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July ends with another 'heatwave', birthdays galore being planned, and new careers happening. Not bad for a mid-year.



FIRST KNIGHT, I'd had a good time at the mediaeval re-enactments at Berkeley Castle near the Welsh border, so have started thinking about getting involved with this kind of thing. Suits of armour can be expensive, though, so I reckon that getting togged up in something which involves a little less queuing at the local blacksmith might be more up my alley. Wait and see. HISTORICAL CONSIDERATIONS
PAINSWICK MORE DAMN SUMMER PICS. I like to try and take pics which have an element of what the more wordy amongst the happy-snapper community call chiaroscuro, an interplay of strongly-constrasting light and shade. This view from the guest-bedroom in Painswick seems to qualify in a way, so I took the pic on my way to the shower the morning after a great feed to celebrate L's impending birthday. Thank God the lens was not as foggy as my head... 

OH OH SEVERN! (A silly musical reference that will mean nothing to those who don't remember MUSICAL YOUTH's follow-up to 'Pass The Dutchie'). We occasionally drive across the Severn river estuary from England into Wales, and this is the bridge we take. Imaginatively, it's known as the Severn Bridge. It's nowhere near as long as the one from Osaka on the Japanese mainland to the island you'll find the city's Kansai Airport on. Despite the fact that she's been on that bridge as often as the one to Wales, L doesn't remember it at all! Strange what a person can miss...

C& C BIRTHDAY FACTORY. If it's Laetitia's birthday - and it was - this'll stand for chocolate and champagne. She had a double celebration that week which began with a little party and ended with her being offered a job at a University library here! A qualified librarian who'd worked in specialist and academic libraries back in SA, it's a career she's been trying to get back into since she got to Bristol. Time for a change of workclothes! 


Iiiiitttttttttttssssssss SNOWTIME! (In South Africa)

SNOW PLACE LIKE HOME. SNOW PLACE LIKE HOME. As the snow topped the mountains back home in Cape Town, England sweltered in temperatures of around 37'C. Hot for them. Not too bad for us. This is a pic of the mountains around the university town of Stellenbosch outside Cape Town. 
SQUARE DEAL. Cade and Ryan were in Bath one evening to play a gig with their band Lumiere, and we got together for a stroll through town after I'd finished work. Here, Cade and Ryan join me in the square in front of Bath Abbey, the site of the ancient church where the first ever King of England was crowned over a thousand years ago. You've naturally all heard of him. King Edgar? No? Good, then I don't feel like such an ignoramus either... WIVABRUVVAS!
MY 9-5 STREET I WORKED HERE. The publishing company I worked for was headquartered overlooking this street in the city centre, and part of the original city wall runs right through the building. The buildings on the right extend across to behind the viewer's right shoulder, and that's the building I worked in. Every day I crossed this street for lunch, or headed away from the Abbey for a lunchtime pint with colleagues. Couldn't do that in Korea...
SOCCER SHOCKER. This is one of those once-in-a-lifetime moments, so L had to take a pic. She had until this moment never, ever seen me looking even vaguely sportsmanlike. And now we know why - I don't have the knees for it. The last time I'd played football was back at Junior School in Zimbabwe and now I'd actually started playing for the work team, but just stuck with going to practices. Why? Well,  I'm a tad too much of a liability on the pitch until I get my head around the intricacies of the offside rule. Besides, colleagues kept breaking things and I wasn't too keen to follow suit. We sporty sorts (ahem) don't look too good on crutches. ME IN FOOTIE KIT FOR THE FIRST TIME IN 20 YEARS!
CHRIS VISITS FAMILIAR FACES IN NOT SO FAMILIAR PLACES. This is me overlooking the Avon Gorge and the Clifton Suspension Bridge (about 5 minutes' drive from where we live) with a friend I'd made in Taiwan. Chris used to work there and is now a foreign correspondent for a Chinese newspaper in Washington DC. He'd popped in to visit us in Bristol during a brief trip to his home town in this part of the country.
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