A giant adventure in Ireland mix

Northern Ireland coast I got away for the first time during the pandemic. It was an adventure taken on my motorcycle. I of course took the pacemaker device out for the first time in a long time, so I did a mix while in hotel rooms. I did start a mix with key parts of the journey but it was long and didn’t really work together. Instead I took the Ireland part and skipped a few tunes to make this frankly great mix. Its quite different starting with some classic Orbital and ending at Home. Along the path, there’s lots of new tunes which I haven’t used before. What I like about this mix is the gel of the tunes and mixing.  I also quite like the vocals in the mix which add something special to the whole thing.

Enjoy the mix, which is a new entry in journey with pacemaker mixes on my mini mixcloud (where you can hear it at super high quality and download it.

  1. Belfast – Orbital
  2. Eye – Ma5Haria
  3. Suru (Martin Roth Nu-Style remix) – Super8 & Tab
  4. Pǝsnɟuoɔ (Confused) – Laurent Garnier
  5. A break in the clouds (Main mix) – Holden
  6. Chordplay – Oliver Smith
  7. Are you one of us (Cabriolet Paris remix) – Kyau & Albert
  8. Dust in the wind – Arnej
  9. Laguna – Protoculture
  10. Polarize (Second sine remix) – Snejider
  11. Avenue (Club mix) – Paul Van Dyk
  12. Floyd (Extended mix) – Jerome Isma-Ae & Alastor
  13. Home (Cosmic gate remix) – Paul Van Dyk Feat. Johnny Mcdaid

Updated on Sunday 26th September, a giant adventure in Ireland is now number 98th in the tech trance chart.

Mixcloud chart

Circling the Isle of man without touching it

Common travel area by scooter map
About 600 miles of traveling

I mentioned traveling the common travel area as a holiday and I decided it needed to happen. Especially since the weather is actually going to be pretty good throughout the whole holiday (even in Northern Ireland)

I decided to do the loop in an anti-clockwise way because I wanted to visit Northern Ireland when the weather was at its best.

My Honda silverwing ready to go

So why…?

  1. Its right at that place where I’m slightly scared and excited at the same time. Its been a while
  2. I get to visit a new country
  3. I get to drive in Europe at long last
  4. I do it all without flying, although I do wonder if the scooter’s overall carbon footprint is so great or not

Good enough reasons for a holiday  I think

Maybe I’ll one day actually ride the scooter around the Isle of Man in my own TT

Traveling the common travel area by scooter?

Common travel area by scooter map
About 600 miles of traveling

Originally I booked a holiday in Portugal as a personal incentive for having the Covid19 vaccine. However during Euro 2021, Portugal was moved from the Green countries to the Amber countries. Although double jabbed, I made a call once I finally understood what I would need to do in regards to tests and finally cancelled the trip (the incentive worked, I could cancel most of it and I am generally trying to fly less).

However I still have the time off and started thinking what I could do with the time which is different from my usual days?

This is when I thought, I have never been to Northern Ireland and wanted to visit the giants causeway. While looking around at ferry’s trying to avoid going into Ireland I found out there is no tests to enter Ireland/Europe as its now part of the common travel area.

Ireland, the UK, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man

You do not need to take a COVID-19 test or quarantine on arrival in England if you are travelling within the UK, Ireland, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man, (the Common Travel Area), and you have not been outside of the Common Travel Area in the previous 10 days.

I’ve been thinking what if I travel from Manchester, England to Hollyhead, North Wales, get the ferry across to Dublin, Ireland. Travel up to Belfast, Northern Ireland. Then get a ferry across to Cairnryan, Scotland then travel back to Manchester, England! One massive loop. Going to all of the United Kingdom and a part of Europe on my scooter?

My Honda silverwing ready to go

This would knock the long running new years resolution to drive in Europe and also kinda visit a new country.

Its also going to be social distanced if I’m riding my scooter most of the time. Perfect pandemic holiday eh?

Its about 600 miles of travel and two ferries crossings but I think with good weather its possible with a few stops in hotels and with friends.

Updated visited countries

Countries in 2021A while ago I did a count of the countries I have been to. I know I’m privileged to have visited a lot of these countries. It was always strange to me because its not like I planned to do it, till I started putting in my new years resolutions visit a new country.

I updated the list to 2021 (although there’s not going to be much updates for a while I suspect). Its strange looking at the map because there is whole continents I haven’t even crossed on a flight.

