I was amazed to discover that the Harry Ramsden's in the Metro Centre is being knocked down. I never really went there more than once a year, but I kinda feel it /should/ be there.
The departure of Harry Ramsden's is like losing part of the establishment. Sure, we rarely went there, but we need it to /be/ there. The end of this fine Fish & Chip restaurant represents the end of a bygone era, where waitresses wear black dresses with little white pinnies - and where fish and chips are cooked fresh for each order.
This made me think - what other places, other than the local library, do we need to be there, but not actually visit or use in any way?
It's fascinating, knowing that I will, quite soon, live somewhere entirely different. Ten years in Stanley brings a certain expectation of existence that is totally shattered by a move some thirty miles north. They are, for the most part, changes that I welcome, but the void that exists between now and then is what is hard to bear at the moment. On the one hand, little has changed, whilst on the other, everything has changed.
The reason for the move north is to be near the sea and near to friends like Jason & Antonia, Chris & Alison, Ian & Rebecca, Christine & Steve, Tim & Brenda and John & Ann. (no specific order there, folks - nor an exhaustive list.) Not only that, it represents a chance to become part of a community for the first time - something which I find attractive, having lived a good distance away from my friends all my life.
It's a wild ride, and not one I'd recommend. That said, it has its compensations - like spending a couple of days with my PMV in NBBTS looking at houses.
A sneaked shot in the Victorian Tea Rooms, to show the luxurious surroundings and classy clientele. Here we enjoyed a cup of tea and a bite to eat. The tea, TL informs me, tastes strange - but mine seemed to taste fine, as did most of the breakfast I had (not pictured).
A quick tip to anyone wanting to eat a sausage at this establishment - probably best not to bother, unless you like turkey and spleen flavour.
Rather than drive back to Stanley, we drove up to the Sun Hotel in Warkworth and spent the night, before returning to NBBTS for more house viewing on Friday. It's a nice little Hotel, which wears its two star rating bravely, and certainly is undaunted in its pricing. I salute them.
PMV Hard Egg Brekky Breakfasting
After two days and a good few houses viewed, the field has narrowed itself considerably. It's been useful to find out what is attractive, and what is not - where to go, where to avoid - what is possible, and what is not. The two places above both have just about everything on the tick list.
More than that, they are welcoming and I feel excited about the possibility of living in either. So, if you are the proud owner of either of these fine buildings....well...as soon as some houses down here are sold, expect a call.
The enticing half-term break afforded me an opportunity to escape for a bit of a day to Lindisfarne with Jac.
It was nice weather, too. Most unexpected. The drive up was pleasant, and we stopped off in Almwick for a quick bite.
The cafe we went in is great. When they need to be in the cellar, they lock the door, and open the floor.
Mind the step!
Jac's teacakes looked lovely, and my BLT featured
some amazingly flavoursome bacon. Smashing.
The view over the harbour. Always stunning.
Jac says that the castle looks like it's wrapped in a cloak. I think I know what she means. Here she is on her way
back from photographing some ageing locks and other crevices.
The car park there is jam full - it's half term. So why is the extremely popular and useful bus service to the castle not running?
I despair of the British sometimes.
We rushed back afterwards, after an interesting meal at a pub, which I shall choose not to tell you about, mainly because I have no pictures. The journey back was frustrating, and the traffic got very bad towards Newcastle.
Fiona, Jac and myself took full advantage of the chicken curry we prepared a little later. It was a good end to the day.
Popular and successful function band “Soul Doubt”, of which I am tearfully delighted to be a member, played a fantastic gig at The Old Assembly Rooms in Newcastle on Saturday last.
It's an impressive room to play in, and all who attended the Ball were clearly in the mood to have fun. This is absolutely the way we like it.
The band itself was lacking two important members, and so things felt a little different. In particular, we had a new chap on the drums. Phil is the new drummer in question. He's great, and did exceptionally well for his first time out with us. Andrea, our resident Sax player, was also away, and so we enjoyed the tunefulness of ...erm... someone else.
He was great. No, really he was. I liked him. He even told me the name of Courtney Pine, whom I had temporarily forgotten. Maybe I should have asked him for his own name?
N.B. I wish to point out that I implied that I had a lot to tell, and not that any of it was interesting.