Saturday, February 04, 2006

Stuff I Did In England

I’ve spent a fair bit of time “down south” (as we say here in the north) over the last couple of weeks and had a good time working with some lovely people in a nice environment in the middle of a quaint-but-not-at-all-twee town called Chester. Here’s just a select few of the many wacky and outrageous things I got up to/observed.

(i) I went to see ‘Brokeback Mountain’ at the movies last week and quite enjoyed it despite the fact that it took me ages to get to grips with the accents and the incoherent dialogue. In fact, I think the only line I understood in the first 45 minutes was “Am sicka beans!” Those cowboys should really be told it’s rude to speak with your mouth full.

(ii) I went out for dinner (alone) most nights but didn’t quite appreciate the sad nature of this until someone laughed out loud when I told them that one of my restaurant choices had been a tapas bar.

“So who did you share the dishes with?” came the question, in between all the laughing.

“Share? Food?” came my snappy reply. At which point, of course, it was my turn to laugh.

(iii) Chester has the best Starbucks in England. Hands down. My tolerance levels for caffeine are heading off the chart though ‘cause my drink of choice is now a grandé caramel macchiato with four – count ‘em – FOUR shots of espresso.

(iv) Two different women asked me if I was related to Kiefer Sutherland. I knew that if I said yes they would have countered with “Well can you get me his number then fatty?” so I just lied and said no.

(v) This week I went to see ‘Munich’ at the movies. It was interesting but not particularly moving. “That’s terrorist no.2 blown up. Who’s next?” The best thing about it was the fact that I totally believed I was back in the 1970s, dodgy fashion choices and all. Kudos to the production designers if, indeed, that is what production designers do.

(vi) The windows in a non-smoking hotel bedroom only open a quarter of an inch. Whit’s THAT aw aboot? It’s barely enough space to blow out the smoke, never mind flick away the finished butt. I would imagine.

(vii) I watched a programme last Monday on BBC2 called ‘Balderdash & Piffle’ where they examine the origin of English language words. On Monday, they were showcasing words beginning with the letter ‘C’ so gorgeous Jerry Hall was in New Orleans trying to find the origin of ‘cocktail’ and hip, jazz saxophonist Courtney Pine was in New York trying to find the origin of the word ‘cool’. Germaine Greer, unsurprisingly, was just banging on about her c**t!!!

(viii) The water in England is different. And not in a good way. My hair just didn’t have its usual bounce and shine and my skin was left feeling very dry. I was almost on the point of buying some moisturiser (for men) when I remembered that I could probably hold off and borrow some from my pal Poochie. Which reminds me Dave, have you been to see ‘Brokeback Mountain’ yet?


At 4/2/06 3:00 pm, Anonymous wendi said...

neil!! you crack me up...but FOUR shots of espresso?!?!? i can't even finish a whole caramel machichichisomethingrather!!! although it is my fav hot coffee drink...ok..the only one i like...although i could do without the coat of thick syrup it leaves on my tongue...

At 5/2/06 9:09 am, Blogger Neil said...

The secret of getting maximum drinking pleasure from a caramelmachiowhatsitthingy is to stir it well at the outset. This will perfectly balance the sweetness and strength and minimise the tongue-coating.

Oh, and Eminem was talking bollocks - you DO get more than one shot!

At 16/2/06 3:31 pm, Anonymous deborah said...

Once went to Chester and was really impressed by a sculpture in the Cloister garden, see above.

I thought the way the centre was built on two levels quite amazing ......... went to a few good pubs up there too.


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