In late August I went to the Friday practice sessions of the 2016 round of the Supercars at Sydney Motorsport Park. The support classes for this event were top notch. In particular the Carrera Cup Asia and the Toyota 86 categories were great to watch.
The photos below are from a variety of the categories that day.
A few months ago I took my camera on a walk from Surry Hills down to the harbour during Vivid Sydney. Below are some of the sights that I saw, and not all of them are Vivid Sydney related, Sydney is a beautiful city that glitters under lights.
My final day in Germany began by being woken to the sound of Worms Cathedral’s bells tolling. After taking a shower in the freezing bathroom of my hotel room (it was more of a B&B) I carefully packed my suitcase and carry-on backpack for one final day of adventure and then the long journey back to Sydney.
Once I had finished breakfast I rugged up as it was a very cold morning and walked through the pedestrian mall of Worms back to the Worms’ Hauptbahnhof to catch a train to Frankfurt. As I walked I discovered a plaque noting the place where Luther had lived during the Diet of Worms.
To get to Frankfurt I had to catch a local service from Worms back to Mainz and then switch to a S-Bahn service. Although the local trains are “relatively” slow I had a good view of the vineyards that make the Rhine area so famous. I switched trains at Mainz’s Römisches Theater station, unfortunately the transfer time between the two trains was around 2 minutes so I did not have time to take a photo of the ruins of the Roman Theatre that the station is built beside.
The Technik Museum Speyer was the biggest surprise of my trip. As stated in my previous post I had not heard about the town of Speyer until the previous evening and I went there on a whim. Visiting the museum was then a last minute decision as I had a few hours spare.
The museum is very large and has an amazing collection of planes, trains and automobiles from all areas of the globe. Seeing the Buran Space Shuttle alone would have satisfied me but also walking through a Boeing 747, Antonov 22 and German U-Boat made this museum the best I’ve ever been to – better than Kennedy Space Center.
I need to return and spend a full day here as I didn’t see everything and I now also want to visit the nearby sister Auto & Technik Museum Sinsheim. Continue reading →
Earlier today I upgraded my installation of Virtualbox on Windows 10 from 5.0.20 to 5.0.22. This also came up with an update to the guest additions which I installed into my Ubuntu 16.04 guest machine.
After a reboot Ubuntu would no longer boot and instead would flicker as it tried to change the screen resolution inside the virtual machine. This is a known problem in VirtualBox (see: https://www.virtualbox.org/ticket/15526).
I’ve managed to revert VirtualBox and the guest additions back to 5.0.20 using the following steps:
On the host OS (in this case Windows 10) reinstall VirtualBox 5.0.20 over 5.0.22 – this was straight forward, I found the old installer in my downloads directory.
Open VirtualBox and start the Ubuntu guest machine, immediately hold down the left shift key. This must be done before the purple splash screen.
At the grub menu that loads select “Advanced Options for Ubuntu” and then select the second menu entry. This entry should contain the word “upstart”.
Once Ubuntu has booted to a console, login.
Switch to the currently installed VirtualBox guest additions install directory
and try and run
I didn’t have much success with this.
Insert the guest additions CD from VirtualBox’s top menu bar.
Until the previous evening I hadn’t even heard of Speyer and discovering it turned out to be one of the highlights of my trip. After spending the morning exploring Worms I jumped on a train for the 35 minute journey to Speyer.
Arriving at Speyer I walked from the Hauptbahnhof along to the Altpörtel and Maximilianstraße, Speyer’s main street. Here the pastel coloured buildings of Speyer felt a lot more like “stereotypical” Germany than Worms or Mainz did. This may be due to it receiving much less damage during WWII than the other two cities.
Finding my way from Worms station to my hotel for the night should have been pretty simple. All I had to do was walk down one road and then turn once and walk down a second but somehow I still managed to get lost. It turned out that my hotel was above a restaurant that was closed over the winter. Once I had figured out how to get into the hotel I put my bags into my room and headed out again to find food for dinner.
Worms was a lot smaller than what I was expecting. Trying to find dinner turned out to be quite a challenge as many of the restaurants and pubs contained people openly smoking inside. In the end I just settled for a hot chocolate at a cafe, planned ideas for things to see the following day and then had an early night.
My next destination after Aachen was Worms around three hours away. Getting to Worms required me to catch three different trains. So rather that trying to get there as fast as possible I gave myself the whole day to do some sightseeing along the way.
It was fortunate that I wasn’t in a hurry as my first train of the day from Aachen to Cologne was delayed by 25 minutes. Once I got to Cologne I changed trains for a slower IC train but one that would wind itself down the side of the Rhine Valley.
I have previously been down the Rhine Valley on my first visit to Germany but it is so spectacular that it is worth doing multiple times – next time I do it I hope to be on a boat, photos taken through a train window just don’t do it justice. For tourism reasons it is called the “Romantic Rhine” and with huge cliffs, many castles and beautiful villages it more than lives up to its name.
A year or so ago I first saw the draft model Erebus E63 Mercedes Benz V8 Supercar that Biante Model Cars was producing, it looked absolutely spectacular. A few months ago the finished version of that model was released and as Erebus Motorsport are no longer racing the E63 I decided it would be a model worth collecting so I purchased it. This was the first model car that I’ve purchased since I was a teenager and by far the most expensive. When it arrived I couldn’t believe the level of detail in the 1/18 scale model. As a consequence I purchased the model of the Volvo S60 on my next paycheck. They are now proudly displayed on my bookcase and I have my eyes on more models, this could become an expensive hobby.