Saturday, July 31, 2004

All Hail Yorkshire

Sunday the 1st of August is Yorkshire Day. A day to celebrate the largest and most beautiful county of England. If you are thinking of coming to God's Own County, say on the weekend of 14th August, here are a few places in the Dales you might like to try.

http://www.yorkshirenet.co.uk/ This is a Yorkshire portal, with loads of information on places to stay, things to do etc.

I reckon that you could base yourself in somehwere like Grassington if you fancied a weekend in the Dales. The pretty village is full of nice pubs such as the Foresters and the Black Horse, there are loads of cafes and restaurants, plenty of guesthouses and B&B's, and more fancy art shops than you can shake your wallet at.




This is the scenery just north of Grassington on a rainy but very warm day in early June this year, this is Bastow Wood/Grass Wood.

For walkers, this is a dream area, you are on the Dales Way so you could walk north to Kettlewell along the high moors with their many exposed rocks and escarpments then get the bus back (I'm slightly hazy about N Yorks bus timetables, they used to run a bus on alternate Thursdays in even numbered years, but I'm not sure if the service is still this frequent.)

Westwards you are within striking distance of Malham where you can walk the short distance to Malham Cove, the Tarn and the wonderful limestone pavements, not to mention

Eastwards you could take the car up to Grimwith Reservoir and go for an easy walk around the edge, lots of waterfowl to see and maybe some sailing on a weekend.

A short car ride southwards and you could visit Bolton Abbey, good parking, lovely easy walking along the river Wharfe, or take one of the track up through the ancient woodland and along the Strid, or if you are feeling more adventurous, go north to the Valley Of Desolation, Brden Fell and Simon's Seat.

Most excellent lunches are to had at The Priest's House Restaurant which is located at Barden Tower north of Bolton Abbey.

I would have included some more pictures but bloggr is playing up, I'll adjust the post on Sunday.

Friday, July 30, 2004

The thing is, I think you and me have grown apart.  I'm sorry, I know we've had good times, but that's in the past and I've got to look forward now.

Yes, yes, I know we used to be so good together, we were inseperable, everywhere I went you were there with me, I'm not denying they were great times, but I've found someting new.

I still hold fond memories of all those trips away, Scotland, Norway, the Dales and Lakes, happy days traipsing up hills, down dales, through rain, sun, wind and often more rain together, but.....well the thing is, whereas you used to support me in all things, not I just find you're rubbing me the wrong way all the time.

There's just no future for us, I want to go on doing the things we did together, and frankly, you're just not up to it anymore.

 


I'm sorry to break it to you like this, but I'm leaving you for a pair or brand spanking new Meindl Actives..................



My dear old Trionics, which have carried my weighty frame all over the North, Scotland and Norway, have finally travelled their last.  20 years of good service, but all good things must end.
The new boots performed very well yesterday, and they were waterproof, wahey, dry feet again!

Thursday, July 29, 2004

Walking Yorkshire : Middlesmoor, Angram Dam, Scar House Dam


With Stevan in mind, here's another of my guided tours of God's Own County.



A day off, I know, I know. That's five in five months, I'll be getting idle. This is a strait bit of road, something that's not very common in North Yorkshire. The driver that left the skid marks gets no points for observation on a road like this, if you can't see oncoming traffic here, you really shouldn't be driving at all.

I parked at Middlesmoor car park (space for about 10 cars), 093743, tried to ignore the couple exchanging saliva in the only other car there, really, I didn't expect dogging in Middlesmoor, then struck out north and west along the Nidderdale Way Moor Lane.




VOOOOOOOOOM!!!!!!! If you can see a tiny dot in the centee of this picture, it's an RAF Tornado on sheep frightening manouvres. It makes a lot of noise for something so far away.




Coming down Scar House Pature, a nice view of some crags (067764).




Now I'm not so daft as to think that hikers don't cause any damage to the countryside, but these horrible gouges are made by motorbikes. Hikers cause some damage, mountain bikers can cause a lot more, motorbikes (and in some cases off road 4x4's) shouldn't be allowed on to any footpaths or bridleways. The problem is, it just can't be policed at the moment. I like walking along the Pennine Way where it crosses the M62, anyone familiar with the area will also be familiar with the devastation caused by motorbikes.

Footpaths have become 20 foot wide mudbaths, the top soil, always very thin on moors, has been ripped away by the bikes tires and washed off by rain. Popular parts of the Pennine Way are becoming a virtul no go area for walkers, the very people the route was intended for.

