Mar. 2nd, 2014

tinyastronomer: (little prince)
January: Saw 2001: A Space Odyssey at the Prince Charles (what the hell?!); Trip to Paris with Nick to see an aboriginal art exhibition at the Musée de Quai Branly and put a lock on the Pont des Artes; spent a great snowy weekend in a huge house in Bath with Tim and Pete and Matt playing hide-and-seek, making snow sculptures and visiting the spa.
February: Got soaked in the Rain Room art installation at the Barbican; spent a lot of time in the Mariko Mori art exhibition at the RA; had a karaoke birthday.
March: Nick and I both got flu and looked after each other; walked part of the Green Chain walk to the Thames Barrier in the snow; joined up all Nick's freckles with a marker pen; made our own Easter eggs.
April: Gorgeous long weekend in York; spent a whole day barefoot.
May: Lovely long weekend in Whitstable with Nick; picnics in blossomy Green Park and Kew Gardens; walked Peddar's Way and the beautiful, wild Norfolk Coast Path with Tim, with Mum joining us for the last few days.
June: scored a KOALAS sign from London Zoo; visited Chislehurst caves and happened to get a private tour; saw the awesome Stomp; and had a wonderful picnic breakfast in Green Park.
July: Private screening of Serenity on the big video screen at the RAS; paper plane throwing competition; slept out in a hammock; slept out on the roof; roller disco!
August: finished the pizza oven and had a pizza party; bumped into Ann and David at Kew Gardens.
September: Went Segwaying in the forest; visited Battersea Power Station with Open House; quit my job.
October: Fed giraffes in London Zoo; saw and handled some great artifacts from the RAS such as Herschel's notebook; went to Laos, celebrated Boun Ok Phansa, swam in waterfalls and rode elephants; visited Vietnam and went kayaking in Ha Long Bay.
November: Visited the jungle and temples of Angkor Wat in Cambodia; explored Thailand including floating down the River Kwai in a rubber ring and celebrating Loi Krathong in Chiang Mai.
December: Met and held my new niece Sophie; spent Christmas Day at a nearly-deserted Avebury with Mum; went to Trafalgar Square with Nick, Tim and Matt to see in the New Year with a bang.

I'm going to go ahead and call that a great year.
tinyastronomer: (little prince)
1. Go to a bed showroom and try out the beds by cuddling on them (January)
2. Learn the Greek alphabet (January)
3. Be North of the Arctic Circle (February, Arctic Science trip to Kiruna)
4. Have a sauna and jump in the snow afterwards (February in Kiruna)
5. Visit Prague in the Czech Republic (February 12-14 with Nick)
6. Make and use a pinhole camera (March)
7. Learn at least three poems by heart (April - Jabberwocky by Lewis Caroll, Sea Fever by John Masefield and The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost)
8. Make paper (May)
9. Go wild swimming (June was when I counted this as done, as previously I'd only been wild swimming in a pool in Laos, the River Kwai and a billabong in Australia. I finally swam in Buckstones Jum and Grasmere in the Lakes in June, then Llyn Idwal in Snowdonia in July)
10. Slice open a watermelon as big as my torso with a machete and have a watermelon party (July, Tim's birthday - I technically used a billhook, but I'm counting it! The melon weighed 13kg)
11. Play Calvinball (August, with Nick and Tim)
12. Swim through Durdle Door (September with Tim - we swam once through and back, then we did it again and went round the outside of the arch)
13. Make chocolate from raw cocoa beans (October with Nick, and it tasted pretty good!)
14. Make a coke and mentos fountain (November with Tim)
15. Visit Venice (December with Nick)
16. Go swimming in the sea on Christmas Day, complete with Santa hat or reindeer antlers (December with Mum at Durdle Door)
tinyastronomer: (little prince)

  • Tried ice-sculpting at a festival in London.
  • Went to Kew After Dark with Nick, where the trees were lit up and there was a fibonacci pattern of flaming torches.


  • Visited Kiruna in the north of Sweden with Tim for the fieldwork part of our Arctic Science course. I had a wonderful time walking and digging in the snow, making snow angels, taking a real sauna (we spent three periods in the sauna followed by naked rolls in the snow), feeding excitable reindeer and seeing real immaculate dendritic snowflakes. We also visited the biggest underground iron mine in the world, and went husky sledding across a frozen lake with some lovely dogs (I only fell off once when driving). Best of all, we saw the most incredible coronal aurora at Absiko, with green and pink and white and even a little bit of purpley blue.
  • Spent a couple of days in Stockholm, seeing the Vasa, the medieval town of Gamla Stan and Skansen where we fed a sweet little fussy red squirrel who only eats almonds and saw lots of Swedish animals like moose and wolves. We stayed on the Chapman ship, with a porthole looking over the Royal Palace, and I stayed on a Jumbo Jet for a night and walked out along the wing.
  • Spent my birthday with Nick in sunny blue-skied Prague, where we got invited into an underground fairy grotto and had mulled wine, played in a hall of mirrors and had the most delicious chocolate fondue I have ever eaten. We also ate in a cafe frequented by Einstein, saw the astronomical clock and visited Tycho Brahe's grave.
  • Went to Savernake Forest with Mum and Tim on a peaceful sunny day and saw the Queen Oak, the Spider Oak, the Spiral Oak, the White Road Oak, Big Belly Oak, Old Paunchy and the Cathedral Oak. On the way home we saw a fantastically bright rainbow.


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