"Homepage!" Kettleman's Profile

Now us instead of Me!

My wife Claire created her own VT userid but as we generally go on the same trips it seemed a waste of time for her and I to do our own thing, so here we are, an Us instead of me.

Personal Info - Paul

A little personal information I suppose! I was born in St Thomas' Hospital in London in December 1955 just in time to ruin my Mum's Christmas dinner.

Until I was 10yo we lived in Chadderton near Oldham in Lancashire and then moved south again where I have lived in and around London for most of the last 40+ years.

I now live in Hythe in Kent. Married to Claire, with no kids, two cats and two motorcycles.

In 1992/93 I worked in the Czech Republic as an English Teacher in the gymnázium (grammar school) in Zastávka u Brna. On my return to the UK I enrolled at (my then local) University in Luton to study Information Systems and in 1996 I graduated with a BSc Hons.

Since 1997 I have worked for the Education Department in a London Borough in the ICT Team, with my main specialisation being support and training on the School MIS. I travel everyday into London either by train or by motorcycle (when the weather is good!!)

Personal Info - Claire

I live in Hythe in Kent with my husband, Paul.

I love living by the sea and have done so for most of my life, however we have the best of both worlds with beautiful countryside on our doorstep too.

I enjoy going away with my husband but I am always happy to return home and living only a few miles from The Channel Tunnel and the port of Dover, short breaks across the Channel are a regular feature of our lives.


We joined VT in Summer 2002 and have visited quite often since to make some upgrades and add new places we’ve been to, and to check what other VT members think of places we want to visit. That's the real glory of this place!!

Looking at some other entries, I have been rather limited in my travels, mainly Europe, with only two trips to the USA and one to Africa! I am full of admiration of all the guys and girls that have made so many visits and have made so many excellent pages.

I’ll have to do more on my pages than just list all the places I have been to without filling in the information to go with them.

I’ve made a start and deleted a few places off, like Slovakia. I’ve been quite a few times but either to watch FC BOBY Brno in Bratislava or Trencin or simply passing through.

Although back in 1993 I spent a week in the Jasna area in the Slovak Tatra Mountains. But anything I could add would be so out of date it’s not worth putting it on the site…

Photos and Copy and Paste!!!!!

Wherever possible we use photos we have taken ourselves, be they more recently with a digital camera or in the past on and old-tech 35mm SLR and then scanned in. We sometimes nick one off the web as a make weight to save having a blank., although recently I have my own "pic to follow" image as a marker. Any make weight pics are removed as soon as a self-made pic becomes available!

I believe in writing my own commentary on where we have been rather than simply cut and paste from the place we visit's own website or simple plagiarism from their guide books or worse, from Wikipedia!

I prefer to think that VT is a personal experiences website. If I wanted stock info I'd buy a Rough Guide or Fodor. It seems many ratings hunters don't feel the way I do!

I am also not a great fan of people that chase ratings by spreading their tips over several pages.... Instead of filling the space these boxes allow or by using the Travelogues to show pics of e.g. the front door of the pub, the bar, the door to the bathroom, and a fourth to describe the back door. :)

Another irritation are the members that put tips in the wrong places! Why tell us of the dangers of pickpockets in Granada on the Fuengirola page?

No doubt voicing these opinions will get my backside flamed, although I read that the ratings system was changing to make them more equitable!

Amazingly, VT thinks the same as the system has changed to allow multiple photos per tip to save the ratings chasers from having to type in loads of the same tip to show a different photo!

Oh dear!

In one week at the end of October 2007 my rating fell about 700 points! As you can see from the above I don't consider myself a ratings hoe, but it's nice to be able to maintain my position about 2500 in the world! And now way way down....

Sob.... ;)

  • Intro Updated Sep 26, 2010
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Comments (19)

  • toemayn's Profile Photo
    Dec 23, 2013 at 1:23 PM

    Hope your birthday is filled with all the fun you can handle!

  • CEP1863's Profile Photo
    Dec 23, 2013 at 8:26 AM

    Paul, I wish you a fantastic birthday and a year packed full of exciting travel!

  • iandsmith's Profile Photo
    Mar 28, 2012 at 5:25 AM

    Gosh, I was lucky, my ratings went the other way. Hang in there. Cheers, Ian

  • Minceta's Profile Photo
    Dec 23, 2010 at 5:17 AM

    Hello, Paul! Hereby I would like to wish you a VERY HAPPY BIRTHDAY and at the same time MERRY CHRISTMAS AND A HAPPY NEW YEAR! If you and Claire want, we can stay in touch. Best regards from a sunny Belgrade from Jasmina

  • pieter_jan_v's Profile Photo
    Dec 23, 2010 at 4:10 AM

    Happy Birthday. PJ

  • ViajesdelMundo's Profile Photo
    Apr 22, 2008 at 1:36 PM

    HI - I see u r going to Club Dobogomajor nr Balaton Lake, Hungary! When are you going? We stayed there a week last June, as a timeshare exchange. It is very nice and good food at the restaurant there.

  • Gillybob's Profile Photo
    Oct 26, 2007 at 2:41 AM

    Lovely daffy! If you fancy a trip up North, we have a VT meet on 24 November for the Manchester Christmas Markets - come and catch up with VT friends! Gillybob greetings

  • elssbkeppe's Profile Photo
    Apr 3, 2007 at 11:50 AM

    Thank you for your comment. I told myself 6 years ago "I would love to live in Spain", I just left Belgium and now its my sixth year here. The best thing I ever did. Best regards!

  • BluBluBlu's Profile Photo
    Feb 28, 2007 at 11:45 PM

    I heard Goddards was shutting down...they are going into the wholesale side! Greetings from sunny Goa! Blu

  • uglyscot's Profile Photo
    Dec 23, 2006 at 12:43 PM

    happy birthday to whichever one it is who is celebrating. May you both have lots of interesting travel in the coming year.

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“For my part, I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel's sake. The great affair is to move.”

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Paul Devall
Hythe, United Kingdom
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