Sooo.. anyone planning a holiday this/next year?

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Post by merry »

The kids are off to Iceland again, as we know. Leaving next Thursday for 5 days. It's costing me an absolute MINT :o

Anyone else?
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Post by Wildrover »

We are off to stay with my friend George in Cyprus week after next. I worked with him for years and he retired a few years ago and built a beautiful villa by the beach in Larnaca. It's pretty cheap as the flights for two are only £300 return and the accommodation obviously free but I don't doubt we will go for some lovely (and expensive) meals while we're out there.
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Post by TRavine »

OMG Iceland must be wonderful! I so want to see it one day. But very pricy!!

It's still a while until next summer, but if everything goes according to plan, I'm thinking of taking my mom back to the UK, to "continue" our trip. We did not get to see nearly all that we wanted, so we'll probably go back to Manchester for a few days, to do some day trips from there, and then work our way up to Edinburgh. I'm kind of a recidivist when it comes to travelling. Many people like to go to different destinations every year, I keep coming back to my favourite ones to explore them more until I know them inside out, lol.

And I'm such a sucker for the UK! I just love it so much! The country, the people (who are WAY friendlier than people in Austria!), the culture, just everything!
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Post by TRavine »

Update: I just randomly bought a ticket for a theatre play Ian McKellen is starring in, in London, in January 2023. I suppose now I'm going to have to buy a plane ticket and book a hotel, don't I? 😅😅
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Post by merry »

Afraid so :mrgreen: Not that long to go either! Ian Mckellen will be worth the trip!

Best value I had from a play was Hamlet at Stratford, with David Tennant as H and Patrick Stewart as Claudius! Dr Who and Captain Picard on stage together :lol

OC is our Iceland expert so if you ever plan a trip there, he's your guy - practically an adopted Icelander :D
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Post by Philipaholt »

who are WAY friendlier than people in Austria
Come off it, they can't be that bad! :D mind you I've only been to Austria once and I was only a kid. Maybe my memory is faulty. What's the friendliest place you've ever been?
Last edited by Philipaholt on Wed Nov 02, 2022 4:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by Patience »

I have booked 4 nights in Berlin in the middle of December. Christmas markets await.
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Post by TRavine »

Philipaholt wrote: Wed Oct 19, 2022 4:41 pm
who are WAY friendlier than people in Austria
Come off it, they can't be that bad! :D mind you I've only been to Austria once and I was only 13. Maybe my memory is faulty. What's the friendliest place you've ever been?
Oh, trust me they can ;) As I have already told Merry: On my first day living in Vienna, I was at a supermarket, and a guy ran in, pushed me to the side (rather vilently!) and called me a "son of a wh***" because I happened to be standing between him and a can of beer.

Just the other week, I was riding the tram, texting someone, and the woman sitting across from me started yelling at me to "put that f**king phone away and stop looking at it all the time!"
Vienna was actually crowned the world's "most unfriendly city" in an international survey, so that says something ;)

I've been to some friendly places, but the US and UK both stood out to me repeatedly. People in Manchester were exceptionally friendly and helpful when I was there this past July, all of them.
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Post by TRavine »

Patience wrote: Wed Oct 19, 2022 4:52 pm I have booked 4 nights in Berlin in the middle of December. Christmas markets await.
So lovely 😍😍 Have fun!
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Post by Philipaholt »

TRavine wrote: Wed Oct 19, 2022 8:19 pm
Philipaholt wrote: Wed Oct 19, 2022 4:41 pm
who are WAY friendlier than people in Austria
Come off it, they can't be that bad! :D mind you I've only been to Austria once and I was only 13. Maybe my memory is faulty. What's the friendliest place you've ever been?
Oh, trust me they can ;) As I have already told Merry: On my first day living in Vienna, I was at a supermarket, and a guy ran in, pushed me to the side (rather vilently!) and called me a "son of a wh***" because I happened to be standing between him and a can of beer.