Tarmac + bikes + motorbikes = Good
Moors + feet = Good
Moors + bikes + motorbikes = Bloody awful quagmaire




Scar House Dam and the Scar Plantation, and some sheepshit.




About a mile further west, Angram Dam, a very impressive bit of early 20th century engineering. It is a nice bit of architecture, it's big and imposing but at the same time fits in nicely to it's surroundings.




Credit where credits due, thanks to James Watson for a really nice dam.




Looking north along Angram Dam to Carl Fell side.




Baa, baa, bugger. This one won't make it to market.




Geese below the weir at Blowing Gill Dike (036756)




Blowing Gill Dike Weir.




Looking down the very steep path to the Nidd Weir (031759), I was very sursprised here when I saw lambs that were clearly only a few days old, I know the upland ewes lamb later than valley ewes but it still seems very late in the season to be birthing.






A family of geese in the pools behind the Nidd weir.




Looking west up the Nidd valley towards the Nidd head Spring. It was a very hot and humid day, quite hazy, so not the best day for distance and panoramic pictures.




A female pheasent at a feeding bin close to Shore Gill Lodge (048774)




The battlement like structures at the base of Scar House Dam, looking from the north.




Having walked through High, Middle and Lower Woodale farms, this isthe view of lovely Nidderdale from the eastern end of Woodale Scar (088767)




Last picture for today, an increasingly uncommon sight, proper bales rather than those huge round things, this is at Haver Close Farm (097764).

I took me just short of six hours to complete the circular route back into Middlesmoor, and lo and behold the dogging couple were there again, although having done a days walking they were noticeably less frisky.

There were hundreds of rabbits to be seen today, you could count hundreds in the fields north of Middlesmoor, but I saw a lot of dead ones, untouched by beast or birds, a sure sign of myxomatosis. I saw a few stumbling, blind myxi rabbits around, and put one out of its misery, it's a nasty disease, not that I like rabbits, but I wound't wish that on anything.

To explore this wonderful part of Yorkshire, buy yourself the OS Map OL30, Middlesmoor is on the south sheet. More pictures to follow but I thought it was getting overly large for a single post.

Tuesday, July 27, 2004

Yesterday saw another fantastic win for the England team, led by Yorkshire's Michael Vaughan. 




England dominated from the off, with centuries from Strauss (the boy does like Lords), a double from Key and Vaughan in both innings.

 


Ashley Giles has found some great form with his bowling recently and has been on great form with the bat for about 18 months, his man of the match award was well deserved.



Flintoff has become such a talisman for England, opposing sides must worry now whenever he arrives either to bat or bowl, his 58 in the first innings gave England the impetus they needed to declare, and then he wrapped up the Windies tail in no time at all.

As for the West Indies, only Shivnarine Chanderpaul really stood up to the england attack, Chris Gayle played fairly well in both innings and the rest of the team were well below average.  In all the fuss that was made when Lara was given out in the first innings, it is worth noting that he  was plum lbw in the previous over and the umpire turned down the appeal.



They came in their hundreds, 1265 to be precise.  For all those strugling bloggers out there, writing decent material most days and still getting only a handful of visitors to their blog, try mentioning famous poeple naked.

Personally I'm surprised that Nancy Dell'Olio naked was more popular than either Tatu naked or Avril Lavigne naked, but there you go.

 
Kylie Minogue naked


One of the Olson twins as good as naked

Whilst were down here in the gutter, how about a picture of popster Darius flashing his cock at an eight year old girl.  What's that ?  You say Darius would never do such a thing, I beg to differ.
Are your mates twats ?  This is a picture of waiter Ric, looking (relatively) normal.

 


And after a night out, falling drunkenly asleep on the couch, and your so called mates have found the hair clippers, what fun!

 


Nice one Ric, we were serving a club match and I had to tell the captain that Ric had had a tumour removed.

 


If anyone else fancies getting themselves a 'lateral lobotomy look', contact Ric via Yorkshiresoul.

Monday, July 26, 2004

Yorkshire Soul's Rambling Quiz - Series 2 - Final Week 10
 
Answers in an e-mail to Yorkshiresoul@gmail.com, please don't post any answers in the comments, just send the number of answers asked for, lists of possible answers wil be marked incorrect, title e-mails "Quiz Week 10".  Answers by Sunday 1st August please.

1) Scientists have recently dicovered a cloud of methane the size of Italy, where did they find it?

2) I am like the Lord, my friends are the manifestation of God, the servant of God,  the gift of God and the one chosen by God, what are our names ?

3) What was the name of the coalition political party that opposed Indira Ghandi's ruling Congress Party during the mid 70's emergency ?

