Sunday, June 16, 2019

Samsung S10

Back in Feb I treated myself to a new Samsung S10 mobile phone.


This is the first since coming back to the UK I've bought a phone out of contract. Basically the list price was £799, I got £289 to exchange my S8 and £32 from a cash back site. the total for the phone was £478 plus I also got a free pair of the new Samsung Ear Buds worth £149.

Put this against the £30 per month I'll save going down to a sim only contract and basically I'm quids in, it also gives me more freedom to go with any provider.



The plus's of the Samsung are many:


Three camera's on the back, superb wide screen option
No notch for the camera
fingerprint sensor in the screen
Great battery life
New Android operating system
Good tie with my Samsung watch
Definitely more interactive than any other phone I've used
Waterproof
Dual Sim
SD Card up to 128GB


Downside:


You wouldn't want to drop it, glass back very expensive
Took a while to get rid of some of the in built pre sets

That's it really.

The pictures it takes are amazing, the wide angle feature and the super slow mo are great photographic tools.


Ratings


Performance 8/10
Battery 8/10
Value 8/10


Am I glad I bought it? Yes...



Derby County Ladies Football Tournament 2019

Elizabeth and I had a great day yesterday. During the day we attended the U12 Football Tournament put on by Derby County Ladies.


In the five round robin games, Belper Sports won 3 and drew 2, this put us in 1st place going in to the semi final. In the semi's we played Coalville Ravens. Coalville are a very physical side and at the end of full time then extra time it was 0-0.



Penalty shootout it was, this Elizabeth's 2nd penalty shootout, the first she saved an all important penalty. Against Coalville, it was 1-1 after the first set, then 1-1 after the second round of pens, our Midfielder scored to make it 2-1 and then Elizabeth saved their 3rd penalty.

and breathe......

In the final we played Derby County, they really pressured Belper for the first 5 minutes, but in the 2nd part of the match Belper scored a superbly worked goal and just controlled the rest of the game. WINNERS....


It was great to see the girls enjoying themselves.


In the evening it was their Football prize presentation, its always a good night. the girls all receive a trophy for the work they've done through the season and there are three awards from the manager, Players and most improved player.

Brilliant day, brilliant evening....

  



Wednesday, June 12, 2019

No Social Media

Time to air out the old Blog again....


This time its because I'm taking a break from social media. The issue I have with social media are many as are the benefits I can see from using it.


So during July I'll be coming off Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and deleting Snapchat. The only two I'll be keeping is WhatsApp for news on Elizabeth's football and Messenger. I use messenger for my video chat, although I will be trying outs WhatsApp video calling during the month.


Its the continual snooping that is really getting me down, no sooner do I look at something on eBay and my Facebook stream is full of those same products, Twitter isn't so bad and is my main form of news, so I will miss Twitter the most, but the different factions on my feed are just shouting at each other, they are both right and both wrong but there is no common ground at the moment.


Snapchat is easy to delete, I never go on it, not sure why I joined. Instagram is something else I've never really got the hang of.


The only people who will miss my posts will be my family and a few close friends, if at the end of July I want to go back on the Social Media circus I will have to look at who the are that really interact with me and delete accordingly.


So should any one feel the need to contact me during July, the best way will be through this blog.


See you on the other side..........

Monday, June 10, 2019

Wild Pheasant Hotel & Spa Llangollen

I stayed at The Wild Pheasant on business, I've never really stopped in Llangollen before, been through it many times and I was looking forward to looking round the town. Obviously, its June in the UK and it was pissing it down so any thoughts of walking the half mile in to town were out.



The Hotel as a Spa and leisure facilities but I didn't use them. I was given the key to my room upstairs. The room for £80 was not bad, modern and not too shabby. Unfortunately the remote wouldn't work and there was a noise of water filling from the bathroom which would have kept me awake all night.

I spoke with the reception and they were very good, just straight to change my room. The new room was huge and very well set out, the remote was a bit dodgy again but by then I was past worrying.



I decided to eat at the hotel and as usual decided on the bar. The menu was a little light and the prices a little steep. I settled on bread and oil for starters, my usual burger for main. The burger arrived about 20 mins later without the bread, when I asked for the bread, it was "oh yes, I'll just bring it out" no apologies for not being bought out earlier. I wish I hadn't bothered! the bread was hard, cold and there was less than a table spoon of oil.

The burger was actually very nice, well put together and not a strong sauce.


I couldn't resist a dessert so I had a Hot sticky date pudding, not bad....

Ratings

Hotel 7/10
Food 6/10
Breakfast 6/10

Would I visit again? Probably.
 
 
 

Thursday, June 06, 2019

Tafarn y Gader Tapas Bar Dolgellau

This restaurant was a bit of a surprise on my visit to Mid Wales. The B & B I was staying in recommended it so I tried.


The service was a bit lack lustre at first, but once it started everything flowed really well. The menu is very good, plenty of tapas to have a go at. The prices are around £6 each, for two people 5 portions would be fine.


I had deep fried cheese..



Croquettes...

Potato bravas in garlic...


Plus dessert, obviously.


A special mention to the 3 fine lagers that were on sale, Stella, Mahou and San Miquel, I love all three.

The total bill was around £30

Rating
Service 6/10
Food 7/10
Value 8/10

Would I visit again? Definitely
 
 
 

Mawddach Trail


One of the few perks of staying away with work is that I sometimes take my bike with me.

