So February half term and the traditional trip away and my 12th appearance and how time flies and another chance to bang out another of the little known classic, a cultural review of series with previous February episodes on the following links WROCLAW RIGA TALLINN KRAKOW WARSAW HAMBURG DOUGLAS STUTTGART BERLIN
Day 1 Tuesday
So the magnificent 13 assembled at The Rocket at the end of the M62 to get the coach to Manchester airport and head to this years winning venue Bratislava and with the traffic being OK we were soon ordering 12 pints and one cup of tea and the first round of fixtures commenced the 3rd annual soccer dice tournament. Onto the plane and the random seating didn’t work out too bad for us and I got boxed off with some extra legroom and all the seatbelts fitted us gang of lager louts and happy days. With a two hour flight and a quick transfer from the airport we were in the beautiful city of Bratislava and a very quick dive in and out of the Ibis hotel we were in a small cafe around the corner ordering 13 local beers and the cafe was that small she didn’t have 13 pint glasses ?? We ambled down towards the main “drag” taking in the sights and checking every nook and cranny as experience says you can find some boss and cheap bars off the beaten track. Walked past one place and wished I had my good Sony camera on me but I grabbed a picture anyway and “Boy with footy in Bratislava” can be seen below.
Who says its all booze, ripping yer mates and soccer dice eh ! But that was the sum of culture on day one. As we went from bar to bar playing a round of soccer dice until half the league was complete we had a round down some very ropey stairs in The Goblin Bar and asked if the match would be on later. The barman then spent 30 mins trying to get a dodgy feed for a match that was kicking off in over 90 mins time. We didn’t have the heart to tell him about the kick off time and left to get a boozer with “proper” TV. We eventually ended up in The Red Lion for the match and what a disappointment and due to the increasing number of beers consumed my memories of the match are a bit fuzzy. To pick things up post match I put my international darts championship on the line. I have played darts for many years and in many tournaments but never have I been second up and passed the set of darts but with one of the dart points still in the board. Not only that I was suffering bounce outs that caused sparks to fly on the floor !! I was just glad to get out alive and fight another day and a defeat with the score A.Fay 1 v 0 N.Fay. Not to be forgotten but I found some fancy dress and tapped one of the lads on the back and managed to scare the life out of him.
Somewhere in-between all this madness I ended up in McDonalds and suffered another defeat as it was plain hamburger 0 v 1 hamburger with all kinds of shite on. Memories fade even more but we ended up having a late and very expensive drink in an Irish Bar and fell in just after 2am and headed off to bed with a Pepsi Max and a Twix from the hotel bar. I was sharing a room with my 32 year old nephew who discovered (A) I am very hairy (Oh come on please do behave yourselves) and (B) I like to listen to a podcast getting asleep !
Not to forget another defeat on the cards as I was hanging around the bottom of the soccer dice league table on just 6 points after day one but as I drifted asleep listening to the podcast (BBC Friday night comedy for reference) I had a vision of Yazz singing “The only way is up”
Day 2 Wednesday
So I had a little nose at what was on offer for breakfast and as usual I ended up having hotdogs as it was the nearest thing I was going to get to a sausage and some bread for stodge. Another defeat was incoming as I normally rob a load of small Nutella’s to give to my three daughters but this place must have been tipped off about me and only had a giant jar with a spoon (bastards) A morning walk was next and sweating ale out we marvelled at the three different types of trams doing the rounds and decided the auld ones were best. After going for some more culture and walking up to see Bratislava castle I needed a lie down and asked some questions to the lads from Richard Herrings book “emergency questions”
So it was time to get back on the ale again including two beers in a small cafe/bar in a thoroughfare. Two things of note here. First up I needed a piss and asked one of the lads “where the bogs were?” “Downstairs” was the reply. As I walked down the stars I thought very nice decor for a bog and walked along a small corridor not knowing where I was going and looked left at a small reception and two very attractive girls popped up and said “Can I help you?” “Where are the toilets?” I replied to which I was told “Upstairs” yeah yeah the lad had sent me downstairs into a Thai massage gaff !!! Second memory is that me and one of the other lads decided next year we were gong to create 100 emergency questions involving the other lads. Needless to say none of them will ever be printed on this blog as the first 10 we come up with were ruthless !!! It was then another first when going for a Geoff Hurst in the next pub and ice in the urinal ??