Just the other week, I was riding the tram, texting someone, and the woman sitting across from me started yelling at me to "put that f**king phone away and stop looking at it all the time!"
Vienna was actually crowned the world's "most unfriendly city" in an international survey, so that says something ;)

I've been to some friendly places, but the US and UK both stood out to me repeatedly. People in Manchester were exceptionally friendly and helpful when I was there this past July, all of them.
:o well. I stand absolutely corrected. Imagine being voted the world's most unfriendly city. What are some of your favourite haunts in the UK and US?
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Post by TRavine »

Philipaholt wrote: Wed Oct 19, 2022 9:01 pm
TRavine wrote: Wed Oct 19, 2022 8:19 pm
Philipaholt wrote: Wed Oct 19, 2022 4:41 pm

Come off it, they can't be that bad! :D mind you I've only been to Austria once and I was only 13. Maybe my memory is faulty. What's the friendliest place you've ever been?
Oh, trust me they can ;) As I have already told Merry: On my first day living in Vienna, I was at a supermarket, and a guy ran in, pushed me to the side (rather vilently!) and called me a "son of a wh***" because I happened to be standing between him and a can of beer.

Just the other week, I was riding the tram, texting someone, and the woman sitting across from me started yelling at me to "put that f**king phone away and stop looking at it all the time!"
Vienna was actually crowned the world's "most unfriendly city" in an international survey, so that says something ;)

I've been to some friendly places, but the US and UK both stood out to me repeatedly. People in Manchester were exceptionally friendly and helpful when I was there this past July, all of them.
:o well. I stand absolutely corrected. Imagine being voted the world's most unfriendly city
Well, it's mainly people in Vienna. The rest of Austria is mostly okay, I'd say. And there is something about the Viennese grumpiness that's kind of strangely laughable sometimes. There was a terrorist attack in Vienna two years ago, where a man shot several civilians (it was terrible!!! :cry: ) and - in Viennese manner - a man in a nearby building opened a window and yelled down at the terrorist: "F**k off, A**hole!" It was caught on video, and a day later everyone, including myself, had the quote as their facebook banner. :tongue You know, other countries have: "Pray for..." but no, Vienna had that! :devil

Where in Austria did you go as a child, Pippa?
What are some of your favourite haunts in the UK and US?
In the US, I loved the upper eastcoast (I lived in Boston for a year), the west coast was nice as well. As for the UK, I haven't found a place I didn't love there. I've been to London repeatedly and also across the country and up to Scotland and I keep coming back, lol. It has become my favourite travel destination in recent years. Some people think I'm crazy to go back to the same country every year instead of exploring different ones, but I always feel that there is still so much for me to see there.
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I visited Innsbruck in 1976 for the Winter Olympics; they had the games because Denver, to whom the Games had been awarded, dropped out.

I had a pleasant 2 weeks there, with a side trip by train to visit my friends in Zurich for a weekend. On the last day of competition I went to the ski jump at Bergisel where they had held the opening ceremony to watch the 90 metre ski jump. I got chatting to a group of Austrians using my badly remembered O level German and they decided that I was a very friendly Englishman. The leader of their group noticed that I had a scoresheet with all the jumpers listed, so he said to me 'You are Kontrol!' and I had to keep the score of every jumper. Every so often he would take the scoresheet from me and note happily that the Austrians were in gold and silver medal position.

