International Travel

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How to cut queues at immigration – with maths

<p>When going on holiday to a foreign country, there’s one part of the journey that everybody dreads: border control. Everyone has to have their passport checked by an immigration official when entering a new country – and even when leaving some – so queues are almost inevitable.</p> <p>At Heathrow airport – <a href="https://www.internationalairportreview.com/article/32311/top-20-largest-airports-world-passenger-number/">one of the largest in the world</a> – many arriving passengers are <a href="http://www.dailymail.co.uk/travel/travel_news/article-6030399/BA-boss-criticises-two-hour-queues-Heathrow-Airport-border-farce.html">experiencing waiting times</a> of up to two hours at passport control. Border control officials seek to manage these queues through staff rosters – and when there aren’t enough staff rostered on to meet the number of arriving passengers, then queues at passport control can become excessively long.</p> <p>Staff rostering presents what’s known in industry as an “optimisation problem”. It is used in hospitals for nurses, in call centres and even in schools, <a href="http://www.optimisationintherealworld.co.uk/2018/04/13/challenges-in-producing-a-staff-roster/">for playground supervision</a>. The main goals are typically to ensure that services are completed in a reasonable amount of time, and to reduce the cost of staff.</p> <p>But these two goals are often contradictory – since paying more staff usually leads to better service. And because of this contradiction, staff rostering can be a very difficult optimisation problem to solve.</p> <p><strong>Meeting requirements</strong></p> <p>To balance these two aspects of staff rostering, organisations or regulatory bodies typically impose “service requirements”, in the form of expected service times. At Heathrow airport, the <a href="https://www.heathrow.com/company/company-news-and-information/performance/airport-operations/border-force">service requirements</a> state that 95% of passengers should be processed at passport control within 25 minutes for EEA citizens and 45 minutes for everyone else.</p> <p>Unfortunately, the border force at Heathrow has been unable to meet the services requirements for non-EEA immigrants since February 2018. July saw the worst performance, with 24.5% of all passengers entering the UK through terminals three and four experiencing waiting times of more than 45 minutes at passport control. In <a href="https://www.express.co.uk/travel/articles/977533/british-airways-heathrow-airport-passport-control-queues-UK">June</a>, <a href="https://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/991733/summer-holiday-travel-delay-Heathrow-airport-luton-airport-manchester-airport">July</a> and <a href="http://www.dailymail.co.uk/travel/travel_news/article-6030399/BA-boss-criticises-two-hour-queues-Heathrow-Airport-border-farce.html">August</a>, there have been reports of passengers waiting longer than two hours.</p> <p>Having lots of valid data is critical to making a good roster and reducing waiting times. The main components of staff rostering are modelling demand, scheduling days off and assigning staff to shifts or tasks. If the demand is known exactly in advance – for example, if the number of playground supervision tasks are the same every day throughout the school year – then staff rostering only needs to consider the last two components.</p> <p>In more dynamic environments, such as airport arrivals, demand modelling plays a crucial role in staff rostering. In an airport, the demand for passport control is directly related to the arrival times of aircraft, which can in turn be delayed. For example, in May 2015 only <a href="https://www.caa.co.uk/Data-and-analysis/UK-aviation-market/Flight-reliability/Datasets/Punctuality-data/Punctuality-statistics-2018/">75.93%</a> of flights arriving into Heathrow airport were on time. <a href="https://www.caa.co.uk/Data-and-analysis/UK-aviation-market/Flight-reliability/Datasets/Punctuality-data/Punctuality-statistics-2018/">Of the remaining flights</a>, 17% were delayed by less than an hour, and about 7% were delayed by longer. Since <a href="https://www.heathrow.com/company/company-news-and-information/company-information/facts-and-figures">94% of passengers</a> are international travellers, border control is massively affected by flight delays.</p> <p><strong>Digging into the data</strong></p> <p>One of the worst options, in regard to meeting service requirements, is to roster staff according to the scheduled arrival time of all flights. Although this would be relatively cheap, it ignores the fact that air travel is routinely subject to delays.</p> <p>A better way for border force to reduce delays at passport control is to roster staff so that the largest expected demand can be served within the set service requirements. Basically, this would mean opening as many booths at passport control as possible, at the busiest time for arrivals – taking into account any expected delays.</p> <p>But this is a very impractical and expensive solution, and there are limitations with respect to the number of available staff – especially since <a href="https://publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201719/cmselect/cmhaff/421/42105.htm">border force is already struggling</a> with insufficient numbers of staff. Fortunately, there is lots and lots of data relating to air travel, which can be used to model demand more accurately, and roster staff and employ other available technologies accordingly.</p> <p>Historical records of flight arrivals, the number of EEA and non-EEA citizens arriving and the demand at passport control are all available. Through the use of statistical and data science techniques, such as <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Forecasting">forecasting</a>, a sophisticated model of demand at passport control can be developed.</p> <p>Performing staff rostering with such a demand model may be conservative, meaning a higher overall cost, but it will be more likely to fit with the reality of air transportation. Yet proper demand modelling can also highlight situations – periods of time when predominately EEA citizens are arriving – where automatic passport scanners could provide flexibility in rostering staff, and which could decrease costs.</p> <p>Given the excessive delays reported at Heathrow border control, we can only assume that there is significant limitations to the demand model currently being used for staff rostering. By making better use of statistical techniques and drawing on the large amount of data that is available, it’s possible to significantly reduce the waiting time for passport control – even when flights are delayed.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important; text-shadow: none !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/100988/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: http://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><em>Written by <span>Stephen J Maher, EPSRC Research Fellow, Lancaster University</span>. Republished with permission of </em><a rel="noopener" href="https://theconversation.com/how-to-cut-queues-at-immigration-with-maths-100988" target="_blank"><em>The Conversation</em></a><em>. </em></p>

International Travel

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Queen gives special message to Aussies

