Sunday, 27 December 2009

Big boys toys!

What a way to get over Christmas - more excitement! I got the opportunity to ride the footplate on a steam locomotive today. I was invited down to the Embsay and Bolton Abbey Railway, where I met up with Crazy Dave Anderson. He introduced me to the train crew, then we set off for Bolton Abbey. I was surprised at the heat coming from the firebox - it was tremendous, and contrasted with a pretty cold afternoon. Needless to say we got plenty of pictures too, a couple of which I've included below.

We're ready to set off to Bolton Abbey (above)

The engine turns around at Bolton Abbey (above)

A very arty view of the funnel, taken by Judith

Me, Crazy Dave, driver Neil Hubbs and the engine's owner

Friday, 25 December 2009

Merry Christmas, and a Happy New Year!

It's well over a month since I last posted here, but at last Christmas has arrived and I've actually got a couple of days off! I'm very much looking forward to New Years Eve, when Julian and I are going to do a four hour review of the year. Then I'm off to bring in the New Year with friends in Ripon - the first time I haven't spent it with my dad in more than ten years. One tradition we do intend to keep up though is breakfast at Stumps Cross Caverns on New Years Day. We've still a couple of Christmas quizzes to do, then I've a special one for a wedding just after the new year. The Tempest quiz will be excellent, weather permitting, as teams put in a lot of effort with fancy dress outfits. I'm looking forward to one team in particular, as they're keeping it very close to their chests!
A couple of weeks ago I got a new camera, and trailed off up the Waterfall Walks at Ingleton. I tried out a new technique (to me that is) and took the camera out of automatic mode for the first time ever! I wanted to get the effect of water flowing, using a very slow shutter speed.

This picture is the very first one I took of a waterfall - and I have to admit I'm very well pleased with the result. I'll probably never be able to repeat it, but at least I can say "I did this!" It's at Pecca Falls, around half way to the top of the walk.
I had been planning to go out this morning again (Christmas Day) but the fog's descended now, so I guess I'll have to wait until the conditions improve.