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About colin

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  • Birthday 07/04/1955

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  1. Human hair tale.... we were approached at the famous outdoor swimming pond at Budapest by a guy who had obviously been on the lookout for a potential courier. Speaking English gave us away obviously. He explained that his daughter was studying in Vienna but that the government would not let him send money. Through friends, he had put together a package of long human hair, which his daughter could apparently sell to wig makers. It was a brown paper wrapped package - he opened it and showed us the contents. We stashed it in the bottom of the wardrobe under assorted footwear. At the border on the way out, we were searched of course, but they were fixated on an empty container under the floor. Something we never used. There was a round access hatch, which took some effort to open, before they satisfied themselves that we were not smuggling any shit.... My parents never much liked the notion of fitting a crapper smack bang in the middle of the floor.... even though it was removable. Some years later, 1978 to be precise, by post grad diploma class did a mass Europe tour on behalf of the local companies we were doing export projects for. The last leg took us to Prague. Hotel as described above, with a sneaky advantage for us when we discovered the night porter's mother was from Arbroath, and he had a store of beer.... Changed money on the street for way better than the official rate. Last day, want to spend my remaining cash, so do every floor of the one department store, finding nothing, and now on the top floor, sports department. Still have the ice hockey stick....
  2. Not really convoluted but .... 1966, VERY early motor caravan. With my parents and 3 brothers. Depart Troon, Scotland and drive through northern England to Hull with one overnight stop somewhere. Hull - Rotterdam on Norwave? Norwind? Drive across Holland, roughly east via Arnhem into Germany, down the Rhine for some way, then a bit left to Nuremberg and into Austria at Passau. Linz and along the Danube to Vienna. Continue south east to the point where the Czech border meets the Hungarian border. On into Hungary to Budapest. Next leg (smuggling a packet of human hair - another story...) to Lake Balaton and then west back into Austria and Graz. A meander through southern Austria, as far up as Zell am See and back down via the Grossglockner Hochalpenstrasse, before a detour into Italy to Dobbiaco and thence to the Brenner Pass and Innsbruck. West again through Liechtenstein and into Switzerland, St Gallen, Schaffhausen, and Germany again. Black Forest, slide west into France, Netherlands again, Luxembourg, Belgium and finally Netherlands with a visit to Madurodam (spelling?) before the ferry back and reverse drive through England before reaching Scotland and Troon after 6 weeks. Languages, castles, cathedrals, milk, milch, lait, brötchen, semeln, baguette et croisants.... We were so lucky.
  3. In more than one country it is being noted that a significant proportion of people who die from this are diabetic. As said above, lots of factors, and only time and research will put the jigsaw together.
  4. Trust him or not, I am praying for him.
  5. Wouldn't it be the one across the Styx?
  6. St Helier is all tide access, but Granville is not. You need to check the date to see if you can get a full day ashore.
  7. Because of why I go there, I tend to eat in either the St Helier Yacht Club on South Pier or the beautifully situated Royal Channel Islands Yacht Club at St Abubins. Do a check on Tripadvisor before you go. There are loads of good and varied eateries. The Chambers is the favourite watering hole for many. As an alternative, in good weather, take the boat to Chausey for the day. Simply amazing scenery. One place to eat, so choice easy and booking essential.
  8. You should be able to get the Friends and Family discount through him.
  9. Good video Neil, I hadn't seen it. It can be rough..... Hence, for me, Magnus Lounge, good dinner with a bottle of Malbec, then sleep till past Sumburgh.
  10. I like the North boats Hjaltland and Hrossey. Civilised ideas like the Magnus Lounge and driving the car off in the morning, then joining your passengers back on board for breakfast - good breakfast! The infamous Sleeping Pods are not universally appreciated....
  11. Pint? I hadn't realised she had gone all imperial....
  12. Careful.... I was severely ticked off a few years ago by her then Commandant for us commenting on lack of maintenance. My defence was that we were on his side!
  13. Other than Germany and South Korea who appear to have planned well, or been lucky in timing, hardly any other country was equipped to do widespread testing when the virus struck. Playing catch up since, so in France we are about to see a huge increase, and UK will follow as soon as supplies allow.
  14. There is only one! Custom designed and beautifully built and decorated in 1989.
  15. Poor systems and management or mountains to climb? This has an impact on a scale never experienced before.
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