<p><span>The Queen has delivered a special message to Australian families. </span></p> <p><span>Her Majesty sent a text of condolences to the Governors of New South Wales and Queensland following the recent bushfires, which saw devastation throughout both states. </span></p> <p><span>"Prince Philip and I have been deeply saddened to hear of the tragic loss of life and property caused by bushfires affecting communities and businesses across northern New South Wales and South East Queensland," the 93-year-old royal wrote.</span><span></span></p> <p><span>There were 65 active bushfires burning across the region with an estimated 21 lost and two lives taken. </span><span></span></p> <p><span><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="/media/7831852/queen-elizabeth-aus.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/02fb3962d00946e1aeb2c9dff2e223cc" /></span></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><em>Queen Elizabeth in Sydney Australia on March 13, 2006. </em></p> <p><span>Queen Elizabeth also said she felt inspired by the community joining together in the wake of the horrific tragedy.</span></p> <p><span>"I am heartened that once again the richness of spirit that defines Australians has drawn people together to support those in need," she wrote.</span></p> <p><span>She signed off the message as 'Elizabeth R' which stands for Elizabeth Regina.</span></p> <p><strong>Read Queen Elizabeth II’s full message here:</strong></p> <p><em>Her Majesty The Queen has sent the following message of condolence to the Governors and people of New South Wales and Queensland: </em></p> <p><em>Prince Philip and I have been deeply saddened to hear of the tragic loss of life and property caused by bushfires affecting communities and businesses across northern New South Wales and South East Queensland. </em></p> <p><em>I am heartened that once again the richness of spirit that defines Australians has drawn people together to support those in need. </em></p> <p><em>Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of the victims.</em><br /><em>Elizabeth R</em></p>

International Travel

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7 rarely seen photos of royal siblings

<p><span>We’ve pulled together some rarely seen photos of members of the English royal family – past and present – with their brothers and sisters.</span></p> <p><strong>A future Queen and her little sister</strong></p> <p>In 1933, the future Queen Elizabeth II stands beside her four years younger baby sister, Princess Margaret Rose, holding a handbag that was reportedly made by disabled soldiers.</p> <p><strong>Same family, divergent destinies</strong></p> <p>Elizabeth and Margaret were born “minor” royals in that they were the daughters of the Duke of York, who was the second son of the King and therefore not expected to become a monarch. But when King Edward VIII abdicated the throne in December 1936, the Duke of York ascended, thrusting Elizabeth into the role of heir presumptive. Nevertheless, the two always remained close, although this photo from 1955 (when Elizabeth had been Queen for three years already) poetically catches the sisters as they gaze on in different directions.</p> <p><strong>Cheeky sisters</strong></p> <p>Princess Beatrice of York and her little sister, Princess Eugenie of York, enjoy playing in the snow in Switzerland. Both women are first cousins of Prince William and Prince Harry and are natural redheads, just like Harry.</p> <p><strong>Prince Harry and Prince William head off to school</strong></p> <p>In the mid-1980s, Prince Charles’s two sons, Prince William and Prince Harry, head off to the Wetherby School in London, a private pre-K program. That’s their mum, Princess Diana, standing behind them in red.</p> <p><strong>The future kings with their sister, Princess Mary</strong></p> <p>Pictured when they were much younger, Edward and Albert are shown with their sister, Princess Mary, who would one day become Princess Royal. The title, “Princess Royal” is an honour the monarch may bestow on his/her eldest daughter. The current Princess Royal is Princess Anne.</p> <p><strong>The four siblings together</strong></p> <p>Marking their forthcoming Diamond Wedding Anniversary at Clarence House in London in 2007, Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh enjoy a photo opportunity with their four children, Prince Andrew, Princess Anne, Prince Edward, and Prince Charles.</p> <p><strong>Siblings and the next generation of siblings</strong></p> <p>In 1988, Princess Anne and Prince Charles brought their respective kids together, along with their parents, Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip. The children, pictured left to right, are Prince Harry, Zara Phillips (the daughter of Princess Anne), Prince William, and Peter Phillips (the son of Princess Anne).</p> <p><em>Written by Lauren Cahn. This article first appeared in </em><span><a href="https://www.readersdigest.com.au/thought-provokinginspirational/19-rarely-seen-photos-of-royal-siblings"><em>Reader’s Digest</em></a><em>. For more of what you love from the world’s best-loved magazine, </em><a href="http://readersdigest.innovations.com.au/c/readersdigestemailsubscribe?utm_source=over60&amp;utm_medium=articles&amp;utm_campaign=RDSUB&amp;keycode=WRA93V"><em>here’s our best subscription offer.</em></a></span></p> <p><img style="width: 100px !important; height: 100px !important;" src="/media/7820640/1.png" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/f30947086c8e47b89cb076eb5bb9b3e2" /></p>

International Travel

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Jennifer Aniston breaks Harry and Meghan’s world record

<p>Jennifer Aniston’s Instagram account has broken the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s world record for obtaining the most amount of followers in the shortest time.</p> <p>The 50-year-old, best known for her role of Rachel in<span> </span><em>Friends</em>, joined Instagram on Tuesday this week and managed to quickly break the internet.</p> <p>Her first photo was an image of herself and her five<span> </span><em>Friends</em><span> </span>co-stars including close friends Courteney Cox and Lisa Kudrow.</p> <blockquote style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" class="instagram-media" data-instgrm-captioned="" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/B3o8vWDhlOh/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="12"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"></div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"></div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"></div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"></div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"></div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <p style="margin: 8px 0 0 0; padding: 0 4px;"><a style="color: #000; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none; word-wrap: break-word;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/B3o8vWDhlOh/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank">And now we’re Instagram FRIENDS too. HI INSTAGRAM 👋🏻</a></p> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;">A post shared by <a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/jenniferaniston/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank"> Jennifer Aniston</a> (@jenniferaniston) on Oct 15, 2019 at 6:03am PDT</p> </div> </blockquote> <p>The post alone has reached over 12 million likes since the time of posting and has broken Harry and Meghan’s record for gaining followers.</p> <p>The famous couple gained a million followers in six hours after they launched their joint Instagram account @SussexRoyal, in April this year.</p> <p>But Jennifer surpassed that feat, gaining the same amount of followers in under five hours and 16 minutes. With the record announced by the Guiness World Records yesterday evening.</p> <p>Scroll through the gallery to see Jennifer Aniston's best moments.</p>

International Travel

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Prince Harry chokes up talking about Archie during speech at WellChild Awards