4) Which Spanish city was General Franco's base during the Spanish Civil War, which kingdom was it once the capitol of, and which Spanish warrior hero is buried there ?

5) The national flags of Switzerland, San Marino, Belgium and the Vatican share a common trait that distinguishes them from the flags of most other nations, what is it?

6) Who were the members of the First Quadruple Alliance, and whom did they oppose ?

7) If you sail East from Kodiak Island, in which province will you land, and if you sail West, in which country would you make landfall ?

8) Two meteorites have fallen through the earth's atmosphere and are about to fall on my head, which one should I be most worried about, the one that weighs 10 femtotonnes, or the one that weighs 10 petatonnes ?

9) What is the proper name of the painting known as Whistler's Mother ?

10) What are the next two names on this list ?

Some Picture
Tom's The Best
Chart King

New Leeds Signings
 
Last week Leeds United unveiled a raft of new players to bolster a team weakened by the departure of the entire first team.......

Stephen Hawking - midfield, "The thinking footballer" was named club captain.

Billy Bremner - LUFC directors said "In this age of political correctness and multi-culturalism, being dead should not be allowed to stand in the way of a long and fruitful career."

Giant Haystacks - Goalie, "We were looking for an imposing prescence in the nets, someone to really fill the space between the posts."

Arthur Scargill - Centre Forward, "We are informed that Arthur is the best striker in the business."

Buttershaw u-12's (girls) - Defence, "Well they can't let in more goals than last years shower did."

Sadly the news Leeds squad were soundly beaten in a friendly match vs. a Seacroft Veterans 11 yesterday.  The team seem to be struggling to ge to grips with Captain Hawkings new 4 - 4 - quark - quantum underspace - 1 formation, especially Brian Deane who accidently arrived at Dunfermline, dressed as a donkey.

 

Sunday, July 25, 2004

Now believe it or not, this picture was culled from an official Olympic website, and not from some lesbian soft porn thingy.............



Jo Fenn and Jade Johnson, ahem, modelling the new British Olympic kit.

 

Yorkshire Soul's Olympic Babes #5 - Jade Johnson Long Jump
 


I can't honestly say that Jade is as good a medal prospect as some of the babes already featured.

But who cares ?!!  Seriously, although Jade's career has been interupted by injuries, she did manage a 4th place at the world championships.

Jade has silver medals at both the European Championships and the Commonwealth Games and has seriously improved her personal best distance in the last year.  Come on Jade, this is what we want to see in Athens.............



A little meme thingy from Penny Farthing, sorry I'm so late replying, I've had problems with my BTe-mail.

1. What time do you get up?

7am, unles I've got a really big function on, sometimes I'm in the kitchen by 6.

2. If you could eat lunch with one person, who would it be?

John Constantine, it would be a liquid lunch obviously.

3. Gold or silver?

Gold 

4. What was the last film you saw at the cinema?

Shrek 2 

5. What is your favourite TV show?

I don't really watch a lot of telly but I do like CSI, and the Las Vegas version over the Miami one.

6. What do you have for breakfast?

I'm trying to be a little healthier, so it's either porridge or crunchy nut corn flakes. 

7. With whom would you hate to be stuck in a room?

Gerry Adams. 

8. What/Who inspires you?

Paula Radcliffe

9. What is your middle name?

Andrew, my parents had a royalty fixation 

10. Beach, City or Country?

Country, the high moors, pretty woodlands, tumbling streams 

11. Favourite Ice Cream?

Proper vanilla with loads of vanilla seeds, or double chocolate with extra chocolatey bits. 

12. Butter, plain, or salted popcorn?

Not keen on either, Mrs YS is the popcorn freak at the cinema.   Did you know that selling popcorn is more profitable than selling guns or cocaine ?

13. Favourite colour?

Goth at heart, black.

14. What kind of car do you drive?

It's aRover, automatic, blueish, I don't know what sort without going out to have a look, Im not really a car person.

15. Favourite sandwich?

Hot rare beef with dijon mustard.

16. What characteristics do you despise?

People thinking they are automatically better than you just because they went to a £3,000 a term public school.

17. Favourite flower?

White Rose, like you needed to ask.

18. If you could go anywhere in the world on vacation, where would you go?

I've done some of the places - Las Vegas, Napa & Sonoma, Australia, Hong Kong, Paris, Rome, Lanzarote, Barcelona, this year I'm going to Holland, Germany, Luxembourg, France and Switzerland (all in one day!), then New York and New Orleans, then Lanzarote again. 

I would like to go back to Australia, see more of Hong Kong (we only spent 3 nights there), Thailand, New Zealand, New England, Canada, pretty much anywhere really.

