Benalmadena, LIMF and the plague.

So it is a week since we landed from a lovely family holiday in Benalmadena. I had all good intentions to blog on that then for the Liverpool International Music Festival but alas I got sidetracked and then stuck down ! But here is a catch up in the life of ickle old me.

So Friday 15th August and an early start as we headed off to Speke Airport (Will always be that name to me) and a first family holiday of just the five of us on our own. Couldn’t of asked for everything to go any smoother until a hitch at the apartment  meant our room was smaller than we thought we had booked. Oh well the kids were on the sofa bed and we would have to draw lots to see who was sleeping on the lilo ! As it happens the sofa bed was a massive double pull out bed and the three sprogs fitted on with space to spare. (Judith Chalmers mode alert) Benalmadena is situated on the Costa Del Sol and we stayed in The Sunset Beach Club which is very child friendly and a great complex to stay in and has a lot of Irish staying being Irish owned. There is a lovely promenade to walk along and a stunning marina with shops and bars and boat trips if you fancy that. Not far away each side are the resorts of Torremelinos which we got the bus to one night and walked home and the other side is Fuengirola to which again we got the bus to and went the water park there one day. Back to the Sunset Beach and there were also adult activities in the day and I was dying to have a go of the outdoor darts tournament but decided against it as I didn’t fancy necking the required six pints at 1pm in the afternoon to get me in my perfect relaxed darting zone. I noticed a wedding at the apartment and pictures were being taken of the guests on the bridge that separated the two large pools. Nice touch but fancy having a wedding and a beer at the outdoor bar and a seventeen stone me walks past in just a pair of pink Puma swimming shorts, full on moobs out and big hairy beer belly on show, with no doubt a few crumbs of Jamon Ruffle crisps embedded in the thatch. We love Jamon Ruffles on holiday and still you can’t get them here. Having earned some brownie points by keeping our three kids entertained in the day with swimming and watching them in the play area Mrs Fay let me out for a few beers on the Sunday to watch Liverpool’s first game of the season. I started off in the apartment bar and then onto another two pubs the last one a sports bar full of scousers. One fella was there with his two kids decked out in full Liverpool kits although he himself was an Evertonian. A Geordie asked him how come your two lads are Liverpool fans and your an Everton fan to which the bluenose replied “coz der grandads a terrorist” ha ha. The apartment had its own entertainment room with kids disco every night which promoted lots of “dad dancing” not from me, my moves are much better and an act for afterwards with the kids highlight being a jarg Adele singing one night. So a great holiday, great weather and some great family memories. Just a shame it’s another 12 months until the next one.

Sunset Beach Club Benalmadena

So coming home once again everything went like clockwork and the kids were good as gold aided by the armoury of iPad, 3DS and Playstation Vita and before I knew we were home. After a quick disco nap and how great to was to be back in my own bed we were still in holiday mode and heading off  to the Liverpool International Music Festival (LIMF) for The Lightning Seeds and The Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra. It was busier than last years classical evening though I was putting that down to Liverpool’s own Lightning Seeds being on. The Phil entertained us to some classical classics and film scores before a break and then the main event. The Lightning Seeds did not disappoint and Ian Broudie was at home, literally as he lives around Sefton Park. “Pure” is The Lightning Seeds song of choice for me taking me back to my old bedroom as a teenager in Mossley Hill Road and I can remember taping it of Radio City to put it on one of my many home made cassette compilations which I ingenuously called “Now that’s what Fay calls music” Had a great night and carried a few cans under the buggy as you do, isn’t that what buggy’s are for ? Friday moment was when darkness had fell and the bright lights of the fairground could be seen a group of middle aged men came out of the toilets and gave a rendition of Simply Red’s “Fairground”  and the night was rounded off with some fireworks to a cover of “Perfect Day” by Lou Read I spent the Saturday and Sunday over in the park watching bands across the four stages including Bird, Baltic Fleet, Lamp Scientists, By The Sea and a fella called Swindle who sadly only had a few people watching him but had a great mix of funk and Jazz with a very modern twist.

Ian Broudie Lightning Seeds at Liverpool International Music Festival The shadow of Alan at Liverpool International Music Festival

Sunday morning and a visit to church for a christening and I decided to glam up and put a suit on mostly because I am very casual, some might say scruffy or very smart and don’t have much in-between wardrobe wise. We walked up to Mossley Hill church and my first foray into a church for a good few years and then god struck and the wheel of the buggy fell off, or as it had become personal beer transporter with a seat for Holly built in. £50 plus straight out the arse pocket for a new one. Not happy enough with that Holly had caught a bug which was spreading to the rest of the family and I got it overnight Sunday which meant my last day off bank holiday monday when the highlight of the weekend at LIMF included The Tea Street Band and The Farm was spent in bed and on the toilet where there was a mighty battle between my arse and mouth to see who could expel most fluids in one day with the mouth winning on a points victory as I battled the plague. That rough twas I that I even had to take a day off sick on Tuesday adding to the break (No work mo pay here la) and the start of a mini recession in september awaits.

