So, blog number one.s***. What a big week it has been. I should have started doing this earlier.
A twenty-something hour flight was not a good way to start a holiday. Saying that my arse was sore is a massive understatement. And, once again my knee swelled up and was fairly problematic. But the free Carlsberg definitely helped the situation. I also finally got to watch 'Up'. A movie I have wanted to see for ages. It didn't disappoint.
I stayed at the Generator Hostel in London. It was huge with over 500 beds (apparently) It was easy to find too, the underground was so simple to navigate it made getting anywhere pretty hassle free. By the time I checked in it was after 6pm so I decided to have a quick walk around the city and plan the next couple of days. I checked out all the major attractions. Buckingham Palace, London Tower, Tower Bridge, London Eye, Westminster Abbey, Camden Markets and Big Ben.I think that was everything I really wanted to see.
The 11th, 12th and 13th were all spent at the Download Festival. I met a guy from Perth and got a lift with some of his friends from Leeds from the East Midlands Parkway Train Station and camped with them. But not before stopping at TESCO for some supplies.This included 9 cases of Carlsberg, BBQ's and meat, for four people. The campsite was enormous. People had begun to arrive two days before we did, so of course we were at the back. 40 minute walk from the festival grounds. But it was okay; just take a few travelers for the walk in, time flies. The bands I checked out over the weekend were. Them Crooked Vultures, ACDC, Volbeat, Megadeth, Deftones, Rage Against The Machine, Slash, Billy Idol, Aerosmith and The Stone Temple Pilots. It pissed down rain on Sunday and I fell asleep while taking shelter in my tent and missed Motorhead. But Lemmy performed with Slash so at least I got to see him. Slash and Myles Kennedy playing Gun's and Roses tracks is probably better than seeing Axl and Co perform them.. Volbeat were amazing as always, and dedicated their show to Dio. They were the highlight for me.
You'd think that after three days of heavy binge drinking I would be ready for a quiet night. But no, what was supposed to be a few quiet beers while watching the soccer turned into a pretty massive night of drinking at the nightclub within the hostel. Probably one of the biggest nights I had. Good fun though, happy hour prices and plenty of other backpackers to hang out with. They were all good, fun people.We ended up being asked to go to bed by the staff as we were the last people still up. After not going to bed until about 4:30am, I was up at about 7:30am to shower and have a coffee before catching a 10am Eurostar to Paris. I had to check in at 9:30am. It wasn't a pleasant experience. I was far too hung-over to really comprehend what I was trying to do, but, amazingly nothing went wrong.Until I got on the train that is. I was looking forward to sleeping on this trip more than anything else so far and within three minutes of leaving the small child seated behind me started to cry, and scream, and throw a tantrum.The only thing more astounding then the fact that a kid can cry for four consecutive hours without stopping to draw a single breath, is the fact that I didn't kill it. I think a lot of people thought the same. But I already had a headache, it didn't help.
I'm really glad I knew where my hostel was in Paris. Well, kind of, it was up the road from the place I stayed at the last two times I was here. I was asleep within an hour of arriving. I like this area of Paris, right next to Sacre Couer (one of my favorite places in Europe, so far.) In fact, I can see it from my bed and can listen to the musicians playing up there. It's currently 11:30pm and they're still going, a saxophone tonight and accordions last night. I didn't do too much on this stop in Paris, just wondered around. I sat and read up at Sacre Couer today and had a walk around the Luxembourg Garden, it was a nice day for it. I also went to find Moulin Rouge; I wanted a photo of the windmill. It turned out to be only a 10-15 walk from the hostel. But that involved walking through the sex district, it was pretty full on. I encountered a beggar, sitting on the foot path, with no arms. It really confused me. Apart from feeling pretty sorry for the guy I couldn't help but wonder how he collects the coins from the passes by. I also remember some of the beggars from this area from last year, but they don't seem to remember what a tight arse I am, and still curse me when I decline their requests for change.
Tomorrow I'm off to Switzerland for the Sonisphere Festival. Good times ahead.