19. What colour is your bathroom?

Blue and white, in both houses.

20. Favourite brand of clothing?

I don't do brands, although Oakman slacks are nice, and Cab shirts are comfy.

21. Where would you retire?

Here, Ilkley, Yorkshire, and if I had enough money I might winter in Lanzarote / Barcelona.

22. Favourite day of the week?

No preference, days off I suppose.

23. What did you do for your last birthday?

We went to see brother in laws nos. 2+3 play cricket, the gang turned up with children so we played in the skate park for half the day, then we returned home and had some dinner, rustled up by myself whilst the kids ran riot around the dining table.

Full report here http://www.yorkshiresoul.org/2004/07/its-my-birthday-hurrah-ill-be-working.html

24. Where were you born?

St. James, Leeds, despite being a fat lad from the off they put me in an incubator for a while.

25. Favourite sports to watch:

Cricket, any league or level.

26. Who do you least expect to send this back to you?

I haven't done it by e-mail.

27. Person you expect to send it back first?

As above

28. What fabric detergent do you use?

Amway, but Mrs YS does all the washing.

29. Coke or Pepsi?

Pepsi Max, but for preference, old Rioja.

30. Are you a morning person or a night owl?

Mornings, I like to get into the kitchen and get a load of work done when it's quiet, I was a night owl when I was 18, these days I'd rather be in bed at 1am than partying.

31. What is your shoe size?

9

32. Do you have any pets?

No, I'm allergic to dogs and cats, very allergic to short haired cats, and fish are always ok when you leave for work, and floating on the surface when you come home, I'm better at cooking them than keeping them.

33. What is your favourite hobby?

Blogging, reading, walking, D&D

 


Saturday, July 24, 2004

Book Review - Hellblazer : Hard Times - Brian Azzarello & Richard Corben *** 
 



After Gaiman's Sandman, John Constantine is surely the finest comic character to date.  The blonde English magician stumbles through life, running from devils both real and imaginary, tangling with the worst that society and the afterlife have to offer.

This graphic novel collects issues 146-150 and details the start of Constantine's journey through the dark underbelly of America.  At the start of the novel we find Constantine locked up in an American prison for the murder of 'Lucky' Fermin.

I'm not keen with Azzarello's treatment of Constantine, although he's always been a hard case, wisecracking son of a bitch, he is presented in Hard Times, and throughout the American series, as darker, more twisted, more self centered than we have seen him before.

In the past Constantine always seemed to suffer for his mistakes, and he didn't pass judgement lightly on others, throughout Hard Times he seems to positively revel in the death and destruction he causes.  You might argue that most of the characters he encounters in this novel deserve the gruesome  fates meted out to them.  Some of them certainly do, but the final scenes of the prison riot with its numerous acts of bloody revenge and Constantines seeming indifference to the fates of prison officers and weaker prisoners alike show a side in the magi's character that I am not keen to see.

Constantine still has his ghosts, literally, in quieter moments they surround him to remind him of past sins and mistakes, but without them John appears not to suffer from conscience at all and in this Azarello makes a cheap point, he's read the back catalogue and knows what should be written, but I think he's missing the point about Constantine's troubled soul.

Richard Corben's artwork, oh dear, it's just not good enough, that fat bloke with spiky haircut, well that's John, in fact nearly all of Corben's drawn characters are pretty chubby, if they're not chubby then have strange, elongated heads.  James Sinclair's colouring is no better (but is better when he colours for Marcelo Frusin in the next installment).

Despite all these criticisms though, it's still Hellblazer, and still worth a read.  There are some good points, Constantine confusing the compasses of the Muslims is a very nice touch, and the changed vision he visits upon the inmates to wreak revenge on the controlling rapist Traylor is typical Constantine.

If you can get through this and not panic too much that Azarello has changed Constantine into a soulless killer then things are looking up, as the next installment in the series, 'Good Intentions', is a much better piece of work.

Yorkshire Soul's Olympic Babes #4 - Victoria Pendleton 500TT + Sprint Cycling
 



Hertfordshire girl Vicki has been cycle racing racing full time since finishing her degree two years ago.  Cycling during her penultimate year at university she picked up a clutch of silver medals, since going full time she has picked up a World Championship gold, set British national records for the 200m and 500m sprints and collected a sweep of gold medals in th national championships for sprint, scratch and keirin.

 


Vicki is a serious medal contender despite her 4th place finishes in her last two world championship events. 