South America, Africa and Australia. All I’d like to visit sometime, for example South America, love to visit Argentina, Brazil and Chile. In Africa Nigeria, Kenya and South Africa. Finally Australia is a strange one for me, as I’m not so focused about Australia but I’d like to see Tasmania and New Zealand mainly to visit people I know. I was considering Singapore for a holiday as its in the UK green list for travel and I have always wanted to check it out (you know how much I love cities) but decided not being able to go into Malaysia would be disappointing with Kuala Lumpur being a few hours away.

Of course this may all change in the next few months but I decided to revisit Lisbon after my brief stop over 3 years ago.

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Can I travel around Europe with Estonia’s Digital Nomad Visa?

schengen zone countries

I spent a bit of time tonight looking at the Estonia’s Digital Nomad Visa requirements and I do believe the idea of applying for a Estonian Nomad Visa then heading over to the Netherlands is possible.

From the Estonia Digital Nomad Visa FAQ.

17. How long can a DNV-holder stay in other countries in the Schengen Zone during their visa period?

I looked at the Schengen area and found the above mapping.  I’m sure its obvious for most but I hadn’t actually looked at what countries were included and not. I can imagine a base out of Tallinn, Estonia and a month or two out of the Netherlands?

The other restrictions look good to me although I’m also interested in the short 90 day Nomad visa too.

Checking for Spy Cameras everywhere…

I recently been tracking a lot of Spycams in hotels and airbnb’s. Yes its currently mainly happening in the east a lot more it seems, but like most technological trends its on the way westward.

It very much reminds me of my experience in the Airbnb in Barcelona. Yes its was a listening device and they did declare it once we were in the flat but its not good enough. Airbnb is the wild west for this.

The spycameras are getting super small and higher quality all the time. For the last year I have been checking my hotel rooms (pre-covid19 when I could travel) with my camera phone and light. I’m not using an app but rather the camera light as my camera sees IR no problem. Theres some quite good tips in this travel site.

By the way, don’t search for “spycameras” on the web, as you will get some questionable results!

Could Covid19 be the Airbnb host shake out which was needed?


Updated: 24/4/2020 – Enough said

Some Airbnb hosts are a bit screwed right now. Although the platform has had some trouble before Covid19. I’m sure the platform will keep on going but its going change for some.

Airbnb, a home-sharing website, has seen bookings fall by 40% in big European cities as the pandemic halted trips. It may delay its IPO, which was expected to be this year’s biggest. But despite racking up losses of late, it is well-managed, cash-rich and, thanks to an unmatched global reach that puts up a high barrier to entry, likely to make money again once people get back to travelling.

The Economist

I do not feel sorry for those Airbnb hosts who bought all those extra house/flats for the sole purpose of renting on Airbnb.  They took the living piss extracting huge sums of money and ruined local communities as they did. This could be the world wide shake out of the Airbnb money making mania?

Post Covid19, I’m banking on the emphasis being less on GDP and more on human values.

The rainy days travelling mix

Rain drops on a window screen
Photo credit to: josephb on flickr

It was a rainy drive down through Birmingham on Sunday but complete with the Pacemaker device and a steady driving from my partner, I was able to do a mix for the whole journey down south. Kind of gutted I didn’t include Travel (Signum mix) by Bulgarian

This time I recorded the whole mix, which was meant to be slightly more chilled as I’m sure it affected the driving speed a bit. I think its worthy of a journey with pacemaker mix and I dedicate it to my lovely partner who drove quote a bit last weekend.

Lots of new tunes and some old classics, mixed up and played over a car stereo while travelling on the motorways.

Enjoy!

  1. The Blessing – Gui Boratto
  2. Lately (The struggle dub) – Airbiscuit
  3. Suru (Martin Roth Electrance remix) – Super8 & TabArm
  4. Shoreside – Streetcleaner
  5. Rain (Cosmic Gate remix) – Armin Van Buuren feat Cathy Burton
  6. BOOM – MaRlo
  7. The Storm – Eco
  8. Breath (Blake Jarrell remix) – Anna Nalick
  9. Percussive Thinking (meat katie & elite force remix) – Forme
  10. Communication (mas mix) – Mario Piu
  11. Rosegarden 2.0 – JS16
  12. City of lights – LTN
  13. Shnorkel (Dousk Exclusive Gems Remix) – Miki Latvak & Ido Ophir
  14. Cafe Del Mar at Night (Beat Service’s Out of office mashup) – Energy 52 vs Shakedown
  15. Switch (Oliver Klein & Peter Jurgens remix) – Beckers
  16. Mirrors – Trilucid
  17. Z.I.T.A (Markus Schossow remix) – Hiver & Hammer with Funabashi
  18. Daddyrock – Sander Van Doorn
  19. Dance4life (12 inch mix) – Tiesto Feat Maxi Jazz
  20. Anjan – Angelica S
  21. Weather The Storm (Daniel Wanrooy twister remix) – Space RockerZ
  22. Cream (Paul Van Dyk remix) – Blank & Jones

Imagine if the Curve card supported all those transport and store cards?