So it’s the big birthday week in the Fay household with Elizabeth turning 10 and Charlotte 7 and all the fun and games that brings. In one last proof that there isn’t a god a friend of Elizabeth found the missing buggy wheel on Woodlands Road (Must have fell off coming home from the park on Friday night) and the buggy is fixed and my bug has gone and I returned to work on Wednesday. Take that big fella what you got for me next ? On second thoughts thou shalt thank the lord for the giveth of the buggy wheel and not lead me into temptation on the Monday at LIMF by getting pissed watching boss bands but spend the day weeing out my bum. Amen.

Despite my best efforts my anti sickness/bug precautions on holiday did not protect me. Any Jamon Ruffles in that “Hoff” chest hair ? One last note as you came in the hotel there was a sign saying don’t pull it off if you aint the Hoff. Meaning get yer t-shirt on fatty your in the hotel now. I duly obliged and covered up.

Fay The Hoff

Peace

Fay x x x x x x

Paint the whole world with a Cliff Rainbow.

So Thursday and no reported serious crime in the hood and The Aiggy Vale Crips have still managed to keep hold of the subway (See previous blog) todays “breaking news” was Cliff Richard. For legal reasons I have to be careful what I say on here just in case Cliff and his lawyers are reading. When the Savile story broke I delved into the murky world of the internet and read some crazy stuff. Weird thing is a lot of this crazy stuff seems to be coming out which is a worry as what do I now make of the crazy crazy shit ! Buy me a bevy and I will bore you senseless for an hour about it. Anyways with many an old age womans last bit of can I say dampness ? now suppressed and the noise of those amazing topless Cliff calendars being torn down from kitchens all across middle England it got me thinking about who if anybody was revealed in operation Yewtree or the likes would crush my childhood. Now forgive me if we have been here before on a blog (Cant be arsed reading back through them) sometimes my social media of Facebook, Twitter and blog all blur into one and I can’t remember what I have done on what.

So who would crush my soul if even the merest hint of an allegation against them surfaced. After falling in love with Glastonbury on my first visit in 2010 that is forever tainted as I rushed around to catch the opening act on the pyramid stage. The one and only Rolf fucking Harris. It’s Ok I can cope with adult good time being crushed but not that of my rose tainted innocent childhood. When kids Tv just meant the odd half hour now and again and having to put up with The Sullivans and Crown Court around the time your fave kids TV show should be on never mind if the BBC had even started broadcasting for the day. Well me, I was a sucker for Rainbow and thus if Geoffrey Hayes ever gets pulled in by the bizzies I will have to re-evaluate my whole childhood. With the recent Cliff allegation it got me looking into Rainbow and the fountain of all knowledge that is Wikipedia possibly the best thing on the internet and something I use several times a day increasing my knowledge in all matter of shite facts. So there I was and typed in Rainbow whilst having a pre holiday Desperado (I am now on holiday saved this blog to post whilst I am away) To my shock it seems Geoffrey was not the first presenter on Rainbow and it was a fella called David Cook. So Ok I was still a fantasy of my dads after a few bevies in the Little House and Travellers Rest in Aigburth Vale in 1972 but I was still amazed Geoffrey never had the gig all the time. So with the power of the internet it was straight onto youtube to see if there was any footage of David Cook (Shakes head in disgust) presenting Rainbow.

You bet your bottom dollar there was. The whole first episode was on there. So 10pm in the evening and I am sat at my imac with a Desperado watching the first episode of Rainbow. I have had some highs (051 and Cream) in my life and some lows but was this rock bottom ? Oh no it was gonna get a whole lot worse. That bad that David Cook gegging in on what I had down as Geoffrey’s crown was soon forgotten. I froze still, then managed to raise an eyebrow, feeling in my body came back. I had to check how many Dezzies I had consumed. It was only three. Next check was had I been spiked ? Negative. What I was seeing was true. Never mind Geoffrey being outed as a nonce thus shattering my childhood. What the fuck was going on with Bungle. Now being a fan of Geoffrey I also have soft spots for Zippy, Cheeky bastard. George ,dying to come out just do it George I have had friends who have waited too long and finally Bungle, big daft cunt.  This Bungle (As below) is neither big, or daft. If Jimmy Savile was inside this 1972 edition of Bungle it couldn’t get any scarier. Am I to assume this was just Bungle in his younger days before he hit puberty and put on a few pounds and his head grew quite a lot ? Maybe giant TV bears are born with toned bodies and two coloured hair ? I didn’t speck George in the clip below but there was a mini Zippy with what is uncannily like a George puppet but is miniature and purple, maybe he grew up to be pink. He has the mannerisms of George. Anyway my head it battered trying to re-evaluate my childhood and indeed Rainbow after tonights revelations and if you dare ever get named Geoffrey Hayes I will be the first in the queue to twat you. I can’t even begin to digest the pre Rod, Jane and Freddy group.