<p><span>Prince Harry was overcome with emotion as he spoke about becoming a father during a speech at the WellChild Awards in London.</span></p> <p><span>The awards celebrate the WellChild charity, which showcases the inspiring qualities of Britain’s ill children.</span></p> <p><span>The Duke of Sussex delivered an emotional speech about last years’ ceremony, which at the time means that the couple were secretly expecting a child.</span></p> <p><span>“They (the awards) never fail to inspire me — but this year it resonates in a different way because now I’m a father. Last year when my wife and I attended we knew that we were expecting our first child, no one else knew, but we did,” he said.</span></p> <p><span>“I remember squeezing Meghan’s hand so tight during the awards and both of us thinking what it would be like to be parents one day and more so what would it be like to protect and help our child should they be born with immediate challenges or become unwell over time.”</span></p> <blockquote style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" class="instagram-media" data-instgrm-captioned="" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/B3p1a43FvaJ/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="12"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"></div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"></div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"></div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"></div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"></div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <p>This evening, The Duke and Duchess of Sussex attended the annual #WellChildAwards in London. WellChild aims to ensure every child and young person living with serious health needs has the best chance to thrive with the support and medical care needed in the comfort of their own home. The Duke of Sussex became Patron of WellChild in 2007, and last year both The Duke and Duchess attended the awards to honour the children and families that WellChild supports. The Duke, who first came to these awards over a decade ago, shared in his remarks tonight: “Last year when my wife and I attended we knew we were expecting our first child - no one else did at the time, but we did - and I remember squeezing Meghan’s hand so tightly during the awards, both of us thinking what it would be like to be parents one day, and more so, what it would be like to do everything we could to protect and help our child should they be born with immediate challenges or become unwell over time.  And now, as parents, being here and speaking to all of you pulls at my heart strings in a way I could have never understood until I had a child of my own.” • To find out more about tonight’s event and how you can support this very special organization, please visit @WellChild Photos ©️ PA images</p> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;">A post shared by <a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/sussexroyal/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank"> The Duke and Duchess of Sussex</a> (@sussexroyal) on Oct 15, 2019 at 2:18pm PDT</p> </div> </blockquote> <div class="post_body"> <div class="body_text "> <p>“And now talking to all of you as parent pulls at my heart strings, in a way I never could have understood, until I had a child of my own. No parent wants to hear that there child will suffer, that they will face extraordinary challenges — that will affect them throughout their lives,” the Duke continued in his speech at this year’s event.</p> <p>“After meeting all the WellChild kids and parents over the years you have managed to give us a sense of optimism, of hope and of strength that no professional, no bestselling book or advice could ever give us — so thank you for being you.”</p> </div> </div>

International Travel

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“I was a big fan of my mother too”: Prince William’s sweet reaction about Princess Diana

<p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Prince William has fondly remembered his late mother, Princess Diana, during his and the Duchess of Cambridge’s Royal Tour of Pakistan. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The royal spoke with a 14-year-old student at a government-run school in Islamabad when he a special moment took place. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The young teen told the Duke she was a fan of the late Princess Diana, to which Prince William replied: "Oh, that's very sweet of you. I was a big fan of my mother too."</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"She came here three times. I was very small. This is my first time and it is very nice to be here and meet you all," he added.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Prince William also admitted to the student about why he became an Air Ambulance pilot, saying he’d “always wanted to learn to fly.”</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"I was flying for a while actually. I love flying, I feel very free (and) I like learning a skill, I enjoy that. I can relate the science of what you do,” he said. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge kicked off the first full day of their four-day long tour in the capital city and met with a number of school kids. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The couple spoke about the importance of education, especially for young women. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The couple then met with Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan, who was a close friend of Diana's when he was married to Jemima Khan.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">It is believed that Prince  William played cricket with Khan when he was a young boy. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Scroll through the gallery above to see Duchess Kate and Prince William on their Pakistan Royal Tour. </span></p> <p> </p>

International Travel

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The Queen's Speech: Her Majesty breaks her own tradition for just the third time in history

<p><span>Queen Elizabeth II was dressed in full ceremonial robes as she delivered her speech at the State Opening of Parliament on Monday.</span></p> <p><span>However, she left out one thing from her outfit, breaking her own tradition for the third time in history.</span></p> <p><span>The Queen opted against wearing the jewel-encrusted Imperial State Crown, choosing instead to wear the George IV State Diadem.</span></p> <p><span>The crown, which was made for the coronation of the Queen’s father King George VI in 1937, featured 2,868 diamonds as well as a collection of sapphires, emeralds, pearls and rubies. It weighs a little over one kilogram.</span></p> <p><span>In a <em><a href="https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-50047222">BBC</a> </em>documentary released last year, the Queen described the crown as “unwieldy”.</span></p> <p><span>“</span>You can’t look down to read the speech, you have to take the speech up, because if you did your neck would break – it would fall off,” she said.</p> <p>“So there are some disadvantages to crowns, but otherwise they’re quite important things.”</p> <p><span>Meanwhile, the diadem is comparably lighter. Commissioned for George IV’s coronation in 1821, it was set with more than 1,300 diamonds and lined with gold.</span></p> <p><span>According to <em>BBC</em>, this is the third time the monarch opted not to wear the crown for her speech since 1852. In 1974, she did not don the crown and ceremonial accessories for the Queen’s Speech following then-prime minister Ted Heath’s decision to call a snap election.</span></p> <p><span>In 2017, the Queen wore a blue jacket and hat in place of the crown, in what observers saw as a nod to the European Union (EU) in the wake of the Brexit vote.</span></p> <p><span>During her speech on Monday, the Queen read out the laws the Boris Johnson government wants Parliament to approve, including policies on crime, plastic pollution and healthcare as well as seven Brexit-related bills.</span></p> <p><span>The speech comes as Johnson’s government continues the effort to secure an agreement that will allow the country to leave the EU by October 31.</span></p>

International Travel

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A ‘mistical’ day in the highlands