Today I was staying in Mid Wales at Dolgellau, I've know the area very well and there is a trail from there to Barmouth on the coast called the Mawddach Trail.

It follows an old railway line and you are taken all the way by the estuary and then you ride over the amazing wooden railway bridge into beautiful Barmouth itself.

The ride is very flat and easy. The distance on the trail is around 10 miles each way. I didn't stop in Barmouth, but you could easily have a stopover there. Plenty of places to eat and relax, if the mind takes you the beach is fantastic.

I rode back on the road and over the toll bridge at Fairbourne. The whole trail is super scenic and if your into bird watching its a must.
 
 
 
 
 

Tuesday, January 01, 2019

2018 The year that was..

For good or bad, 2018 was a quiet year. Whilst boring as you live it, looking back now I’m pleased that it was quiet and hopefully 2019 will be just as steady...

I’m publishing this review on my less often used blog, there was was a time when my blog was my social media outlet. Since the on set of Facebook, Twitter etc etc I’ve used it less and less. I would love to start it going again but never seem to.

The weather was the big thing for the UK this year, a very cold Jan-Mar with plenty of snow. I was caught out twice, once in north Derbyshire and then in Cumbria. Scary, but very beautiful...







Another phenomena this year has been some of the sunsets there have been, stunning is the word! Whether this is an Oman for the end of the world, pollution or just one of those things I’m not sure, but as someone who dabbles in photography, it’s given me some great opportunities.






I’ve spent a lot of time away from home with work, I’ve stayed at some great hotels and also some pretty award ones, mostly the bad ones are the chains were the hotel is in serious need of refurbishment. I want name and shame, but Jury’s Inn and Novotel you aren’t at the top of my list to stay. However, I must mention The Titanic hotel in Liverpool as being this years outstanding hotel in the UK, Faultless...



This year also saw our bi-annual trip back to Thailand, this year followed the same format, I drive....

We had the compulsory visit to Hua Hin which is one of my fave places, especially the surrounding places of interest. This time we stayed at the Dusit Thani, you know I mentioned about old hotels needing a refurb, well that is a case in point. Great Hotel, just needs all the rooms to be bought up to 21st century standards.

Whilst in Bangkok we always stay at the Chatrium Riverside, my fave hotel in BKK, well should I say my fave place that I can reasonably afford!!!

My wifes family seem well and are always happy to see their grand daughter, shame about the token Farang. we met up with friends old and new and generally had a great time. One thing I did learn is: Never fly with Thai Airways again, over priced, too many undisclosed T & Cs, poor cabins and the worst customer service ever (Never have got back to me)...




The biggest surprise is that we spent several days in Pattaya, I wasn't looking forward to it, having seen it 15 years ago as nothing more than a giant brothel. I have to admit I was pleasantly surprised with how there was to do, excellent Cafes and Restaurants and Jontiem was fairly impressive compared to my last visit.










Sunday, March 25, 2018

Full Sus Rules


I’ve had my full suspension Norco now about 18 months and I think I can finally give my opinion on the change from hard tail to full suspension.

In general they are brilliant! Lock them out at the rear and they ride something like my old old tail with only a slight weight penalty. It’s going downhill that the real big difference shows it’s face. I’m able to pick lines in descents that would have spelt disaster on an hard tail, also the ability to stay sat down and control the bike is amazing.

On long rides, again the rear suspension makes the journey a whole lot more comfortable, taking the buzz out of the trail.

Uphill is still an issue, mainly due to me being unfit!

Basically, I don’t think I’ll be reverting back to a hard tail any time soon. My next upgrade maybe electric.....

Saturday, March 04, 2017

New/Old Bike

I recently purchased a retro MTB, a 1991 Kona Lava Dome. Back in the day I owned a 92 Lava Dome. I bought it off eBay for £72.
The forks and stem were corroded, The tyres were shot, but other than that it seemed ok.
Alas, the forks and stem were a bit further gone than I thought, Vernon Barker who tried to sand blast them and powder cost them told me I would never get a flawless finish. So I just had them powder coat them as best they could. Also the Headset on the original was worn and the replacement I bought was also worn so I had a standard headset fitted.
I changed the tyres, grips and pedals and added bar ends to fit in with the look of the time.
Overall I was quite please. However, despite being able to strip and rebuild a vintage bike. I forgot how tedious fiddling with Cantilever brakes can be and the weight of the bike is actually heavier than my modern full suspension bike.
Not the outcome to the project I wanted but I'll use the bike as a gym bike and go to a few Retro MTB meetings..



A box of bits for cleaning





Friday, January 27, 2017

Cote Brasserie Manchester

On our recent overnight visit to Manchester, Nuch fancied a French meal.
We checked out Cote Brasserie on Trip Advisor and it looked ok.
The menu as you would expect is very French, the prices are medium to high, but not as much as you might think.
For my starter I had a beetroot salad with goat cheese puree, it was nice, too much beetroot and not enough goat cheese. My main course of Fillet steak was cooked to just how I liked it (well done).
I thought the drinks were expensive, a bottle of beer was over £4, that's £8 a pint in real money.


Would probably visit again...



Beetroot & Goat Cheese Puree starter



Crab starter



Fillet Steak main




Beef Bourginion main