After Shane Warne announced his retirement from International Cricket (following the absolute belting of England in the Ashes series early this year), I thought it would be a good idea to see him play one last time. Conveniently he plays in the domestic series here in England for Hampshire as their captain.
When I found out that his team had made it into the final of the Friends Provident Trophy and that the final would be played at the home of cricket aka Lords Cricket ground, I couldnâ€™t pass up a chance. So Lustri and I got a couple of tickets to the match. I was pretty excited because A) this would be probably the last chance for me to see Shane Warne play and B) I would be visiting the immensely-historical home of cricket.
Nat and I always wanted to spend a week in Portugal again before the summer was out on this side of the hemisphere, and especially that we havenâ€™t had much of a summer this year in London. We both wanted to spend time with our family and lots of time on the beach trying to get some colour back into our skins that we lost from the London clouds.
My Grandma had no idea Giulio was on this side of the world. She got the biggest surprised when she saw Giulio at the airport. It was really good to see her so happy.
As weâ€™d just been to the Global Gathering festival in rain and muddy conditions, on the flight over Giulio started to develop a bad cough and cold. The poor guy ended up missing the first two days of action confined to his bed at home because he was so sick.
Go the gum boots!
So as most of you know Global Gathering is without a doubt the best and largest dance festival on the planet. When Global Gathering is on, you can pretty much say that there are no big name DJs anywhere else in the world at the same time. With huge names such as Basement Jaxx, Faithless, Carl Cox, Paul Van Dyk, Roger Sanchez, Armin Van Buuren, Pete Tong, Annie Mac, Erick Morillo, David Guetta, James Zabiela, Nic Fanciulli, Steve Lawler, Paul Oakenfold, Booka Shade, John Digweed Eric Prydz, Sander Kleinenberg, Mark Knight, Armand Van Helden, Steve Angello & Sebastian Ingrosso, Fedde Le Grand, Scratch Perverts, Sasha, Ferry Corsten, Calvin Harris, 2ManyDJs and many, many more (click here for the official list).
PVD @ Amnesia
So I went to Ibiza to catch up with Mick and Candice. Mick has been a good friend of mine for some time from the hockey days and Candice is his girlfriend.
Our first night was at Amnesia where Paul Van Dyk was to play a 6 hour set. He played a pretty good mix and dropped in a few classics along the way e.g. Iio â€“ Rapture and one of my top favs: Andain â€“ Beautiful Things. A great night was had but the humidity, heat and general way too packed club stopped it from being as good as it could be.
We normally take turns in writing on the blog but Rach has been â€œbusyâ€. Itâ€™s getting on a while since we went so I thought Iâ€™d at least put a quick entry up along with the photos.
The drive into the city made us realise this place was far different to any other city weâ€™ve been too. Some areas looked quite run down, almost exactly as you see them depicted in Middle-Eastern-like scenes in the movies. There is a thick grey smog layer over the entire city. Iâ€™m not sure what from, because it doesnâ€™t seem any busier than other cities. Maybe itâ€™s due to the thousands of huge oil tanker ships that pass through the river that divides Istanbul and connects the Black Sea and Mediterranean Sea.
In an attempt to be quick, Iâ€™ll go over the highlights and let the photos tell the rest of the story.
Can you believe it? Another year has gone flashing by again. Every day goes flying passed like crazy. It feels like not long ago I was writing the one year post. And just like my last post, for those of you not in the know, Rach and I have been together for two years today.
Two years on…
What a fantastic ride it has been and I could not have chosen someone better. Her excellent qualities make for a great companion and itâ€™s made our time together fantastic. The last year has been so easy going and smooth sailing.
Weâ€™ve been to so many different places and many more to come. To mark the special occasion we are currently in Budapest, Hungary, off on yet another trip
To see a glimpse of what a fantastic time the last year has been click here.
The weather has been pretty lame in London for the last couple months, or I guess you could say all year but mainly the last couple months as the expectations are higher, since we are officially in the 2nd month of summer. For some reason on the Tour de France weekend the sun decided to come out. According to the media there were over 1.5 million people in attendance and definitely everywhere you went there were loads of people.
