Wedding season

Its certainly wedding season at the moment and it seems to be the year for weddings with about 5 I am going to this year.

About 2 weeks ago it was my cousin’s wedding in Cheltenham. It wasnt as far as I first thought to travel with it taking about 1hr 45mins – good traffic. It was a lovely sunny day.The wedding was in Manor by the Lake. After the ceremony there was the opportunity for photos. As I said it was a nice sunny day so some great photos. The “wedding breakfast” was next – I had pate for starter and salmon for main – I am glad I had the salmon as the chicken looked very dry! Unfortunately I was suffering from hayfever so was sneezing abit 🙁 If you know me, you can see photos on my Facebook. After some post-meal cake and tea etc everyone headed home.

Last weekend I went away for my ex-bosses wedding near Southampton. I tried down with 2 ex-workmates and one of their girlfriends. It was a long way to travel so we decided to travel down on Friday afternoon and then travel back on Sunday morning. It took about 5hr 30mins to get there. We stopped for about 45 mins in a service station and 45 mins worth of traffic jams. We did manage to get to destination in time for meeting everyone else – time for some food and a drink.

The actual wedding was on Saturday and we were lucky with the weather. Travelling from hotel to church it was raining but stopped by the time we got to church. It was a very nice service. It was abit different to the normal “hymns” and were more like “normal songs” – if you know what I mean! The band playing the music were excellent.

After the ceremony, many photos were taken. We all then headed to the Solent Hotel were the wedding reception was being held. More photos were taken and then some drinks – I had a few “buzz fizz” type drinks. Food was served around 4pm. I had the salmon for starter and for mains chicken. It was all very nice.

After the meal was time for the speeches. The groom (my ex-boss) had not written anything down for speech and “winged it”. Thats what he said and I couldnt see if he had to few keywords to help him remember things to mention. He is an experience public speaker so he wasnt (or didnt appear) as nervous as groom’s are often. The father of the bride also gave a speech and of course the best man’s speech. It included many things as expected – very good, very funny. It even included abit of a quiz about the stag 🙂

In between the speeches and the evenings events – a band playing – a casino was set up. It was all just for abit of fun. I managed to lose some and win some and pretty much broke-even (with the fake money!)

The band playing were a jazz band and after a few songs a few people gradually made there way onto the dancefloor – maybe after a few more drinks!! I didnt go up – didnt hear the Jazz version of Bon Jovi!! 🙂 Later on in the evening, there was a finger buffet – I was a bit hungry by then some had a couple plates worth 🙂

The evening ending about 12.15am with pretty much every gone. Relatively early but it had been a long day. Got back to hotel and we ended up watching the rest of the movie on TV – I think it was The Ring. By then it was about 230.

Sunday morning and we all just about managed to get up for breakfast – before 10am. We also had to leave at a certain time as it was the same day as the British Grand Prix so we had to time things right or else get stuck by Silverstone with 100,000 fans!! On route home, we stopped of at one of my workmates “colleagues” – his wife was kind enough to make a “nice spread” with sandwiches, scotch eggs, bread, ham etc. My other ex-boss was also there with his family. The grand prix started at about 1pm and shortly after we all made a quick getaway!! We worked out the grand prix would finish at 230pm and he was about abit less than 1 and half hours away from Silverstone. Anyway, we got past Silverstone properly about 10-15 minutes before the race ended.

To break up the trip we stopped off a Stratford for about 2 hours. Total travel time to get back to Manchester was about 6 and half hours including the 2 hours at Stratford. We didnt really get stuck in jams but plenty of slow moving traffic – roadworks limiting speed to 40,50 or 60mph.

After all the driving, Monday morning I woke up with abit of a sore back!! Good excuse to not go to the gym. Once again, I have uploaded photos to Facebook.

Tomorrow I will be going to another wedding. This is my cousins wedding but the “Chinese part”. The normal Chinese wedding reception is a BIG meal in a restaurant with many courses – about 10 main courses plus the dessert courses. The dishes usually include lobster, sharks fin soup, fish and chicken. I think things like the fish and chicken are always included as they are “lucky”.

25th June 2009 – a sad day

Dont know what it was about 25th June 2009 but 2 very famous people sadly died. First there was Farrah Fawcett. Not that well-known to me but lots of people liked her. She was one of the original Charlie’s Angels. She died after suffering for a while from cancer.