<p>Walking through the historic Amagi Tunnel evoked images of the beautiful young dancer and the student in <em>The Izu Dancer</em>.</p> <p>The 115-year-old moss-coated stone tunnel features in Yasunari Kawabata’s Nobel Prize-winning beautiful short story which I had just finished reading.</p> <p>About halfway through the 445m tunnel, I thought I felt a slight tremor and the words of our Walk Japan tour leader and guide suddenly began to echo inside my head.</p> <p>Describing Japan’s record for earthquakes upon our arrival in the Izu Peninsula the previous day, Yohei had said: “About 1500 earthquakes strike Japan every year with around 1000 minor tremors occurring each day. In 2005, 130,000 quakes were logged in Japan.”</p> <p>I quickened my pace.</p> <p>“It’s unusual for a year to go by without three or four earthquakes measuring 6.0 or more on the Richter scale,” he continued. “Japan actually accounts for about 20 percent of the earthquakes of magnitude 6 or greater.”</p> <p>I began to jog.</p> <p>“Deadly quakes are a tragic part of our nation's history,” he said.</p> <p>I ran like the wind towards the circle of light at the end of the 445m tunnel. </p> <p>“It would be just my luck for a quake to strike right now,” I thought, in mid-tunnel. “I’d never be found.”</p> <p>Emerging breathless at the end of the tunnel, those who had already made it through, alive and well, looked at me as though I was slightly deranged. My young Singaporean friends were busy setting up a group leap at the mouth of the tunnel. The photos looked pretty cool.</p> <p>Earlier that day, as we drove south along the east coast of the Izu Peninsula, waves were pounding the black volcanic rocks that characterise the region, and fishing boats were bucking at their moorings.</p> <p>Leaving the coast behind, we headed inland through lush green forests, negotiating many tunnels and the Kawazu Nanadaru Loop Bridge, a corkscrew-shaped construction completed in 1982 to accommodate terrain too steep for a conventional road.</p> <p>Our destination was the Amagi Highland in the middle of a mountain range which forms a spine along the length of the peninsula. The mountains had been pushed up, folded and crumpled when the Philippine Sea Plate collided with the Eurasian Plate 600,000 thousand years ago, creating the Izu Peninsula.</p> <p>Our local guide for the day, Dan Tsuchiya, was waiting for us at the turn-off to a steep, windy, narrow mountain road.</p> <p>Before setting off on our hike to Hatcho-ike (or Hacho Pond), the crater lake on Mt Amagi, Dan led us through a series of warm-up exercises in which everyone participated with great enthusiasm. There are maps and information boards everywhere on Japanese hiking trails, so we had an orientation session before we set off uphill through a beautiful forest of beech and maple trees. </p> <p>Our hike followed an ancient road that led to the once strategically-important port of Shimoda in the south of the peninsula (more about that later). Misty rain enhanced the colours and added a mystical, ethereal atmosphere to the landscape. As we climbed steadily higher, I was grateful for my layers of merino wool, wet weather gear – and umbrella to keep my camera dry. </p> <p>Dan stopped at his ‘secret favourite forest’ to show us images of maples ablaze in autumn regalia. Further on he pointed out a sad sight – the demise of the ‘mother tree’, the oldest tree in the forest. The 300-year-old beech had been blown over by the wind a couple of months earlier and would no longer feed the forest with seedlings or the animals with nuts.</p> <p>The forest floor was strangely clean, which gave the appearance of a well-kept park but in fact the lack of seedlings and undergrowth was attributable to the unsustainably large numbers of deer. They cannot be hunted in a national park so they take refuge there, eating everything except japonica, which is poisonous to them. Unless the deer population is controlled, japonica will take over the forest, said Dan.</p> <p>Inside an experimental area that had been fenced off to allow the forest to regenerate, seedlings and undergrowth were thriving.</p> <p>Beautiful azaleas are a feature of the Amagi Highland. People come from all over the country to see the trees flower in June and July. Some were already in flower, providing vivid splashes of colour amid the green of the forest.</p> <p>By the time we reached Hatcho-ike, the ‘Eye of Amagi’, at an altitude of 1170m, it was completely shrouded in mist and the temperatures were dropping. Our picnic lunch was a hurried affair on the steps of a demolished building that had its heyday last century when large numbers of people would hike up the track to ice-skate on the frozen pond in the winter. A photo on an information board shows dozens of skaters on the ice in the 1960s. What fun that would have been.</p> <p>Confusingly, the sign at the top said the pond was not a crater lake but a body of water created by a fault slip. </p> <p>As drizzle turned to heavy rain, we took a shortcut back to our bus, passing by an ancient road beneath a canopy of trees and clusters of vivid pink azaleas and rhododendrons. No-one seemed to mind hiking in the rain in such a beautiful forest. We all had umbrellas and wet weather gear so we were warm and dry. Hiking with an umbrella was a novel experience for me. I found it very useful for keeping my camera dry while taking photos in the rain . . . a third hand comes in handy too. </p> <p>Our accommodation for the evening was Amagiso Ryokan in Kawazu, a traditional Japanese inn with 28 hot springs baths including public outdoor pools at the foot of a spectacular waterfall. Open to male and female guests (in swimsuits), the pools have appeared in several Japanese movies and television series.</p> <p>Chatting with my fellow hikers in the hot springs in the misty drizzle with the waterfall gushing from the cliff above was sublime.</p> <p>Revitalised by the outdoor bath, I dressed in a bright yellow and white floral yukata with a blue haori (jacket) for dinner, another traditional Japanese feast of seafood and fresh produce. I was slightly alarmed at the live abalone on a burner in front of me, trying to escape his fate. On another burner, I cooked thick chunks of Kobe beef, vegetables and fiddlehead fern to tasty perfection.</p> <p>Other dishes included swordfish, white clams, shrimps, snails, sea bream, broad beans and mountain vegetables.</p> <p>The waitresses were exceptionally friendly and chatty – Yuki had spent time in Canada, and Takako had worked at Amagiso for about 25 years. Takako was also responsible for the beautiful flower arrangements at the inn.</p> <p>By the time I got back to my room, my futon had been made up with the lightest feather duvet. The rain was steady overnight and torrential by morning so my plan to return to the hot pool by the waterfall before breakfast was thwarted. The pathway was closed . . . along with numerous roads in the area.</p> <p>At breakfast, we could create our own omelettes with a variety of tasty ingredients and little burners. There was yoghurt, noodles, salad, miso, tofu and pickles too.</p> <p>A young kimono-clad girl escorted us to our bus under bright pink and purple umbrellas.</p> <p>The ever-resourceful Yohei came up with a rainy-day contingency plan. Hiking to Kawazu’s Seven Waterfalls was off the agenda so we visited the Uehara Museum of Art near Shimoda instead. The museum has two magnificent galleries displaying precious Buddhist art and sculptures dating back to the 8th century, and modern art including paintings by Monet, Renoir and Picasso. I fell I love with a beautiful sculpture there. She looked so forlorn in the rain.</p> <p><em>To be continued...</em></p> <p><em>Read Part One of Justine Tyerman’s Japan visit <a rel="noopener" href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/travel/international-travel/living-like-a-local-in-japan/" target="_blank">here</a>.</em></p> <p><em>Justine Tyerman was a guest of <a href="https://walkjapan.com/">Walk Japan</a>.</em></p>

International Travel

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Rare photo of Fergie shared on her 60th birthday