It made for a great day with the sun, the huge crowds and the worldâ€™s most popular cycling event. Rach and I donâ€™t really know anything about cycling but it was good to see it in the flesh. The Saturday started off with a parade of cars going around throwing free goodies into the crowds (bottles of water, food samples, tiny toy bikes etc) as well as people dancing to music on floating dance floors on top of vans. This was on just before the race started.
Earlier in June Mark and I went to the UK round of the DTM at Brandshatch (Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters, basically German Touring Car Championships). I guess you could say they are the equivalent of V8 supercars but for Germany. DTM a number of ex-F1 drivers such as Jean Alesi, Heinz-Harald Frentzen and F1 world champion Mika Hakkinen.
Brandshatch is an ex-F1 race circuit where the British GP was held from 1964 to â€˜86. At first glance it looks like itâ€™d be an unreal track to drive at cause itâ€™s not flat like all the other race tracks. Itâ€™s full of uphill and downhill parts. The first corner is known as one of the scariest in the business as it drops away sharply to the right and looks like youâ€™d have to take the corner almost blind as it drops quite a distance. Youâ€™ll see what I mean from the photos. It then heads up a hill to a midsize hairpin and then storms straight back down the hill for a left hander. Thereâ€™s a bit of the straight then a large round u-turn which links back up to the main straight. The DTM ran on the short version of the track. Click here for a map of the track.
Nat and I went for a quick trip back to my mumâ€™s home town Faro in Portugal. We both really enjoy Portugal and we love our family there. Our avo (grandma) is just great. She is always so hospitable and always serves up fantastic food.
On our first night we had a massive Faustino dinner (Faustino is my mumâ€™s maiden name). My grandma, two aunties, one uncle and four cousins were all there. My aunty served up a yummy feast and it was good to catch up with everyone. It had been ten months since we were last in Faro, but gees it didnâ€™t seem that long ago.
On the first day we didnâ€™t do too much other than roam the city centre streets in Dublin and pop into a number of shops along the way. I think Rach and I were a bit tired from the week that had passed as we both went back to the hotel for a nanna nap at about 5pm The weather was pretty cold which didnâ€™t inspire us at all anyway. We went into the Temple Bar area for dinner which is an area with the most concentrated number of pubs, bars and restaurants I have ever seen. The place is very popular and there were always heaps of people around. We ended up having dinner in the area every night of our trip. After dinner time there were also quite a few people standing out the pubs struggling to stand up. Apparently Dublin youths have a binge drinking problem, according to the ad campaigns on the bus
Sorry for the massive delay in getting these photos up. I can’t believe how quickly time goes past. In a couple days it’s been a month since we moved into our new place. Gees it really does fly when you’re having fun Anyway, I know some of you have asked or wondered why we moved out. I’ll keep it short in saying, if it wasn’t already obvious, we moved out because of one individual at our last place. That individual even snoops around on this blog spying on us. Clearly that person doesn’t have much of a life. The individual knows we know they snoop on here. We’ve already busted the person and displayed them a special private message for them only. Anyway enough of the rubbish, on to the new place.
Rach and I went for a quick day trip to Brighton on a Saturday. Brighton is on the coast and has a pebble beach. Yes thatâ€™s right they donâ€™t have sand, just lovely round pebbles. Brighton is about an hour train ride out of London and is sort of a hip version of Batemanâ€™s Bay but on a bigger scale.
In the centre of Brighton, they had lots of little streets closed off with all sorts of different shops and some streets with a trash and treasure going on (mainly trash from what we saw ) Walking around, there were a fair few fashion shops, Rach even picked up a new set of shoes for work and I found a new bag for work.
So we headed to Venice for our second time, but this time with Nat and Mark who had never been before. I wasn’t sure how Rach and I would go as Venice is a small place and there aren’t they many huge landmarks or big sights to see. The first time we came to Venice we were blown away by how amazing it looked taking a Vaporetto (water bus) all the way down the Grand Canal through the centre of Venice. They say it a lot about other places but there truly is no other place like Venice.