When it came to half time they fed me with lots of sausages and other goodies and plenty of wine and schnapps, so I was quite surprised that I was sufficiently with it to continue keeping the scores accurately. Loud cheers greeted the Austrian in the lead, Toni Innauer, as he prepared for his second jump - he fluffed it but was still leading. A few places further down it was the turn of the East German in the bronze medal position to jump, so I told Boss Austrian how many points Jochen Danneberg (correction by me, I misremembered) needed to grab the top position. He grabbed the scoresheet from me and looked and agreed, and then shouted as loudly as he could how many points Herr Danneberg required and all the Austrians went quiet. Then his group went into a huddle and cast an evil spell on Herr Danneberg, and when he came down the jump all the sporting Austrians booed and the East German fluffed it really badly and dropped out of contention. Later on the Austrian Karl Schnabl who had been in the silver medal position outjumped Toni Innauer when his turn came and won the gold medal. By then everybody was happy with an Austrian gold and silver and Henri Glass of East Germany with the bronze and I had a lot more schnapps to drink; and how I found my way to the pick-up place for my minibus back to the hotel in Matrei am Brenner I shall never know.

I hope you have a lovely time at the Berlin Christmas Market, Patience.
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In the US, I loved the upper eastcoast (I lived in Boston for a year),
Ohhhhh I love Boston! Been there twice. Love to go back but who knows if I ever will. Why were you there for a year? School? Work?
Where in Austria did you go as a child, Pippa?
I went to Vienna with my dad. A very special trip that. We didn't do too much sight seeing but I bought a wee little porcelain horse that's says Vien on it. I love it. Sadly it's front legs broke off on our plane back but I still treasure it. What I mostly remember of Vienna (I was only a kid so I remember very little) was a living statue Street performer. I was entranced by him. Also the streets were lovely and old and I liked that.
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OurCreature wrote: Wed Oct 19, 2022 10:49 pm I visited Innsbruck in 1976 for the Winter Olympics; they had the games because Denver, to whom the Games had been awarded, dropped out.

I had a pleasant 2 weeks there, with a side trip by train to visit my friends in Zurich for a weekend. On the last day of competition I went to the ski jump at Bergisel where they had held the opening ceremony to watch the 90 metre ski jump. I got chatting to a group of Austrians using my badly remembered O level German and they decided that I was a very friendly Englishman. The leader of their group noticed that I had a scoresheet with all the jumpers listed, so he said to me 'You are Kontrol!' and I had to keep the score of every jumper. Every so often he would take the scoresheet from me and note happily that the Austrians were in gold and silver medal position.

When it came to half time they fed me with lots of sausages and other goodies and plenty of wine and schnapps, so I was quite surprised that I was sufficiently with it to continue keeping the scores accurately. Loud cheers greeted the Austrian in the lead, Toni Innauer, as he prepared for his second jump - he fluffed it but was still leading. A few places further down it was the turn of the East German in the bronze medal position to jump, so I told Boss Austrian how many points Jochen Danneberg (correction by me, I misremembered) needed to grab the top position. He grabbed the scoresheet from me and looked and agreed, and then shouted as loudly as he could how many points Herr Danneberg required and all the Austrians went quiet. Then his group went into a huddle and cast an evil spell on Herr Danneberg, and when he came down the jump all the sporting Austrians booed and the East German fluffed it really badly and dropped out of contention. Later on the Austrian Karl Schnabl who had been in the silver medal position outjumped Toni Innauer when his turn came and won the gold medal. By then everybody was happy with an Austrian gold and silver and Henri Glass of East Germany with the bronze and I had a lot more schnapps to drink; and how I found my way to the pick-up place for my minibus back to the hotel in Matrei am Brenner I shall never know.

I hope you have a lovely time at the Berlin Christmas Market, Patience.
OC, what a lark. That's sounds absolutely fantastic. Especially the sausages. I hope it's a fond memory. It's quite the story.
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Merry says that I have the ability to make people want to feed me............ :lol
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Merry says that I have the ability to make people want to feed me............ :lol
True! :hugs
Sadly it's front legs broke off on our plane back but I still treasure it.
My heart is in tears for that sad Pipkin moment on the plane :cry

