Location: Brussells, Belgium
Well the boys are off on there re-enactment of the 1945 D-Day landings!! After months of meticulous preparation (well we booked the ferry in December), aquisition of the essential 'passes' needed from our forger (2 tickets to the Olympic Stadium in Berlin!) and a visit to the quartermasters store for our gear we head off fully prepared - with a £9.99 toy tent to camp in, a full tank of petrol, two match tickets, a car flag St Georges cross and plan that we'll watch loads of football. I can omnl;y assume that D-Day was planned slightly more carewfully but anyway the invasion of Europe is on and we will be part of it - Lets hope that our team make it all the way to Berlin this time........... but I doubt it
Location: Isle of Jura, Scotland
Wow! This is a little jewel. This isolated virtually uninhabited gem is a fantastic piece of Britain. It will be reivisted again.
A very back to nature boys trip (again!) - well this is the year of the stag after all.
We arrived after a gruelling through the night drive from Blackburn. Starting with a midnight trip to Tescos to stock up on the essentials..... beer, red wine and whisky. Oh and a few bits of food including the obligatory Scottish porridge. 8 hours later we arrive (along with Lucy the dog!) at a very cold and grey port.
Lucy proved me wrong with my earlier commment of 'she'll be fine , she doesn't chase anything' when she set off at full speed across the car park after a cat! All aboard the boat with Ian our transport through the corcavechia (spelt wrong I'm sure), the worlds biggest whirlpool.
Unloading on a rugged, wet and slippery rock in torrential rain was hard, even harder was getting everything into the Bothie, our little shephards hut. Home for the next 4 days.
Location: Les Trois Vallee, Meribel, France
Another boys ski trip complete and maybe the last at this glorious venue in Meribel - Number 9 Les Sonnailles, Le Hameau, Meribel-Mottaret. My favourite 2nd home and somewhere that immediately feels like home when I set foot in it every year for this boys trip. For whatever reason, maybe the 3 months I lived here and it was my longest permanent place of residence for nearly two years, this place does feel like home.
A wek of absolutely freezing tempeartures and little fresh snow was dissapointning a the off piste was not really navigable - except a first day foray that saw me spend more time on my arse than my skis in a clingy glup!
Location: Leogang, Austria
After the deserts and scorthing temperatures along with the driest air I have ever experienced we are starting the Life Begins at 40 tales here in Leogang, Austria for the annual pilgrimage to the Microgenics Christmas 'meeting'! I say pilgrimage as this is an event that one feels should be made as it is a gathering of our european brothers from the Microgenics corporation that feels more like a family Christmas gathering than that of you other halfs company that are so often tedious affaris where you make polite converstaion with dull office colleagues you have nothing in common with. Not at Microgenics. This is a get together of friends and colleagues that make you feel welcome and ensure that you have a great and memorable time. I love these meetings!
This year whilst the 'workers' are slaving away at the early morning meeting the other halves (me and the rest!) are off skiing!!! There is little risk of me moan ing about Judes job....
A morning on the pitse with Rafa from Spain and a second day with the entire Spanish Ski squad was jus a great way to spend a couple of days before Christmas chilling. The usual late night party that ended at 4 ish after a dance, drink, drunken conversations in many languages none of which I speak sober but appear fluent in when pissed