01 May 2013
It was the BJC a couple of weeks ago and it was up in Pickering. The big “gala” show was in Scarborough on Saturday. We couldn’t afford the time or money to go for the week but we did decide (ok I may have been quite pushy) to go for the show on Saturday. It’s a reasonable way up there, in fact it took us 3 hours to drive up, but we felt a day at the seaside would be fun for all.
We set off a little late but still got there at 1. Doors opened for the show at 7.00 so it gave us around 6 hours to play and look around. We played on the beach for a bit. N and J made a little sandcastle with the brief help of a little boy who got shouted out by quite burly looking grown-ups and then scampered off.
We had a lovely meal of fish and chips (for tradition’s sake) at a place that really did do gluten-free food on its menu but then ruined it by saying that fried gluten-free food is done in a fryer that also fries gluteny food. So that’s of no use to anyone then. We’d brought food for J along with us anyway so it wasn’t a major issue just an indication of the general lack of understanding that food places have.
I managed to leave both J’s coat and my camera at the caff as well. By the time I spotted this we were a good way away heading towards “Luna Park”. Sounds great but in reality a tired dump of over-priced, under-performing “attractions”. R took the kids whilst I drove back to get our stuff.
Once re-united we all played a bit in the park before it closed rather early. This happened earlier with the donkeys – N wanted a ride, “after food” we said. And the donkeys walked home, away from the beach, past us as we ate. She was glum. Twice.
Walking back to the car we bumped into BJCers who’d clearly just been bussed into Scarborough for the show. I saw a few recognisable faces and a few tedious show-offs (really please don’t walk around with a ball on your head – it’s little wonder you’re walking around on your own). We saw some young unicyclists bouncing up and onto some street furniture. And then Biskup yelled at us from over the road, yay for Biskup – long time no see.
A couple of other folk also said hello, hi Abby and friends. Sadly we missed loads of you.
The show was in a lovely old venue that suffered somewhat for having columns in the way for most seats on the balcony (certainly those seats on the side balcony). We picked seats that weren’t great but the area was quiet so hopefully the kids wouldn’t annoy too many folk.
As soon as the show started more people shifted down to where we were as their view was poor or became obscured by other people moving or standing up to see. As I said, the balcony views weren’t great. So what about the show?
I have no idea. I spent the first half fielding 2 kids, N was good and enjoyed the show. J yet again spent his time playing with the foldy-uppy chairs and running up and down the rows. L just cried and wouldn’t go to sleep.
We finally got her to sleep during the intermission so only had to cope with J running about. He didn’t want to be cuddled or held so carried on running and playing with chairs.
As far as the acts went I saw a bit of Steve Ragatz (very good), Eugenius Nil someone (very good), a pair of German girls (pair clubs, not as slick as could be maybe), a trick cyclist (N loved this one) and that was about it. The headliner was some Russian whizzkid apparently – can’t say I can remember anything about the act tho. And there was a poi act that went down a storm. Completely missed it.
Sincere apologies to those put out by the babies. I think we’ll wait a few years before the babies get to go to another show.
01 Feb 2013
It’s been a good while since I got up to York for a ChocFest but we finally managed to get it sorted this year, yay!
I think it’s the first time I’ve ever taken part in the Chocfest Chocolate Cake Competition too. We sorted a decent first ever stab at a gluten free cake for J and took that along.
Unfortunately we had to leave early to get kids home and to bed so missed the show and the cake comp judging. N very keen to find out if we won (we won’t have).
The day was spent chatting to Tom D, Fak, Naomi (another one), Nathan and family, and Silver and family. N and Fred played a lot, J had great fun and L was passed around to all and (occasionally) sundry. No juggling done of course but it was lovely to catch up with a few familiar faces. There were an awfy lot of unfamiliar faces there too. I spose that’s what happens when you don’t go to these things for ages.
We had dinner locally before coming home. I can’t remember the name of the place at the mo but it was proper classy. We had a telly on our table! It was showing the BBC news channel but N wanted CBeebies. I think it was after 7 so that wouldn’t have shown anything anyway so we got them to turn it off. Who really wants a telly at the table? Oh apparently everyone else who comes here. There were some properly big fat jabbas filling the house. The food was fatty and plentiful and cheap. Steaks were overdone, chips were good, ribs were ok. We left full but unsatisfied.
Hopefully we’ll be at more events this year, see some of you soon.
24 Jan 2013
Blimey it looks like I might be going to a juggling event again, that’ll be two within a year! Not sure when that last happened. Anyways with a little bit of luck we’ll be heading up to Chocfest (with gluten-free cake) on Satdy. Yar!
