|The beautiful city of Edinburgh, Scotland|
I was with the divine Gill (Velvet), Matt and Cian in the beautiful city of Edinburgh, but first I had to get to Central Station.
I got back in contact with a lovely lovely wonderful sexy (ok I had to put that in or I'd get no more cuddles or lifts, isn't that right hun!!??!!) friend via Facebook on Thursday evening. I swear he must've come in from work seen the friend request (he had been suggested as a friend to me by a mutual friend), accepted and then got straight onto chat to talk to me!! He then offered me a lift to the station with my suitcase the following morning. It was the least I could do to get him a coffee next day bless him! True to his word he was actually EARLIER than scheduled but that was fine as it gave us nearly an hour to catch up (even with interruptions of 'The train now standing at Platform.... 2.... is the...... Cross-Country Line to..... Edinburgh. Calling at..... blah blah blah' (the ....'s indicate they seem to have 30 second pauses like the announcer is a chronic asthmatic and can only get out a maximum of 3 words!!) over coffee before I met Norman (who was going the opposite direction to Manchester thence to Cleethorpes for family holiday), Kris and FINALLY got to meet Kris's lovely finance Mellissa and her daughter Amber!! More cups of coffee and a bacon sarnie later and we were ready to face our journeys.
Unlike the catastrophe that was the Carlisle to Newcastle run the previous week my run to Edinburgh was completely unmarred. I really couldn't have asked for a smoother journey. The only hiccough being that I got the reservation card that went with the ticket for Edinburgh back to Newcastle out rather than the Newcastle-Edinburgh one, some old couple had sat in my RESERVED seat but it didn't matter as half the train was empty so I just sat elsewhere since someone had sat in THEIR reserved seats, I wasn't going to make an issue over it!
Got into Waverley (that's Edinburgh main station to those not familiar with the strange names we give our stations!) about 5 mins late but that's nothing really, we were stuck outside the station for almost 15! Met Gilly and Cian and thence commenced my purgatory... well briefly! They are renovating part of the station so I had to cart my suitcase up LOTS of stairs into the shopping mall, then up MORE stairs to pavement level!! Normal service was resumed when I heard the skirling of pipes as I crossed the road opposite the Station Hotel... ah to be in Scotland with the sound of pipes in my heart. Bliss!!
I've popped in a couple of cartoons there for Joel's amusement as that's pretty much what he thought of bagpipes, although admitted that he could see WHY the Scots got fired up about them.
Anyhow, got to Gill's WONDERFUL, big, airy, beautiful flat. Honestly I want to live there and the settee.... you can comfortably die on it!! LOL
Didn't do much other than shop on Friday night, but it was lovely being back in Gill's company. And we BOTH felt Joel around very strongly. I have to tell you about the shopping trip, and if you think it irreverent to Joel's memory...you didn't know him very well. We were browsing the alcohol shelves of Tesco and I spotted Advocaat. Now Joel LOVED Advocaat... or Snowballs at least. Me and Gill ended up having a mock argument about how evil/lovely (Gill in the evil corner and me in the yummy scrummy lovely Advocaat corner LOL) Advocaat was/is! Some woman came past looking askance at us so Gill piped up "It's ok, I'm just telling her that it doesn't matter if her recently dead hubby who I love dearly liked Advocaat, it's still EVIL!!!" The woman went off with a face white as a sheet and me and Gill collapse laughing on each others shoulders. Truly the devilment which was/is Joel Milburn's memory was with us then!
Oh and my poor sweet innocent Greebo-Joel has been corrupted!
|The D.G.C. Distinguished Goth Medal... for services beyond Death. Awarded for Valor to Joel Thomas Milburn for love eternally given and served to Paula Milburn.|
Anyhow the night of the housewarming was BRILLIANT!! I met a number of people whom I decided I love and feel I've known for years!! Bryar the darling spider woman (she loves spiders the way I love bats for jewellery!!) and I chatted up a storm. Martin (Boyle... Irishman extraordinaire) is a sweetheart and since he doesn't drink I had him on Pol Watch... I WAS imbibing and have been known to get morose! Yummy food and lots of alcohol later... I have Martin look at me and say 'POKE!!'... this is cuz I told him if I got too quiet or looked sad to poke me. I'd just gone quiet cuz I was tired!! That was before Matt brought out the 6 year old (lethal percentage probably) most DELICIOUS Elderflower Mead I have ever tasted!!! Chatting to Pam and Bryar, Martin and Matt we then started on the Whisky. Now I don't normally drink whisky, but discovered when it's a GOOD whisky, drunk in the company of friends with just a dash of water in it... it's pretty good stuff!! Finally crawled into bed about 4am, thinking 'My God! Am I gonna have a hang over in the morning.....'
