Prisoner Cell Block H Episodes 1 – 692

He Used To Give Me Roses
I Wish He Could Again
But That Was On The Outside
And Things Were Different Then

So went the end tune of Prisoner Cell Block H. I first stumbled over Prisoner Cell Block H in the mid 1980’s when it was shown late at night on Granada TV.  As  teenage boy I think the lure of Chrissie Latham’s legs drew me in. Part of the skill in watching Prisoner was actually finding when it was on. Tucked away late at night and often post midnight it would sometimes go missing for weeks as Granada had two weeks coverage of The Lada Classic snooker or some other event. Later memories of Prisoner are when I lived with my nan and I would come home half sozzled from the boozer with some chips for us and she would make the bread and butter and we would both settle down to watch it. I am sure she was much happier with me making her watch this than taking the only TV in the house over early on a Sunday afternoon to watch some Football Italia. The run on Granda ended in the mid 90’s and I actually missed the last episode though did know what happened.

So 27th February 1979 (I was 5) and Prisoner premiered in Australia (Named Prisoner Cell Block H in the UK) it ran for 8 series (I dont do seasons) and there were 692 episodes made. Often remembered for its shaky walls and bad acting it became a cult classic over in the UK in the 1990’s. It has even spawned a modern remake called Wentworth which is now going into its 6th series. Deffo couldn’t watch that with my nan as I wouldn’t know where to look when the racey lesbian scenes came on. Well I tell a lie because I would obviously be looking at the television.

Fast forward to around Christmas 2015 and I discovered that all 692 episodes had been uploaded to Youtube. Queue the opening credits and mugshots of the current inmates and an opening scene of an outdoor location shot of Finders Street Railway station in Melbourne and so the marathon begins. Originally only given 16 episodes Prisoner was soon extended but eventually was give parole in July 1986 with time for the writers to give it the ending it deserved. The prison itself was channel 10 studios in Melbourne and most of the action surrounded “Cell block H”

I thought I had seen quite a lot of Prisoner but I knew I had not seen any of the early episodes and jumped into it during its first vintage era with Bea, Doreen and Lizzie alongside the bad “screw” Vera “Vinegar tits” Bennett so it was nice to see how it all started. As I reached through the episodes it soon became clear that I actually had not seen many of the episodes and the old trick of time when you are a child seeming like ages but in fact only a short time. Episodes ending on cliffhangers.  A writer friend of mine said to my missus once if a programme ends and you want to find out what happened straight away then its doing its job and Prisoner certainly had many of these with just banging on my iPad to watch an episode turning into a 3 to 4 episode session. Being an old sentimental fool the era mentioned above took me back to being a child and with the aid of modern technology you come across wonders like below and Prisoner in Concert.

TV gold ??? As you would expect with 692 episodes there were peaks and troughs in the series but I battled though with some great cliffhangers like the tunnel escape, a great period with Jock Stewart and Judy Bryant and some belter characters and obviously some that got right on your tits. So as the bad screw Vinegar Tits left it was time to enter Joan Ferguson AKA The Freak who made Vinegar tits look like a saint.

Prisoners cult status in the 1990’s over here lead to stage shows, books and even the theme tune “On The Inside” by Lynne Hamilton reaching number 3 in the singles charts in 1989 (I remember taping it off the charts) As top dogs of the prison came and went only Mrs Morris (Mrs Jackson) lasted the full 692 and apparently one prison inmate extra as well.

So fast forward to me coming home from Berlin the other week and feeling worse for wear I ended up having a mini Prisoner Marathon over that weekend and eventually getting to Episode 692 just over two years after I had started it.

***** 30 year old Spoiler Alert *****

I knew that the last episode was the final defeat of Joan “The Freak” Ferguson and the death of the terminally ill top dog lured her into a trap and picking up some money from a robbery. So Ferguson was now on solitary confinement and a prisoner was brought in to pass The Freak her food. What I wasn’t expecting was the terminally ill top dog Rita Conners was in fact still alive and they had all be in on it to get The Freak. I was very surprised that after 692 episodes it still had a twist I was not aware of. We never did find out if Rita survived or what happened to The Freak and after 692 episodes the closing theme tune played for a last time.

