Oct 29 2007

The Cottage Sessions

Category: Musicash @ 9:38 pm

A weekend of musical kaffuffle in Rochester, Northumbria at Sam and Reds place.

Up after work on the Friday, met the pair, plus Le, Daffyd, Lucy, and Ricko up there for scran, beers and chilling.  Went through some stuff on the friday eve but most people crashed out at about half 12.

Spent all day Sat playing and recording tunes.  Got lots of excellent tracks down, some of which we started with from scratch, others which were almost ready to lay down immediatly.  Dan Cregin came over as well to add an extra layer in there – excellent work on the bass and other assorted Stringed instruments.

Sam’s on a mission mixing the tunes down at the mo – they’ll be available on www.ashthegreen.co.uk/tunes when he’s done.

Red’s showing well, being beaten up by a small monster inside of her.  They’ve got a new place to be living in as well – moving late Nov – on the other side of the River Rede, stunning place, amazing views, HUGE!  They’ll be rattling round in there after living at the cottage for 2 years now.

Went through lots of potential wee Kellie names too.  So far, “Battenburg Meniscus Chava Kellie” is the agreed set of names for the bairn.  Well, we generally agreed it around Red rather than with her.

Top weekend, top tunes, top people.

Oct 22 2007

Hujo : The wedding

Category: home,Scoutingash @ 11:12 am

A most excellent weekend up in Glasgow. Picked up Matt and Dav from Runshaw on Friday afternoon, arrived Glasgow around 9pm.  Met up with the rest of the 7 explorers we’d arranged to be on the colour party, checked they were ok & give brief outline of weekend.  Then over to check into a VERY posh hotel, and meet the rest of the wedding party in a nearby resteraunt.  Hugh on good form, caught up with Roger, Dom and Rob.

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Up next morning to ensure the explorers were up, briefed them on what needed to happen.  Then back to out flat to meet Hugh & the rest of the guys, get ready and then start with our wonderfully detailed itinerary of being in the right place at the right time.  Collected the guests and chivvied them into opentop buses for a tour of Glasgow, arriving at the University Chapel.  A stunning place, one of the most impressive chapels I’ve ever been in.

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Got everyone inside, caught Jo arriving & escorted her mum down the isle. Then back to the seat for the service – after the wedding ceremory snuck out with the explorers to get the colour party set up.  The Explorers were excellent – big respect to Carrington, Matt, Steph, Bex, Dav, Kingy and Nancy – Hugh and Jo were well impressed as they came out of the Chapel.

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Several thousand photographs, got the congregation back onto the buses (inadvertantly telling them to arrive back at 4.30 – not 3.50! — that one involved some frantic phonecalls!), then some more pics in the Cloisters. Grabbed a cab back from the Chapel with the Parents & Dom plus flags and flowers, to the Trades Hall, venue for the evening doo.

Lots of mingling, meeting & catching up with people, nearly getting set up by Carl, and a bit of tense action until the final bus arrived ( with many shivering people), then into the venue proper.  Awesome place.  Big on the History, and character.  And it had been decked out really well.

Excellent food, speeches very good & impressive, was ensconsed by Hugh’s Sweedish Scouting mates & so good conversation.  Food cleared away and Ceildh started – had one dance then ended up chatting with Nige and the Explorers, trying to get Matt to make all the right moves with a girl he was working on. How worringly pious of me.

Good evening, cleared the hall, took flowers back to ours.  Everyone else seemed to evaporate, so went for a couple of beers with Nige to the bar round the corner.

Sunday, morning after brekky, courtesy of the parents.  Good to catch up with everyone in their normal wear!  Collected Explorers, started heading home.  Felt a bit rough in the morning – halft way down the A74 realised I was coming down with something.  Very hard 5 hour journey back – shattered, aching, hot/cold things, killing headache etc.  Bugger.

Dropped Explorers off in a variety of places – after saying our goodbyes to Carrington and the other car at Rheged.  Home for about 4, straight to bed.  Up at about 10.30pm til 12, then bed again, really rough night, took a days illness on the Monday. Bleargh.

Oct 14 2007

Glen Nevis

Category: Mountaineeringash @ 9:25 pm

Up with Mark G, and met Willmott and the Galster up there.  Nice, though a bit pricey bunkhouse under the Ben Nevis pub.  Intention was to do Tower Ridge – the longest climb in the uk, but the weather found us and so cacked it down.

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Went into Glen Nevis and did Ben More instead – after getting the top in the ming we found an ‘interesting’ ridge on the way down with impressive drops, slippy rock, and a bit which wanted to emit me from the ridge at high speed.  Managed to stop quickly though *ahem*.

