Astrofest 2015

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With the sun over the water on a train over a bridge, with music in my own bubble, I can almost cry at the beauty of life. I kid you not. It was one of those breath-taking big orange ball sunsets, of which I couldn’t have taken a picture that would do it justice, while I was on my way to Astrofest for the 8th time. Steven and I met in Hook of Holland, where we had dinner in the harbour before we boarded the ferry. On the other end, there was a coach to London instead of a train, but it was a smooth trip and I even remembered the route to the venue from Kensington High Street.

I had forgotten my tickets to Astrofest, but the lovely organisers remembered I had been a speaker a few years back, so there wasn’t a problem. The sun was shining and it was a beautiful weekend. Steven and I first paid a visit to Robin from Canopus books. He gave me an awesome book, which I started reading right away (I will show you the book later). Then we met up with Graham and the boys had a look around all the astronomy toys. We said hi to Emily and Dave, Mandy and Ian and we found Todd lurking around the stalls too.

The pub we usually go to for lunch had changed their interior a bit, but it was still a lovely place and it was another cosy gathering of friends. Old and new. (Tom, it was great to meet you and I’m looking forward to catching up over Skype soon). Unfortunately we missed a few talks, but the venue was packed nonetheless. I especially liked the talk about Rosetta’s Comet and how it showed us the anatomy of the ‘duck’ (and that it would float on water too). Another very important mention was Asteroid Day (and I loved how people were asking about Brian, while he’s still touring of course).

A personal highlight was the lovely women at the stand of AstroCymru. They sold beautiful astronomy jewellery to support their work of visiting schools to teach kids about our planet and what else is out there. Steven (and I) especially loved their ‘down to earth’ box, in which they kept real fossils. I held a real vertebra of an Iguanodon dinosaur and a real meteorite. Steven, being a dinosaur fan, told the lady a few facts she didn’t know yet and I loved her enthusiasm!

Before we went for dinner, I had checked into the nearby hotel (where three men complemented me about the bag my mum had made, ha ha). The evening gathering was lovely too (not in the least because Annie gave free massages to us all). We managed to find a cosy pub, with a funny guy serving us and it was concluded that this was all we needed on a desert island. All in all, it was truly great to be over for Astrofest again and I already look forward to the next one!

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We took the ferry out

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Aw. Teddy bears on the road in Kensington.

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That’s okay, Central Line, WWRY has closed anyway.

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Lovely view from our hotel

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Me and the lovely Robin from Canopus Books

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Reading from my new book (more soon)

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Holding a real Iguanodon vertebra!

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And a real meteorite!

Lucie did a great job!

My pal Brian was sort of there anyway.

Steven and I captured by Graham.

The boyriend.

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Lunch with the Galaxy Zoo gang

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Dinner with the Galaxy Zoo gang

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Including weird faces…

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And free massages!

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The beautiful astronomy jewellery

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Bye London!

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Clouds from the other side, flying back

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The Dutch shore in sight.


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