Phew, I'm still alive. Before I tell you about my week away, some other notes first:
is less than a week away, and we still have no game controller. And we have quite a few people coming. Looks like Bob's mum will be doing it if we can't find anyone. Joy of joys.
I went to a karaoke night on Saturday. Never again. Thanks a bunch Dave :p It was quite amusing watching Christina, Steffi, Steffi's friend (with whom, I spent all night doodling on beer mats and playing noughts and crosses), and the woman who was going out with the bloke running the karaoke, singing along with some crappy Boyzone song. Only we couldn't hear them due to the shitty microphones and the fact that they were holding them about 25 miles away from their mouths. Probably just as well...
Back to work on Monday morning, and the Internet link is down. It's like I was never away... And on my desk, is a bag. *opens it* - a bottle of wine thanking me for my help last week! W00t! And lots of work that piled up there while I was away. Fuck.
Unfortunately James isn't going to be able to make it up north for The Killers
concert, so I have enlisted Herr Dave to join me, in the hope that he enjoys it. Hopefully I'll still get to see Adele on the Saturday, either I'll persuade Dave to stay overnight in Manchester, or I'll go back the next day. Or she can come to Blackpool, or something. Plenty of time to work it out.
Started listening to Bad Religion
again. They are fantastic. Everyone should get some of their songs. I'm pretty much listening to music all the time now, I have a stack of new bands to check out, which I will share with you when the time is right. I also need to listen to some Morrissey and The Smiths. Everyone and his dog goes on about him like he's some kind of God. But the man himself is a pompous arrogant twat, I saw him on TV twice over the weekend and he acted like a dick. Why do people lose half of their brain cells when they turn into celebrities? Gwynneth Paltrow's new kid is called Apple, ffs. APPLE! What the FUCK is that about? Also on the subject of music, isn't it strange how early demo versions of songs are sometimes better than the final versions?
I have to wait two weeks for the Enterprise
season finale. Bollocks. I don't hold out much hope for a season four. I think it's doomed, due to all the stupid old Star Trek fans going "OMG ITS NOT LIKE THE OLD SERIES!" - Bollocks to you, stop being such arseholes and enjoy the series as it is, don't compare it.
- I don't need to say anymore. Happy reading. It's the latest Internet phenomenon. And I watched it being born.
Right, my week away:
Leave school at 10am. Had to sit next to a loudmouth kid who wouldn't shut the fuck up. Arrive at 12pm. Very nice room! Bunk bed, but I'm taking the bottom bunk. Shower and sink provided, but no toilet. WTF is that about? Have to use the ones on the main corridor.
Our instructor, Tan, was a fucking nutcase. He rocked. Very loud, but very funny, he reminded me of myself, only without the funny bit.
We had archery first. Most fun! But we had a forefit kind of game, in which you have to do certain stuff depending on what your partner hits. Then we had to do a cutlery themed game that determined what cutlery you were able to use later on in the day as you ate dinner. I had to eat mine with just a spoon and a fork. Hilarity ensues.
The Lake District is home to some of the most intense military activity in the country, with fighter jets always passing overhead. There are always some RAF
jets, or, if you're lucky, USAF
jets flying overhead. When an F-18 Interceptor flew over at 200ft I nearly shit myself.
The only rain of the entire week that actually touched us came on Monday night as we were leading the kids on a walk through the forest to investigate the wildlife and plants. Rushed into the on-camp classrooms to continue, with a lovely view across the lake, with the lights of nearby villages in the distance.
Kids wouldn't shut up until 11:30pm, whereby I crept into bed hoping that the rest of the week was going to be significantly more fun.
This morning, bouldering. This is like rock climbing, but you traverse across horizontally rather than going upwards. Pretty boring really, the kids didn't really enjoy it.
Afternoon arrives, and it was time for the group canoe! We sailed down the lake in a big boat to the village nearby, with a shop and a cafe, and we let the kids buy gifts and stuff. Most enjoyable, but hard work.
Actually this is the most boring day of the entire week. Sod all happened. I can't even remember what our evening activity was.
The day of the raft race! I was NOT going to be beaten. But first, rock climbing, which is always fun. It's been five years since I did any, so I was a bit scared. Got up the wall ok, and then I had to abseil down. Oh my god. I think I shat myself. Well, not quite, but it took a few minutes for me to get used to it again. Then I remembered that I liked rock climbing, and did quite well.
OK! Raft race time! Tan let us in on the big secret, how to build the perfect raft that would better anyone elses. And it was rather good. Unfortunately, when we got in the water, all the plans went the way of faeces creek with no propulsion device. We had no sense of direction, missed the buoy we had to go around, turned around and managed to go around it. Then we were in a sprint for the finish with another raft. And we beat it to the bank! We won! We sat down on the beach, as were told to do, and then wondered why the team we just beat were taking their raft apart bit by bit. Then we were told that you have to dismantle your raft and put all the bits back. So, we were robbed because the organisers couldn't work out their own bloody rules. There was some confusion over whether we were 2nd or 3rd, and I'm quite bitter about it. In my mind, we were first back to the fucking beach, so we were the winners. Although to be honest, who cares? It was good fun.
Wednesday night was a sports night, where we all played basketball (I was running rings round the kids, I'm such a bastard) and rounders (I clubbed the ball so far, I'm such a bastard) - and it was quite boring really. Uneventful night. Apart from when I slipped on my arse TWICE in the same place because the court was wet from the mud/rain from the night before.
The day I was waiting for! King swing followed by kayaking followed by the campfire/barbecue. Unfortuntely I didn't get a go on the king swing, because one of the kids decided to wet himself and I had to bring him back to the centre to get changed. Upon my return there was no time for me to have a go myself. Which doesn't really matter, it's a holiday for the kids, not for me. Disappointing though.
Kayaking is always fun, I've done it a few times before and I love it, I'm also pretty good at it, and the kids enjoyed it too. I think this was my favourite activity of the week, and I didn't capsize either!
The campfire was hilarious. Tan is a born showman, the guy has balls of steel and ran the whole shebang himself. I mean, I know loads of campfire songs and stuff, but I wouldn't have the bottle to stand up in front of 50 people and do it. Getting the kids to bed that night was a pain in the arse, as the kids were singing the annoyingly catchy songs all night. Finally managed it, and then I went to bed to prepare myself for the last torturous day.
Went out with a bang by doing the aerial runway. 30 foot high. 200 foot long. Scary as hell. Then the kids did some rope-based obstacle course, which was amusing as they fell off one by one. We said goodbye to all the instructors, and got a nifty certificate each! Coach journey home was amusing, all the kids were falling asleep, and a few of them were almost sick. Got home at 3:30pm, went home, and thought, "That rather owned, I want to go next year."
And you know what? I think I might. If I'm still here, that is. My joints have finished aching now.
Just phoned the ICT helpdesk. It's the firewall. Blasted thing. If I was there I'd kick it. Can't be much worse than it already is.
I'll leave you with this thought. Never ever EVER listen to I'm Sorry I Haven't A Clue
at work. People will look at you strangely when you start laughing like a madman at the ever-delightful Samantha's adventures with the teams on the scoring desk. 0_o
And so ladies and gentleman, as the round egg of time is cracked and its contents opened into the non-stick frying pan of eternity, and the bread of fate is cooked in the toaster of eternity, I notice that it's the end of the blog entry. So from myself, it's goodbye. (Jesus christ, I listen to that show too bloody much)