Original Bungle Rainbow

Youtube clip of first episode below.

So if all the recent allegations have not left you with a crushed childhood or re-evaluating anything you have seen I leave you with a picture of Big Daddy.

Big Daddy

Peace and paint the whole world with a Rainbow

Fay x x x x x x

The Ghetto that is Aigburth

So two years ago we lived in the leafy suburb of Garston with a lovely semi detached house with garden on the site of the old Speke Road tenements. September 2012 and we moved to a terraced house and back yard in the hood now more commonly known as Aigburth. First up it was drugs and guns in the road at the bottom of ours and news of a police raid. A revolver, shotgun and dozens of rounds of ammunition were uncovered in a raid on the house in Woodlands Road, Aigburth. Suspected quantities of heroin and cocaine were also recovered. All that swag at the bottom of our road. I could have had my own game of Grand Theft Auto The Aigburth Stories ! I reckon I could suss what house it was as well if the groups of lads smoking weed outside was anything to go by. No I am not the grass before you decide to spray paint it on my crib.

Next up Tuesday night and my sister reported that the roads by hers were chocker. So Juliet Bravo took the dog for a walk and discovered there had been an incident on Aigburth Road by Liverpool Cricket Club. She sent me a few pics which I tweeted on my Liverpool weather account and the Echo live news blog picked up on (below) one and so not only am I Liverpool Weather expert I am now Liverpool crime correspondent. Eventually news about what had happened was revealed and a man was stabbed in the arm on a busy city street following a dispute between the occupants of two black vehicles. Residents said the victim was seen walking on the pavement on the city centre-bound side of the dual carriageway. He then staggered across the wooded area of the central reservation and onto the Speke-bound side of the road, where a passer-by alerted the emergency crews. Things were now getting serious in da hood of Aigburth. An area now known for its crime and lack of degradation. Maybe the Speke-bound road was the one to take for safety.

Aigburth Road Stabbing

Things were getting out of hand. I managed to get myself asleep by purchasing some grade A skunk on the corner of our block and spent the rest of my giro on chocolate and sausage rolls from The Bread Shop in Aigburth Vale. The next day (Wednesday) the crime wave continued. This time just up the road from the stabbing it was time to up the ante and have some armed robbery action. Two robbers disguised as parcel delivery men fled with holdalls of cash after a raid on a Liverpool bank. Shocked onlookers told how raiders, thought to have been wearing bright orange TNT uniforms, struck at the Barclays branch in Booker Avenue. The hood of Aigburth is turning into a brutal war zone and the cheeky bastards were running off in bright orange ! I have only one choice to make now. Do I join the Aigburth Bloods or Da Aiggy Vale Crips ? I think I will join the Aiggy Vale Crips as I will enjoy defending the subway in da Vale.

So off out of the hood tomorrow and the sunny and warm safety of Spain. No I am not on the run seeking the sanctuary of Marbella, or am I ?

Peace, westside and gang hand symbol.

Fay x x x x x x

 

I don’t like cricket, oh no, I love it.