Later on in the day – Thursday night UK time – the news came out about Michael Jackson passing away. It all happened about 1215pm (LA time) when ambulance was called as Michael Jackson was not breathing. There was some confusing with some online web sites/news networks saying he was in a coma, some saying he died. At about 230pm (LA time) it was announced that he was official dead 🙁 I was trying to get the latest news, watching the BBC News, checking online news sites and also Twitter. Facebook also had lots of status updates all about Michael Jackson. Twitter actually suffered with it being “over capacity” and either being really slow or giving errors.

It was actually the web site TMZ that announced it first before anyone else. There are all sorts of stories in the news and I am sure you have read about it. It seems that he was given a shot of Demerol – which is a powerful painkiller – and he “overdosed” and had a cardiac arrest after suffering from a heart attack. Some stories are coming out that he may have been given daily injections on Demerol!

There has already been one autopsy but there will be a second one to confirm what happened.

For all the latest I recommend checking out the BBC News web site or the web site TMZ.

No matter what happened to Michael Jackson in his life he made some AMAZING songs. Billie Jean, Thriller, Beat It, Smooth Criminal, Bad,….. thats just a few. Looking at online music charts his albums are selling very well. Looking at Livehits, Man in the Mirror will be No.2 with Smooth Criminal currently 11. A load of other songs are in the top 100. Amazon.com album chart has about 16 MJ albums in the top 20. (Its similar for Amazon UK).

Also people started playing his songs as soon as his death was announced with last.fm showing a huge increase in number of songs by Michael Jackson played.

Ronaldo

Hes not official been sold yet and is still official a United player but the deal is all but done. Ronaldo will be leaving United for Real Madrid for £80m. Its a huge amount of money – although I have read it may be paid in instalments. More crazy is the amount hes being paid. He will be on a 6 year contract with pay increasing 25% each year. Apparently he will earn something like £530k a WEEK!!! Crazy!!!

He was an amazing player and will miss his skill. Its now a question of who United buy to replace him. You really need 2 players to replace him with a winger and a striker. It looks like United will get Valencia from Wigan but hes of course no way compared to Ronaldo as a winger. Also, it looks more and more like Tevez will leave so we could need 2 strikers?? We be interesting to see what happens and if we actually do manage to buy anyone! Benzema is a good option but he apparently doesnt want to leave Lyon and even if he does would prefer Spain. David Villa would be great but seems unlikely. Argually 4 of the best players in the world, now play in Spain: Ronaldo, Kaka, Iniesta, Messi.

Anyway,…… I am sure Fergie knows what hes doing!!………

(I hope Barcelona win the Spanish league and cup next season!)

The new iphone!!

Apple’s Worldwide Developer Conference started yesterday and it was the all important keynote speech. The main thing everyone was looking forward to hearing about was all about the new iphone.

Basically the new iphone – called the iphone 3GS (the S standing for speed) will be faster, have more memory, better screen, voice control and have a digital compass. Those are the main things. Everyone seems to be getting very excited over a compass?!?!

The keynote speech was on at 6pm UK time so I kept an eye on what was happening via Twitter and also on GDGT site.

There are some cool new things with the new iphone but also some cool things to do with the new OS. I like the idea of the voice control – you can say things like “Whats playing” or “Play more songs like this” as well as what you would expect “Call Joe Bloggs”. Sounds cool but dont know how much it would really be used?? The other thing you get on the new iphone 3GS is the compass which would integrate with Google Maps – nice little feature but not really a “killer-app”.

The other things changed is better camera, video record and better battery time. You can see the differences here.

Some of the new changes to the actual OS and some of the apps looks cool. There is a TomTom app so in theory it could properly replace your existing satnav. I like the look of the Nike+ app too.

Will have to wait till contract runs out and then maybe get the new iphone. Get rid of this stupid LG Viewty! The cost of the iphone 3GS here in the UK though is as usual high. There was an announcement that the iphone 3G (current existing model) would be on sale for $99.  This is of course if buying in US and not really sure if its $99 for “pay as you go” or on contract. Anyway, just checked the O2 site and the prices for pay as you go are:

  • iPhone 3G 8GB – £342.50
  • iPhone 3G S 16GB – £440.40
  • iPhone 3G S 32GB – £538.30

Looking at contract you can get the iphone 3G 8Gb for nothing for most contracts and just paying the monthly contract. However, if you go for the new iphone you could end up paying almost £270 for a 32Gb one and paying about £30 a month.

May be worth considering pay as  you go as you get 12 months worth of “unlimited web”.