Local Heart, Global Soul

November 24, 2014

One More Little Moving Dot On One Of The Many Long Strips Of Tarmac…

Filed under: Life,photography,Seen from: Planes Trains and Automobiles — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
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(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

This is my last post from our Summer 2013 camper travels to the south coast of England.

We still had insurance claims and the long list of tree damage to sort out with the owner of the camper, the only downside to our début camper experience.

Himself and I still like the idea of a camper but agreed that if we ever invested in one, it would be far smaller, it would have a toilet but no shower, we never used ours and didn’t miss it.

From the instructions we were given when we picked up the camper, it was immediately clear that both the shower and toilet take a lot of time in replenishing the water and cleaning,  so we decided immediately that the toilet was worth the effort but for us, the shower wasn’t. A short walk to a camp-ground shower block was far easier for a family of four.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

We also vowed that if we ever invested in a camper, that an old second hand one would be fine: a few dents and scratches would be acceptable and we could concentrate on having fun rather than obsessing about every possible speck of dust or mud.

It’s been a learning experience, and many assumptions have been trumped by reality.

I was surprised to find that many camp-sites of the UK we visited, many places for campers were limited, and that looking on the internet, many of the smaller camp sites (that we typically prefer) only catered for tents.Given the limitation of having to take your entire accommodation with you if you want to go get fish and chips or go to the supermarket I think that an investment in a decent tent might suit our family better if we are going to do more camping in the future.

We make our way up the European motorway system, one more little moving dot on one of the many long strips of tarmac that thread through cities, provinces, countries and all over continents.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

 

November 23, 2014

My Blog Gets Hijacked By The “Traffic Officer”…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

This is my blog, but it sometimes gets commandeered  by members of my family. Actually if I am to be strictly accurate it gets commandeered by one specific member of my family: Little Mr.

At nine years of age he is not yet allowed a mobile telephone (He will have to wait, like his sister did, until he is thirteen and going to a high school that requires a long bus ride to get to) It’s the bus that was the leverage for the phone, in our house and not the age of the child,  and he is also expected to save for his own pocket camera if he wants one, like his sister was obliged to do, and did.

Unfortunately he is completely, utterly and totally besotted with Lego and I can only make him save by putting his money box into safe keeping i.e. parental care. (That parent being me).

We discuss purchases and savings goals and the principle that if you want to spend Euro 5,–  every few weeks on something small every time you go to the toy shop then you will never have enough cash built up to buy the boxes that cost Euro 30,–  (or 50,–  or Euro 100,–). Kiwi Daughter caught onto this concept at a far earlier age, with Little Mr, it’s a work in progress.

The camera is something he therefore wishes for but isn’t prepared to pay for himself, and he’s figured out that since he has a camera toting Mama in the front seat of the car on long car journeys, all he actually has to do is to give instructions , make   shout demands  requests, and the Mama in the front will oblige.He is a nine year old boy, one of our friends has a two year old son, in one respect they are completely identical: they adore anything with wheels. They are vehicle crazy, the two year old has a preference for trains, and the nine year old a preference for emergency service vehicles, but scratch beneath the surface and you will find that any vehicle with wheels will do, especially if it’s an unusual vehicle. Therefore any unusual vehicle sighting whilst travelling on motorways is accompanied by the frantic words “Look, Look, Look ! Mama, get a photo, get a photo, get a photo!!!!” said at breakneck speed and at full volume.

In the summer of 2013 we were travelling back from the channel tunnel in France to the Hague, The Netherlands. Little Mr would very much like you all to know about the less vehicles we encountered on the way home. The other “Little Mr” from the “Travelling Two” family, would very very much approve.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

This load has extra impact protection, so it’s clearly the sort of stuff you’d want to keep your distance from…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

November 22, 2014

The Other Signs Of Travel…

Filed under: Life,photography,Seen from: Planes Trains and Automobiles — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
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Road travel in Europe involves looking at a lot of road signs… not all of them however are for city directions, motorway exits, highway services, toll roads, rest stops, ring roads or connections to other motorways. Here are a few of the other sorts we saw on the way home from France…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

November 21, 2014

Cité Europe… In Europe, But Not Actually A City…

Filed under: Calais — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
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(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

The previous times we have travelled through the channel tunnel at Calais from England en route to the Netherlands, we have found ourselves for one reason or another, making the return journey on a Sunday.