<p><span>The Duke of York is the first royal to wish Sarah Ferguson, Duchess of York well wishes on her 60th birthday. </span></p> <p><span>Prince Andrew shared his own tribute to his ex-wife by posting a photograph taken with the whole York family, including Princess Eugenie’s husband, Jack Brooksbank and Princess Beatrice’s fiancé, Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi.</span></p> <p><span>“Wishing @sarahferguson15 a very Happy 60th Birthday!" The royal member captioned the post.</span></p> <blockquote style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" class="instagram-media" data-instgrm-captioned="" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/B3ocLMwp0b-/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="12"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"></div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"></div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"></div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"></div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"></div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <p style="margin: 8px 0 0 0; padding: 0 4px;"><a style="color: #000; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none; word-wrap: break-word;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/B3ocLMwp0b-/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank">🎉 Wishing @sarahferguson15 a very Happy 60th Birthday!</a></p> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;">A post shared by <a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/hrhthedukeofyork/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank"> The Duke of York</a> (@hrhthedukeofyork) on Oct 15, 2019 at 1:18am PDT</p> </div> </blockquote> <p><span>The series of pictures feature Fergie working on her charity projects. </span></p> <p><span>Princess Eugenie, the youngest daughter of Sarah and Prince Andrew, shared her own sweet message to her mother, writing: “To my beautiful Mumma - Happy 60th birthday. </span></p> <p><span>“You are an inspiration and one of the people I admire the most.</span></p> <p><span>“Thank you for being you. I love you to the moon and back @sarahferguson15.”</span></p> <blockquote style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" class="instagram-media" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/B3pZW1aFYDT/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="12"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"></div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"></div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"></div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"></div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"></div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/B3pZW1aFYDT/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank">A post shared by Princess Eugenie (@princesseugenie)</a> on Oct 15, 2019 at 10:13am PDT</p> </div> </blockquote> <p><span>Along with the heartfelt message, the royal shared a series of adorable throwback photos as a child alongside her mother.</span></p> <p><span>Princess Beatrice is yet to share a message on her twitter account to say happy birthday to her mother, however, it seems she may choose to honour her mum in private. </span></p> <p><span>Scroll through the gallery above to see Sarah Ferguson throughout the years with her family.</span></p>

International Travel

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Never before seen: Princess Eugenie shares intimate video from wedding

<p>Princess Eugenie has celebrated the first anniversary of her marriage to Jack Brooksbank in a beautiful way. </p> <p>Queen Elizabeth’s granddaughter, 29, took to Instagram on Saturday to share intimate behind-the-scenes footage from her special day along with an adoring caption in dedication to her new hubby. </p> <p>"This was the greatest day of my life... forever and always!" Eugenie wrote.</p> <p>"Happy one year anniversary, my Jack!!"</p> <p>The clip showed previously unseen footage of the glorious royal wedding including all the hard work that went into making Eugenie’s special day all the more valuable to her - sharing details of the colourful floral arrangement and the intricate happenings in the royal’s tiara and wedding dress. </p> <blockquote style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" class="instagram-media" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/B3gsnFxl6Ks/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="12"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"></div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"></div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"></div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"></div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"></div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/B3gsnFxl6Ks/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank">A post shared by Princess Eugenie (@princesseugenie)</a> on Oct 12, 2019 at 1:16am PDT</p> </div> </blockquote> <p>Royal fans were also treated to glimpses of special moments between the bride and groom, including Eugenie and Jack smiling at each other, laughing with each other and sharing their first kiss on the church steps. </p> <p>The princess was not only one to celebrate the big day as other royals sent their warm wishes to the loved up couple. </p> <p>The Royal Family Twitter account shared a heartwarming snap of both Eugenie and Jack sharing a kiss on the steps of St George’s Chapel after they said their vows on their big day. </p> <p>"Congratulations to Her Royal Highness Princess Eugenie and Mr Jack Brooksbank on their 1st Wedding Anniversary!" the photo was captioned.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p dir="ltr">🥂👰🏻 Congratulations to Her Royal Highness Princess Eugenie and Mr Jack Brooksbank on their 1st Wedding Anniversary!<br /><br />Today marks one year since Her Royal Highness and Mr Brooksbank exchanged vows as St George’s Chapel within the grounds of Windsor Castle on October 12th, 2018. <a href="https://t.co/NsQplFH1Qx">pic.twitter.com/NsQplFH1Qx</a></p> — The Royal Family (@RoyalFamily) <a href="https://twitter.com/RoyalFamily/status/1182924767545966593?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">October 12, 2019</a></blockquote> <p>The Duke of York shared his own sweet sentiments for his daughter’s wedding anniversary, along with a touching video capturing more unseen moments at the couple’s ceremony. </p> <p>The footage showed his then 28-year-old daughter arriving at the ceremony, along with a clip of Prince Andrew walking Eugenie down the aisle. </p> <p>"Wishing @princesseugenie and Jack Brooksbank a very Happy First Wedding Anniversary!" Prince Andrew captioned the video.</p> <p>Princess Eugenie’s big sister, Beatrice will soon have her own intimate moments to share when she ties the knot with Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi in 2020. </p>

International Travel

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Duchess Kate channels Princess Diana in Pakistan tour outfit

<p>Prince William and Duchess Kate have arrived in Pakistan to commence their historic five-day tour.</p> <p>The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will be surrounded by tight security, with 1000 police officers accompanying the couple on a visit dubbed as the “most complex” ever by Kensington Palace.</p> <p>The couple were presented with flowers by local children who were all donned in traditional attire, as they stepped off the British Government’s RAF Voyager plane.</p> <p>The Duchess opted for an elegant blue shalwar kameez – a traditional Pakistani outfit comprised of a long dress and trousers – by British designer Catherine Walker.</p> <p>The combination was highly reminiscent of the outfit Princess Diana wore when she paid a visit to Pakistan in 1996.</p> <blockquote style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" class="instagram-media" data-instgrm-captioned="" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/B3nOER5HJSc/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="12"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"></div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"></div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"></div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"></div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"></div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <p style="margin: 8px 0 0 0; padding: 0 4px;"><a style="color: #000; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none; word-wrap: break-word;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/B3nOER5HJSc/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank">DIANA Style Inspo | #KateMiddleton touched down today in #Pakistan in a dress extremely reminiscent of an outfit worn by #PrincessDiana during her visit to the same country in 1996. The duchess paired her #SalwarKameez with nude stilettos and silver jewelry. #DianaStyleIcon _ _ _ _ #TwinningRoyals #realeza #royales #bluedress #ombre #diana #princessdiana #DianaPrincessOfWales #peoplesprincess #princesadiana #ladydianaspencer #katemiddletonstyle #royaltourpakistan #pakistan #royalvisit #rsw #royalstylewatch #realeza #realezabritánica</a></p> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;">A post shared by <a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/royalstylewatch/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank"> Royal Style Watch</a> (@royalstylewatch) on Oct 14, 2019 at 1:56pm PDT</p> </div> </blockquote> <p>The couple’s visit is the first official one to be made by the royal family to the country since Prince Charles and Camilla visited back in 2006.</p> <p>When announcing their itinerary, William and Kate revealed that their tour would span over 1000km across the country.</p> <p>They plan on visiting Islamabad, Lahore, the northern regions and border regions to the west.</p> <p>It’s been said that the Duke and Duchess’s program will “pay respect to the historical relationship between Britain and Pakistan”.</p> <p>The five-day tour will “largely focus on showcasing Pakistan as it is today – a dynamic, aspirational and forward-looking nation.”</p> <p>Their trip will also involve visiting programs “which empower young people, and organisations that help ensure they have the best possible start in life.”</p> <p>Scroll through the gallery above to see Kate’s stunning traditional look.</p>

