OutSider Weblog

Thursday, July 25, 2002

Drinks in London, Tonight
Okay, here's the updated plan. I arrive in Waterloo at 14.43, which is ludicrously early to go to the pub (unless, of course, you know better... ;-).

As the reasons for chosing a pub near Waterloo were that I wasn't likely to arrive until the early evening and some folk were going on to events later on (some on the South Bank, making the Waterloo area a natural target), I wonder now if this makes sense, especially as Simon and Sandra really need to be on or near the Central Line to get to the event they're going to... So, may I suggest the Glasshouse Stores, Brewer Street instead? The pub's a Sam Smith's one, with decent beer and rather good food, and it makes a natural starting point for moving on towards the rest of Soho, Tottenham Court Rd/Charing X Rd or Holborn... We're likely to be here for a good few hours (must remember to nip out to check mobile every now and again). Which reminds me, my mobile number is: +44 7940 584 653 and it should be on and charged (those keyring chargers are a godsend -- no-one in Europe seems to have the air batteries) from about 2.30pm.

I'm just off to check in, so will sign off now, pausing only to do a final email check. I should be able to check email later today, but will otherwise be in the Glasshouse Stores from about half five or so.

Wednesday, July 24, 2002

Drinks in London on Thursday 25 July
I'll be back in London tomorrow, and somewhat thirsty with it, so seriously up for beers... Plans are (ahem) fluid at the moment, but it looks as if I'll be at the Jubilee, Waterloo from about 5 (beer, food, cqtching folk who're off to the theatre), moving on across the river for some more serious drinking (suggestions include the glasshouse stores on Brewer street -- the Sam Smith's pub half way qlong, not the new looking place with a similar name at the very end or the Princess Louise, Holborn -- if it's not got some kind of meeting on), and finishing at the Cro Bar (I can't see getting my rucksack through the door of the Troy Club, somehow)

Comments here don't work yet, so please leave any comments, suggestions, etc in the similar entry in my livejournal...

Monday, July 22, 2002

Has it really been more than a week since I last updated this? Let's see now, Sunday was mostly slept through -- never did make it out to another club on Sunday night, Monday was too wet to do much touristy stuff (although I did manage to get up the Fernsehenturm, or TV tower and have a sort of a view), Tuesday was "wander around Berlin taking pictures" before getting a night train to Amsterdam...

Amsterdam was her fine old temptressy self... Did a lot more walking, less shopping, saw some lovely tranquil places, took some pictures and managed to "fit in" (ha!) some Serious Drinking (via Hugh Shipman's guide book) and an extremely pleasant evening drinking with Martin Wisse...

Finally did the canal tour. More later perhaps, when I have pictures, but for now the verdict is "don't bother"!

The train journey to Amiens (land of the weirdest keyboards yet -- when you can find one at all) was sort of chunky, changing at Antwerp (where I may be returning this evening) and Lille, to progressively smaller and slower trains... High points here included the Somme battlefield tour (one of my original objectives) and (surprisingly for me) the Cathedral...

Sunday, July 14, 2002

Damn! Blogger's just eaten about a page of update...

The weather broke in Prague shortly after I got back to the hostel, with a spectacular thunderstorm -- which seems to have covered most of central Europe. Got to Berlin fairly uneventfully, and crashed out quite early on Thursday before spending much of Friday trying to sort out phone batteries. Big mistake on Friday night: the club near the hostel was on, and I ended up staying until about five. Love Parade was still pretty amazing, though I ended up spending most of Saturday night sitting in a bar and chatting to folk.

It rained a little during Love Parade: seemed hard to tell it from the waterpistols at first, but when I got in this morning, it was coming down pretty heavily, and it's been a grey, wet day all day. Which isn't bad, as the cool helps.

Wednesday, July 10, 2002

Chilling in the heat
Still in Prague, and it's so hot that I've gone and had a haircut (not brilliant, not extreme, but it cost all of about three euros). Only problem is, I'm now overheated and itchy from the trimmings. Managed a little sightseeing the last few days, but the hostel has a pleasantly cool beer garden with interesting stuff into the small hours (although the new variant on the matchbox drinking game -- if the box lands in the ashtray, you get to buy a round -- probably wouldn't work in a country with western-style beer prices: a bottle of Staropramen is about 45p here).

Managed to find two appropriate English-language books (Schweik and Three Men on the Bummel, of which rather a lot of it reads rather true) and sat in a nice, cheap, air-conditioned beer cellar for a few hours with them.

I'm growing addicted to the local coffee -- forget espresso, this is turkish style, with a large spoonful of finely ground fresh coffee (or freshly ground fine coffee) in a glass of boiling water.

Friday, July 05, 2002

Bloggers' Paradox
When there's lots of stuff going on, there's no time to update, and when there's time to update, there's usually not much worth saying.

Friday morning of a holiday weekend in Chotebor, a small town in the middle of the Czech Republic, and it's the second full day of the Eurocon. Before that, I spent some days going around Prague with a bunch of other foreign visitors to the con -- Prague's lovely, so I've changed my plans to include another few days there before I go to Berlin on Thursday (this should let me get in a riverboat trip, a visit to the witchcraft and alchemy museum and either find those Arcimboldo portraits or see the torture museum). Oh, and when I get back, I must try and find a decent translation of Jaroslav Hacek's The Good Soldier Schweik, and re-read Michael Scott Rohan's Maxie's Demon, which is partially set in the Prague of Rudolph II.

So, between Prague and Berlin? I've got from Tuesday (if I can get two nights in the hostel) until Thursday afternoon, so I suspect it'll be a two-jawed trip: Prague-Nuremburg-Berlin or Prague-Munich-Berlin, with at least one couchette train.