Monday, 28 October 2013

O Sole Bearo

Beargiorno (sorry bear, its buongiorno.) T'isn't, 'cos I say every bear will understand beargiorno, so you're stooopid if you can't. (Well, I suppose, but then I'm not a bear.) See, told you, now let's get on with our story shall we?
Stooopid here was clearing out his jacket a couple of months ago, when hey presto he pulled out a wad of unexpected Euros. Well, I told him to expect the unexpected, but would he listen? Anyway, Ann also got an offer of a free night in a hotel, so she put Euros and free nights together and got Naples, though we did have to pay for some of our stay. So off we jolly went.

Our hotel was on the shores of the Bay of Naples and we had a fantastic view across at a big mounting called Vesuvius.  He says it's a volcano, but I see no smoke, do you? (Just wait!)

 Next morning we went to Sorrento and caught this boat and went out to Capri.
Then we went up to the top of the island and I perched on the fence to get my photo taken

He said, "Sit with you back to the view and wave, so I did.  Then I looked over the fence - Yikes, it was a long way down.

So to get my pitter pattering palpitatitatiting heart back on an even keel I went and sat on a big Roming stone. He said it was Roming, but it looked pretty static to me. (Not Roming, but Roman, bear.  The Romans put it there a very long time ago and I don't think they ever thought a bear would sit on it.)

I didn't tell you how we got up there did I? We took a bus up to Anacapri and then took a chair lift, so if you've got no head for heights, it's time to put your paws over your eyes. What's that you say? It's a bit late for that? Yeah well I aspose it is.  Can you see me on Ann's shoulder?
When we got down we found some lovely gardens in Capri town and we saw this amazing footpath and nothing would do but for his high and mightiness but that we would walk down it.  (I walked, you rode I think, and you enjoyed it.)
Well... yes I did and the views were lovely. And yes, it's those rocks again. 
Back at the harbour it was time to take a nautie pose (nautical, bear, nautical - you were a very good bear.)  Ah, yes, whatever.  Then it was back on the big boat and home in time for  bed.

Next day we went in a funny creaky wee train to Pompeii, where there were lots of ruins and painted walls and stuff. Being ruins meant that well, there wasn't much left standing, but my humings certainly found it very fascinating, and I liked it too.

We went to the circus, but I think it was a dead loss, there were no aminals, and no acrobats and definitely NO CLOWNS. How can you have a circus with no clowns?  I only went 'cos he said there'd be a circus.  It's a swizz I tell you. (Sorry bear, but Roman circuses weren't so nice.)

On Sunday we went on a cruise down the Amalfi Coast. When we got to Sorrento, we had breakfast and then clambered on the boat. Here I am cutting another nautie pose (I give up.)

Then I settled down in his camera bag to enjoy the view.  That's Ann's foot and it was a bit close for comfort at times.

When we got to Amalfi we had a nice walk around and bighead had an ice-cream, and I didn't get my picture taken with it! Still, it tasted lovely.
On our last day we went up Vesuvius, and had a nice walk up to the top.
Here I am with Ann, looking into the middle of the mounting.  It's got a GREAT BIG HOLE in the middiddle, so it has, TUGE in fact.
See? I told you
 Alan held on to me and calmed me down and then I said I'd like to sit on the rail and have my photo taken as a BIG BRAVE BEAR. So here I are.
 And, just so's you know there is smoke coming out of that there mounting, and right pongy it is too.

See you all again soon,

Saturday, 28 September 2013

I ARE a work of art!

A quick 'ceding 'citing post. I are officially a WORK of ART. (It's been said before!) 

Well, he's in it too and you can't have everything.
We are back in the Netherlands and to-day we went to the Unseen Photo Fair where we took part in the   "Outside In" project and became part of a work of art.
We went into this big hall place and there were HUGE pictures of people all over one wall and on the floor.

At one end there were people queueing up behind a van that looked like a camera, and every now and then a picture would spew out of a slot in the side an the people got very tocited and smiled a lot.

 Well, we had to join the line and watch all the tocited people getting their silly photos. (Oh, come on grumpy, it was a lot of fun watching people of all ages giggling and playing about. It put a smile on everyone's face.) Well, I aspose so, but it's 15 minutes I'll never get back.

Eventually we got up to the back of the van and his nibs and I climbed aboard. We had to look at a screen and smile and then, Flash! Then, calm as you like, he get's out. "Is that it?" I said. "Is that what they're getting all tocited for?"  "Yes," says he,"Just be patient," He says. Well, I had a bit of a harumph and sighed a bit.
Next thing I know we're standing at the side of the van like all the other eejits before us and then..tada.. magic happens, and first my feet appeared and then the rest of me shortly followed by a grinning idiot. 

 We had become part of a work of art. A nice lady took our photos together and then I said, "Come on then, let's get the real star's photie," and here you see me bigger than life size.

At the end of all the 'citement we went to the other end of the hall and joined all the other people getting stuck to the floor! Finally I are famous, just like Moaning Lisa, or maybe the Girl with the Pearl Earlug.

See you all again soon.



Sunday, 15 September 2013

A little light climbing

Cor, I'm not sure what's going on - only one post in months and now he's got Red Bus syndrome, you know, you wait ages for one and then two come at once.  

As you'll see I got over all my injuries and made it to the Lake District with himself, Bill and John.  We all stayed in a cottage and they seemed to spend a lot of time holding up glasses and laughing a lot. (I'm not sure what you're talking about. What's a few beers a couple of bottles of wine and the odd whisky between friends on a hot sunny weekend?)  Well, I don't know I didn't get to share much of it, so the truth will out. (Telltale!) Am not. (Are so!) AM NOT!!! Let's not fall out over it but maybe you'll give me a better share next time.  (Well ok then. I know blackmail when I see it.)
The rest of the time we went walking.  As you can see I had some difficulty with my rucksack, so I hired a porter to carry it for me ('Scuse me, you hired a what?... You rode in MY rucksack in a nice poistion with a good view!) Well, it sounded good didn't it? 

