Category Archives: Days Out

Neolithic Long Barrow Coldrum Stones near Trottiscliffe with the DJI Mavic Pro drone.

Neolithic, refers to the period of British, Irish and Manx history that spanned from circa 4000 to circa 2,500 BCE. (Source Wikipedia).

My aim today was to film the neolithic long barrow known as the Coldrum Stones, with my DJI Mavic Pro drone. The stones are located near a small village called Trottiscliffe, in Kent, United Kingdom.

The stones are looked after by the National Trust and are free to visit any time of the year. It is a lovely walk to the stones, along side the fields, forest and gorgeous views of the North downs.

Coldrum long burrow neolithic stones

I created the mission (flight path) my drone would be flying using the Litchi Mission Hub website.

Continue reading Neolithic Long Barrow Coldrum Stones near Trottiscliffe with the DJI Mavic Pro drone.

Adiós 2016!

In my last blog of 2015 I mentioned what a special year it had been for us, but honestly 2016 has topped it in so many ways.

It was the year Bowen travelled the most miles and visited even more exciting, exotic destinations than ever before. There were again a few firsts (first time to Zel am See, Mexico City, the island of Bali and Kraków). British Airways was the carrier of choice and they lived up to their great customer service by upgrading us twice for free.

On the BA website they have this cool little chart showing some cool statistics. 

The year of travel started in late March with a week long trip to a small Austrian town called Zel Am See. This was our first ski trip to Austria and it was awesome! The weather was perfect most days, the scenery was outstanding.

A week or two later we were jetting off to Mexico City for the wedding extravaganza of the year. Our friends Rodney and Sofia were getting married, but this was no ordinary wedding.

Continue reading Adiós 2016!

Have a £1.5 million pound Rolls Royce Silver Ghost for your birthday Mike!

I had a fantastic birthday today. I got my first gift watching the Malaysian F1 Grand Prix, but I will come to that a little later.

It was a such lovely day today, Jo and I decided to take a drive up to Essex with the aim of visiting one of the coastal towns.

On route we stopped at P&A Wood in Great Easton. According to their website “In 2001, P & A Wood were appointed as “The Official Rolls-Royce and Bentley Heritage Dealers” in recognition of the knowledge and expertise that the company had built up with the Classic and Vintage cars“.

Stepping into their show room and one can see why? It is incredible! So many classic cars but my favourite was a Rolls Royce Silver Ghost from 1914. It had a price tag of £1.5 million. A small price to pay I guess for a car that has only done 5556 miles in its whole life. It was in perfect condition. Next year perhaps!

Outside their buildings every Tom, Dick and Harry who owned a super car had gathered to show off their rides.

Continue reading Have a £1.5 million pound Rolls Royce Silver Ghost for your birthday Mike!

The GoPro Hero 4 Time Lapse feature is pretty cool.

I did a 60 second time lapse of us building our tent at Oldbury Hill campsite in Kent over the weekend.

It is quite a cool feature. I placed the GoPro Hero 4 Silver onto a tripod. Surprisingly it does not use a lot of space at all because all it is doing is taking one photo at time every 60 seconds.

Then a I did a 30 second time lapse of us pulling the tent down.

The GoPro Studio is quite clever in that it recognizes the photos as a time lapse sequence without the need for me to add them, thus saving some time.  It didn’t take long at all to make the above videos. I could have added sound and more text but for the short video there was need.

A visit to Scotney Castle a 14th century gem.

Despite the cold weather today, we made use of our National Trust memberships and visited  Scotney Castle, built in the 14th Century by Roger de Ashburnham, Conservator of the Peace in Kent and Sussex. It is located near Lamberhurst in Tunbridge Wells, which is in the beautiful garden of England (Kent). 😉

scotney castle 1~2

The castle is situated on 750 hectares of beautiful rolling green hills filled with sheep and cows. There are lots of trees and plants in amongst the sculptured gardens. There is even a quarry, which has the footprint of an Iguanodon, left here over 100 million years ago.

Sadly we saw very little flowers, but were told that it is most beautiful in early summer, so we will definitely be visiting again.

Continue reading A visit to Scotney Castle a 14th century gem.

A visit to Ightham Mote a 14th Century Manor House.

We joined the National Trust today. We have been members before, so thought we would give it another go.  It cost us £99 for the two of us for a years membership, which is not bad when one considers how many National Trust historic houses, castles, mills, gardens, coastlines, forests, farmland, moorland, islands, castles, nature reserves, villages… and pubs there are around our lovely island.

