Tuesday, 23 June 2009

LinkedIn milestone

I noticed today that my 3rd degree contacts on LinkedIn has just passed the magic 1 million mark. This is a doubling since October 2007 when I passed through the 500,000 mark. How long to the next 1m I wonder?

Monday, 22 June 2009

Happy Brithday Littleton Memorial Hall

It is now 10 years since the Littleton Millennium Memorial Hall opened (did you spot the clue in the name?)and to celebrate this milestone there was a party last Saturday.

A lot of people congregated at the hall with their provisions to enjoy some alfresco dining.

Party at the hall

despite some rain early on
Dining in the rain

the weather did clear so we all stayed dry and were also able to enjoy a flying display by Paul Ambrose

and some great music from the bands...

even if dancing on gently sloping grass did feel a bit like taking your life in your hands.

Saturday, 6 June 2009

One Way UK regional puppet ministry festival

Guest post from Carol who writes.....

Yesterday saw the "Ups and Downs" puppet team heading to Guildford for the One Way UK Puppet Ministry Regional Festival. Helen and I are still relatively new to this puppeting thing, so we allowed ourselves to be persuaded by Ros (our team leader, who has many years puppetry experience) to enter the song competition. We were amazed to find, on arrival, that we were the only team to have entered this particular competition, which removed some of the pressure. However, as each entry is judged on its own merits (rather like the Chelsea Flower Show), we still needed to put on a good performance.

Here is a video of a practice session for the routine

The morning consisted of workshops and performances by visiting puppet teams, who put on some very impressive shows. Lunch was next, and then the moment we had been waiting for arrived and we were on. The performance went without any major hitches, and we were then able to relax and enjoy the skit competition that followed, with 4 entries ranging from single puppeteers, to a sizeable team that told the story of the ascension of Elijah with a very impressive chariot.

When the team competitions were over, it was time for the Lip Synch challenge, which Ros had very kindly entered me for. This involved 4 contestants at a time going behind a screen, choosing a puppet, and then lip synching and performing along to a previously unannounced song. Ros and I both won our initial heats, which meant that we were competing against each other in the semi-final. I couldn't believe it when both our numbers were called to go through to the final, but really thought my ears were deceiving me when they announced the song for the final - Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious! I had great difficulty stopping my arm from shaking at the end of that one!

The final workshop was followed by the results of the competitions. We were awarded a very respectful Silver for our song, and I was stunned to get second place in the Lip synch challenge (ahead of Ros who came third). Thankfully she didn't take it personally, and still agreed to drive us home after a very successful and entertaining day!

Thursday, 4 June 2009

Cycling to work

A couple of months ago I bought a new bike under the bike to work scheme.New Bike :-)
This scheme provides the ability to buy a bike with pre tax income so long as you commit to its majority use being to cycle to work.

Well today I started to keep my end of the bargain and tackled the ride from home to Hursley.
Ready for the off... There he goes... 
The journey turned out to be 6.58 miles from door to bike shed and took me in the region of 1 hour. Coming home bizarrely was a tad further despite following the same route. Quietly pleased with myself though that I managed to keep going up the hill through Oliver's Battery.

I have worked out a great route based on small backroads which meant that even though I left home around 7:45am I only met a couple of cars on the whole route. Hopefully as my fitness level increases I will be able to enjoy the wonderful scenery a little more:-)