That has one disappointing down-side: most shops in France (and Belgium too) are shut on Sundays and in some areas you would be hard pressed to find even a bakery open.

That’s annoying if you are a Foodie wanting to stock up on a few of your favourite French supplies on the way home.

Therefore I was delighted to find that our summer of 2013 trip ended with a Friday booking back through the channel tunnel and finally we could stop off at the place I’d been dying to visit: Cité Europe.

Cité Europe is a huge shopping centre just a stone’s throw away from the channel tunnel in Calais. They have clothes and all the regular stops you would find in a large out-of-town shopping centre, but it’s the supermarket I’m interested in with things like tins of Confit de Canard, dried hams and of course wine (for himself because (a) I drink very little wine anyway and because (b) I’ve been completely tee-total since my 2010 accident.

Alcohol and strong pain medications don’t mix but since I drank so rarely before the accident it’s not something that I miss. Himself however, enjoys a glass of red wine so he enjoys a French supermarket as much as I do. Goodies await, we go inside…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Kiwi Daughter and I find a funny and ingenious graphic on the wall of the ladies lavatories to indicate what this hook is for…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Little Mr would have gladly taken this home with us, if he could have…( even though it’s as big as he is!)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Grocery shopping done, we are on our way…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

 

 

November 20, 2014

Some Who Go Walkies, Also Take The Train…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

We are finally back in Folkestone,  and although we didn’t originally have a place to stay planned for the night before our channel tunnel crossing back in the summer of 2013, we found the Little Satmar camp-site so easy, friendly and convenient that we rang  two days ahead and asked if they had a spot for us, and when they said they did, booked it immediately.

We had to be up bright and early for the channel train the next day so it was a dawn breakfast and we were just driving out just as the first campers were emerging from tents and caravans and making for the showers.There was a haze around camp as the sun came up so I attempted some arty photographs of some parked up bicycles … and failed. Within the hour we join the queues at the train, where it’s already surprisingly busy and seriously warm, in fact it turns out to be 29 C (84.2 F) and we have blue cloudless skies for the trip back.

From the loading area waiting for the train we have a brilliant view of the chalk outline of the horse on the hill by Folkestone and  the kids giggle at the dog walking and toilet area marked “Walkies”, complete with big bone gateway. Again we are sorted into a queue with the other high vehicles and board the train. The passport control is easy enough, they are asking a lot of questions so it takes longer but they are friendly enough. That said it’s strange to be speaking French again, takes a few minutes to switch. We have somewhere we want to stop off  at on the French side very soon so we need to get our  Continental brains working again…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Out in France…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

 

 

November 19, 2014

Ticking Another Little Red Box…

Filed under: Uncategorized — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags:

I have seen the red coloured round “pillar box” letter boxes in the United Kingdom, but this is the first time I’ve ever seen one that looks like this one. Therefore I’m adding this to my collection of letterboxes from around the world. It’s less quirky that some in my collection, but for me it’s nice to get some of the less well known ones into my collection anyway…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

November 18, 2014

Can We Have Chips With These?

Filed under: England,photography,South Coast — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags: , ,

You know I love quirky things: seen on English motorway, a truck carrying one of the strangest cargo’s I’ve ever seen (and it’s headed towards the sea, but maybe that’s just a coincidence). We have a giggle and tease about pulling them over and cheekily asking of we could have chips with these please?

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

 

 

November 17, 2014

A Tribute To Ambulance, Police And Fire Crews Everywhere…

Filed under: England,photography,South Coast — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags: , ,
(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

To say that Little Mr is fanatical about emergency service vehicles is an understatement. I would be a complete failure  as “Mama with camera”  if I didn’t record at the very least: samples of every emergency service vehicle we find in countries we visit, and said vehicles in very different situation we can find at home.