On The Inside The Sun Still Shines
And The Rain Falls Down
But The Sun And Rain Are Prisoners Too
When Morning Comes Around

So at 45 mins an episode 31140 mins or 519 hours or 21.625 days what was I going to to with the gap in my life. Well its back to the new version of Prisoner called Wentworth and all 5 series of that are on Amazon Prime. When I am on my last legs I will think bloody hell can I have them 21.625 days I watched Prisoner Cell Block H back please lord, god or whoever was my maker (Mum & Dad)

So it was a “ripper” rekindling childhood memories watching Prisoner and “Fair Dinkum” to me for doing all 692 episodes. Judging by the comments on the you tube videos people go back and watch them all again and again but once is enough for any sane man and some might call me insane for watching 1 episode never mind 692. No more spotting people who went on to be in Neighbours or Home and Away no more he used to give me roses. It’s all over “You Beauty”

 

So for the record

Fave Character : Lizzie Birdsworth

Fave Top Dog : Myra Desmond

Fave Prison Officer : Jim Fletcher

Best Other character : Inspector Grace

Best Storyline : Believe it or not too many to mention !!

Best Scene : Final Episode Rita giving The Freak her food

Peace

Fay x x x x x x x x x

 

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The 2017 Faymondo Music Awards (Say no to The Brits)

So back when I was first getting into music and thought the Brit Awards were cool, well they were to a 14 year old me. I decided to note down my own awards inside a maths exercise book I had robbed from school. Those small squares on the page kept my writing just that little bit tidier. With that act the Faymondo Music Awards were conceived. They were never going to be cool as a 14 year old picking his fave albums and artists from the limited amount of albums bought with pocket money and prezzies for birthday and chrimbo. Growing up the winners would be no cooler. But here we are this year celebrating the 30th year of the Faymondo Music Awards. 30 years on I couldn’t give a toss if my winners aren’t cool. Just my opinion on the big world of music out there. How much has changed over the 30 years in the “music biz” since the start of the awards but for me musically I am buying more music than I ever have due to my vinyl addiction and listening to a whole lot more variety thanks to the world of Spotify.

So being the 30th anniversary I had big plans for a celebration of my fave music of the last 30 years. My event had to be held on the same night as the Brits but have no worries of artists not being there to pick up an award and instead a pre-recorded face time message because Ed Sheeran wont be getting a look in. He’s not even best ginger artists of 2017 that award goes to local talent Ali Ingle. So with the mini sausage rolls ordered from Iceland and unlimited amounts of Skol on offer (I have a budget you know but Desperados in the VIP section) I had even pushed the boat out and bought a job lot of party poppers and silly string and the icing on the cake some gold envelopes. Sadly the invitations never went out as I recoiled in horror as my venue of The Aigburth Peoples Hall was busy on Wednesday 21st February 2018 as their darts B-Team had a home match against Mossley Hill Legion B-Team. So instead winners are to be announced below as I type this and can hear the real Brit Awards from the front room watched by my daughters. We could only imagine what my awards might have been like (Insert images going wavy and the non reality of what the night would have been like)

First up best newcomer and to present the best newcomer award is Geoffrey Hayes from rainbow. So having solo albums out previously and teaming up to perform live and now getting better known for the legendary “house gigs” (Must sort my own out) the winner of best newcomer 2017 is Henry Priestman & Les Glover who released “Six of one & half a dozen of the other”

Next up best female and another icon from my past to present the trophy. Ladies and Gentlemen Mr Jan Molby and the winner for the record 9th time Sheryl Crow and a track from her 2017 album “Be Myself”.