International Travel

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Busy in blue: The Queen is back to work and expressing concerns over one important aspect of her job

<p>Queen Elizabeth II is back to work today, after relaxing on a months-long summer holiday at Balmoral Castle in Scotland.</p> <p>In true HRH fashion, her schedule is packed over the next few weeks, but she was full steam ahead and visited one of her patronages at Haig Housing.</p> <p>Haig Housing is the UK’s largest military housing charity as it provides over 1,500 properties across the country to armed forces veterans at affordable and accessible rates.</p> <p>For the visit, she decided to wear a matching hat and a blue double-breasted coat. The Queen finished the look with black gloves and a matching black bag.</p> <blockquote style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" class="instagram-media" data-instgrm-captioned="" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/B3eva4Lnj8T/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="12"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"></div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"></div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"></div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"></div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"></div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <p style="margin: 8px 0 0 0; padding: 0 4px;"><a style="color: #000; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none; word-wrap: break-word;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/B3eva4Lnj8T/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank">Today Her Majesty The Queen visited @haighousing in Morden to officially open their new development of 70 homes. Haig Housing is the country’s largest military housing charity, with over 1,500 properties across the UK, providing affordable and accessible accommodation to armed forces veterans -some who have been severely wounded - and their families. 🎥The Bowman family welcomed The Queen into their new home. Michael served in the Grenadier Guards for 14 years, and is one of the newest residents in the development. The Queen has been Patron of @haighousing since 1952, and 70 years ago, in 1949, opened a Haig Housing estate in Jersey. (📷 swipe ⬅️⬅️) The Queen also met @royalairforceuk veteran Ken Souter, who served with 73 squadron from 1940 and flew Hurricanes in North Africa. Her Majesty recently sent Ken a birthday card to celebrate his 100th birthday 🎂 After meeting more residents and schoolchildren from the London Borough of Merton, along the Queen Elizabeth Terrace - a block named in her honour, The Queen unveiled a plaque to declare the development officially open. 📷Press Association 🎥TheRoyalFamily</a></p> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;">A post shared by <a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/theroyalfamily/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank"> The Royal Family</a> (@theroyalfamily) on Oct 11, 2019 at 6:54am PDT</p> </div> </blockquote> <p>She was greeted by local schoolchildren and Haig Housing staff upon arrival before meeting residents whose new homes in the Centenary Development have been specifically designed to meet their needs.</p> <p>The Queen has been patron of Haig Housing since 1952. It was also at Haig Housing where she met with 100-year-old World War II vetran Ken Souter, where she was “glad to see” that his special birthday card turned up.</p> <p>It is tradition that the Queen sends every citizen who turns 100 a hand-signed card, but after they’re sent off in the mailbox, it’s out of her hands.</p> <p>She added that she's "always worried" about whether or not they'll arrive on time, according to<span> </span><a rel="noopener" href="https://twitter.com/RE_DailyMail/status/1182622399419879424?s=20" target="_blank">royal reporter Rebecca English.</a></p> <p>Souter was thrilled with the visit, saying that the Queen is a “truly amazing lady”.</p> <p>“It was an honour to meet her on her first day back on public duty,” he said.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"> <p dir="ltr">The Queen meets <a href="https://twitter.com/RoyalAirForce?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@RoyalAirForce</a> veteran Ken Souter, who joined 73 squadron in 1940 and flew Hurricanes in North Africa.<br /><br />Her Majesty recently sent Ken a birthday card to celebrate his 100th birthday 🎂 <a href="https://t.co/ql0xQSElVj">pic.twitter.com/ql0xQSElVj</a></p> — The Royal Family (@RoyalFamily) <a href="https://twitter.com/RoyalFamily/status/1182611056734150658?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">October 11, 2019</a></blockquote> <p>Next week, the Queen will make several public outings, including the State Opening of Parliament, where she is expected to give the Queens’ Speech.</p> <p>She will also be attending a service with Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall to celebrate the 750th  anniversary of the rebuilding of Westminster Abbey.</p>

International Travel

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Japan upset Scotland at chaotic Rugby World Cup in the wake of Typhoon Hagibis

<p>Japan has dominated Scotland to triumph with a 28-21 win, meaning that this is the first time that Japan have reached the Rugby World Cup quarter-finals.</p> <p>Japan were faster and relentless in their attacks against Scotland, much to the delight of the red-and-white crowd who were cheering on their every move.</p> <p>Japan coach Jamie Joseph said that the team went “another level” in the match.</p> <p>"Tonight we went another level," he said.</p> <p>"They wanted it as much as the Scots and gave as much as they could. This is what it takes to win big test matches."</p> <p>Wing Kenki Fukuoka scored two tries while Kotaro Matsushima and Keita Inagaki also scored as the team held off attacks from Scotland.</p> <p>However, Japan were aware that their win came at a price, as the country is reeling from the damage caused by Typhoon Hagibis.</p> <p>"Whilst we are celebrating tonight there are a lot of people who aren't," Joseph said.</p> <p>Rugby fans are shocked at the outcome, as it means that this is the second time Scotland have failed to reach the last eight. Their last loss was back in 2011, but they haven’t let it get them down.</p> <p>"We had a mountain to climb after that first half but we started climbing it and I thought the effort the players put in to get back to within seven points was excellent," said Scotland coach Gregor Townsend to<span> </span><em><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-10-14/japan-scotland-rwc-result-typhoon-hagibis-winner/11598394" target="_blank">The ABC</a></em>.</p> <p>"We were obviously aware that this was huge for the home nation. The atmosphere was absolutely fantastic and you didn't want to be the team that was losing in that atmosphere."</p>

International Travel

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Cracks found on older Boeing 737 planes during inspections

