Posts made in March, 2011

Maker Faire

Maker Faire

So we had quite a collection of experiences today. We woke up and had breakfast at the hotel. Andrew had a full English breakfast and I had poached eggs with homemade English muffins. Yes, they actually did call them “English” muffins on the menu. A little redundant if you ask me. Anyway, then it was off to fix a quick train ticket mishap and on to Maker Faire which is part of the Newcastle Science Festival.

What fun! They had everything from a giant fire-breathing robot dragon to remote controlled trash cans named Sid and Nancy to DIY electrical kits to music made using Tessla coils. Andrew was in seventh heaven. They also do this strange thing called yarn bombing as part of the festival which is basically where people knit items and vandalize public spaces with them. For example, one person knit a seat warmer for a public bench and another thought a tree sweater would be a nice contribution. Who knew knitters here are such rebels? After spending all morning at Maker Faire we had lunch at a little noodle house which was surprisingly good seeing as though there isn’t a large population of Asians living here as far as we can tell.

By the time we were done with lunch it was about 4:00 p.m. and we went back to the hotel for a little R&R to rest up for an evening concert and seminar on creating music using brainwaves. It was pretty interesting although a little anti-climactic since the guy just stands there with a headset thinking about music while a computer outputs sounds. It was an amazing scientific feat, but the entertainment factor could have been amped up. The best part about the evening was the walk to the concert hall. The river and bridges here are really beautiful! I promise to post pictures tomorrow as we have no wi-fi at our hotel so there is no way to get the pictures onto the blog. I am currently posting this from Mickey’s iPad. Our hotel tomorrow night has it so I will update this post then. Andrew took some really beautiful ones of the Newcastle Bridge that I can’t wait to share. Because we had a late lunch and were pretty beat by the time the concert ended, we decided to forgo dinner and just eat some snacks we brought. At the time I’m writing this, Andrew is already sleeping. Hope everyone is well at home. Cheers, Chelsie and Andrew

UPDATE…The photos are here!

Inside the Sage Gateshead where we saw Brainwave. It was a beautiful theatre. Note the pink guy with no pants. He was waaaaaay underdressed.

Maker Faire

Tree Sweater Yarn Bomb (Those hooligan knitters!)

Fire-breathing dragon.

The night skyline from Millenium Bridge. You may recognize the bridge from the bottle label of Newcastle Ale.

The outside of the Sage Gateshead where we saw Brainwave.

Fire-breathing dragon head shot

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We’ve arrived!

Hello everyone! Although today was mostly full of travel, it was a good one. Our plane left LAX a half hour late which wasn’t too bad. (Thanks Dad/Steve for dropping us off at the airport!) Andrew surprised me with an upgrade to extra legroom seats which turns out was totally worth it. We had at least 4 inches more legroom than the other seats in economy and they leaned back further too. We ate dinner on the airplane at around 10 p.m. LA time and then settled in to watch movies. I started The King’s Speech which was great, but fell asleep half-way through and stayed that way pretty much the rest of the flight. Andrew watched Due Date which was apparently pretty funny because I saw him many times out of the corner of my eye having quiet fits of laughter.

In London we got through customs no problem and arrived to Mickey’s around 6 p.m. We ate dinner at a very nice gastro pub near their place called The Fellow. Andrew had perfectly cooked Venison with haggis and “neeps and tatties” which are mashed turnips and potatoes. I had some amazing fish and chips with smushed peas. Wow, everything was really good.

Next we were off to the train station to take the last train to Newcastle which is in Northern England. We took off from track 8 at King’s Cross station which as you Harry Potter fans know is really close to platform nine and three quarters (the gateway to Hogwart’s Express) Andrew even pretended to run into the wall where the made-up platform was supposed to be like Harry does in the book, but didn’t get through. Muggle! Ok enough Harry Potter references. I’m reading the books right now so I just couldn’t resist. We arrived a little after midnight and decided to walk to our hotel a few blocks away. We all assumed that since it was so late, it would be a pretty deserted trek. We couldn’t have been more wrong. As soon as we exited the train station, we were assaulted by the sights and sounds of thousands of young people partying the night away. They were everywhere…in the street, inside noisy pubs, stumbling around the sidewalks. A good many of them were way too intoxicated for their own good. With a little luck we finally got to our hotel and checked in for the night. Sorry we don’t have pictures to go with this post as Andrew didn’t have time to take any with all the travelling going on. Tomorrow we are headed to Maker’s Faire, a fun hands-on science festival here in Newcastle and I’m sure we will get plenty of pictures of that. Thanks for all the well wishes. We wish you could all be here with us. Cheers, Chelsie and Andrew

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We’re off (again)…

Welcome once again to our travel blog. We are resurrecting it sooner than expected as we got a killer deal on plane tickets back to London. Our itinerary includes stays in Newcastle and London, England and Edinburgh and Turnberry, Scotland. We have lots of fun things planned so check back to see what we’re up to. As in the past, we will try to post something every day. Don’t forget to leave us comments. We love to hear from you.

Cheers, Chelsie and Andrew

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