Just an update sausage rolls half gone but still loads of Skol left ?? Next up and best male. Here to present the award all the way from Australia is Val Lehman AKA Bea Smith from Prisoner Cell Block H. And the winner is Nasher aka Brian Nash and his album 432-1 : Open the vein

So just two awards to go and these must be the big ones as there is a runner up section ?? Here to present firstly runner up in best group 2017 is the cast from Auf Wiedersehen Pet. First up and runner up with their “Every Valley” album Public Service Broadcasting.

And so onto the winner and a fine return to form with ‘Automaton” best group 2017 is Jamiroquai

*** Note at this point a pissed up Jay Kay (I knew free Skol was a bad idea) has a pop at the Auf Pet boys and Jimmy Nail twats him !!!

**** Second note if there was a remix of the year the Purple Disco Machine remix of “Cloud 9” is great.

So it’s the big one and the 30th Faymondo Music Awards best album of 2017. If you could put any paper plates in the bin bag coming around that would be great and also for some reason there is still loads of Skol left ??

Here to present the award is a member of a band I only got into very very late but am a proud owner of their vinyl box set of 5 studio albums its Mick Jones from The Clash.

Runner up was “Automaton” by Jamiroquai. Sadly Jay Kay cant be here as he is currently in Garston Walk in Centre and was kindly escorted there by Dennis from The Auf Pet Boys.

And so the winner of the 30th Faymondo Music Awards album of the year (Party poppers and silly string ready) and an album I have hammered but like all music I love I can now pin point an exact place and time. I was coming home from a Deacon Blue gig in Edinburgh in July feeling a lot worse for wear after a double night out for my wedding anniversary. How could I numb the pain of the journey home on the train as after an hour I was starting to sweat ale out. I put this album on and spent the next hour soaking up the lyrics looking out at Englands green and pleasant land. The album had me at the first track “Salt In Our Veins” through to the bashing of Gideon Osborne in “Prostitues and Cocaine” the brilliant takedown of Katie’s Price and Hopkins in “Katies” and finally the retro fest of “Just Sounds Like Noise” the winner is Nasher with “432-1 : Open the vein”

Well thats it folks. I am off to what could only be described as possibly the best pint ever with Nasher and Mick Jones and it would be rude not to invite Messrs Priestman and Glover along as well. Might as well go the old Aigburth Arms and Steves chippy on the way home. Just hope they dont laugh too much at the previous 30 years winners !!! Heres to another 30 years and to the grand old age of 74 !!

Peace

Fay x x x x x x x x x

For the record the shortlist

Little Fictions Elbow
Automaton Jamiroquai
Live At The Glasgow Barrowlands Deacon Blue
Backlash Black Joe Lewis & The Honeybears
Be Myself Sheryl Crow
Life Love Flesh Blood Imelda May
Every Valley Public Service Broadcasting
Six of one & Half a dozen of the other Henry Priestman & Les Glover
Short Stories Vol 1 Ricky Ross
Sings & Strings The Christians
432-1 : Open The Vein Nasher
Who Built The Moon Noel Gallagher & High Flying Birds
The Massive Gong The Destroyers
Crooked Calypso Paul Heaton & Jacqui Abbott
Migration Blues Eric Bibb
As You Were Liam Gallagher

And to laugh at the all time winners list.