<p><span>Boeing is facing yet another safety issue after structural cracks were found in 38 of its 737 NG airplanes around the world.</span></p> <p><span>The inspections ordered by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) discovered that out of the 810 jets that had been examined, 38 had cracks in a “pickle fork”, or the part that attaches the plane’s body to the wing structure. This amounted to about 5 per cent of the planes inspected.</span></p> <p><span>Boeing and airline officials said the planes will be grounded for repairs.</span></p> <p><span>So far, two airlines have disclosed that they have jets that need to be grounded. Southwest Airlines announced on Wednesday that it had grounded two of <a href="https://edition.cnn.com/2019/10/10/business/boeing-737-ng-grounding/index.html">the 700-plus NG jets in its fleet</a> due to the cracking issue, while Brazilian carrier Gol Linhas Aereas confirmed it took 11 out of its 115 planes out of service. </span></p> <p><span><a href="https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-boeing-airplanes/boeing-says-cracks-found-on-38-of-810-737-ng-jets-inspected-globally-idUSKBN1WP2BD">Last week</a>, the FAA ordered airlines to inspect their 737 NG fleets after Boeing alerted the agency about structural cracks. Aircrafts that have made at least 30,000 flights must be inspected within seven days, while planes between 22,600 and 29,999 cycles are to be inspected after 1,000 flights.</span></p> <p><span>Today, about 6,800 of the 737 NG jets are in service around the world. </span></p> <p><span>Virgin Australia said it had inspected nine out of its 19 NG planes and found no issues. The remaining 10 will be inspected over the next week.</span></p> <p><span>“We will act on any directives issued by CASA or the FAA and work closely with Boeing to conduct inspections,” a Virgin Australia spokesperson told <em>Over60</em>.</span></p> <p><span>“We will endeavour to minimise impact to customers while any inspections occur.”</span></p> <p><span>The report came as Boeing continues its effort to seek approval for the 737 Max to fly again. All 737 Max jets have been grounded since March following fatal crashes in Ethiopia and Indonesia, which killed 346 crew and passengers.</span></p>

International Travel

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These are the world’s best bars for 2019

<p>The world’s best bars for 2019 have been revealed.</p> <p>The World’s 50 Best Bars, which has compiled an annual ranking of bars around the world since 2009, collected votes from more than 500 drink experts across the globe, including bartenders, cocktail specialists, consultants and drinks writers.</p> <p>Topping the list is New York’s Dante, a historic bar which was originally established in 1915 and reopened in 2015.</p> <p>“The measure of a bar is the experience of its customers – in hospitality, drinks and food Dante has the fundamentals down to a fine art, earning the deserved title of The World’s Best Bar 2019,” the list said.</p> <p>Apart from the restaurant-bar’s collection of Negronis, the panel also recommended the Garibaldi, which consists of Campari and ‘fluffy’ orange juice.</p> <p>Dante’s owner Linden Pride said he “could not be more honoured” to win the award. “We will continue to focus on our approach to hospitality and creating those special moments for every guest that comes through our door,” Pride told <span><a href="https://edition.cnn.com/travel/article/worlds-best-bar-2019/index.html"><em>CNN Travel</em></a></span>.</p> <p>The UK was also well-represented on the list with 10 bars making appearances. London’s Connaught Bar placed second, emerging as The Best Bar in Europe awardee, while American Bar earned the number five spot and the Legend of the List award.</p> <p>From Asia, six Singapore bars made the list with the chart-topper Atlas coming in at number eight. The Parkview Square bar was noted for its Great Gatsby-esque interior and impressive drink collection, which boasts more than 1,300 different labels of gin.</p> <p>Australia’s only entry was Sydney’s Maybe Sammy at number 43. Located in The Rocks, the hotel bar received praises for its “inventive and delicious cocktail list, luxe surrounds and an attention to detail” as well as “great hospitality”.</p> <p><span><a href="https://www.worlds50bestbars.com/fifty-best-bars-list-2019/?ist=1"><strong>The World’s 50 Best Bars 2019</strong></a></span>:</p> <ol> <li>Dante (New York)</li> <li>Connaught Bar (London)</li> <li>Florería Atlántico (Buenos Aires)</li> <li>The NoMad (New York)</li> <li>American Bar (London)</li> <li>The Clumsies (Athens)</li> <li>Attaboy (New York)</li> <li>Atlas (Singapore)</li> <li>The Old Man (Hong Kong)</li> <li>Licorería Limantour (Mexico City)</li> <li>Manhattan (Singapore)</li> <li>Native (Singapore)</li> <li>Carnaval (Lima)</li> <li>Katana Kitten (New York)</li> <li>Guilhotina (São Paulo)</li> <li>Three Sheets (London)</li> <li>Himkok (Oslo)</li> <li>High Five (Tokyo)</li> <li>Salmón Gurú (Madrid)</li> <li>Paradiso (Barcelona)</li> <li>Indulge Experimental Bistro (Taipei)</li> <li>The Dead Rabbit (New York)</li> <li>Coupette (London)</li> <li>The SG Club (Tokyo)</li> <li>Dr. Stravinsky (Barcelona)</li> <li>Employees Only (New York)</li> <li>El Copitas (St. Petersburg)</li> <li>Scout (London)</li> <li>Jigger &amp; Pony (Singapore)</li> <li>Operation Dagger (Singapore)</li> <li>Baba Au Rum (Athens)</li> <li>La Factoría, (San Juan, Puerto Rico)</li> <li>Presidente (Buenos Aires)</li> <li>Schumann's (Munich)</li> <li>Speak Low (Shanghai)</li> <li>Little Red Door (Paris)</li> <li>Linje Tio (Stockholm)</li> <li>The Old Man (Singapore)</li> <li>Lyaness (London)</li> <li>Happiness Forgets (London)</li> <li>Swift (London)</li> <li>Trick Dog (San Francisco)</li> <li>Maybe Sammy (Sydney)</li> <li>1930 (Milan)</li> <li>Sober Company (Shanghai)</li> <li>Electric Bing Sutt (Beirut)</li> <li>Kwānt (London)</li> <li>Artesian (London)</li> <li>Coa (Hong Kong)</li> <li>Jerry Thomas Speakeasy (Rome)</li> </ol>

International Travel

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The latest royal to join Instagram: See their personal photographs here!

