Home » Archive for October, 2010

09.40am Leeds to London train coach D

Posted by on October 28, 2010
Seat 31: “I’m going to meet Susan. We’ve done it every year since 2001. [Pauses.] I’m not that bothered. I’ve done all the arranging again. I’ve been the one that’s done it for the past three years. I don’t want to be the one who does it again next time.” Seat 32: “It’s her turn. She can pick up the phone.” 31 “She won’t.” 32“She’ll...
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Do you believe in fairies? Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, author of the Sherlock Holmes stories, did. In fact, he went to his grave believing in fairies, the poor deluded old codger. And all because of two little girls from around here in West Yorkshire who were trying to stay out of trouble. In 1917, cousins, Elsie Wright and Frances Griffiths, found themselves...
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The run itself was fine. I’ll even go as far as to say that I almost enjoyed it. But precious little else went to plan. In fact, the weekend went from bad to worse, and then some. We travelled from Leeds to Peterborough OK on Friday. We got to Julie & Ed’s house OK (Julie had roped me in to joining her for this half-marathon on Sunday). We had...
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Preparing for my big run

Posted by on October 8, 2010
That’s it. The training is over. My body is as ready as it will ever be for this Sunday’s half-marathon, given the raw materials available. But man, the preparation! I had no idea it would take such commitment, such planning, such mental effort. My challenges have included: Which colour sports bra to buy? My two old black ones simply don’t reflect...
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Mr Man at the top of the shopping centre was trying to get to Tesco’s. Not too ambitious a goal, you’d have thought, for a Saturday afternoon. It’s a good enough pavement. Gently sloping. A few metal benches. No loose slabs to get het up about. But not all was as it should be, trolley-wise. No. Three Tesco trolleys were being spun, wheeled, leant...
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Who’s scat?

Posted by on October 5, 2010
We found droppings. Faeces. Actually, to sound like I know what I’m talking about, I’m now going to call it a ‘scat’. As scats go, this was a rather beautiful specimen. Glossy, almost jet black, and packed throughout with bright red berries. Something had been feasting among the nearby rowan trees, all of which were laden with clusters of the...
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Shadow grasshopper

Posted by on October 5, 2010
As soon as the rain stopped, we hot-footed it with joy and whoops of excitement to a local beauty spot near Burley-in-Wharfedale. Oh, OK, then. As soon as the rain stopped, I dragged the boys kicking and screaming away from their Lego and forced them up a steep muddy path far, far away from the local playground and the telly. It was deserted, apart...
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The Brontë Parsonage

Posted by on October 5, 2010
It’s a miserable experience, poking around the Brontë Parsonage in Haworth. Even soaked in sunshine, the museum is as much a reminder of physical and emotional suffering as of literary genius. There’s the sofa that Emily died on, in full view of the cemetery outside (can you hear her bone-shaking TB coughs?). The bed that Branwell died in (that’s...
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Thick lip

Posted by on October 5, 2010
Grub’s been invited to go to a karate taster session. I’m thinking, it’s a bit – well, shouty, isn’t it, karate? All that ‘Eyes On You Sir!’ stuff? And, no matter how you dress it up, it’s basically about fighting, right? And don’t you need to buy a whole load of kit, like dressing gowns and bits of rope? Maybe, I say. Later that day:...
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‘If it swims, we sell it,’ says the sign above one stall in London’s Billingsgate Market. We knew we’d miss the main event. Most of the fish at this historic East End place (the largest selection of fish in the UK) is shifted well before 8am – and that’s near the end of a full working day for the traders. But it wasn’t quite over. There...
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