22 May 2012
It’s mine (and DB’s) birthday on the 11th May but my birthday was somewhat overshadowed by the birth of little Louie on the 10th this year. She’s lovely if a little small for a person (about the right size for a newborn though).
This week also saw the death of one of my regular go-to websites. The IJDb has finally closed after 11 years of life. I spent more time there than pretty much any other site using its rec.juggling interface for the majority of the time. I met numerous people online first through its pages and chat room. Hello to Lisa, Sun, Mini and their mum, Popstar Dave, Greg and more. I remember meeting Fak and being surprised that she was female.
Hopefully another site comes along to replicate this loss.
Major thanks to Colin and his minions and all who gave the community its colour. RIP IJDb.
06 Jun 2011
We had 8 nights this May starting with the rest of the family’s first BBU.
The drive was a complete mare. Something like 5 hours with many stops involved. Once there though a few lovely people helped with baby-sitting and/or tent upping. We did only have one request along the lines of “How many days have you packed for?” as we dumped a house worth’s of stuff into the tent. Mildly surprised at that.
Bloomin’ cold it was at first. That first night was a bit of a nippy one. But we all survived that one well enough and the next 3 days were just relaxed and happy. Very nice people, lovely location and decent weather. Oh and the friendliest juggling convention took place around us too.
On the Monday we had to decamp, re-pack the car, drive north, unpack the car and re-camp. That was a long day.
The new site was just outside of Cromer. We’d packed up in 22 degree sunshine and were dressed for summer. As we got nearer Cromer the weather turned; we lost 8 degrees and gained rain and wind a plenty. It heaved it down with rain that night which gave us a rather rough view of Cromer as we went out for fish and chips. Not the best first impression.
After that though the weather was pretty darn nice and so was Cromer. At least it wasn’t bad for an English seaside town. Proper pier with theatre too.
We zoomed over to Hunstanton for a day with my folks and niece and nephews which was fun despite Hunstanton being a dump and losing 2 children at one point. The following day my folks came to Cromer for a rather lovely day of lazing and walking and beach sitting. And that was about it.
Things of note were that the businessmen of Norfolk seem to be untrustworthy dodgy types. There was a children’s fair thing on the seafront at Cromer where you had to buy tickets from a central place and signs up all around to insist that you don’t give cash to the staff! Nice way to treat your staff – “hi thanks for working for us, we don’t trust you.” In Hunstanton too the refrain “No refunds” was apparent on a goodly number of signs.
We went at one point to a crazy golf course only to find another “no refunds” sign, a price of a fiver each and another sign that said “No followers”. The group in front of us were debating this as they had a very young member of their family but the rather dodgy looking people in the hut were not shifting on their no follower rule. This kid was no way old enough to play the game so they were being total arses. We decided not to spend that much money when it involved giving it these shysters.
Oh the town should be renamed “Hunstanto’n” as no-one there seems able to use apostrophes correctly.
After Cromer we packed up and headed to Manchester as R had rather sweetly bought us tickets to see The Fall live in their home town that Friday. Hellish journey! Getting northwest from Cromer isn’t easy. In the end it took us 6 hours of slow and tedious roads. The show was fun whilst it lasted but it didn’t last very long at all so a long day’s drive for about 60 minutes of entertainment (including support poet “a low rent John Cooper Clarke” and band). Officious bouncer helped to annoy many, R couldn’t see anything and it was awfy hot. Luckily R’s sister is lovely and looked after the young folk for us (with the excellent help of her daughter) whilst we were out. And finally home on the Saturday.
All in all a lovely week. I think we need less stuff and a wilder trip next time. Maybe Glen Brittle?
05 Apr 2011
I’ve just bought the family some tickets for the BJC show on the 17th. Any BJC attendees who want to join us for food and drinks pre-show let me know and we can meet you in the city centre sometime that afternoon/evening.
See some of you there.
20 May 2010
I was driving through the market town of Belper yesterday and what did I see but a man walking along wearing his Nottingham BJC 2007 hoody. Never seen a random man with a juggly top before.
15 Apr 2010
I were up in Yorkshire on Friday past. OK I’ll stop that now.
The BJC this year was in lovely Huddersfield. Not been there before and somehow I doubt I’d have picked it as a place to visit were it not for the BJC plonking itself down there and inviting us in. Surprised how nice the place was. Probably another of those “shush don’t tell the southerners how nice here is, we don’t want an influx” things.
Sadly I only managed to get there for about 12 hours from midday Friday. I’d picked the Friday as I wanted to see the BYJotY show. Word had it that the normal org Luke B had cried off, some pitiful excuse like “not being in Europe” no doubt. So it seemed young Tom D had valiantly stepped into his shoes instead. Not a bad play considering he only had 3 weeks to pull the thing into shape.
