Bec and Paul are trundling through Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia until school is back in March 2009. They insist on keeping a blog despite the facebook thing being much more likely to attract any interest.

27.5.08

Stockholm

so i'm here in Stochholm! weather is nice and this is one cool city!
I am staying in the student accomodation here in one of the universities, i am really lucky because i have my own room with internet, bathroom and cooking facilities and it is all gratis! My mate Tim is studying here and his canadian friend has gone on a euro tip until sat and i have his room, after then i'm in with Tim.
First impressions of this country are mixed, i really like it here but it isn't as neat and anal as i had expected. The countryside is beautiful, really differen't to the europe i have seen and there is water everywhere, really lovely. Stockholm itself is made up of several islands, i think tomorrow we are going to go an a ferry and see some of the other islands. Today we explored the city and within half an hour of sitting down saw someone collapse and get taken away by an ambulance then someone across the road get arrested! but that is nothing to base this city on, it is really beautiful and i can't wait to get more of a vibe for the city

Claire

26.5.08

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21.5.08

Proper Paris Post!

So i am here in the Netherlands now, staying in the beautiful city of delft, it is like a fairytale, little houses, canals, very pretty.
It has been almost a week since i left paris and i haven't written a proper post, so here goes.
My week in Paris was fantastic, Jacques and Adrian were very good to me, They were living in a 1 bedroom flat with Adrians cat Limba in southern Paris. Almost the whole time i was there the weather was perfect, since we were practically nocturnal it was handy that it didn't get colder than 20 degrees at night.
Paris has so much on, it is a sensory overload. You can get any cuisine, hear any music and the architecture is as diverse as it comes.
The first full day in paris i spent with Jacques and his friend Oliver at a music festival held at a university, was great, we drank punch and beer and watched the bands, had a boogie, they also had fire breathing and capoiera.
After that we had a bit of a tour around the attractions of paris, we walked up to the Arc de Triomphe and had a walk down the Avenue des Champs-Élysées. I learned how to travel the Paris Metro without paying, actually i think the whole time i was there i only paid 3 times and that was because i was alone...naughty naughty!
The next day we had a bit of a cycling tour of paris and visited De Cathédrale Notre-Dame and many other sights which was great. In the morning we drank mint tea at the Grande Mosquée de Paris and walked through the gardens opposite. There was a kind of mini zoo there which had wallabies...a nice little reminder of home! we ate asian baguettes for lunch on the seine. In the evening we made our way to Le Brespail, Jacques restaurant where we ate Foie gras (i feel awful after reading how this is made), drank mojitos and a little too much wine. His friends also came who are fantastic we were dancing and having such a good night though it didn't end all too well on the cycle home. We were all a bit drunk and poor Shai clipped his bike with mine and stacked it. My bike was a velibe, a really heavy bike you can hire on the streets so mine didn't even move. He said he was alright at the time and and cycled home ok, though the next morning found out that he went to the emergency room and had broken his shoulder and leg :(
I took it a little easy the next morning went to visit Jacques mother with Flo and in the evening went and saw Jacques and Adrian play.


Adrian's solo.....then some french from Bickenchurger


The rest of my stay in Paris was fantastic, (though it pained me to see Shai in such bad shape) we did so much in so few days though the whole time i never went to see the Eiffel tower! I did alot of cycling around, it is great in Paris, you pay €1 to hire a bike for 24 hours!
I visited the louvre


Mona Lisa Madness from Bickenchurger on Vimeo.

and the grand palais gallery which had a fantastic exhibition on called figurative narrative
One of the most entertaining things i did in Paris was the Rasta boat party, it was like something i've never seen before, it was a boat full of rastas stoned out of their mind and a DJ playing reggae who didn't know how to mix the songs in time, there was also a rastafari ceremony with chanting and drums and cake very fun!!
Oh and Bec the Pho in paris is really good, i had some in china town for dinner, just like the real thing with the side salad and all! yum!
In the last few days in Paris Jacques and i spent time getting things sorted for his trip to cuba. we got him a camera, bought some new mallets (also made use of the electronic drum kit in the music shop...hilarious) fixed his vibraphone and sorted out how to send it, I learned how to play poker (very badly) and Adrian and Jacques had a going away party. It was an experience being somewhere where i was the only one who never knew what was going on, the people i met made a big effort to speak english though it wasn't always easy and i just sort of went with the flow. I never felt akward or uncomfortable and even learned a tiny bit of french. It was sad to leave paris with the people, bikes, baguettes, cheese, Croissants, pan de chocolat, and nutella but i know i'll return, i made some fantasic friends there who i'll never forget!!

Claire

19.5.08

Paris!

well i am a bit delayed on my paris blogs, this is for a few reasons; first is the french keyboard letters and punctuation is all different and in unfamiliar places (i did try, it took me like 10 minutes to write a sentence), the next reason is i didn't really have the time, but now i will try and recall all the fun and excitement of glorious Paris!

actually here is proof that i did try, i found this draft saved, i thought i lost it when the PC crashed...yay, i'll leave all the mistakes to prove the insanity of the keyboard!

So i am here in amazing Paris staying in the apartmnt of Adrian and jacques, friends i et in seville. I have only been here 2 and a bit dys but i've dne so much and i feel like i hqve been here a week .
The flight was greqt, but arried i pris to find thre was a trqnsport strike on. It was quite hilarious watching all of us french illiterate tryig to zork out what was going on with the rail employees belting out istructions in french and about 30 of us fresh off the plane standing around wanting to uy a ticket and not knowing how to. It turned out because of the strike the fqre was free and all of us didn't have to line p at all.
The strike also meant thqt the trin services were ultra slow and i got a little lost but i got to my friends place in the end at like midnight and hour and a half later than expected.
the first night we went for drinks and cycling through the strets of paris. Many people were out on the streets at cafes and bard becuse the followin day was a public holiday; In the end we drank cocktails at one of the oldest bars in paris which has been run by the same family and serves over 350 cocktails. we got home around 6am and didn't get up till 3 the following day.
the weather has been beautiful, it has been 25-27 degrees during the day and stays at around 20-24 all night.

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