<p>Mike Tindall is the newest member of the Royal Family to become one with society and join Instagram. </p> <p>The 40-year-old made his debut on the photo-sharing social media platform on September 18, sharing a series of photographs from a live recording of the House of Rugby podcast at The Prince hotel in London. </p> <blockquote style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" class="instagram-media" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/B2jsy4bHR6e/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="12"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"></div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"></div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"></div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"></div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"></div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/B2jsy4bHR6e/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank">A post shared by @mike_tindall12</a> on Sep 18, 2019 at 8:36am PDT</p> </div> </blockquote> <p>The former Rugby sports star married Queen Elizabeth’s granddaughter Zara Tindall in 2011 and together they share two children, Mia Grace, and Lena Elizabeth. </p> <p>The father has given his followers a glimpse into his seemingly busy life, with 9 posts already up for fans to have a look at. </p> <p>On September 28, Tindall shared a group picture of friends and his wife, Zara for a clay target shooting tournament. </p> <blockquote style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" class="instagram-media" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/B27NHnJHoPI/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="12"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"></div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"></div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"></div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"></div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"></div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/B27NHnJHoPI/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank">A post shared by @mike_tindall12</a> on Sep 27, 2019 at 11:41am PDT</p> </div> </blockquote> <p>Their two girls are yet to make an appearance, but judging by his already bountiful number of posts, we are hoping it won’t be too long until we get to see their cheeky smiles. </p> <p>It is an unspoken rule that the royal family aren't allowed to have personal social media accounts. </p> <p>Senior royals keep their fans updated via official channels such as @SussexRoyal, @Kensington Palace, @Clarence House and @The Royal Family.</p> <p>However, Princess Eugenie has a personal page, most likely because she doesn't have a formal working role within the royal family.</p> <p>Scroll through the gallery above to see Mike Tindall throughout the years with the Royal Family.</p>

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Prince Harry and Meghan considering moving to Canada with baby Archie

<p><span>Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan are reportedly considering moving to Canada with their son Archie.</span></p> <p><span>“Meghan and Harry have considered moving to Canada, as it’s part of the Commonwealth,” a source told <em><a href="https://www.usmagazine.com/celebrity-news/news/prince-harry-and-meghan-markle-considering-moving-to-canada/">Us Weekly</a></em>.</span></p> <p><span>The Duchess had previously lived in Canada for several years while filming the TV show <em>Suits</em>.</span></p> <p><em><span><a href="https://www.etonline.com/prince-harry-and-meghan-markle-arent-moving-to-canada-but-want-to-have-extended-trips-in-more">ET</a> </span></em><span>reported the royal couple is “looking very seriously at spending extended periods of time in Commonwealth countries in their role as Commonwealth Ambassadors”. Locations including Australia, Africa, Canada and the Caribbean are being considered for the royals’ upcoming travels, a source said.</span></p> <p><span>However, a source told <em>ET </em>in April that any extended overseas stay would not occur until 2020.</span></p> <p><span>“While details would naturally be formalized over time, with Harry and Meghan’s role as President and Vice President, respectively, of the Queen's Commonwealth Trust, any relocation for an extended period of time would be an opportunity for them to work in their already established humanitarian roles,” the source said.</span></p> <p><span>Currently, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex are residing at Frogmore Cottage. </span></p> <p>A source previously told <em>Us</em> that the Duchess enjoys life in Windsor. “She really likes living in Windsor,” the source said. “It’s much less complicated to have friends visit and feels less claustrophobic than Kensington Palace.”</p>

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Soccer fan captures hilarious selfie with Prince George

<p>A lucky soccer fan has captured a selfie with Prince George after seeing the Cambridge family out at a soccer game.</p> <p>Twitter user @CoProNorfolk was at the Saturday match between Aston Villa and Norwich when he noticed the royal family enjoying the game.  </p> <p>Taking a sneaky over-the-shoulder selfie, the fan managed to capture a deadpan stare from Prince George.</p> <p>"Not The Best game of Football I've Seen ... Who's That behind me though??" the tweet read.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en-gb"> <p dir="ltr">Hey .. Self Care Saturday..Out at Carrow Road .. Not The Best game of Football I've Seen @ Carrow Road as Norwich loose To villa 5-1 .. Who's That behind me though ?? <a href="https://t.co/ECtXrjDUbs">pic.twitter.com/ECtXrjDUbs</a></p> — Co•Production Norfolk (@CoProNorfolk) <a href="https://twitter.com/CoProNorfolk/status/1180533852839841794?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">5 October 2019</a></blockquote> <p>Prince George and his father William were thrilled at the outcome of the game, which saw Aston Villa winning the match 5 to 1.</p> <p>Princess Charlotte also attended the game, but was less interested in the outcome. </p> <p>In another sweet snap posted by the Kensington Royal Instagram page, Prince George is jumping for joy with his father and mother. There are rumours that the excited royal was shushed by Prince William as they were sitting among the losing home fans and he was being mindful of his son rubbing the win in their faces.</p> <blockquote style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" class="instagram-media" data-instgrm-captioned="" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/B3P_hXWl6fV/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="12"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"></div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"></div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"></div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"></div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"></div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <p style="margin: 8px 0 0 0; padding: 0 4px;"><a style="color: #000; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none; word-wrap: break-word;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/B3P_hXWl6fV/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank">🎥 @SoccerAM — a fantastic performance from Aston Villa @AVFCofficial at Norwich today! 👏⚽</a></p> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;">A post shared by <a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/kensingtonroyal/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank"> Kensington Palace</a> (@kensingtonroyal) on Oct 5, 2019 at 1:27pm PDT</p> </div> </blockquote> <p>It appears that members of the British royal family aren’t too keen on posing for selfies with well-wishers.</p> <p>In 2018, Duchess Meghan informed fans that she wasn’t “allowed” to take one and back in 2015, Prince Harry said that he “hates” the selfie trend.</p> <p>"I know you're young, but selfies are bad. Just take a normal photograph!" he told a fan in Canberra back in 2015.</p> <p>However, this doesn’t appear to stop fans from getting photos with the Duchess of Cambridge and the Queen herself.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en-gb"> <p dir="ltr">“We’re not allowed to do selfie” or “Harry don’t want”?!?! <a href="https://t.co/uPEq4uWIJ1">pic.twitter.com/uPEq4uWIJ1</a></p> — PyleArte (@YleArt) <a href="https://twitter.com/YleArt/status/936576010325254145?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">1 December 2017</a></blockquote> <p>Aussie hockey players Jayde Taylor and Brooke Peris were stoked to notice Her Royal Highness had “photobombed” a selfie they took together during an event in Glasgow back in 2014.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en-gb"> <p dir="ltr">Ahhh The Queen photo-bombed our selfie!! 😄 👑 <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/royalty?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#royalty</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/sheevensmiled?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#sheevensmiled</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/amazing?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#amazing</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Glasgow2014?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Glasgow2014</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/Hockeyroos?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@Hockeyroos</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/AusComGames?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@AusComGames</a> <a href="http://t.co/ZMtHYFUqHk">pic.twitter.com/ZMtHYFUqHk</a></p> — Jayde Taylor (@_JaydeTaylor) <a href="https://twitter.com/_JaydeTaylor/status/492269017215012864?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">24 July 2014</a></blockquote>

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