Flashing lights and sirens add additional ear-drum bursting shouts and squeal of excitement in our car so if I go deaf in later life I will lay the blame squarely at his door and probably ask him to pay for my hearing aids.

Not being able to hear his grumbles at this request would be bonus. There was a programme on Dutch television some years back that highlighted the problem that car drivers often didn’t pull over for ambulances, police and fire engines because they heard the sirens but couldn’t figure out which direction they were coming from.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

My solution both then and now is to install a small boy who adores emergency vehicles behind a microphone on the vehicles and let them be the siren instead.

The sound they emit could clear entire neighbourhoods let alone streets and if Little Mr is anything to go by, they also know the different siren sounds needed for police, ambulances and fire engines. Their impressions are fairly accurate and it would be their dream job.

They are so enthusiastic that only problem might be getting them to stop. Ear protection for emergency service crews would be necessary of course but I’m sure that would be a minor hitch. During our  summer of 2013, long haul drive back to Folkstone, he demands requests photographs of different emergency service vehicles that we pass. To me they all looked pretty much alike but he indignantly  said they definitely weren’t and now that I’m sorting out the photographs, he’s completely correct! I owe him a rather belated apology. Therefore a post especially for Little Mr. … and a tribute to the work of  ambulance, fire and police crews everywhere.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

 

November 16, 2014

Signs Of The Times… Well Sort Of…

It’s probably because United Kingdom place names are so unlike Dutch ones that we giggled so much when we saw these signs along the highway… (Unless it’s just our sense of humour) I hope these signs will tickle your funny bone too… Ducks crossing? beware of Ducks? (Don’t ducks just fly out of the way??) Who Knows?

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Do you really  want to write on the back of a letter that you live in “Puddletown”?  (unless you are one of the Ducks from the sign above)!

All of these sounded to us like made up names of  children’s story book place names…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Blandford? Nothing spicy goes on there clearly… Piddlehinton (Himself hinted that someone must be taking the Pi$$)…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Tolpuddle, a tax on weak bladders? That the Martyrs museum is close by may be significant?

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

The result of more weak bladders… and very recently in Warmwell… the rest? the mind boggles…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Add Tolpuddle Ball (Himself said it was maybe better not to ask)…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Poulner already sounds like it involves poultry… but a place called Crow where they also need to add a sign of a bird?  (and a bird that looks like a parakeet at that?)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

There’s a place called Arundel in New Zealand, where everyone pronouces it “Ar run dul” , then I heard on the BBC the following pronounciation” air ran daal” which made me seriously wonder… who’s right here? (yes, it’s exactly the same spelling).

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

If somthing’s worth doing, it’s worthing doing right…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

… or Sompting like that…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

It’s near the sea… did they miss the “C” off the front of hove???

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

More nursery rhymes…  I’d like to say it was near Puddletown, but it wasn’t.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Sevenoaks / Seven Oaks… ok that ones is clear, “Orpington” …I have no clue and “Maidstone”,  maybe let’s not go there either…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Gravesend, clearly the end of the line …

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

November 15, 2014

Long Haul Back Along The Coast…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

To get from  Bridport  to Folkstone in what was left of the day, we needed to get ourselves off the small lanes and “B” roads and onto motorways.

In our journey of summer 2013, we pass by churches, towns, beautiful buildings and fields. I  see what I assume must be the entrance to a stately home, with Lions on the gates.

The views varied wildly because sometimes everything to the side of us was obscured by motorway barriers, sometimes by trees and hedges but there were still fleeting moments when I could record the scenes speeding past our windows.

Sometimes the traffic flowed freely and we made good time, at other times, whilst changing between motorways we stood still in traffic jams.

Having an on-board lavatory was once again a God-send that the kids and I made good use of during our crawl towards yet another round-a-bout. Eventually we get onto a motorway where the traffic is flowing freely and we can get some serious distance under our belts (or tyres). As the evening draws in, we get closer to the outskirts of Greater London, aircraft from one of the airports nearby make low passes. We are slowly getting closer and closer to our destination…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

 

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