As it happens I HADN'T done anything embarrassing... and woke to the most gorgeous smell of bacon and creamy-weamy scrambly-wambly eggy weggy!! (this is Cian talk for the most delicious creamy herb scrambled eggs, crispy bacon, and toast) Bryar started something and we all ended up having the eggs and bacon in a croissant - YUMMY!!
Alas all good things come to an end and I had to go back to Station....
Another uneventful journey back to Newcastle, apart from *drum roll and fanfares needed here* we DIDN'T sit for 20 mins on the High Level bridge!!!
Had arranged to meet Bryan, and it was nice that I'm treated as a big girl and trusted to get to Hebburn metro on my own LOL!!! Nah I'm just getting overly used to being collected and treated like royalty by my friends. I LOVE my friends!!!
Bryan took me to the Premier Inn at Tyne Dock (South Shields) where I was staying the evening and rushed back to attend a party. I tidied myself up and then had dinner in Taybarns (for those not familiar - pay about £10 and have unlimited soft drinks and plenty of food!! Eat as much as you like). I was holding out for the Profiteroles!! I got my wish... HUGE bowl of them (they wouldn't let me take the whole bowl sadly.... nor would my conscience or my waistline!!) and hot choccie sauce. Picked up at 8pm and went to the Beehive for karaoke!! Sang lots of songs once poor Bryan had sworn (under his breath) at the mixer desk several times. I'm now it seems, an unofficial roadie and entrusted with the car keys!! Not that I can (legally) drive so Bry knows I won't drive off with his car!! Got back to the Premier about 1.15am *YAWN*
Following morning I had to be out of the Premier Inn at 12 noon. I was actually out of there faster because my lovely wonderful taxi man (he's not but he seems to have appointed himself as such) because I'd sent a text to all saying I was shattered and just wanted to go home, need cheering up etc., decided to meet me at the station for coffee. We forgot (again) about the tannoy system but I did get taken home!
Then the fun started!! I discovered I had £2 electric credit left. Fortunately the post yielded a cheque which needed paid into the bank... and I needed to buy a foot pump for the air bed so a trip into Consett was in order!! I think it funny that I was halfway there on the bus when the heavens open to a torrential shower just as my MP3 player started playing Joel's cover of Glycerine!! I think he was telling me that he's glad I'm back locally for a bit!! Think he's been a bit stretched getting around from Shrewsbury to Edinburgh and then South Shields this week... even for a super Angel like him it must be sub-sonic apparating there!!
Got that sorted out and I took electric key with me... now the ONE place I know does electric top up in Consett... the Co-op, the PayPoint was off (bear in mind I had got about 2 hours sleep that night about 4 the previous night and have been showing signs of clinical exhaustion).... this is the point at which I sit there and scream, albeit silently but inside it wasn't!!
My temperament was restored somewhat by getting 3 pairs of trousers for £1 each in the X-Catalogue shop, and then having a fish from the Consett fish shop.
I decided to chance it and got off at the Spar stop (2 stops before 'my' stop and with bags to carry) but Lo! It was to be a miracle, the key worked in the Spar and Paula had elec-trickery again!! And so finally it was
So I DID (on pain of death or threats of not seeing me again for coffee EVER AGAIN if I didn't!! from certain friends) have a lie in until 11am this morning. I think someone saw my status message on Facebook as a cry for help... it was but only in a rally of the troops to send virtual hugs and random silliness my way. But no, this friend comes in person, and has coffee on my sofa with my stupid cat all over him!!
Oh I might have sometime a treat for Joel getting organised. Those that know and love him, know that he loved his bikes, and DESPERATELY wanted a Hayabusa (Suzuki... a bike to cry over it's that gorgeous). Well I came up with the idea of taking his ashes for a ride on one of them..... feelers are being put out for me to ride pillion with Joel on my back in a backpack of course!
Now off to make some grub... before round 2 starts on the chatting!!
Love you all, had a fantastic weekend, but I'm glad to be home!!