, we only managed to get there at 4:15, which was still ahead of Bruce, so we were there to see him arrive and the surprise on his face! His parents had come from Scotland.

Packing Shed, Mersea Island

Bruce and Graeme arrive

There were about 60 people in the shed, a good number for a good atmosphere. Some photos below:

Party in the Packing Shed, Mersea Island Bruce is 40 Michael, Packing Shed Island Bruce and Graeme, painted faces

It was great night, and a lot of unsteady people tottered into boats about 10:30. Luckily no-one fell in on the transport back to the shore. Bruce had a great surprise. We had a few more drinks on Retriever, which may have been my downfall…

The next morning I was so rough, that I couldn’t face the lovely cooked breakfast offered by John, nor could I face the 7 hour sail back to Harwich. So very wimpily, I got the bus and train back to Cambridge and missed out on the glorious sail back. I don’t think I would have been good company, and the seas were a bit bumpy. which would not have agreed with me at all. Nick and John were wonderful hosts and very relaxed sailors, it was a pleasure sailing with them: I’m a shade embarrassed that it was only one way!

Tweets this Week (2009-05-10)

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As You Like It

We saw a really good production of As You Like It tonight at the ADC. by the CU Amateur Dramatic Club. Great fun!


The cast were very confident and the direction and timing were super. The forest of Ardennes was a hippy commune, with lots of drug smoking (which does explain some of the strange dialogue)! Two stars of the performance were Lucy Evans (Rosalind) and Adam Hollingworth who was great as Touchstone. Rory Stallibrass (Orlando) was also very good, in fact all the cast were excellent. Clearly they had a good time, as did we!

From the ADC web site

Orlando is lost in a world without leaders. The good ones have vanished and the bad ones have taken their place. He needs to become the man to lead the new youth onwards and upwards and out of this disillusioned state, but there’s a problem, his complete and unqualified adolescent inadequacies.

Rosalind is lost in a world without leaders. The old ones have abandoned her and the young ones are little more than causeless rebels. She needs to escape her monotonous life and become the woman to lead her sex into a new freedom that can only be made possible through love, but there’s a problem, a complete and absolute lack of men.

Enter Ardennes.

Shakespeare’s sunniest comedy truly begins to delight when Orlando, Rosalind and their respective sidekicks break through the black and white of the urban spread and find themselves bathed in the magic of the bard’s most dazzling of surroundings. It seems that in the Forest of Ardennes infatuation is inescapable and hilarity is sprinkled, doused and poured.

The only true solution to oppression is love and laughter, and the club’s headline Easter term spectacle will overflow with both. Sure to boast Cambridge’s finest acting and comic talent as well as an aesthetic designed to melt your eyes, As You Like It is going to be huge. Watch this space.

Cycle to Reach Fair

Mayday Bank Holiday yesterday, and Michael and I joined the Cambridge Cycling Campaign to cycle to Reach Fair (established 1201).   

Cambridge Cycle Campaign muster at the Fort of St George

The ride out was lovely, with the wind behind us. We started out in a group of about 25, led by a guide. The pace was a bit slow, and the group broke up at the park and ride by Cambridge airport. We met Richard in Reach, and, ignoring that it was only 11:45, popped into the Dyke’s End Inn for a beer. The Devil’s Dyke IPA I had was rather strong! A shower of rain passed over and we sheltered in the pub for a bit, before venturing out for some whelks, which were a nice treat for me (Michael wasn’t impressed)!

Cycle to Reach Fair

The Fair was good, very lively and lots going on, bumped into a couple of people we know, and tred to stay out the chilly wind. Hog Roast and another pint of beer to keep our spirits up in the cold (my legs has big goosebumps)

Reach Village Fair

Had a slightly surreal cream tea at St Etheldreda and the Holy Trinity church. We though we would be in the church hall, but we ended up inthe church itself, sitting on the pews eating our good fruit scones with jam and cream, and drinking the strong tea. The church organist was playing beautifully (from memory rather than sheet music) and it was a bit like a scene from the Vicar of Dibley.

Cream Tea at St Ethelreda and the Holy Trinity church, Reach
The tea and fruit scones gave us the energy to cycle back the 11 miles home, against the wind. So we managed about 22 miles in total,