Tag Archives: beach

Our holiday in Alanya

We took a last-minute break to Turkey, and stayed at the Sunprime C-lounge in Alanya, which was a great hotel for not many pennies. Turkey has had its fair share of unrest recently, but down on the coast there were no signs of this at all. The city and neighbouring hotels were quiet for day one, but then the Eid-al-Adha holiday arrived and there were plenty of Turkish tourists around, to complement the Brits, Germans, Russians, and the rest, (there were at least 10 nationalities shouted out during the pool activities).

Judging by the old photographs in the hotel, Alanya has grown a lot in the last 50 years, becoming a popular retirement destination, but the old fortress and tower dominate the skyline and were well worth the trek up the hill (though sharing a taxi is defintely recommended). Not recommended, walking backwards while taking a selfie at the top of the cliffs.

A week in Wroxham

Many thanks to Ian and Finola for organising a week in the Norfolk Broads to celebrate New Year. Finding a cottage with a free boat within 4 miles of the Woodforde’s was inspired, although you can’t prove that we ever visited the brewery since we managed to drink all 72 pints of the evidence.

New Year’s Eve also gave us a chance to dress up and polish our french accents, as we took part in “The Brie, The Bullet and The Black Cat”. While I won’t spoil the surprises, you can be reassured that no-one was exactly as the seemed… It also gave me a chance to play with my new flashgun, which really made a difference for indoor portraits.

Other highlights included tens of herons, thousands of seagulls and a beachful of mating, pupping and nursing seals (well worth a visit).


Sizewell beach

I’m not sure whether two or three data points constitute a statistically significant pattern, but just recently there has been a remarkable correlation between us spending the weekend away from Manchester and experiencing beautiful weather.


Not seen - huge nuclear power station

Two weeks ago we were at the Olympics wandering around in the sun, a month ago I was being sunburned in Norfolk on my stag, and now I’m sitting on the beach at Sizewell, having gone paddling to mitigate the 30° heat!

Sparkes et al, 2012, Nature, “Pre-determination of meteorological events based on the travel plans of a 26 year old homo sapiens”

Norfolk field trip (remix)

Four years after my visit as an undergrad, I returned to Burnham Ovary Staithe last weekend to demonstrate on the Norfolk field trip. I think I learned possibly more this time, especially having to teach as we went round. Due to the vast quantities of mud involved, I took my first digital camera with me, the venerable Fuji Finepix A340. It is still rubbish, the zoom is still broken and it’s restricted to only one setting, but it forced me to try and be creative with it. Looking back I’m not sure which set are better, though last time I did have the advantage that it wasn’t freezing cold and raining lots of the time – turns out cold, wet fingers are less keen to take pictures than warm muddy ones.

Another experiment – this time with pictures

Right then, let’s see how one uploads a picture to this thing

These are just a couple of snapshots, both through windows unfortunately… First we have the view upon arrival into Hong Kong airport (sadly not the old city airport which would have been fun!) Secondly we have the view from my office here in Kaohsiung. It beats the Cambridge view hands down 🙂

I’m in Taiwan

15 hours in the air, several more waiting around for buses and planes but I have made it to Taiwan. The weather is warm and humid, I didn’t need to bring all these jumpers. Turns out swimming shorts and sunglasses would have been a better idea. My hotel is on campus, just a short walk from the lab, and looks out onto the beach. It’s a hard life