Our first visit was to Igtham Mote, which is an outstanding 14th century moated manor house located in Kent near the village of Ightham.

We got to see the bottom half of the house as that was the only part open at this time of the year as well as the lovely gardens. We will definitely go back in March, when the rest of the house is open to the public and the gardens are starting to bloom. Definitely worth a visit even if one is not a National Trust member.

Snakes alive!

It is not often one gets to see the UK’s only venomous snake species out in the wild. Jo and I were walking in the North Downs, in Kent’s Trosley Country Park, when we stumbled upon this little beauty lying in the path, probably waiting for a small mouse or lizard. It didn’t bargain for my boot, and was hissing and striking at it much better.

Fortunately I had my Panasonic Lumix TZ20 available and was able to take a short video and a few photos. I have since looked up the snake and it’s a Vipera Berus or Adder or Viper. Males are grey, whereas females are brown in colour. They all have a distinct “V” or “X” shaped marking on the head.  These snakes have vertically slit pupils, dorsal surface and flanks are indented and have zigzag stripes on the back, and the flanks usually have a row of dark oval spots.

The females get to about 75cm in length. This one was roughly 30cm. Check out this website for more detail on this snake.

Green Day Wembley Stadium 19th June 2010 Review.

We witnessed the most fantastic, incredible, awesome Green Day concert at Wembley Stadium. We’ve never seen them live until tonight, but wow! was it worth the wait? Singing along to all their songs with the crowd singing in unison was an amazing feeling. Wembley Stadium as a venue for bands such as Green Day is just brilliant!

They kicked off their show at 8pm with four songs from their latest album “21st Century Breakdown”.

The crowd went ballastic. Then a few recent awesome songs from the American Idiot album and then Billie Joe got into gear singing some of the older songs from Dookie (Basket Case, When I come around, Burnout etc).

The three main band members – lead vocalist and guitarist Billie Joe Armstrong, bassist and backing vocalist Mike Dirnt, and drummer Tré Cool were brilliant and played their part well and looked like they were really enjoying themselves on stage.

Billie Joe is certainly a wonderful showman and could easily get the crowd to sing and clap at his command. Even Tré Cool is a showman in his own right and quite a funny guy.

Tré sang a song or two while Billie Joe played the drums and there was a moment where the two of them went for some record by singing and dancing to the song “shout” made famous by the Isley Brothers. It was quite funny though.

The band even dressed up in drag and sang one or two songs while lying down on the stage.

Some people in the crowd went mental especially where we were standing. That can be a good or bad thing depending on what you are expecting from the concert. I personally don’t mind people jumping around if they think of others, but when they push and kick and punch just for the fun of it, then it can become a bit unpleasant. There were definitely a few English idiots in the audience.

There was a good mix of stage videos behind the band and on the side screens.

With the various lights going on the atmosphere was electrifying.

The concert went on for well over 2 and a half  hours with two encores. The last 6 songs were just incredible, with spectacular fireworks, fireballs, ticker tape even toilet paper being thrown up into the air.

Below is the playlist for the concert.

  1. Song of the Century
  2. 21st Century Breakdown
  3. Know Your Enemy
  4. East Jesus Nowhere
  5. Holiday
  6. The Static Age
  7. Give Me Novacaine
  8. Are We The Waiting
  9. St. Jimmy
  10. Blvd. of Broken Dreams
  11. Nice Guys Finish Last
  12. Burnout
  13. Waiting
  14. Geek Stink Breath
  15. Dominated Love (Slave Tre on Guitar and Vocals, Bille Joe on Drums)
  16. Hitchin’ A Ride
  17. Welcome To Paradise
  18. When I Come Around
  19. Metal-Jam Iron Man/ Sweet Child of Mine/ Highway to Hell
  20. Brain Stew
  21. Jaded
  22. Longview
  23. Basket Case
  24. She
  25. King For A Day
  26. Shout/Hey Jude/I cant get no satisfaction/Teenage Kicks/Always look on the bright side of life
  27. 21 Guns
  28. Minority

Encore:

  1. American Idiot
  2. Jesus of Suburbia

Encore 2:

  1. When It’s Time (Acoustic)
  2. Wake Me Up When September Ends (Acoustic)
  3. Good Riddance (Time of Your Life)

33 songs in total made it one helleva good evening. If they were playing another night in London I would definitely go again.

All photos taken with Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ7 and belong to lookatbowen.com