Stars and bars

So we are at the hotel 14 Sterren, on Texel. It’s a Saturday afternoon and there is the sound of a wedding in the background. It’s going on at the restaurant in the buildings next to where we are staying. We have had a short but fun ride to get here, and that was yesterday, cycling from Alkmaar to here.

Today’s very short cycles were into the centre of town and back:

Cycling without luggage was welcome. I don’t think we are at the full strength of former years at the moment. That is, we could have done the 36 miles from Alkmaar to our place in Texel in a morning or even the full 58 from IJMuiden to Texel, (i.e. IJMuiden to Alkmaar and Alkmaar to Texel) in a day if we had wanted. But we didn’t want. This is holiday, which means we don’t have to strain our bahookies. Continue reading

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11 April: First day of DemocracyAlive!

I woke around 8am UK time, with a stinking hangover. Not fair! I’d not drunk any alcohol. I finally found the online programme for today’s DemocracyAlive! events. I don’t mean it wasn’t online before, just that I’d not made time to read it before now. I decided on going to these events:

  • What public services for the future? Digital Transformation and Low-carbon economy
    (12 noon to 1pm)
  • Festival launch (2pm to 3pm)
  • [Koffiepauze (3pm to 4pm)]
  • Democracy as a culture (4pm to 6pm)
  • Talking Europe with Commissioner Vestager (6pm to 7pm)
  • Talking Europe with Michel Barnier (7pm to 8pm)

Here’s how I got on, mostly recalled from tweets, texts and emails I sent at the time.

Continue reading

10 April: Napier to Texel

A first!

I gave my first ever presentation to students today: briefing them about how I would mark some of their work. I think it was successful, and the students asked some incisive questions.

Then the travels began: Continue reading