Blogs from Douglas, Isle of Man, Europe

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Europe » Isle of Man » Douglas December 13th 2021

Dear All Greetings and a Merry Christmas! I am writing this entry after my first venture off the island of Great Britain in nearly two years! Yay – how wonderful, and I feel truly blessed to have been able to do this. Whilst Great Britain is certainly a beautiful island, and I have very much enjoyed exploring more of it these last two years due to the circumstances, it is still an island, and for a travelling soul like myself, I haven’t felt completely myself being island-bound for so long. The great wide world out there has been beckoning, and I feel more confident in being able to explore it again. Alas, I did not venture far this time – just a short hop over to the nearby Isle of Man, but it was certainly a ... read more
The Triskelion
Seagull
Peel Castle

Europe » Isle of Man » Douglas August 7th 2021

Being woken up at seven by the loudest seagulls and what sounded like a strangled cat, you'd have thought that we'd have caught our nine forty tram and definitely made it for the ten forty one. Spoiler alert, we didn't. No idea where time went but as a result we skyped the Douglas tram and drove to laxey to catch the mountain railway. We *should* have had plenty of time but two laps of the town after missing a few turns and a closed road meant we were literally running to catch the train. Within two minutes of being in it, ash and I were subtly inching towards the middle of the tram, a little fearful of the edges. Seth on the other hand was not fearful, even as the mist crowded in and visibility decreased ... read more

Europe » Isle of Man » Douglas August 6th 2021

Yesterday (which seems like about ten years ago) mostly involved not getting covered in food, spending all our money on a couple of sarnies, not getting married and getting very judgy. After a swim and pushing up, we drove to Gretna green. In part so Seth could tick Scotland off his list of countries but also to see what it was all about (not to get married!) In short... It was less tacky than I expected, the food was soooooo expensive I could have done with a second mortgage and some of the people were.... interesting. One old guy ruffled Seth's hair (Seth's was quite taken aback but proclaimed it was his first time having his hair ruffled by an old man ?.) We were also sat by the bar and this bloke ordered 4 double ... read more

Europe » Isle of Man » Douglas June 3rd 2017

Tried to drive out to Ballaugh Bridge and drive around from inside the TT circuit, unfortunately the GPS tried to take the wrong way around the mountain course. Since 2007, during IOM TT, the mountain course is turned "one-way" to mitigate head on incidents when over confident riders cross the centre line. No matter, I have a grandstand ticket for Creg-ny -Baa and ended up watching the morning session with my new found Aussie friends who offered me a beer at 10:45am in the morning :-) I lent my USB battery pack to Ryan so he could call his Mom and I was golden for endless beers :-D After the morning practice session I moved on to Ramsey's hairpin. My first position was 200 meters from the hairpin which gave me the best view ever, right ... read more
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Europe » Isle of Man » Douglas June 2nd 2017

I can't believe the sensation of racing motorcycles going full throttle past the grandstand down to Bray hill. Now imagine this: Stand beside your busy interstate or freeway. Not on the shoulder, but on the white line right beside traffic. But instead of vehicles traveling at 120km/h, they go by at over 300km/h! I'm getting ahead of myself. Let me start with getting here. Watching them load the ferry from Liverpool is fascinating! It's a rear loading ferry with a ramp system to turn cars around so they can drive around a circuit and not have to reverse off like typical drive on ferries. They installed posts where motorcycles are lashed to, avoiding the tedious task of pull down straps to anchor the bikes to the deck. Alright, back to racing! The Ilse of Man TT ... read more
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Europe » Isle of Man » Douglas July 29th 2015

The more I learn about the Isle of Man, the more excited I am to explore about for the next few days. Took a taxi to the dock this morning in Belfast - somehow my name turned into Nellie (which totally sounds like Julie). Which I suppose is better than my boarding pass for the ferry which simply said lol. The taxi driver was very chatty - of course we discussed weather, my next stop on the trip and what I do back home. The usual. The ferry ride was nice and smooth. I took the time to watch some shows on my laptop (Charlie Cox is adorable as Daredevil, just sayin') and just take in the scenery. Today is a splurge day, for I took a taxi from the ferry to my hotel as well ... read more
Promenade
Buildings along the Promenade
Looking out

Europe » Isle of Man » Douglas March 19th 2015

I had planned on going out around the island today, but a few factors changed my plans. Isn't that how an adventure is supposed to be? There's a 2-mile-long Promenade that goes the length of Douglas. I've walked the whole thing now - once in the dark, and once in the daylight. Speaking of daylight, wow. I actually had to use sunglasses for the first time on the trip today - it was so bright! That was a pleasant surprise. My hotel is 1 block from the Promenade, and squarely in the middle of the 2 miles, so it's pretty ideal for exploring this part of town. I'm on the top floor (4th by American, 3rd by British practice), and there's no elevator. I'm glad I was able to lighten my luggage, if only slightly, with ... read more
view down the Promenade
Manx money and the Manx tartan
Victorian houses

Europe » Isle of Man » Douglas March 18th 2015

Now I'm officially traveling solo for about a month. Today was all about transportation: the Tube, a train, a plane, and a bus. I've safely arrived at my hotel on the Isle of Man, the Rosslyn Guest House. I had to walk the last mile or so from the bus stop to the hotel, and it's a bit colder here than my last stop. So I'm going to rest and look forward to adventures tomorrow. I met with Eno for lunch before I left - it was regrettably short, since she had a meeting at 2. I will certainly miss her company and the comfortable place to return at the end of the day. I'm happy that we will be meeting up again in 2 months. I'm including 1 picture that I took on my plane ... read more

Europe » Isle of Man » Douglas June 8th 2014

The Isle of Man Experience.... Over the years, I have been aware of the racing at the Isle of Man and the crazy riders that race here, including Graeme Crosby, another New Zealand rider from the 70's that I now have a lot more respect for, after winning here. Unfortunately there were two fatalities on the track this year that included very experienced riders, so that just proved the extreme demands and concentration that is demanded here on the Isle of Man. We enjoyed the racing from various vantage points and the weather was very kind to us all week -this also gave us the opportunity to find out what else the Island offered. We were very impressed with the friendly people and the small villages scattered about the island, we especially enjoyed Peel, Castletown and ... read more
Riding to Lunch
The Train to Snaefell
Tom, Nadine and Bones

Europe » Isle of Man » Douglas June 2nd 2014

From Luxembourg to 'I Love Man' After a few days in Luxembourg and some shopping over in Germany at Louis and Polo, the motorcycle 'lolly Shops', we headed off to Rotterdam in overcast, but fine weather, to catch our overnight ferry to Hull in England. The ride to Rotterdam was a game of motorcycle/Car/Truck chess but we all made it in good time. Tom rode his Yamaha Tenere, Nadine on her BMW G650 and Bones and I on Tom's Suzuki 650 VStrom, that he rode with us on the High Andes Adventure in 2008. Bones had a problem getting on and off the VStrom, so Tom became her 'Care Giver' and everyone thought I had an invalid on my bike, until she stood up and walked after being dragged off the back of my bike....we need ... read more
Leaving Rotterdam
Linda and Brian
Bikes packed like sadines




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