Friday, July 23, 2004

Yorkshire Soul's Olympic Babes - Sarah Stevenson, Taekwondo
 



The best thing about Sarah is, when Dr P appears whinging that she isn't enough of a babe to appear here, being an Olympic Heavyweight Division Taekwondo fighter she'll probably come round and kick his arse.

Doncaster lass Sarah is 23 and has a few triumphs to her name already, including gold in the Swedish Open and gold in the 2001 World Championships.  Sarah thinks she has the fighting style to beat almost all of the worlds women fighters and reckons that the Olympic final could be a copy of the world championship final with Sarah taking on Zhong Chen from China.

 


Fan Pleaser #3, Where Can I Get Pictures Of Nora Lydon John Lydon Wife ?
 



Howzat? That's John's dad on the left of picture, then Mr Lydon, then Mrs Nora Lydon (nee Forster), I think the chap in the pinstripe is John's brother and for the life of me I can't explain why Dennis Rodman is lurking in the background.

Further possible fan pleasers from the search log....................

Alan smith scum (oh yes!)
38 FFF wifeswappers
38 DD wifeswappers (obviously having not found his first desire, he's willing to try a smaller size)
Avril Lavigne is a lesbian

Thursday, July 22, 2004

British Olympic Babes #2 - Jo Fenn, 800m 
   
 
 Jo Fenn finished a very good second in this years European cup, and despite facing some very talented opposition in the eight hundred metres, she could do well.

 


Jo took up athletics at the age of 12, she has so far competed in five major championships and performed well in all.

 


Multi talented Jo also plays acoustic guitar and sings very well, she's had a minor hit at #13 in the European Country Music chart with her band The Business, she hopes to return to music when her athletics career finishes.

 


Ready, get set, grrrrrr, as well as running 800m, Jo also took the AAA Indoor 1500m title this year, her target for the Athens games is to run 1.57 in the 800m which she says would guarantee her a medal, go Jo go!

 

Fan Pleaser #2 - Nancy Dell'olio Naked
 
I have carried out extensive research into Sven Goran Erikson's possibly ex girlfriend, I have trawled through dozens of websites and have been forced to look at hundreds of photo's of naked or nearly naked celebrities (you see how hard I work for you!).

 


Sadly though, after grubbing around in the basement level of the interwebnet, reading the weirdest fan sites and selections of slash fiction I never even imagined existed, I have come to conclude that if there are any pictures of Nancy Dell'Olio nude, then Sven has them safely locked away somewhere.

 


Nevertheless, I think a phwoaar is in order for the above picture, and I'm always willing to be wrong, if you have have pictures of Nancy Dell'Olio naked, nude or engaged in unspeakable acts, please send them to Yorkshiresoul@hotmail.com.

 

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

I've suddenly become twice as popular, and I have no idea why.  My daily hits, which for a year or so have hovered around the sixty mark, have suddenly doubled, but amongst this crowd of visitors to Yorkshire Soul I can find no common thread.

They have searched, and found.....

Robert Fripp Meat chicken Dish
Rioja puns
Makro fire in Lisbon Portugal
Nice picture of a rose
Nancy Dell'Olio naked (I wish)
'The Farmer goes out and' (this from Google Finland)
Naked collaborators of WW2
Yorkshire bullshit
.........and of course Avril Lavigne naked, and that's just yesterday.

I feel a little bit guilty that due to the way Google works (and they do provide 95% of my random hits), many of these poor souls may come across Yorkshire Soul and leave dissapointed (usually without nude photos of Tatu).

So, each day, or more likely when I can be bothered, I'll pick one of these random searches and write something about it in order to keep my floating readership happy.

Tonight then............Robert Fripp Meat Chicken Dish.

Now honestly, I have no idea what King Crimson guitrists eat for dinner, so maybe this was a bad choice for my first fan pleaser, but fear not, for in a bizarre twist of fate I made a meat chicken dish for dinner last night.

2 lamb chops per person (but actually I think it would go better with pork chops, or veal)
1/2 pint bechemel or chicken veloute
2 handfuls chopped cooked chicken
1/2 an onion, finely diced
2 handfuls sliced mushrooms
some fresh breadcrumbs

Heat some oil in a pan, brown the chops on one side only.

Fry the onions and mushrooms, add the chicken, add the bechemel, season again if required.

Turn the chops and spoon the mixture onto the rare side, cover liberally with breadcrumbs and bake in a medium hot oven, gas mark 7, for about 15 mins or until the breadcrumbs have coloured nicely.

I served it with new potatoes and steamed, shredded sweetheart cabbage, and a bottle of Campo Viejo Rioja Reserva '97.


My signature dish.