BEST ALBUM WINNER

BEST ALBUM RUNNER UP

1988

Raintown-DEACON BLUE

The christians-THE CHRISTIANS

1989

When the world knows your name-DEACON BLUE

Checkmate-ROGER CHRISTIAN

1990

Colour-THE CHRISTIANS

In the blood-LONDONBEAT

1991

Fellow hoodlems-DEACON BLUE

Seal-SEAL

1992

Happy in hell-THE CHRISTIANS

Volume 3 just right-SOUL II SOUL

1993

Whatever you say,say nothing-DEACON BLUE

Happy in hell-THE CHRISTIANS

1994

Our town-DEACON BLUE

Very-PET SHOP BOYS

1995

Tuesday night music club-SHERYL CROW

Seal (2) – SEAL

1996

Sheryl crow-SHERYL CROW

Whats the story morning glory-OASIS

1997

Time for change-SOUL II SOUL

Your cool mystery-GARRY CHRISTIAN

1998

The globe sessions-SHERYL CROW

5-LENNY KRAVITZ

1999

On how life is-MACY GRAY

Beacoup fish-UNDERWORLD

2000

Sunset over london-JOOLS HOLLAND R/B’S ORCHESTRA

The marshall mathers lp-EMINEM

2001

Homesick- DEACON BLUE

Loco-FUN LOVIN’ CRIMINALS

2002

The Eminem Show-EMINEM

Roland Gift-ROLAND GIFT

2003

Don’t give up on me-SOLOMON BURKE

Prodigal Sons-THE CHRISTIANS

2004

How does it feel-GARRY CHRISTIAN

Feels like Home-NORAH JONES

2005

Wildflower-SHERYL CROW

Make do with what you got-SOLOMON BURKE

2006

Fundamental-PET SHOP BOYS

Nashville-SOLOMON BURKE

2007

Dog House Music-SEASICK STEVE

Overtones-JUST JACK

2008

Chronicles Of A Modern Life-HENRY PRIESTMAN

I Started Out With Nothing And Still Got Most Of It Left-SEASICK STEVE

2009

Yes – PET SHOP BOYS

All Night Cinema – JUST JACK

2010

Bittersweet Batch- JESSE DEE

Tell Em What Your Name Is- BLACK JOE LEWIS AND THE HONEYBEARS

2011

Build A Rocket Boys-ELBOW

London Afrobeat Collective – LAC

2012

Ill Manors -PLAN B

The Lumineers -THE LUMINEERS

2013

Electric – Pet Shop Boys

Random Access Memories –Daft Punk

2014

Tea Street Band – TEA STREET BAND

The Last Mad Surge Of Youth – HENRY PRIESTMAN

2015

Darling Arithmetic – VILLAGERS

Favourite Worry – THE MILK

2016

Summer 08 – METRONOMY

Cleopatra – THE LUMINEERS

2017

432-1 : Open The Vein – NASHER

Automaton – JAMIROQUAI

BEST GROUP WINNER

BEST GROUP RUNNER UP

1988

THE CHRISTIANS

DEACON BLUE

1989

FINE YOUNG CANNIBALS

DEACON BLUE

1990

THE CHRISTIANS

LONDONBEAT

1991

BLACK

DEACON BLUE

1992

SOUL II SOUL

EN VOGUE

1993

THE CHRISTIANS

DEACON BLUE

1994

DEACON BLUE

PET SHOP BOYS

1995

SOUL II SOUL

M PEOPLE

1996

OASIS

PET SHOP BOYS

1997

SOUL II SOUL

JAMIROQUAI

1998

FUN LOVIN CRIMINALS

OASIS

1999

JAMIROQUAI

UNDERWORLD

2000

JOOLS HOLLAND & RHYTHM/BLUES ORCHESTRA

THE CHRISTIANS

2001

DEACON BLUE

DAFT PUNK

2002

OASIS

UNDERWORLD

2003

THE CHRISTIANS

FUN LOVIN CRIMINALS

2004

JOOLS HOLLAND & RHYTHM/BLUES ORCHESTRA

THE PRODIGY

2005

JAMIROQUAI

FUN LOVIN CRIMINALS

2006

PET SHOP BOYS

TRANSIT KINGS

2007

PINK MARTINI

THE CHEMICAL BROTHERS

2008

OASIS

JEGSY DODD AND THE ORIGINAL SINNERS

2009

PET SHOP BOYS

MCINTOSH ROSS

2010

MASSIVE ATTACK

FAITHLESS

2011

