Saturday, 16 April 2011

From the Yorkshire Air Ambulance to the Scottish Fire Brigade

Well, these holidays have been great. I don't know how else I would have caught up with the paperwork. But I did fancy a bit of time out of Leeds, and as I am gearing up to checking out Fingal's Cave with Ann in the May half term, Glasgow seemed like a good idea. Morgan agreed to come with me, and just as I was booking hotels and trains on line, ex-pupil: Andy Lofty contacted the Foxwood website to see if we would like to play a benefit for the Air Ambulance at Leeds Bus Station on Thursday.

And here's a combination to die for: Foxwood ex-student, good cause, busy thoroughfare. I booked our tickets for the 1.05 to Glasgow, found a hostel just out of the city centre, contacted Foxwood and Doves and two days later, there we were: me, Mig, Gig, Varshika, Amy, Bex and Charlotte. The man in the picture wasn't all that keen by the looks! Or was he just on his phone?
Striking up a conversation with Dougie on the Edinburgh to Glasgow train, we: me and Morgan allowed ourselves to take a lift with him, to our lodgings on the Firhill Road. A modern block of student accomodation overlooking the Partick Thistle stadium. Dougie called it Partick Thistle Nil. I think we understood what he was saying.

We walked along the canal into town, and there, even as the town cente began was the Wee Curry House. We squashed in and tucked in. Later we found it was in the Rough Guide to . .

The city hostelries didn't take our fancy. We had a bit of a laugh in the Open Mike Bar, but en route for Byers Road [as recommended by Carrie-ann] we bumped into a Thursday night acoustic session in the Islay for a group of older generation folk musicians playing guitars, violin, boran, pipe, mandolin. So we just stayed. And then after a magical hour and a couple of pints, the dynamics changed as different musicians joined the session. And the Old Guy leader packed away his guitar after a couple of tunes with the newcomers, and left. We thanked him, and left ourselves.

Next day we did art galleries: Hunterian and Kelvingrove, and saw many a famous painter's work. Here's me checking out Dali's Christ in a discreet tourist in front of a famous painting kind of a way. Later that evening massive pub crawl - probably burnt off the alcohol striding from pub to pub. Which was probably just as well, because our short Scottish break ended with with not one, but two fire alarms in the middle of the night, but noone admitting to having a cig in in Block Whatever 4a.

Grabbing my coat, my keys and my camera . . . [I think we knew it wasn't a fire] here's a blurry picture of bleary people.

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