Anyway back to the story.  The road goes ever onwards as anyone who has read The Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings will know. 

In this case it was up into the hills above Braithwaite and the day was good. We went up Grisedale Pike, Hopegill Head, Grasmoor, Sail and Causey Pike, walked 17km and climbed 1500m or maybe more.  Aren't the names of the hills wonderful.

 Himself seems to be a bit quicker than the other two, so I hopped out of the rucksack and did some mountaineering practice. I chose a suitable precipice and got climbing.

When I got to the top I sat down and had a great rest.  The views were wonderful and because it was so stremely high I sat and had a well earned fruit pastille just to keep up my energy levels you know.

(Excuse me bear I think it wasn't that high, but it was a good try.) Well, it felt high to me.  I only have wee legs (and a big tum.)  That's a very tummiest remark.  (Sorry, you did really well. Shall we start calling you Sherpa?) Maybe not.

Eventually we stopped for lunch and it was time for a group photo even if John held me up ouchily.
After lunch there was time to chill and enjoy the view.  This is looking north towards Skiddaw and Blencathra.  Then it was onwards and around and up and down and down and down until we got back home. In Braithwaite there was time for a beer (rehydration being very important) and then back to the cottage for dinner and wine and maybe a bit more beer.  Then there was lots of laughter, eventually followed by snoring and other noises. (Too much detail, I think).  Only reporting what I saw and heard.

Next day was another good one - even better weather than the last and we set off from the carpark at Ennerdale Water to  Great Bourne; Red Pike, High Stile and High Crag. It were a very long way and we climbed a lot too. In  fact it was 1220m climbing and 20km walking - the last 7 of which we did in 1hr 30m
On the way up above Ennerdale water we met some woolly friends.

Here I are whistling away while some of the humings catch up.  You can just see Bill and his hat coming on the right of the picture.
It was a hot day and a big climb so I sat on this stone in the middle of the stream to cool off. (It must have been really hard, all that climbing.) Oh yes it was really was. At times it was a scramble with all paws in use. (Fibs, fibs. Who was scrambling and puffing and panting?  Me I think.  You had a grandstand view!) Yeah, yeah, yeah, stop complaining.
Can you see me?  This is the summit of Great Bourne.
Here I am, silly Billies if you couldn't see me. Time for lunch.
On the top of Red Pike the view to Crummock Water. Can you see Scotland in the distance? Neither can I, but it is there!
Your intrepid splorer sitting in front of the view
Just before we came down we saw this set of fields. It looks just like a butterfly from up on high.
Well that was it, a long route march back to the car at express speed. Just time for a last look back along Ennerdale water, before he dragged me back to more food and wine. (And beer, don't forget the beer.)  As if I would?

See you soon

Friday, 13 September 2013

King of the Road,Ventoux and bust!

So he's got his mojo back and after a huge gap he's going to tell you all about how I went up Mt Ventoux and came back down again in triumph. (Hi, sorry about that. Are you sure it was triumph?) You're forgiven and yes it was triumph. (Hmm, we shall see.)

It all started when Jack and I had a wee drink.  It was a lovely mango smoothie thingy, and, as you can see, we were fairly prostrated when we'd done - it was a big glass for little bears.

So I said, "I'm off for a wee ride on my bike. Up Mt Ventoux!" Well, there was some consternification, and cries of, "Are you sure?" and, "It's a long way for a wee bike." and stuff... "Boff!" as the French would say.

Ah, the smell of the open road, the singing of the tyres on tarmac, the funny signs people write on the road. (They do?) Yup, they do, well at least they do there.
 The road was steep.

And I saw some interesting sights.  This big man on his even bigger bike thought I was funny until I zoomed past him leaving him in a cloud of dust and exhaust fumes. Pah, peasants. (Heh, hang on a minute.  I ride my bike a lot and I don't like people who do that to me. Or bears for that matter.) Don't care, he shouldn't have smirked.

I like this sign - it says The only way is up but it says it backwards if you know what I mean, and what if you want to came back down, as I did?  Then the only way is down.  Then it would read "Is up, way, the only?" And of course then the answer is "It isn't."

Soon enough I reached the top, and my little bear bot was fairly throbbing after all the bumping on the road. So off I hopped and a kind personage took my photo as I was right on the tippy top of the mounting. 6,273ft up I was - that's 1912m for those of you who are metric - so I didn't run about too much as it was quite puff making.

Soon it was time to go, 'cos dinner beckoned down at the gite.

Most of the road was clear though sometimes there were some cars to avoid.

Here I am back at the bottom of the mounting. Can you see me?  I'm almost all the way over to the left of the picture - 'cor this is like spotting Sebastian.

I was whizzing along, not a care in the world, admiring the scenery when...................

I didn't see a big clump of lavender and next thing I was sailing over the handlebars.

There I lay, groaning and wondering where I was, when a kind somebody (Let's call him Alan) came along and said, "Hello bear what rare you doing there?"  What a STUPID question. I ask you.

Still, he picked my bike up and me and carry us gently back to the gite, where I got all bungaged up.

Then I got my ear bashed by Bearacht.  "There, I told you little bearie, nay crash hat and nay sense.  You'll be more careful next time."  Yeah, yeah yeah. Who need friends like that?  (Well you do, it may have been hard to hear, but better that it came from another bear and not me.)  Well, I aspose so.
There was a silver lining 'cos Ann and Jack got me some yummy cherries and a macaroon and I felt ever so much better afterwords.  I won't do that again in a hurry.

Hugs to all,