Off the hill at 2pm (forecast on MWIS was rank for later), although it cleared and the summit of the Ben was clear.  Not impressed.  Met Office Aberdeen had given the closest forecast – am starting to loose faith rapidly in MWIS, this has happened a few times now.  Into Fort Bill for gear peering, beer drinking and chilling out.


Probably the reason that I fell asleep during games of sh1thead later that night. For a suprise. The odd thing is that I managed to win 2 games.  Whilst being prodded every time I had to play a card.  What can I say – my skill with the game transends sobriety/conciousness.

Over to the Arrochar area today where we hoped the weather would be better.  It wasn’t.  Tried to hire a rowing boat and failed -so bimbled up to a Loch somewhere, peering at big machinary used to service pylons and electrical cabling.  Big Boys Toys and Doozers.


Oct 11 2007

Rats from a sinking ship …

Category: homeash @ 6:03 pm

Seems that a bit of a resignation frenzy is happening back at my old place – Lathom High School.  Since about this time last year, the place has now lost most of it’s key players on the admin side – with 3 in the past 2 weeks!

  • First off, Janey Woo who managed to get a place helping County with budgets for primary schools in the region. She made it out, and gave us hope of life on the outside.
  • Then me – I’d been looking for a route out for a couple of years but had been biding my time for the right opportunity.  Westfield was the right place in ‘oh so many’ ways.
  • Next Bez – Manager of loot and buildings.  With no job to go to she resigned – looks as though this new academic year has been harder than ever (and they’ve consistently been getting more challenging there for about the last 5 or 6 years).
  • Then Liz – ex manager of the ‘Difficult kids’ – a whole world of politics seemed to have surrounded  her reassignment over the last few years & it seemed clear to a few of us that top brass wanted her out – shame as she’s a bloody ace person and damn hard worker.  She’s got a place at a kids unit over Chester way now, far closer to her place.
  • Now Sharonious – sci tech and purveyor of magnificent tunes.  The Sci department will be at a loss without her.

So why these changes?  Well could debate the why’s and wherefores for a while, but a) not wanting to get sued, and b) REALLY not wanting to get sued, I can’t really say my thoughts here. 

Suffice to say we’re all DAMN glad that we got out when we did.  And there’s a big, wide world out there.

Looking forward to the leaving do’s!

Oct 07 2007

Splash n Dash 07

Category: Scoutingash @ 10:50 pm

424One hell of a good weekend.

Up Friday night with a carful of stuff to brief teams at 9:30pm – some teams couldn’t make it which complicated matters later on (one for the review meet), but ended up down at Waterside wood with most of the helpers, quaffing ales til the small hours.  Ate far too many choccy things.

Up at 7 for bacon Sangers that Ray had sorted, then up to GT to set the Orienteers off.  Tim provided me with all the cards & maps – after they’d gone I shot to bowness, hopped on the ferry and had a most spooky voyage over Windermere in THICK clag. 

379   385  394Arrived on the otherside & managed the Canadian canoe to Bike swopover.  This went well & it was good to see the event running so well – albeit in wierd weather conditions.  The teams had been set off in two sets of 5 (far safer for Phil in the safety boat to see them all), and arrived pretty close together, chucking the orange bibs to the guys waiting on the bikes who then shot off.

400  406  412Next over to Wrostlers barn. A lot of hanging about again waiting for the bikers (not ALL got lost this year, just ‘most’, then getting people into the Sea boats.  After this bit – which took a couple of hours – I went round to Coniston to get to the mental base to see Bex get in – fastest Explorer and only beaten by 1 minuite by Jack – go girl! Moira told me that the fastest team had gone up and down the Old Man and were nearly back in Coniston – started to drive up there to find that they’d already finished, and Simon plus team were running to the water to dive in!

418  Found Ray, sorted the school and catering, then hung around waiting for the teams to finish.  Full results on http://splashndash.westlancashirescouts.org.uk . Jayne and Ali won the pair competition – I’m REALLY proud of them, they’ve done themselves and the District proud. Ormskirk Explorers came a very respectible 3rd, and Fylde Network won the overall race, taking about 30 mins off the time from last year.

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Tideied up and sent everyone on their way, then back to GT to chuck tents up, book a curry house, go eat curry in windermere, fall asleep at table, stagger back, fall asleep, then up this morning at 9 ish to run to Tower Rock and get an awesome view up the lake with a Hot Air balloon bobbing along.  Very odd. 


Over to Swindale today to get a couple of climbs in.  Did the Fang (MVS) and another route at MS – really good fun, climbing with Maria.  Back home through miles of traffic, to collect Greenland kit that’s arrived back and dump off Bibs at the wall and gas/cooking kit at the hut. 

Bit tired now.  In Skem at 0830 tomorrow so going to upload pics and get some beers in!