ELBOW

LONDON AFROBEAT COLLECTIVE   

2012

DEACON BLUE

DJANGO DJANGO

2013

DAFT PUNK

PET SHOP BOYS

2014

TEA STREET BAND

METRONOMY

2015

VILLAGERS

PUBLIC SERVICE BROADCASTING

2016

METRONOMY

PET SHOP BOYS

2017

JAMIROQUAI

PUBLIC SERVICE BROADCASTING

BEST MALE

BEST FEMALE

1988

MICHEAL JACKSON

YAZZ

1989

ROGER CHRISTIAN

MADONNA

1990

ROGER CHRISTIAN

N/A

1991

SEAL

MADONNA

1992

MICHEAL JACKSON

MADONNA

1993

TERENCE TRENT D’ARBY

MADONNA

1994

TERENCE TRENT D’ARBY

N/A

1995

SEAL

SHERYL CROW

1996

RICKY ROSS

SHERYL CROW

1997

GARRY CHRISTIAN

SHERYL CROW

1998

LENNY KRAVITZ

SHERYL CROW

1999

JOSE PADILLA

MACY GRAY

2000

EMINEM

MADONNA

2001

N/A

MACY GRAY

2002

EMINEM

SHERYL CROW

2003

SOLOMON BURKE

NORAH JONES

2004

GARRY CHRISTIAN

NORAH JONES

2005

SOLOMON BURKE

SHERYL CROW

2006

SOLOMON BURKE

N/A

2007

SEASICK STEVE

NORAH JONES

2008

HENRY PRIESTMAN

SHERYL CROW

2009

JUST JACK

IMELDA MAY

2010

SOLOMON BURKE

SHERYL CROW

2011

NOEL GALLAGHER & HIGH FLYING BIRDS

BEVERLEY KNIGHT

2012

BILL FAY

NORAH JONES

2013

CHARLES BRADLEY

N/A

2014

HENRY PRIESTMAN

IMELDA MAY

2015

NOEL GALLAGHER & HIGH FLYING BIRDS

ROSIN MURPHY

2016

DAVID BOWIE

NORAH JONES

2017

NASHER

SHERYL CROW

BEST NEWCOMER TO ME

1988

DEACON BLUE

1989

SOUL II SOUL

1990

LONDONBEAT

1991

THE FARM

1992

EN VOUGE

1993

STEREO MC’S

1994

THE GRID

1995

SHERYL CROW

1996

RICKY ROSS

1997

FINLAY QUAYE

1998

KAREN RAMIREZ

1999

JOSE PADILLA

2000

EMINEM

2001

XXXXXXXXXXXXX

2002

ROLAND GIFT

2003

SOLOMON BURKE (NEW TO ME)

2004

DR JOHN (NEW TO ME)

2005

JOHN LEGEND

2006

JEGSY DODD

2007

SEASICK STEVE

2008

ROISIN MURPHY

2009

IMELDA MAY

2010

JESSE DEE

2011

LONDON AFROBEAT COLLECTIVE

2012

THE DESTROYERS

2013

VILLAGERS

2014

TEA STREET BAND

2015

THE MILK

2016

SMOOTH & TURRELL

2017

HENRY PRIESTMAN & LES GLOVER

A Cultural Review Of Berlin

So February half term and the annual trip away with a group of lads who were mainly teachers when I first went about 10 years ago but a few have left for various reasons over the years. This years winning host city was announced back in December and it was the city of Berlin. I last visited Berlin in 1992 when in upper 6th form so I was expecting it to be very different. The pre Berlin health kick had gone great and I had managed to get to day 43/108 with no ale and the scales of injustice had me a just under 17 stone. The first time my scales had started with 16 something for over 5 years. The reward was two days hardcore drinking in Germany. It was valentines day when we left and Mrs Fay got the great present of me fucking off for 2 and a half days so she could hammer the Sky Q box !!  Previous years have seen cultural reviews of Stuttgart Hamburg Wroclaw Warsaw Riga Tallinn Krakow Isle Of Man and Edinburgh   with these lads. (Click on city to read)  In fact these lads have taken me all around Europe.