Boston was the first US city I ever visited and there were things I liked about it and things I didn't (the air felt kind of... steamy? to me) but I was just overjoyed to be in America, a country I sort of idolise, except for the things I don't. Like shootings. San Francisco on the other hand I fell in love with immediately and would go back in a heartbeat, except that I hear the homeless problem there has escalated .
the woman sitting across from me started yelling at me to "put that f**king phone away and stop looking at it all the time!"
I'm a bit wet and probably would have sat there silently in tears of injustice if that or the Beer Guy had happened to me. Poor Tom :hug

Have a great time in Berlin, Patience! You must post pictures of all your purchases!
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I have never been to Berlin although I briefly travelled through Germany on the way back from Switzerland by car many years ago. My brother was posted there during the cold war while in the RAF. Did you know that the traffic lights on the Heerstraße are timed so that if you maintain the speed limit they will turn green as you approach? My mad brother discovered that you could do twice the speed limit with the same effect!
I liked when he came home on leave, bringing several cases of Berliner Kindl, an excellent (and very cheap NAAFI prices) German lager.
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Post by Wildrover »

I'm exactly the opposite to you Merry - Boston is one of my 3 favourite US cities (along with Austin and Seattle) and I didn't care much for San Francisco where it felt like everything was ridiculously overpriced and the people (at least the ones I met) very self-centred. The last three companies I worked for were all based in California so I've spent over a year there over the last 25 years and with the exception of Huntington Beach and San Diego I could take it or leave it. Other towns I really enjoyed are Portland, Charleston and Nashville. I'd like to go to Alaska at some point as it's the only state I haven't visited - a friend of mine visited Juneau last year on a cruise ship and loved it.

I'm sure you'll enjoy Berlin Patience - I've never been when the Christmas markets are being held but I'm told they are amazing. Have a currywurst for me!
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We lived in West Germany for 3 years (July 1959 to July 1962), first for 3 months in Dusseldorf not far from the airport and then the rest of the time in a small Army housing estate just east of a big Royal Engineering depot that was known colloquially as 17 Vehicle; that was on the western edge of Monchen-Gladbach. Dad was a sergeant in the Royal Army Pay Corps (no longer a separate regiment), at Fife Barracks just across the road from the BFES primary school that Nancy and I attended. He was promoted to staff sergeant while at Fife Barracks.

That traffic light system mentioned by Eccs in Berlin also ruled the traffic in the centre of Dusseldorf. We didn't have a car while in Dusseldorf, but we got one in when we were in Monchen-Gladbach - an Opel Kapitan.

There was a NAAFI just down from our school where the school buses used to park; though Mum did her fresh meat and veg shopping in the local butchers and greengrocers in the local village called Holt - very good quality. Another greengrocer used to come round the estate with a horse and wagon. The local bakers had a small van to deliver bread and cakes - we liked the cream cakes very much. You paid the bread girl there and then if I remember rightly. There was a very big NAAFI in the BAOR HQ camp at Rheindalen and other shops as well; Rheindalen was a small town really.

I'm not sure how much is left of the BAOR presence there. Our housing estate was lived in for a while but the latest aerial photos show that our street is derelict with trees and bushes growing where they shouldn't and all the houses abandoned. My old school buildings are still there but Fife Barracks has gone and the garrison church next to the school looks like it is now a restaurant. Most if not all of the Royal Engineer facilities have gone and much of the site is occupied now by the Borussia Monchen-Gladbach football stadium.

Here's a pic of our former quarter - it's the end house with the yellow dot on the roof. The nicest quarter we ever had.
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I sent off my passport renewal form etc today via the Post Office checking service (cost £101), and when I get the new one and have sorted out what I know of my 2023 diary I shall book a week or maybe 10 days in Iceland; I'll see how I feel nearer the time.

I haven't been there for a proper holiday since New Year in 2014 when Mum was 86 and the weather wasn't kind to her. The only time I have been there since then is in 2019 to scatter some of her ashes with N&J and some of our Icelander friends. So it is time I went just to relax, see my friends, visit some of my favourite places etc and, I hope, be spoilt rotten while I am there.
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