Not long before the BJC I’d heard more, that there weren’t many takers for the show. Could it really be so?
On getting to the site I slowly made my way to the main juggly hall, being constantly waylaid by lovely folk going “Ooh Alby, Hellooo!” and offering hugs and chats, from Dr H at the reg desk to the P-Bs once I finally fought my way into the hall.
Some juggling was done in the afternoon with some measure of success. Later I parked myself in the tent where Tom was stressing about the BYJotY show.
He’d managed to get himself a load of entrants the day before so the show was on. Mind you it seemed that many people who should have been around weren’t. And a workshop was due to take place in the tent at the same time the tech run was due to be held, and on and on…
Then, at the right time, a bunch of folk wandered in and dutifully played their own role in the show’s prep and things looked good.
In come the audience and then we begin.
Nina compered again and immediately apologised for her shocking use of the word “Lie-sester” last year but then ruined it by blaming Luke’s handwriting. But in the main she got on with it and things ran pretty smoothly.
The usual things happened, the drop count, the best trick comp (still using the old rules tho – still think 1 min per participant would be better, where the whole minute is the person trying to get their trick sorted rather than 10 secs per go). Perhaps she could have pushed the drop count game more during the interludes, maybe would have got more money if it’d been pushed more, perhaps even someone could have walked the queues before the show to garner money and participants, ah well maybe next time. (NB this is hindsight of course, I wish I’d thought of it at the time)
Notable in the show was our pal ^Tom doing his first go (and what would be his last due to being too old next year) at BYJotY. Droppy but funny and a worthy first go at jungling on stage.
There was a girl too! Emma-Jane I think she was called and she was pretty good. Not much joining in and connecting with her audience but the technical skills were clearly there.
Other notables were Jonny who won with a lovely routine of skillful juggling and having a lot of fun which he communicated well to the crowd; Josh and Lewis larking about and showing off some different skills such as head bouncing and sharing patterns – also the first ever double act (I think it was previously against the rules); and David Haslam with some excellent club juggling.
After all this was successfully concluded with Jonny winning just about everything and a couple of other silver awards (still no golds) Tom looked mightily relieved so I suggested food out with him and a few others. We ended up in an excellent steak place in town, good choice.
After about 2 hours of further wandering and goodbyes I headed home via a 2 hour night time drive. Lovely quiet roads at that time.
I’m left with a strange feeling of having missed an excellent convention but I did enjoy what I managed to see.
I do hope there’s a strong offer for next year, I’ve heard nothing beyond “someone has a plan”. Fingers crossed.
Cheers to the orgs, well done.
Pics from the day here.
18 Mar 2010
Hi all. I am around and about but v busy.
Stuff wot’s happened:
- Bunch of fillums seen, rented via Lovefilm.com which seems to be pretty good but there have been a couple of issues of discs not quite working properly. Nothing that stopped the things working completely but sticking on occasion and being a pain.
- Best was probably “Eastern Promises” by David Cronenberg. It’s about Russian mafia in London and is quite gruesome and unpleasant. Same director and star of “A History of Violence” (which is better, it did at least seem to have a complete story arc). If I didn’t expect there’ll never be an “Eastern Promises 2″ I’d say that the scene was set for that to happen.
- Currently have “In Bruges” to see.
- Spending a lot of time in Derby (for obvious reasons).
- Chocfest been to. Lovely to see so many friends again. Sorry no full review as I missed the show again. Hopefully I’ll get to stay for Lestival’s show.
- Worrying stories about Chocfest maybe not being carried on as most if the orgs won’t be around. Fingers crossed that younger Yorkies will take over. Hopefully things aren’t so negative and I just caught people tattling.
- Bad news re a friendly chap in York having had a heart attack. Good luck and best wishes to him. Get well soon Yo-Yo Monster.
- Work being a pain.
- Getting better after Labyrinthitis.
There’s prolly more to mention but that’ll do for now.
21 Feb 2010
Yesterday was the nth Ballring wot I’ve been to. And the first UK convention (for me) since last year’s BJC way back in August 09. A major shame that Leeds didn’t happen to break up the long stretch between.
Got there to find the PBs there and with friendly folk cooing near them.
Juggling was done. Me and Clurb actually managed some pretty good old patterns we’ve not done together for 8 months or so.
Fun was had with weird Korean rice crackers and Annabod had some crisps which tasted like candyfloss. Well only me and Kate reckoned there was a strong candyfloss taste; the others clearly don’t have the “candyfloss taste gene”.
I didn’t get to stay for the show though.
Hi to all I chatted to. Was lovely to meet you all again. Looking forward to a few more conventions this year.
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