So the first good news was that all 13 people turned up at the airport. We lost two before we boarded the plane for last years trip to The Isle Of Man. Mrs Fay had bought me some chocolate hearts and suggested that I could take them on the plane to share out with the lads. Errrrrrrr maybe not luv ! So as I was off the wagon I was given special dispensation from the “Walter Mitty” (kitty) to have a Desperados instead of a pint for my first drink. A few on the plane and after a very pleasant flight we were soon in the hotel and in the bar and ready to head out into the chilly german evening. So first up was a small bar and it was fixture two on our soccer dice league. Soccer dice is 5 coloured dice which represent a game of footy. Starting with the red dice and then following dice instructions after five goes each and the score is at the end. Top tip throw the red “through ball to green” throw the green “goal” AKA alehouse dice footy but its mighty efficient. Last years champ Eddie was absent but with 13 of us on your the league would be played over two days. Anyway we left the small and smokey bar and ended up cutting through a park and found a pub called The Castle. It was here the checking my pockets I noticed my bank card missing. I deffo had it and with wearing a new coat I checked the pockets and no joy. As I was standing outside to call to cancel the card there was a knock on the window from the inside of the pub and one of the lads smiled and waved my card. They could see I was starting to have kittens and they were passed it in the last pub by somebody. Phewwww somebody nearly had the rest of my five grand overdraft off then ! With Liverpool playing in the champions league we headed to a Berlin Liverpool Fan Club bar handy and on our arrival we were put down stairs into a bunker with seats and a small terrace style seating at the back. Despite our chants of “Liverpool, Liverpool on the big screen” the owners stayed with Real Madrid vs PSG. I could not moan I was bang in front of the TV and after a few pints it was easier for the barman just to start bringing crates of Becks down for us. We were in full voice and the local Germans were joining in with the songs they new though I am not sure the shady looking Owen Oysten stunt double on the back terrace was. Too cool with his cowboy hat on indoors. What a result 5-0 to the oranges reds and the rest of the night becomes hazy after that. I let the lads go in a boozer as I went around the corner to make sure I got my 10,000 steps for the day and after two mins came back and they had all gone. The pub was shut and nobody was in sight. A quick look and I did not have a clue were I was apart from Berlin. Eventually I got in touch with somebody who said our hotel was just past The Castle Pub we had been in. I managed to find that with the help of my iPhone and stumbled back the hotel. Funny enough the lad who had told me how to get home has since got lost and came in after me !! One in the hotel and a story of one of the lads going mental because he got cucumber on his burger and it was time to head to bed for about 1.30am. Freddie was the overnight leader in the dice league.

