Just a quick post before i’m off again, The good people at CHC Helicopters allowed me to use my camera on the flight back to stunning Malta so I took the opportunity and snapped away, it’s not easy though, trying not to get the refection of your bright yellow survival suit in the window, especially when you are my size.
Our ride to land, thanks CHC.
I had a bit of a crazy day yesterday, it started off ok if not a bit early in Malta, got a flight from there to Heathrow, then after a couple of hours boarded another flight to Aberdeen, so far so good, a couple of hours later I was back at the airport, I checked my bag in and walked through security, grabbed a G&T and sat down, a few minutes later Nico joined me and we raised a glass to another successful rig move, now I’m sitting a few meters from my gate and keeping a good eye on it, once the queue was down to the last few people I jumped up and joined the end, once it got to my turn I showed the nice young lady my boarding card, now this is when it starts to get crazy, she pointed out that I was booked on the one hour earlier flight to Heathrow, there must be some mistake I said and showed her my electronic ticket on my phone, which clearly states my flight was to City Airport not Heathrow, after the system was checked a few more times and two phone calls later I was told they had in fact made a mistake, cool I’m thinking to myself, I’ll just get on the plane and be home in time for dinner………………oh no, you see even though I was standing 20 meters from the plane which was only half full, with the door still open I could not board it, something to do with a time issue, this is when I pointed out it was going to take them longer to get my bag I had checked in off the plane than it was for them to print me a new boarding pass, this is the moment they all looked at each other and franticly started punching buttons on the keyboard, and thats when they found out my bag was on its way to Heathrow, apparently someone with the same name as me was travelling to Heathrow, with my bag. Now I’m pretty laid back and as I was on my way home and not going out to a job losing the bag was no real problem, they could just courier it to my house the next day. (which they have). So just put me on the next flight to City and I’ll be happy, oh no that was the last flight to City that night, we can send you to Heathrow they said, that was not going to work for me, stick me in a hotel and i’ll get a flight to City tomorrow I said, with a few looks and nods and a phone call this was agreed on and I was sent back though to the ticket desk for this to be arranged. I met up with a very helpful young lady called Vicky and she started to organise the return of my bag and a room for the night, now the Scottish open is on this weekend (thats golf if you didn’t know) and every hotel was booked solid, so I came up with another plan, instead of a hotel British Airways can pay for a taxi and I’ll stay at my brothers house, with a few looks and nods and a phone call this was agreed on, Vicky was sorting out the paperwork while I was on the phone to my bro to make sure all was ok, then I had to call my wife and kids to tell them I wasn’t going to be home tonight, finally I signed some papers and was directed to the taxi office, gave them my details and was told no details had come through yet and to take a seat, but I had a better idea, I gave my mobile number and walked to the pub, ordered a large cold one and relaxed.
Now what I didn’t know was for the last hour and half the plane I was supposed to be just getting off in London City Airport was still just outside with a slight technical fault, now I’m about to take my first sip of a well earned drink when in runs a taxi driver with a BA agent and points at me and shouts thats him, she runs up to me and asked if I still wanted to get home, silly question as I’m already on my feet, we run all the way to security where its high heels off (hers not mine) laptop out and belts off, through the scanner and then dressed again, more running to the gate where someone else takes over, then its out to the plane, as I’m walking up the steps the door is opened for me, I step on the plane and given seat 1A, in fact B,C and D the whole front row to myself, the door is closed behind me and off we go, as soon as the seat belt light has gone off a large G&T is placed in front of me and its relax time again, both girls on the plane were fantastic, at one point I asked for a bit of ice and the young lady put her things down and came a sat next to me, I thought she was going to hold my hand when she asked what it was I was after, I said just a bit of ice and with a really good laugh she said I thought you asked for some advice.
Now some people might have found this a bit stressful but there’s not a lot you can do about it, and shouting will never help, I found all the British Airways staff to be very professional and helpful on every level and could never fault them, and if anyone at British Airways reads this, you guys just bumped me down to a blue card, any chance I could go back to bronze, silver would be great.
Still trying to get my head around Lightroom 5 so haven’t posted for a while, still not completely sold on it, it’s good, but i’m not.
I like the lens correction feature when you can alter the perspective of the shot to make it look like you were standing more in front of the subject rather than below it, and of course the level feature, even though I have a level in my view finder I still have trouble getting a level shot, although I think this was down to to many Painkillers, that’s the drink not the pills.
And if you fancy one yourself here is how to make it.
Painkiller is a rum cocktail trademarked by Pusser’s Rum, their signature drink. The Painkiller® is a blend of Pusser’s Rum with 4 parts pineapple juice, 1 part cream of coconut and 1 part orange juice, well shaken and served over the rocks with a generous amount of fresh nutmeg on top. It may be made with either two, three or four ounces of Pusser’s dark rum.
Last month, while on another successful rig move we had the pleasure of watching some very heavy lifts going on, now when I say pleasure, I mean in the geeky sort of way, watching a crane lift something is not everyones height of entertainment, but for me it’s cool, and even cooler when you think about this being done at sea, most of us have seen a crane on the high street getting ready to do a lift, the first thing the crane does after parking up and the driver having 3 bacon sandwiches and 4 cups of tea is to put out the stabilises, those things in each corner that slide out a meter or so and press down on the ground to level and steady the crane. The thing is you can’t do this at sea, you have to use ballast and one great thing to use as ballast is water.
This is the Saipem 7000 just after completing 4 very complex heavy lifts, one lift being 11,100 tons, thats 500 tons under the world record (which was done by the same vessel). To put that into perspective thats 4080 female Indian elephants. Now to get back to this ballast thing, the Saipem 7000 was fitted with two ballast systems: A conventional pumped system which could transfer up to 24,000 tonnes of water per hour using 4 pumps and a free flooding system. The free flooding system used 2 m diameter valves to open certain compartments to the sea thus trimming or heeling the vessel. This allows the vessel to lift cargoes from barges much faster than if just the crane hoists are used.
This was the second time I have seen a heavy lift vessel, funny enough the first time was the rig move just before this one when I saw the Thialf, this is the largest crane vessel in the world.
A few years ago I was lucky enough to visit the Capernaum, which was a fishing village in the time of the Hasmoneans. Located on the northern shore of the Sea of Galilee, it is where archaeologist excavated two ancient synagogues built one over the other. A church near Capernaum is said to be the home of Saint Peter.
Now all this is pretty amazing stuff and I for one would not miss out on a day sightseeing, unfortunatly this day started with one almighty hangover which called for loads of water and a good pair of sunglasses, now to most this is not a big problem, however what I managed to do was take shots of the whole day with my exposure turned right up, because I kept my sunglasses on.
Ok so you are wondering where this is going, well I finally bit the bullet and have got Lightroom 5 and by the look of things so far, I have managed to save a lot of very over exposed photos.
Have a great weekend.