21 July 2019

Alzheimer's Memory Ride-Out 2019

The run was converted from a run to a poker run and the destination changed. 

Instead of along the coast to Capel le Ferne it went only to Dungeness and back towards Sussex.

Pepé and I rolled out to meet some other Meldrews, Trevor and Cal.

After a bacon baguette and a coffee we heard the column arrive.

And I started to take pictures on the Nikon D50.


17 July 2019

On the Somme Again - July 2019

A day trip to have a ride around in the (hopefully) blazing sunshine to visit William Devall in the  military extension to the cemetery in Corbie where he was interred 103 years ago.

My brother Neill and I are probably the last of the Devalls (that we know of)  that make these visits to our relatives killed in the Great War, both on the Somme and in Flanders.

There are probably Devall family members in the family tree somewhere in the world that can trace their ancestry back the my Great Grandfather and even his parents branches in the tree.  But we have never encountered them. 

If you know any more Devalls that could be related then please let us know.

So I like to go and show my respect for a man that died fighting for King and Country. 

I don't go every year.  In fact the last time was in July 2016 when Claire and I were on the Somme to attend the Centenary of the start of the Battle.


I am booked on the 0825 P&O ferry to Calais from Dover, and back about 12 hours later. 

Even though we will be in the school holidays, it's still only £20 return. 

The scheduled arrival in France is 1055. 

Plenty of time I hope to get down there and visit and to do a bit of shopping....   Although:
This time my plan is to blast down there from Calais on the A16 via Amiens, or not....

I will also see if the toll tag I have for the SANEF/Emovis motorway system will work. I have it in the car and apparently it can be used on the bike too.  I have never tried it other than in car where it works well.

Drive up to the barrier and it peeps and the barrier goes up. At peak times it saves queuing with a ticket and credit card. 

I emailed Emovis to ask how it knew that it was a bike and not a car?  Their reply was "to approach the barrier with no other bikes or larger vehicles and it would detect the size of the vehicle and charge accordingly, Carry the tag in a pocket of the jacket or hold it up". 

They did say that I should login to my account  a few days later to check and claim a refund if need be!  I will.

Oddly, in MyRouteApp with Google maps as the chosen mapping the route is via the A16.  

With TomTom chosen instead it takes the A26 route! I tend to plan with Google as it is easier to find places (petrol stations etc) that may not immediately appear on the "search", and then switch to TomTom to export to my 410.

TomTom map planner.

After Corbie and William I have been looking at going across country to Bazentin le Grand to see the lay of the land that the KSLI crossed to make their attack. And then home from there.

TomTom Route on 410

I will post a report and photos to follow or even updates "on the hoof".

Update 23/7/2019

Temperatures are looking to be really high this week. At the time of writing in London it is 33°C and France is higher. 

We are experiencing the "Moroccan Plume" of hot air. Usually it's the "Spanish Plume"!


So. Might abort for this week and see about it when I get back from holiday in Devon with Claire and Reggie.




posted from Bloggeroid

6 July 2019

AMRR 2019 - All over now

I was up at 8am. The local Royal British Legion Riders group were meeting on the A2 at 8.30am. Too early for me.

I was away about 9am after breakfast and although I had the dbpower booster with me it was unused. I did have to reset the TomTom as it had lost the connection to the phone and also to my LS2 headset. Once fixed I was away.

The M20 to Maidstone then up to the M2 to stop in at the service station at Cobham to tank up. Another Rocket was there but we had a nod and he was gone. 

The rest of the trip alternated between dull and heavy traffic dull.

The ever lasting roadworks on the A14 seem to have taken many years. The Spanish seem to build hundred of miles of their motorways in a short time.

Eventually I arrived at 1115am. It usually takes less than two hours even with the petrol stop.

I signed in and then went for a coffee and a loo visit.

Outside again it was time to do my walk  around the assembled bikes and looked to see how many Rockets were there. Quite a few there plus around 350 other bikes.

At 1230 we had the honour read out and the Last Post sounded. And then we had the thunder. All the bikes started up and revved.

Then we set off. The journey took much longer than usual due to the roadworks and that there was a climate demo in the city centre.

On arrival I took more pix and these can all be seen on the Flickr link below. It uses a tag so might have other people's pix if they use the same one!

We had the service and then dispersed. 

Traffic was only bad at Dartford where there was an accident on the Kent side that managed to tail back over the bridge for miles 

After another fuel stop I was home about 4 15pm.

TomTom stats for the day:

Stats - max speed?  Must be an error.
My Flickr AMRR Album - To reduce the number of albums all the AMRR visits I have photographed and uploaded to Flickr are now in one place.  It has been sorted to show the newest pictures first.

Until I went to France with my brother in May, I just recorded the fuel stops for fun just to see what the mpg comes out at... But since I have striven to be more economical. This resulted in the Cobham and back to Dartford of 47.44 mpg. Okay. This was mostly at motorway speeds plus the slow ride around Cambridge. Could I have tipped 50mpg again?

Another first was getting the recorded route I took on the way back from the services via the cemetery to download from the TomTom. It's never worked before.  I ended up using the Bluetooth option to my phone and then uploading from there to my Google Drive.  I then opened it in MyRouteApp. And here it is.



One last pic.  Me on the move. I screen shotted this from a video on the day.


5 July 2019

AMRR 2019



It's tomorrow.  I'll need to get my gear out tonight and make sure that I have the routes in my TomTom.  I have been so often before but the TomTom is great for the stats of the run and in case you need to make some detours where there might be roadworks or other closures.



Make sure the Bluetooth kit in my helmet is charged up. My planned stop on the way back to have a look at the wartime NAAFI buildings might need assistance!

When connected to my phone it does pick up information and it will try to offer a reroute.  Of course, when I last did this I had no idea what it meant and ignored the offer of a route change. Doh!  As Homer would say.

Looks at the moment that I am Billy No-Mates again but that's okay. The weather is supposed to be good and sunny so it looks like an SPF50 day and a hat.  But what to wear?  Which camera to take?  

First world problems.



23 June 2019

Vimy 2020


Veterans de Guerre

It is way off at the moment, but things need looking at to plan out the trips and places ahead.

I missed 2019 as we were in Florida for the Easter holiday fortnight. In 2020 it will be on a Thursday. It is always on the 9th April.

A trip across all depends on whether we go on holiday elsewhere for the Easter fortnight again.

I will have a look at planning a route to take in a lunch stop (not McD this time!) and some other sights. 


Plan A


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