So day two and I wasn’t up too early for me which was a bonus and with no breakfast included with the hotel I headed to the local supermarket to get some crisps for breakfast. The rest of the lads were over the road where I managed a crusty cob for brekkie and the funny news that “cucumbergate” had continued with the same lad getting cucumber on his breakfast !! So we had a nice morning stroll to the Brandenburg Gate. I had a few pics taken and I know last time I was in Berlin when I was just 19 I had a picture that I still haven’t dug out for a then and now. The gate hasn’t changed but I am fatter with less hair ! After a quick team photo it was noted that the 10 people under 60 all had Adidas trabs on and the two people over 60 had shoes on. We always like to do a bit of culture whilst waiting for the pubs to open so it was the red bus tour. On a previous red bus tour in Edinburgh the tour guide called us “Intellectuals in the guise of scousers” such was our collective knowledge. No guide on this and not much in the way of info coming into our ears via headphones. In fact just the normal bus might have been a better experience. The highlights were some shops and a protest with flags being checked and I think our 13 lads would have been larger in numbers but there was a massive police presence. Anyways we all jumped off for checkpoint Charlie. We walked past the only remaining bit of wall left so I had to put Spotify on my phone and play “Wind Of Change” by The Scorpions, an emotional moment. We reached checkpoint Charlie which was different from when I last visited and as the picture shows below the fall of the wall made it possible for the Golden Arches to sprout. With the location of the wall shown by some cobbles in the road we tried out best to get a pub crawl going (Was quite hard to be honest with decent walks in-between some boozers) we got the soccer dice league going again and left an Irish Pub to hit another bar. After a test tube of beer in that boozer as I left my soccer dice pocket was open and no dice in. I could have sworn I had put them in after the Irish Pub so thought one of the lads is having me off here. After an inquest in the next pub the lads said they deffo had not played a prank and I checked all my pockets again with no joy so me and a fella retraced out steps lucky enough wasn’t that far and after asking in both pubs and even moving punters in the seats we were sitting in and checking in tramlines of a road we crossed they had to be written off. Gutted we couldn’t finish the league and also a bit of daft sentimental value of the case my mum bought for my 13th birthday with my initials on NGF (the dice had been replaced as we had worn the words off them) one pint later and playing darts it was soon forgotten about apart from some stick for the lads for ruining the league campaign. Have to mention the darts and there were 4 “Fays” on the trip so the fat and old Fay’s played the young and thin Fay’s. Oh yes a win for the fat Fay’s. So we all made it back the hotel together for a few more beers and as I took my coat off that was brand new for the trip I noticed a new pocket I didnt know I had on the left breast. Yeah you know whats coming. It had the soccer dice in !!!! So I fell into bed about 3.30am and got to sleep just after 4am after chatting shit with my roommate and that was it no more grog until after the London Marathon on April 22nd !

So more crisps for breakfast after a lie in until about 10.30am which is very rare for me we went for a walk and the got cabs to the airport to complete the remaining fixtures of the soccer dice league due to some tit losing the dice the evening before. With Freddie needing a win to keep himself in the league he lost and Dicko won the last game of the season to claim the 2nd European Soccer Dice Championship. Only on last thing to do and thanks to the wonderfully stocked toilets of europe the traditional “travel pussy” was placed into a random bag and young James discovered it later that evening when home. Just hope it wasn’t in front of his mum (my sister !!!! )

So another great trip and all eyes to September when the winning bid for host city for the 2019 trip will be announced. As ever many thanks again to the group of teachers (and none teachers) I gegg in with for the trip (The name of the school(s) is withheld to protect the guilty) and hopefully any glaring gaps in the story will be filled in on the comments section below..and big thanks to the organiser. Often a thankless task but again superbly organised this year.

Link for my just giving page fellas

Donate Here

Peace

Fay x x x x x x x x x

 


 

The Opposite Ends Of Celebrating Life

So on Friday me the missus went to a funeral of a school mum who we got to know well. A lovely lady who shared many of the same political beliefs as me who got cancer 6 years ago and fought it off only for it to return last year and sadly take her life a couple of weeks ago. Funerals are sad enough but when its somebody as young as 48 it hits a nerve and also with the service taking place at the same place my mum, dad and nan got cremated that place always gets to me even driving past the bastard place. It was standing room only at the crematorium and we watched it in the foyer with sound and picture from inside being relayed to the large amount of people who could not get in. Being tall I could see right to the front of the service. It was very sad service in parts but also humerous and with a message with Alex’s sister giving an extended eulogy. This was followed by the vicar reading something Alex’s husband Geoff had composed. As a couple of songs were played the people in attendance were invited to write something on the pink heart post it notes given out and place them on Alex’s coffin. Finally a letter written by Alex herself was read out to the people in attendance. I don’t think there was a dry eye in the house at that point. It was a humorous letter and made me think I can see me doing that but it will be a final blog and hopefully not for a long time yet. There was a poignant message about the NHS in the service and how Alex would be haunting Jeremy Hunt now she is no longer here. The people outside of the service room where then invited to put their heart post it notes on the coffin. I did not realise this was the end of the service and let Mrs Fay put her heart onto the coffin and waited. Eventually I joined the queue and not having thought of anything to put on a heart I walked past the coffin placed a kiss on my hand a touched her coffin. Maybe no paper heart from me but a kiss from the heart for a lovely lady who will be sadly missed my many people and my thoughts are with Geoff and their daughter who went to the same infant and junior school as my eldest. I just cant begin to comprehend what they are going through. It was down to The Aigburth Peoples Hall for a celebration of Alex’s life and after an hour and a half I left Mrs Fay there with a few of the school mums having a drink in her memory. I made a point of going over to Geoff on my way out as he was by the exit with their dog Pippa. What do you say ? I just said take it easy and shook his hand. He thanked me for coming. I left. Only after did I find some words that I should have said to him and that should have been “No thank you Geoff. It was an honour to be there” and then “Take it easy” 48 fleeting years on the planet. I don’t know what happens post-life but back here on earth you left your mark on the people you have encountered. We will no longer put the world to rights when walking the dogs on Sudley Field but I will fight on for our NHS and your daughter will be your legacy. Take it easy Alex x x x

