Sunday, June 28, 2009

Move those muscles

It has been a tremendously energetic weekend of muscle pumping ending in a slightly inevitable fondue, wine and snooze.

We started on Saturday morning trundling over to visit Andrew and Jackie on what is a rather sad occasion. Something that is rare in Switzerland: they are actually moving away to follow their careers in Zurich

We had a fantastic time on Saturday:

  • Agata had the chance to go into bubble wrap overload
  • Marcus had the chance to use his electric screwdriver
  • We all had chance for a good chat, catch up and talk about the future
  • We had an entertaining visit to the Lausanne storage facility Zebrabox, boy are they posh

The mostly empty van before packing

A lounge that needs to be disassembled

Agata: the bubblewrap packing queen

The essential packers tool: Nespresso coffee (no instant coffee for us posh movers)

Jackie and Andrew just before their departure.

With our Saturday exercise completed we headed back to Lausanne for an early night. This was not just an entertaining Saturday but a vital exercise warmup for the main event of the weekend

Bouveret is a small port village on Lac Leman east of Montreux and they have a good Overview Brochure and a Website. This year Bouveret has teamed up with 2 other villages Vionnaz and Rochers de Naye to make a 3 run trophy. Due to laziness (and the rainy weather) we missed Vionnaz so we make a good start with Bouveret.

This is the profile of the run, but with this profile I expect to spend quite some time walking! As such I am taking my carbon fibre waling poles with me.

There were 2 possible runs from Bouveret to Lake Tanay, the long 21Km shown above and the shorter 11Km one. Clearly we chose the longer one!

Agata after arrival at Lake Tanay

Marcus having arrived at Lake Tanay

Lake Tanay

Race report: We finished within a few minutes of each other. Marcus had severe navigation problems, effectively getting lost 3 times. The first time there was a fork in the road, one up one down and no indications. I had to wait around for other runners to arrive who knew the way. The other 2 mis directions were my fault and the worst was 5Km from the end where I missed a (small signed!) turn and continued down an asphalt road. About 5 steep minutes down later I saw runners on the other side of a deep ravine. So I had to run all the way back. Frustrating I can say.

Rather than wait 2 hours for a bus to take us back down to Bouveret we thought a much braver idea would be to walk back down. In retrospect until we have become better trained and fitter the bus might have been more sensible.

We study the map trying to figure how to get home. Notice that Bouveret is nowhere on the map. We had 1 hour to find a Bouveret sign and if not we would double back to Lake Tanay to get the bus.

Thankfully we found a sign after about 45 minutes so with stiff legs and only 500ml of water we optimistically continued downwards.

Half way down, a beautiful princess is spotted.

We have just run up this mountain! And then walked back down.

Some not very interesting statistics...

Time to run up the 21Km course: just over 3 hours
Time to walk down (ouch) the 11Km course: 2 hours 50 minutes
Marcus Weightloss after the run (even after rehydration) 3Kg
Bit of body that are aching: Absolutely everything. Not sure about exercise on Monday!

Friday, June 26, 2009

Tabbed PuTTY

If you are not aware of UNIX or the excellent telnet (or SSH) client called PuTTY then you can stop reading now. Else ... I declare that

Today I started using Tabbed PuTTY. Life will be forever changed.

(And don't forget that PuTTY can also be used for serial (RS232) terminal emulation, so there really is no excuse to use a dedicated Serial emulator like HyperTerm, CrossTalk etc)

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Car Buff or Car Bluff

With the credit crunch biting and environmental pressures seeming all too real it's fairly sensible not to drive a large carbon polluting car long distances or at all in fact.

So with a true vicarious spirit installed I can only say I am shocked and saddened that I've completely failed to notice that this seasons mainstream motoring TV series are already in full swing.

As of today (June 25th)

Top Gear Australia: Series 2, Episode 7

Top Gear UK: Series 13, Episode 1 (The stig is revealed)

5th Gear UK: Series 16, Episode 3

I promise to study the relevant websites more closely in the future

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Destination Munich

So we are off to Munich to see our friends Waldek and Aneta. It has been a shocking 3 years since we last visited, and though we are purposefully cutting back our motoring journeys (to save carbon) this one is long overdue.

We ready the essentials: Peanut butter, GPS and iPhone.

First up Agata is driving equipped with a healthy smile

Our new budget Navigon 7310 GPS doing a great job. Although with no manual except the online one on the device the route programming is a bit hit and miss.

We are carrying some Appenzeller cheese contraband so how appropriate that le fromage passes his home.

And then the rain started

3 hours later it is still raining

Arrival Munich and we are so happy

Agata the bookworm is already reading, whilst our host proudly shows us some Xbox skills

Waldek is about to serenade us

Apparently this is not a Dolce and Gabbana T shirt

Marcus and the flower

Entrance to the BMW land munich : homage to all things BMW

BMW foyer - impressive

3 around the M3

Some kind of fast car

2398cc BMW P86/8, weight 95Kg, revs to 19000 rpm, developing 720 BHP

BMW architecture

BMW Museum

BMW spiral

We stumble upon the 24 hour Munich Olympic Park cycle race

For 10 minutes this man proved that phone ghetto blasters are not just for teenagers

Arrival at Neuschwanstein, the inspiration for Sleeping Beauty's castle

View to the Bridge

Macus and Agata posing

Hello Daisies

And then there were 3 in front of the Castle


Castle View

The Ferrari four from Luxemborg

Leaving Neuschwanstein for Lausanne the parking ticket machine sums up our weekend