Something New Every Day

A record of doing a new thing every day in 2011

Gouda Stroopwafels (196/365) Friday July 15, 2011

As mentioned yesterday I had a couple of hours stopover in Amsterdam waiting for my flight home to Newcastle, so I thought I’d browse the airport shops for something Dutch (and new!)

What I decided on was getting some Gouda Stroopwafels, which according to their marketing can be called syrup waffles, treacle waffles or even caramel cookie waffles - the last of which seems the most accurate to me. Very nice they were too.

Seattle to home via Amsterdam on Delta (195/365) Thursday July 14, 2011

After a pretty successful but short work trip, I flew back home on Thursday night so I could get back for my holiday starting on Sunday. However just like on the way out we couldn’t get our usual BA flight via Heathrow so for the first time I flew back with Delta to Newcastle via Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam.

I’d managed to upgrade to a seat with more leg room for just £74 so I did manage to get a decent amount of sleep. However the food was very poor (dry macaroni cheese) and there was no individual movie screens. Definitely more room than on BA so fine on the way home when you need some sleep, but everything else on Delta is just a little worse.

Black Bottle Postern (194/365) Wednesday July 13, 2011

On Wednesday we went to a new bar in Bellevue recommended by @stephbu - the Black Bottle Postern.

It’s on Bellevue Way sort of opposite Joey’s and the Hyatt and not that easy to find. However it was very good - a good selection of beers and the food was excellent. The others seemed to enjoy the crispy fried chicken, and the ”chola batura eggplant potato chickpeas hot” I had was excellent too.

Great to have a few beers with some old friends, and will definitely go to the Black Bottle again.

Lucky Charms (193/365) Monday July 11, 2011

More US food related excitement. In the cafeteria in Bing HQ they offer a wide selection of breakfast options, so I opted for trying Lucky Charms cereal.

I’d heard of them (on The Simpsons I think) but never tried them before. To be honest they weren’t very nice, very sweet cereal plus marshmallow pieces. Not an experiment to repeat.

Reeses Peanut Butter Chocolate Cake Cheesecake (192/365) Monday July 11, 2011

In typical US style we’re continuing to stuff our faces on our trip.

On Monday we went to the Cheesecake factory in Bellevue for dinner, and although we all had big main course, we thought it would be rude if we didn’t have a piece of cheesecake for dessert. The portions are massive there, so we decided to share a piece of an amazing new flavour (for me) between the 4 of us - Reeses Peanut Butter Chocolate Cake Cheesecake.

It was as rich as it sounds, and although it was really nice we were glad we’d shared a single slice between us all.


Saw a fencing exhibition (191/365) Sunday July 10, 2011

It was Paul’s first time in Seattle (in the US even) so we decided to do the tourist spots. After pancakes at IHOP and a brief tour of the Microsoft campus, we headed downtown on the bus, and ended up going to the Seattle Center on the monorail. 

We didn’t fancy risking going up the always rickety looking Space Needle, so we went for a wander around and found there was a Bastille Day French festival going on (a few days early!) For unknown reasons this involved amongst more traditionally French things a display of fencing - the sport not the gardening type.

I’d never seen real fencing before and it was quite interesting, especially when the experts came on and gave a great display of very fast action. Glad I didn’t go for Olympic tickets though, as other than by watching the electronic scoring system it was very hard to tell what the hell was going on.


Flew to Seattle via Paris with Air France (190/365) Saturday July 9, 2011

The BA Heathrow-Seatac flight was completely booked up, so for my week long work trip to Seattle I had to go with Air France from Newcastle via Charles De Gaulle airport in Paris.

It actually all worked out OK in the end, but as the scheduled transfer time in Paris was only an hour and a quarter I knew beforehand it could get stressful. The NCL-CDG flight was 15 minutes late and took forever to taxi to the farthest point of the airport, which resulted in long bus ride back to the terminal. The security queues were then pretty long and I would have been in danger of missing the CDG-SEA flight if it hadn’t been delayed slightly too. By the time I got through I rushed straight to the gate to join the back of the boarding queue with just a few minutes to spare. Phew.

Despite the website not showing it I did have a vegetarian meal booked, which was a pleasant surprise, and I watched 3 decent movies (Limitless, Paul, and Just Go With It) and if it wasn’t for the too short connection time I’d definitely think about going that way again.

Checked out Evernote integration possibilities (189/365) Friday July 8, 2011

I’ve been a big user of Evernote for a while now for keeping notes on everything, mainly because it’s a lot more cross-platform than Office OneNote.

However, what I didn’t realise until Friday was there an extensive API you can use to integrate other apps or services with Evernote. I spent an interesting half an hour playing about with the scripting interface, and had a few ideas of other ways I could automatically add other information into notes.

Unfortunately I don’t think I’ll have time to get an entry together for the upcoming Evernote Developer Competition which is offering impressively big prizes, but I’m even more impressed with the way the Evernote team is gradually turning their program into a platform

(P.S. This entry has been written in an extremely jetlagged and sleep deprived state, so if it makes even less sense than usual that’s the reason!)

Bus through new bits of London (188/365) Wednesday July 6, 2011

I was sick of getting the tube down to Victoria, as even early in the morning it’s insanely busy. So when there were even more delays I jumped off at Finsbury Park and decided to experiment getting the bus.

I knew I could get plenty of buses to Camden and then a 24 to Victoria, but out the back of the 253 I saw a C2 going to Victoria so decided to get that. However it turned off just before I could get it, so I had a 10 minute wait for the next one. However it was sort of worth it as I got to go round by London Zoo, Albany Street and down Portland Place, all places I hadn’t been before.

However all in all it took best part of an hour and a quarter door to door, so not the most optimum commute unfortunately.

Went past opening of M&M World (187/365) Wednesday July 6, 2011

I headed back into Soho after work as I had a full loyalty card at Wok to Walk burning in my pocket, and after I’d had my noodles I thought I’d head back via Leicester Square as I thought there might be a Harry Potter film premiere that might be worth a nose.

However it turns out the big attraction was the opening of M&M World, a store dedicated to the sweets. That all seems a bit strange to me, but I thought I’d briefly join the crowds to see what all the fuss was about. There were some giant M&Ms dancing around, and I saw a celebrity leaving which only later I found out was X-Factor “star” Alexandra Burke. I think most of the crowd were waiting for JLS, but I wasn’t so I headed off.

All very underwhelming really, but definitely something new.