So on Saturday it was day 41/109 on my no ale challenge. Just one large slice of temptation in my way It was a night out for my mate Alan’s 60th birthday. After Fridays events coupled with the fact that my marathon training had got to 16 miles and I had dropped the best part of a stone and a half since Jan 1st I thought fuck it I am having a bevy and so the 108 day challenge was born (Today is now 42/108) I first met Alan when the father in law invited me on his February trip away to Gdansk with a load of teachers he worked with. Alan was one of these teachers and 10 years later after many many laughs, a few Glastonbury’s and numerous gigs we are now good friends. Born in America with a big booming cockney voice and now a naturalised UK citizen Alan has always been an adopted scouser. Me and Mrs Fay headed out early evening for a few drinks before we met the birthday boy. We grabbed a scran in Reds True Barbecue. Not a great start as we were ushered upstairs were we had to wait for a table but could have a beer that didn’t appear so it just felt like we were waiting in a top floor of a warehouse ! I ordered a plain hamburger, thats just the hamburger and the bun. Nothing else, skinny or naked as I like to say. It came out with cheese on !! Quickly replaced though with a new burger and not just scrapped of cheese I wouldn’t be standing for any of that. Having waited a bit longer than Mrs Fay I was playing catchup and lashed the ketchup on. Only bloody BBQ ketchup !! Whats all that about. Managed to get most of it off but a disaster food wise. Next time I am just going to Burger King !! The long awaited beer (Corona) wasn’t that special and we headed up to the Baltic Social for a drink and then onto The Baltic Market which had a queue to get in. Aint queuing to get in a boozer at 7pm so we went to the old Cains Brewery pub and I had a Desperados and that felt much nicer than the Corona. It was good to be back on my fave grog again. We then headed down to The Coburg where everyone was meeting and some old and new faces greeted Alan for his birthday night out. Nice pub The Coburg and it has a bit of history on tits walls. It opened in 1856 as The Transatlantic and was once ran by Robert Cain and soon changed its name to The Coburg. The latest landlord Dean has had the boozer since 1990. Alan enjoyed his birthday night and me and Mrs Fay were not too late home.

Actually Alans birthday today and as he was 60 I got him a prezzie. Don’t expect one every year !! I bought him the latest vinyl album by Nightmares On Wax called “Chase The Future” check it out its great. Alan being a man of many skills often making things so I even made him a card with a collage of pictures from the years and adventures we have had and below here I am with the birthday boy. Which one is 60 !!

So two days of emotions from complete opposite ends of the spectrum. You really do need to grab things when you can. The next blog sees a return of the infamous “A Cultural Review Of……………” and this Februarys trip is Berlin. Hopefully have that posted once I have recovered on Saturday and early in bed as its a 17 mile run on Sunday and the big final push for the 2018 London marathon.

Peace

Fay x x x x x x x x x

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