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Europe 1998 🇬🇧🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿🇧🇪🇳🇱

Thursday morning 3am

The day prematurely began at somewhere around 3am when my peaceful slumber was interrupted by a knocking noise. There I was, in a hostel in Amsterdam, in a dorm of about twenty other blokes, two floors up from street level, and someone was knocking on the window. My ears could hear what was happening. They  ... [More]

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Europe 1998 🇬🇧🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿🇧🇪🇳🇱

Kosy in Kloveniersburgval

After breakfast, I said my goodbyes to Jeannie, who tragically had to go to work that day. Then after I packed up all my stuff, Richard and I set out for Brussels’ Midi station (which had nothing to do with computer music, if you’re wondering) and bought my ticket to Amsterdam on the 12:28 service  ... [More]

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Europe 1998 🇬🇧🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿🇧🇪🇳🇱

Picturesque with a capital P

Jeannie, Richard and I set off early (well, reasonably early – well, that is, reasonably early for us – well, that is, well before lunchtime) for Bruges. Bruges is a marvellously historic town, full of historic buildings, museums, churches and packed to the brim with character. We drove out of central Brussels, stopping for petrol  ... [More]

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Europe 1998 🇬🇧🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿🇧🇪🇳🇱

Drizzled upon in Brussels

Monday: time for some continental drifting. I had planned a trip into Belgium and Holland. Originally I’d planned to go to France too, but during the first few slightly homesick and lonely days of the holiday I’d decided that spending a few days in a country where I didn’t speak the lingo, and where I  ... [More]

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Europe 1998 🇬🇧🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿🇧🇪🇳🇱

Hamley’s and The Croydon Mongolians

I’d arranged to meet Merlin at Oxford Circus tube station to do some shopping. Now, for those of you who’ve never been to Oxford Circus, it’s a very crowded place, day or night, seven days a week. Like many places in central London, a large proportion of the human race finds themselves there, arsehole to  ... [More]

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Europe 1998 🇬🇧🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿🇧🇪🇳🇱

No fixed abode, Cricklewood

It was late by the time my Uncle Hew and I got up – somewhere around 10. At least, late by my usual standards. My boss wouldn’t be too impressed if I waltzed into work at 11am, but thankfully on this occasion I was many thousands of miles away from work, on holiday. After breakfast  ... [More]

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Europe 1998 🇬🇧🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿🇧🇪🇳🇱

Roaming around London

The train from Inverness pulled into London just a few minutes late, depositing me at Euston Station. It was 8am, and the place was buzzing with commuters. I managed to manoeuvre myself and my backpack through the station without hitting too many people and found the Left Luggage counter, where, following the tradition, I left  ... [More]

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Europe 1998 🇬🇧🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿🇧🇪🇳🇱

Further into the Highlands

My mission for Thursday was to get from Inverness to Plockton and back in time for the 20:30 overnight sleeper train to London. Why Plockton? Two words: Hamish Macbeth. If these two words mean nothing to you, then perhaps the following thirty-nine words might help: Hamish Macbeth is a TV comedy/drama series starring Robert Carlyle  ... [More]

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Europe 1998 🇬🇧🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿🇧🇪🇳🇱

Into the Highlands

After packing my pack, I strode purposefully out of the hostel and down the street to Edinburgh’s Haymarket station. Okay, so “strode purposefully” is probably an unfairly muscular-sounding description. But “staggered” wouldn’t be fair either. It was probably something between the two. Perhaps just “walked”. Anyway, I boarded the 09:44 train bound for Inverness, some  ... [More]

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Europe 1998 🇬🇧🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿🇧🇪🇳🇱

More and more of Edinburgh

According to my Tour Of Bits Of Scotland Masterplan, I had a full day to explore Edinburgh. The first stop after breakfast was Edinburgh Castle. I walked back the way I’d come the night before (did I mention I passed a street called Spittal Street?), gazing up at the castle as I approached. The castle  ... [More]

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