So Saturday morning and time to head off to Old Trafford for day three of the 4th Investec test match England v India. Armed with a traditional cricket packed lunch with yes you guessed it sausage rolls it was onto the M62 we go. The weather gods had been kind to us and the sun was trying it’s best to come out and the way play had fallen we should get to se England bat and most probably bowl as well. So our resident sporting event taxi driver Jimmy got us to the venue in plenty of time and not like it used to be having to wait for 11am for the bars to open it was a cold beer for breakfast as soon as we arrived. We headed towards our seats and it was then we discovered we were in the “party” stand. Now to be fair most test cricket grounds become “party” stands after tea as the all day drinking kicks in so what was the “party” stand gonna be like. The first session of the day was mostly uneventful but for a few pints and the cracking open of the packed lunch. I really should lord it up one time with a paper plate and some heinz tomato sauce for my sausage rolls. The sun was winning the battle versus the clouds and the atmosphere was picking up in the party stand with a notable fancy dress gang of various characters from the game Mario. There were even a few Indian fans dotted about as well though mostly quiet as the game was well in England’s favour. So mid afternoon and India into bat it was time for some great cricketing traditions. First up the beer snake. This involved the collection of as many empty plastic pint glasses as possible to form a snake. The quality of plastic has taken a dip over the years and unlike years gone past it is very hard to maintain a beer snake erection so this year the snake had to be held together by many willing volunteers including the cast of the Mario game. I wonder if authorities have taken this tactic to stop the beer snake or is this just one conspiracy theory too far ? Anyways the beer snake ended up being the longest snake I have seen in my many years of going to test matches and though a lot more flaccid than previous snakes it twisted and turned through the party stand and a very impressive length of around 20 metres. Along with the snake itself a whole host of songs accompany it growing from a few plazzy pint glasses to a full on snake with the most obvious being “Feed the snake and it will grow” and it did indeed grow (click on pics for larger version)

Old trafford cricket ground beer snake

So the next cricketing tradition which normally starts mid afternoon during a lull in play is the Mexican wave. Now I am far too cool to do a Mexican wave but will throw a token hand up in the air. The only Mexican wave I have taken part in was at Glastonbury when the lead singer of Elbow Guy Garvey organised a wave to go from the front of the Pyramid stage all the way to the back but to be honest my social barriers are down at Glastonbury and anything goes. We had arranged to get picked up at 6pm but the way the game was developing there was a distinct possibility of a result. We decided to stick at 6pm but another two quick wickets to leave India at 6 men out we made the text and got our pick up pushed back to 7pm.  A wise decision as the Indian team clearly didn’t fancy working on a Sunday and the game was wrapped up with England winning by an innings and 54 runs not before we cheered to great sixes by Chris Broad then grimaced as the next ball ended up inside his helmet breaking his nose. By now I had switched from lager to cider and resisted the temptation to move onto wine and I was even considering a rare red wine!  Only one last cricketing tradition left and that one being a tradition that we only do and before we get picked up over the last 10 years of going the cricket we have a game of jingles in the same speck some steps which is the jingles Old Trafford. In past years we have had up to 16 people playing in the test match cricket jingles world championship but we were down to four this year and Joel won the title with a tremendous first throw and will hold the title for 12 months until we hopefully get tickets for the Ashes 2015.

So we headed back to Liverpool not in a too bad a condition drunken wise and finished the evening in The Kingsman pub or whatever it is called these days, it will always be “The Kings” to me. Only one option left after being booted out after last orders and a bag of chips from the Ko-Sing chippy. The taxi gods smiled on me as I got one straight away and scoffed my chips before falling up the stairs into bed and suffering mid sleep cramps in my calf’s showing hot much I must have downed to cause such de-hydration !! Such is the drinking prowess of me and Joel is that when one of the lads was struggling with his drink it was noted that “These two containers” would be able to be help finish any spare drink. One last random musing is that during one of many toilet breaks there was a lad standing at the urinal with a phone in one hand sending a text and having a piss with the other. Sad indeed and I was praying his phone fell into a puddle of piss. But it was not to be but instead a great feat of managing to finish his piss and put himself away with one hand whilst still keep going on with his phone in the other. Wouldn’t like to shake his hands to congratulate him on such a feat though. Another great day out at the test match and I don’t like cricket, oh no, I love it.

Old Trafford cricket ground England v India 2014

 

Peace

Fay x x x x x x

Carry on camping (The Fay’s go camping)

So at a very late call due to some hassle from the kids and also hanging fire for the weather we decided to use our posh Glastonbury tent we bought for future family camping and book a weekend camping. We were booked to go on a meal on the Saturday night but cancelled (Which with hindsight I could have handled better) but with this being the only weekend left of the summer holiday with something we could cancel we decided to go ahead and take on the showers due over the weekend and we got a tent pitch at The Beacon Fell View camp site in Longridge. That was it the Fay’s were going camping and the kids were very excited. Come the next day as if by some comedic Jeremy Beadle style wind up the Met Office had decided to issue a yellow warning for heavy rain on Saturday !!! It was too late we were committed so let’s go camping. We drove up to Longridge in Lancashire and before we knew it the tent was up. My marathon training although nowhere near that level but I am still running came in handy as it was time to pump up numerous airbeds. We had a pitch with electricity but decided to go old skool and just went with basic camping gear with the plan of buying stuff as we go along if we all enjoy it and get the camping bug. Base camp all set up by 7pm happy days and no rain so we headed on down to the main bar and club area (More social club than Garlands club these days) It was a lovely camp site with a small tent field loads of static caravans and the option to drive your caravan in though who would be into that Alan ?