The Curve CardI have been using Curve for a while now. I first came across it when Tom Cheesewright talked about it at a second degree dinner I hosted. I was still amazed by Monzo but it lost its shine once it became a current account for me. So I finally got a Curve card thanks to Tony Churnside for the referral.

Its been very good to me, and the trade off in sharing my transactions in return for not carrying around all my cards is good for me. I do generally carry around one more just in-case, but its been fine except a couple times, where I needed to tap again.

If I had a company credit card, a curve card would be essential, especially since the receipt feature works almost as I need it for my expenses.

Having used it for a few months, I started thinking it would be great if curve supported NFC travel cards like Oyster. Its something I’ve thought about previously. Of course the London Oyster system supports NFC payments directly, so maybe I should return my Oyster cards anyway.

But imagine if it supported other NFC cards? Yes you can use your phone to do this but I don’t want to use my expensive phone compared to a cheap piece of plastic which I can freeze in a instant? Store cards is more tricky as most are still swipe not NFC but could be very cool?

Update…

https://twitter.com/imaginecurve/status/1102500000020525056

Another busy month or so

Its going to be another busy month or so…

Tomorrow we start to Build a healthy public service internet in the first forum during Mozfest weekend. This will be further explored at Mozfest in the decentralised space on Saturday afternoon.

Not long afterwards I’ll be going to Skopje along the same lines as last year when I was in Sarajevo. This time we have the results of last years workshop, the living room of the future.

Then Berlin for Most wanted music with a adaptive narrative conference talk more focused on audio than video and our first perceptive podcasting workshop. Now this exciting but scary as its completely beta and being developed right now.

I’m back in Berlin not long afterwards for a look at object based media and how machine learning can work together for the future of storytelling, quite similar to TOA 17 but more exploring and more I can talk about now compared to then.

Finally wrapping up with a critical panel discussion titled New platforms, new ways of storytelling at the future of the book in London. I expect a few things I said at Oreilly’s Tools of Change in 2012 are still very relevant. But also Perceptive podcasting will be much more mature by then.

All exciting but quite a bit in one go…

The future of personal transportation?

Bucharest tech week expo - future of travel

I had the joy of going to Bucharest as part of Techweek there. It was quite something and I honestly was caught totally unaware of how different from my previous experiences in eastern europe it was. The weather was wonderful and hot and I pretty much walked around with my swingblade trainers. My only complaint was having to give 1 star to a uber driver for a crazy ride.

While at Bucharest Techweek, there was a expo which showcased some of the latest consumer technology. It was very popular and for good reason. There was a lot of personal transportation technology. Everything from hoverboards & segways to electric assisted cycles & electric cars.

Bucharest tech week expo - future of travel

I hoped the electric skateboard would be great but it really sucked. It was more like a long board with little flexability you get with skateboards. I also tried one of those hoverboards and that thing with one big wheel and you sit on.

I spent a lot of time on a segway, something I haven’t done since BarCampLondon3 at Google’s headquarters in London Victoria many years ago.

Bucharest tech week expo - future of travel

But quickly moved from one with handle bars to one with the handle bar replaced with a thing between your legs. I’m happy to say I never crashed or fell off once. I actually got so comfortable with it that I started doing videos riding around the expo on it.

Such a shame you can’t legally ride these things around in the UK, you can actually buy it though; and not as bad as I first thought too. I mean expensive but not the 3k I guessed.

Why Kate needs a little Culture Shock

The BBC Radio 4 Listening project

Been thinking hard about where I need to take Kate

I’m struggling a bit as she is very adaptable so everything bar a weekend in Tokyo or New York will put her out of her comfort zone.

I happen to come across this piece from thought catalog, 8 Reasons Why ‘Culture Shock’ Can Change Your Life For The Better.

We’ve all experienced ‘culture shock’ at one point in our lives. When we travel to a new country or study abroad or move for work. While the early stages of culture shock can be very irritating and slightly depressing, once you get past the initial shock and adjust to the new culture, you will realize that culture shock actually made you grow more as a person and changed your life for the better.

