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KiwiBill

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  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    Auckland, New Zealand

Previous Fields

  • Occupation
    Retired
  • Boat Name
    vnb ANADO
  • Boat Location
    Hockley Port

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  1. KiwiBill's Long Ramble Home - Topic 3 - London to Lomé, Togo - 1977 to 2007 The Amsterdam ceramic houses are courtesy of KLM and were given to First Class passengers. Blue Circle sent me to Togo to look after the civil/structural side of a cement works. An absolutely beautiful greenfield cement works - see the photo. They had a lovely old-fashioned rule in 1977 which required all business flights longer that four hours to be First Class. And every First Class passenger received a little ceramic gift filled with Dutch gin. These were issued to all the family, including our three-year old
  2. For Mrs Trackman My main enjoyment was reading all the other logs. As a solo challenger I did not have a mate, navigator, engineer, techie, cook, librarian, historian, producer, director, script-writer, dog or cat. Some teams should have been penalised for virtual overloading. But their output was magnificent. The gingernut recipe comes from an aged NZ great-aunt. I only saw her a few times as a young boy. A real Miss Havisham experience. A very old lady living alone with only a large green parrot for company having spent a lifetime as a matriarch on a large NZ colonial farming property.
  3. KiwiBill's Long Ramble Home - Topic 2 - Algeria 1968 - 1979 (addition) When we first entered Algeria from Morocco in December 1968 we arrived at the first significant village and stopped for a cup of coffee. We drank at the typical French zinc-topped bar of a café and were apparently ignored by the barman when we wanted to pay. Someone in the all-male Algerian crowd had picked up our tab! Our first experience of Algeria was very good. On Christmas Eve we were in Annaba having a meal in a scruffy beachside restaurant 150m from the house which, four years later, would be our home for four
  4. KiwiBill's Long Ramble Home - Topic 2 - Algeria 1972 - 1976 Four happy years in Annaba on the extension of a steelworks complex. Very large project. Very international. Russian, French, Egyptian, Palestinian, Hungarian, Romanian. Algeria was celebrating ten years of Independence and everything was calm and happy. The civil war had been ugly and merciless. There was a Commonwealth War Grave site at the edge of town. Immaculate as usual. Next door was the French equivalent. All the French dead had been dug up and moved to France before Independence in 1962. In rural areas we saw colonial F
  5. KiwiBill's Long Ramble Home - Digression Back to Reality - Thursday 14 May 2020 New Zealand came out of full Lockdown amid scenes of mixed jubilation and despair. The approx stats for our Covid-19 experience are: Population: 5 million Total Cases: 2500 Total Deaths: 21 More that half of these were elderly in a few rest homes. We are distant islands, we closed down quickly and we still believe we are immensely rich. International travel is still blocked but local flying and car travel is now possible. Under what we term Level 2, schools and businesses can re-open
  6. KiwiBill's Long Ramble Home - Topic 1 - (Continued) Europe 1969 -2018 With the pressure of the Challenge lifted it is great to get back to life on NZ time and my routine. I even relaxed and read a bit yesterday. As there is no urgency now, I will ramble happily around UK and Ireland a bit before changing the MTP and moving on to Algeria. I suspect that the table on which I have erected my Command Module plays an important part in its operation. Note the magic glow of that restored wood. It is a round Colonial Edwardian (even Victorian maybe) table around which my brothers and I and m
  7. KiwiBill's Long Ramble Home - Topic 1 - Europe, North Africa & Near East - 1937 to Present Day Right! We're off! The way things appear to work, the Memory Trigger Pack has to be a physical tactile object which, when presented to the Machine, gives access to other mementos or artefacts, photos and memories from a quite extensive region. Not of much use to my biographer but I am not doing this for him. You are warned: there will be very little cross-referencing. Let's go! The Memory Trigger Pack (MTP) to start with is a selection of gold and silver coinage from UK and Austria.
  8. I have been given permission to use the Magic Machine on a long route back to Auckland, New Zealand. The six days of the BCN 2020 Virtual Challenge have shown it works well on Baltika and Memories but further careful testing reveals surprisingly that ANY memories, beers and dates can be input and reliable, safe results will be obtained. So; join me on a gentle ramble back to Auckland via Europe, Algeria, Togo, Egypt, Uzbekistan, Papua New Guinea and Australia. The dates will jump about a bit because fuel considerations dictate that the route is governed by geography.
  9. Thanks to the organisers again. Plus special thanks from me to all the other challengers who entertained, informed, amused and amazed me over the six days. My raw stats as submitted were: Locks 34 Miles 83 (including duplications) Points 226.75 (without bonus, quiz, penalties etc) Is there an expanded version of the above table with approved points, daily challenge points, bonuses, penalties locks, miles crew size, etc, etc... ? Those of us who don't have boats, experience, books or knowledge just love statistics. . KiwiBill
  10. Thanks to the organisers again. Plus special thanks from me to all the other challengers who entertained, informed, amused and amazed me over the six days. My raw stats as submitted were: Locks 34 Miles 83 (including duplications) Points 226.75 (without bonus, quiz, penalties etc) Is there an expanded version of the above table with approved points, daily challenge points, bonuses, penalties locks, miles crew size, etc, etc... ? Those of us who don't have boats, experience, books or knowledge just love statistics. . KiwiBill
  11. Thank you, thank you, thank you: O you who never sleeps! You make me weep. I will have some lunch and then start planning my return to Auckland.
  12. After more than three hours of sound sleep I am now refreshed and invigorated. I anyone still standing at Bradley? I am still hovering around the BCN before setting the dial for present-day Auckland. A boon I crave. When the judging, rewarding and sentencing is done please spare a moment's thought for the solo supplicant isolated and alone, separated from friends and family. My father was Austrian-born but fled Austria after graduation as a doctor in Vienna. He ended up in London and met my Kiwi mother and they had a wild time until Dunkirk when he was invited to join
  13. Well done Jan and Andy and many thanks for your effort! It was more challenging for me than 2014 with Team Poppy. I have been blundering around Bradley Workshops in a grey, sleep deprived, coffee and gingernut fuelled trance for three hours now. Bonus point possibilities for your consideration: Bonus points please for solo challengers for denial of virtual company for six days Bonus points please having to drink alone in a virtual wilderness Bonus points please for being pressured to drink alone at 0500 NZT Bonus points please for discovery of the power of Baltika
  14. Thanks Allen for an entertaining diary. At 4:30 am New Zealand I needed a coffee. At Bradley 5:30pm I need a beer. I had worked out a system to read your post before you told me that the hammer man had made it unnecessary. Real coffee first. Virtual beer later. Your log later still. Where am I? I thought I was commenting on Pugnipeek's log. NZ coffee now. I'll browse later. I have yet to master the fine balance between caffeine, the Baltika drive and marbles.
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