This our new house mate smudge. He is named smudge because when he first moved in he would always step in his own poo after doing the business and would smudge it all over his leg. He is about 14 weeks old. When he first arrived he was tiny and fragile but since then he has grown a bit and has started to hone his hunting skills. He has these cute little blue eyes and this tiny round circle pattern on his head. He is so playful and will pounce on anything that moves.
The little guy has already caught his first mouse, which was one of the reasons we got him.
He is very friendly and loves to be in whatever room people are in to either play around in the room or lie down on you. He loves coming into our room when we get home and loves to play underneath our bed. I think he loves all the different things to play with and he loves shoes for some reason.
Some rude individual broke gabnation earlier this morning on Monday. They wiped my pride and joy completely and of course they deleted the last full backup. Luckily I had a backup of a few things but not all hence all the missing images on this page. It’s going to take me a long time to get it back to where it was. Especially the gabnation gallery. Slowly, slowly, I hope I’ll get there. So if a photo album doesn’t work, then that’s why.
** UPDATE ** I’ve managed to get most of it back up. I’m still missing a lot of the blog images and a few albums from the gallery but apart from that it’s mostly all back.
So another year rolls on by. In previous years I’ve said that the year went quick but this year I can’t say it did. It didn’t go fast but it didn’t go slow in any way at all.
Rach and I spent New Years Eve at home… But of course our house put on a party. We thought we’d be able to see the London Eye fireworks from our rooftop but we found out at 00:00 that we couldn’t see them So instead we watched them on a TV. I sat their it utmost disappointment and sadness watching a spectacular display of fireworks, on TV. Unlike the rest that I had seen, this display wasn’t boring. I was really disappointed that we weren’t there along the river watching them in person and soaking up the atmosphere. All I can say that is if you are ever here in London on New Years Eve, make sure you go.
Happy holidays and all of that stuff to you all. Most of all, I hope you’re all spending time away from work and with your families, friends and love ones taking it easy.
I’ve completed a big update to the gabnation site. I’ve changed the way the pages to work in order to make it much easier for me to update and maintain. At the same time I’ve finally got around to uploading the photos from our Europe trip and added the thumbnails for the cities and the other albums. All of the albums from now on will be added to the gabnation gallery but I’ll still add a thumbnail and link to them from within the relevant gabnation web page. The main additions are to the travel, party and events section. You can always access these by going direct to www.gabnation.com and clicking on the relevant links.
Just thought I’d put up a quick post about what’s been going on lately. Well things feel like that they’ve slowed down a little bit and we’ve just been getting into the normal routine, although on the other side of the planet.
We went to Barcelona again in late October. We had a great time and it actually felt like a holiday because we did a lot of relaxing. We weren’t in a rush to see all of the sights like last time and I loved the cheap shopping compared to London.
Rach and I went for a shopping expo one weekend at a complex called Bluewater. This place is huge. We spent all day there and I didn’t see all of the floor space. It has over 300 stores, all in the one mall. Believe it or not though I walked away with nothing and Rach walked away with a winter coat and a few other things.
So the big Lambo weekend has been and gone. What can I say? I walked away feeling both terribly sad and rewarded. Sad that it was over till I purchase one back home and rewarded and what a thrilling, adrenaline rush, schoolboy exciting, awesome experience it was. My vocabulary just isnâ€™t good enough to describe it all.
I paid for a printed action photo, every time I look at the photo of me in the Murcielago on my wall it makes me sad and happy at the same time all over again.
My first go was in the V12 Murcielago. I was most impressed at how fast the beast went when I floored it on the long open straights. We were at an airport racetrack called Bruntingthorpe. It was unreal to flip through the gears with the flappy gear change paddles and not having to back off for a gear change. It was like having a smooth jet powered rocket at your command and each time you flipped up a gear another rocket fired and propelled you faster along. All with an unreal roar coming from the massive engine behind my head. I wish I knew what speed I was going in the Murcielago but I forgot to look down. I think they call it sensory overload. Hearing the V12 blip the throttle on down changes was unreal.