The key points for me are…

  • It makes you a stronger person
  • It makes you more confident
  • You meet a lot of new people
  • It evokes inspiration
  • It gives you free education
  • You will eventually know who you are and what you want

This is when I started thinking its not about scaring the living day lights out of her, but rather inducing a level of culture shock and that doesn’t have to be just for her. It can be a shared “culture shock” experience.

So with this in mind, I started thinking about places I’m planning on going this year… I still dread to think what Kate has planned for me, but shes been taunting me over direct message Twitter…

Time to up my game…

Tokyo awaits

Japanese Shopping Alley

I said in my new years resolutions I was going to Tokyo.

  • Go to a new part of the world
    I’m scoping Tokyo and think I got the flight sorted, some friends who maybe interested and I’m looking at Airbnb for somewhere to stay. My cousin has mentioned eastern europe is cool…  regardless, I got to try going somewhere new and further east

So I have looked at the best times to go and I’m the very edge of booking the flights. Found some great flights for about £500. But I’m a little stuck when it comes to the hotel/airbnb.

Its not the cost, its more if I’m going alone or with somebody else?

I have had a few offers but nothing has stuck yet,  So I guess this is a open call for anybody who would like to join me or has advice on where I should stay or go. Wikitravel and a host of recommended books have been useful.

I will visit other parts of Japan but Tokyo is my main destination, we all know how much I love cities.

Travelstarter: Nice mission terrible name

I first saw Travel starter via Cristiano Betta

A crowdfunding startup for travelers wanting to support the place they are visiting? Sounded too good to be true… But I was impressed with I saw.

TravelStarter is a new way to travel by supporting local tourism and saving money at the same time. It’s easy – you pick your next destination, select your favorite project or reward, and we take care of the rest.

Although I can’t really see it taking off, I think its a really nice idea. For example a friend of mine, went to Goa for a month. She loved it so much that the family she stayed with, she regularly still checks in on them and I think sends them small gifts every now and then. With something like travelstarter, she could help,  encourage others and work towards a better village as a whole.

It wouldn’t really work too well for myself because I tend to head to cities and places which are not really in dire need of external help. Then again it might be interesting to hear about some of the local projects and communities before and after I travel.

It feels like a good idea but not something which I expect VC’s will go for? Terrible name too…

Ride down to Bristol via Snowdonia

At end of my journey

In a previous post I talked about driving to Bristol via Snowdonia. Well I’m happy to say I made it! Yeh me! 400+ miles completed.

I know most of you are saying, so what? But I have never driven so far on my Silverwing scooter before. I use to drive between London and Bristol on the A4 when I moved to London and it use to be a very long trip (4hours). Main reason it took so long is because I was on a 125cc scooter and it was going flat out most of the journey. I couldn’t use the motorway with my L plates and 125cc bike. Such a journey I would need to nap for a hour or so straight away afterwards!

I recorded the journey using my tracks as usual but unfortunately turned it off when stopping at Aberystwyth. I also forgot to turn it on a couple times, hence some small gaps in the journey.

Here is my ride from Manchester to Liverpool to Llandidno to Llarwst to Blaenau Ffestiniog to Barmouth to Dolgellau to Machynlleth to Aberystwyth. Blaenau was impressive, I wished my camera still had enough battery because you swing around a mountain down a beautiful valley into this clearing. The clearing is a mine site with a village in the middle. Barmouth was a mistake because when looking at google maps, I thought the line across the river was a public bridge but it was actually a train bridge. I actually thought I missed it but ended up going back on myself towards Dolgellau. I did stop at Llandidno and try and go around the Great Orme (the wrong way it seems). I also tried to pay at the mersey tunnel but realised it was free for bikes.

Then I stayed at the Queensbridge hotel on the seafront where I got told I was being moving to the Four Seasons in town. Didn’t really matter because it was pretty much the same.

After a sleep and breakfast I headed out again. From Aberystwyth to Rhayader to Talgarth to Abergavenny to Newport to Bristol. The travel across the 2nd seven bridge cross was free, and I somewhat forgot this. Also got stuck in a bit of traffic around Newport and Bullth Wells due to the Royal Wales festival.

The camera clamp actually held all the way through the journey, I was very impressive and thought it was bound to fall off somepoint.

I think I might have connected the two parts together using Google Maps Engine. I tried to do it with a non-native XML editor but KML is a odd format which I don’t really get the schema.

So having that ride under my belt and the weather looking to hold while I drive back. I may avoid Birmingham and the Motorway to drive up through Wales again.

Who knows… Maybe I’ll drive down again and Ireland is calling me too. I always knew the Honda Silverwing was a touring scooter being the little sibling of the Honda Goldwing.