So straight the bar for three slushes, a bottle for Mrs Fay and a pint for yours truly and this camping lark is alright. Having had no tea we thought you might be able to buy some food at the bar but alas not but they did say we could order food in. Pizza Park on St Marys road was a bit far away so we went for a Longridge special and soon I had a pint some chips and the kids were busy playing away at the very well organised kids club and eldest sprog Elizabeth came home with a certificate and proud winner of musical bumps. The final kids game was bingo based on the need to get the six playing cards on your sheet and the winner was middle sprog Charlotte who was the winner. So 9pm and that was it for the kids, get out of the way things were getting serious it was time for adult only bingo and not only that big money cash prize time. So OK it was three games first for a line £10 then two lines £20 no joy in either game and it’s been some time since I have had two lines (Joke kids) Last up and full card time for a whopping £57 which would cover the two night pitch fees. Tensions were high, the pros had the dabbers out and about 10 cards on the go. Me and Mrs Fay with our one card each now telling the kids to be quiet as we are on a family roll heading for the third win of the night. The numbers were flowing and as the gist of this thread would tell you it was gonna be third time lucky unlucky as we didn’t get anywhere near a full bloody house.  Oh well faring no better in the quiz as all the music questions were recent and the kids finding it funny that Great uncle Doug was one of the pictures in the picture round. We decided to head back to base camp. It was like base camp as the only downside to the site was the tent field was up some quite steep stairs. Not ideal for the infirm or after five pints. The kids were settled in bed after some posing for camping memory pictures and the obligatory midnight feast and me and Mrs Fay sat outside to crack open one of the many beers we had brought thinking this camping lark is a piece of piss until we remembered I did not bring a bloody bottle opener. Thank god for neighbours and after that crisis averted it would just be the start of things.

Calm before the storm

Now our youngest Holly (2 years 4 months) hasn’t been the best of sleepers especially compared to the first two but she decided that camping wasn’t for her and let the rest of the camp site now. Our nice neighbours who opened a few bottles for us even shouted shut up at one point. Believe me follow camper we were trying our best to keep Holly quiet but alas it was not happening and the night was filled with the odd 20 mins sleep here and there and as I was staying outside the main pod of the tent I could only watch as daylight broke and I watched the pretty shapes that the rain was forming on top of the tent were forming. The Fay’s go camping had turned into carry on camping but without any comedy value.

So team Fay were up early and we headed into Clitheroe which wasn’t too far away. I had not been to Clitheroe since the death of my dad and it was quite emotional driving to Clitheroe biting my lip a few times so I decided to face it head on and park in my dads old road, a quick glance at the house and a large gulp from me and it was time to get on with things. That particular challenge in life had been completed and was one of the main reasons in picking a camp site in Lancashire for my personal pilgrimage. So we had a nice breakfast in Clitheroe and went to the famous sausage shop “Cowmans” nearly two years since I had the joys of some pork and black pudding sausages and I got a stock to take back to Liverpool. As the rain become heavier and we thought of the yellow Met Office warning in place we headed back to base camp. By now due to Holly’s behaviour on Friday night we decided that we could not take a repeat so we were gonna head back to Liverpool after we had done everything we had to do on the Saturday. So Saturday afternoon we decided to get wet and went swimming followed by a kids afternoon and BBQ and I legged up and got the tent down and the sun was cracking the flags so we went for a small walk and looked at the lovely Lancashire scenery eventually heading home about 5pm. Holly might have won the battle but she won’t win the war. It was a shame we had to bail early but had only really lost out on one evening of a few beers and a dodgy sleep on a airbed. So apart from the mad few hours overnight we all actually enjoyed our camping trip. A quick mention from our non sponsors Outdoor Megastore on Rimrose Road http://www.outdoormegastore.co.uk/our-liverpool-store dead chuffed with the tent and popped up there last week for a few more things, any chance of some dizzy next time ha ha.

View from Longridge

So with being home early I decided to join the people who I had cancelled on for just a few post meal beers and I got the last 82 bus home on which sitting in front of me was Liverpool music legend Ali Ingle. Having only had a few beers I didn’t have the courage to collar him. My kids would have been well impressed if I had taken a selfie with him. Always comedy value the late bus home and my highlight was the man who was standing at the 86 bus stop only to see his 82 bus drive up the road and the 100m dash to catch the 82 which he did. I tweeted Ali later on and he said I should have collared him, so rest assured next time the selfie is a coming.

 

Carry on camping

Peace

Fay x x x x x x