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Stowing Away I stood between two facing mirrors & almost caught a glimpse of infinity, but my bloody head kept getting in the way

Back in Old Blighty

UNITED KINGDOM | Saturday, 22 December 2001 | Views [2145] | Comments [2]

Lord Nelson's flagship 'Victory' at Portsmouth

Lord Nelson's flagship 'Victory' at Portsmouth

Departing Vienna for a slightly warmer England and it's straight down south to jolly Portsmouth by the sea. Land ahoy & shiver me timbers, there's some ye olde ships there like Nelson's flagship ‘Victory’ (surely I don't have to explain that one), the Mary Rose (it sank), HMS Warrior (world's first ironclad) & plenty more. All up it makes me glad I wasn't a sailor on any of them.

The pub-wide conversation in the small pub I stayed at in Portsmouth was quite interesting... all about who's lad could beat the pulp out of someone else's lad (with or without broken bottles). Got very heated, especially from some of the females bragging about their lads. I wisely kept quiet.

London seems more civilised & not too cold. Caught up with Clare & Ed & Mandy & Fran & Hels. Many thanks to Mandy for putting me up while in London. I've been doing day trips in & around London to places I haven't been on previous trips here, like the Planetarium (good fun!). Also saw Lord of the rings at the movies, it's great (nah nah nah to those still waiting for it to arrive in oz)

I have splurged a bit and have gone and bought myself a Mandola - it's like a mandolin, only bigger and an octave lower in pitch(also related to the middle eastern OUD and a bouzouki). It's handmade in Scotland, looks fabulous & sounds beautiful. They didn't have a proper custom case for it, but it fits snugly into a banjo case, so thats what I got. I'll have to see if I can work out how to play 'duelling banjos' now...

Anyway, the plan is to head to the US of A, hopefully able to survive getting through LA customs. Possibly difficult while looking like a ragged traveller, with a passport full of recently visited middle eastern countries, carrying a sub-machinegun-sized hard case, an Arab head dress & a shish pipe.

After that, it's back to Sydney (at least for a while) So hopefully I can catch up with all you Sid-en-ee based people in the new year!

So on that note (G#), I hope that you all have a verry merrry christmas and a ripper of a new year!! (or else yule be sorry!)

Tags: blighty, england, ironclad, mandola, merry christmas, portsmouth, victory




Hey there,

I'm still here. I've been reading your exciting stories and trying to contain my raging jealousy. I half wrote a reply to you a couple of months ago but then the library closed on me and a don't have regular access, however, here's a little one now.
Life's great, studying art, loving it, living in Bondi Junction with great people in great house, loving it.

Happy Christmas, and fabuloso New year to you. Enjoy the rest of your travels and take care, but have a ball.
Cheers and chin chin!

  Jo Dec 25, 2001 11:16 AM


Great to hear from you! Have just read your story, you make us English sound wonderful (re: Portsmouth pub). Also made me laugh you having to go through customs with mandolin, Egyptian pipe thing etc. But you got there eh.

Am at my dad's in Boston at the mo, in my room, which has this computer! Excellent.
The day is 1st January 2002. Mad partying last night with dad and Shirley (his girlfriend who lives here too). - That's a joke by the way - the mad partying bit! Went to a happening Country Dancing do! Actually, it was good fun! Oh I am getting old. But had a really fun time. Dancing etc. 'Easy' dances, very trendy. Went on till 1.30am, so not too late. And am up bright and early this morning and have already been down the Home Depot with dad, to get some wood to make some bannisters. Was there at 8am! and a few other people in there too, who had obviously had a pretty quiet new year - ahhhhh.

What did you get up to?????? Sydney's fires did make the news here. Well in the UK. Hopefully it's all 'OK' now.

Anyway, was great having you stay, really enjoyed it. thanks again for my Christmas gifts, great. Oh yeah, was tuning the guitar the other day, and broke a string! So have put new one on. No probs. What I did was - it wasn't recognising the sound, so I kept turning the thing, but didn't realise I was turning the wrong thing! Oooops, won't do that again!

Take great care and HAPPY NEW YEAR, see you soon.

Love Mandy XXX

  Mandy Jan 1, 2002 5:42 PM



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