More bars and booze and another lovely day weather wise in Bratislava which we didn’t want as we love cold and snow when we go away on our February trips. Some of the lads had a scran in a gaff called The Beer Palace and lovely it was. As for me I couldn’t be arsed having any food as “eating is cheating” As the sun set on Bratislava for day 2 some of the lads went to dip their toes in the Danube. I just went the next pub the Jazz bar for the final games of the Soccer Dice league. Anyway after an amazing run by myself and nearly every other result going for me I ended up joint top and as it was clearly stated in Manchester Airport (Rule 4.1b ii) in the event of a tie a play off match will take place for excitement. I won the match and soccer dice was going home and last years winner presented me with the trophy.
So I went for another toilet break and lost the lads when I came out the pub. All 12 of them has vanished into thin air and thats a big trick the size of some of us. After a firing off a few texts I discovered they were next door but on the 7th floor in the Sky Bar as one of the lads had booked us a slot for a bevvy. Sadly the viewing platform was not open but I joined the two lads that smoked and in true scouse style we enjoyed the splendid nighttime view of Bratislava on a balmy February evening.
So across the road to Bar 17 and one of the lads bought himself a lovely ornament and eventually got the seller down from 30 euro’s to 5 and we left for the next pub The Hacienda which obviously you had to walk in through the door doing a Bez style dance and then once in there create a beer theft straw.
Fuzzy memories of two of the lads trying to play chess for predictably all the pieces just to be knocked over by somebody as they went to start but eventually they started the game and it lasted about 6 moves before check mate !!
The night was getting late and the ale was kicking in but yet another side street and another bar. As what seems to be a recent tradition we ended up in charge of the bars big screen and banging some choons on via youtube. As ever Madness and The Jam were big hits and at some time in the proceedings a what could be only described as a “Lady of the night came in” anyway after she sat on everybody knee only to be told where to go we put “Brass in your pocket” on to which which she was totally oblivious to the pun. Revenge was taken by the father in law as every trip we go on we normally stumble across a sex shop and my father in law jokingly poses for a picture of him going in but this time he got a picture of the lady of the night sitting on my knee !!!! So with that insurance there will be no way I can post the picture of him.
So with the “Brass Bar” then becoming the “Drugs bar” as a fella come in trying to sell gear we decided it was time to quickly vacate that particular establishment but not before scoring 13 bags for 200 euros and having the snapchat details of 11 other ladies though that only made 12 so not sure who was going to share ?? It was time to head to bed as we couldn’t be arsed with the late night hassle that was starting to appear and I headed up to the hotel room armed with a Pepsi Max and a Twix again but two of the lads made it to a Discotheque !
Day 3 Thursday
So with a late flight after the morning hot dog festival for breakfast I again walked up to the castle with even more ale sweating out of me as the weather was even nicer. We checked out and went to amble around the city when our Adam who I was sharing a room with said “Have you got your passport” to which I replied “No its with yours still stashed under the TV in the hotel room” a quick and panic laden dash back the hotel and the cleaner was cleaning the room and smiled at us as we raised the TV to reveal 2 passports and thinking what ever is Bratislavan for “Yer pair of bell ends” On the way back home to the hotel my phone went and I got “where are you” we were by the hotel “Look at the tower” and in the very far distance two lads were jumping up and down waving their arms.
We got to the airport and security was closed it was that quiet but finally got through and both present etc and one last Slovakian piss and another slice of temptation as I was presented with a glory hole. I glanced down at my wedding ring and left it behind.
So onto the plane and no such luck in the legroom stakes and other lads from our group had the luxury though due to what can only be described as a seatbelt malfunction one of the lads had to give up his VIP seat in row 1 to much amusement of the others. As for me, our James (20) had a row to himself so he had to put up with Uncle Knobhead rambling on for two hours. His dad was in the row in front and helping a woman out with her baby and he was doing a very good job until it come to breastfeeding time as the bottle prepared wasn’t working and it was all eyes the opposite way.
So that was that another excellent trip and I look forward to next years a cultural review destination being announced and a nice escape from reality with not one mention of Brexit or Luciana Berger’s new gang. Bratislava was great 100 euros kitty got us two hardcore days on the ale and airport transfers.
As for soccer dice it came home, the name is on the trophy (We need a plinth) and the only way is down !!
Fay x x x x x x x x x x
A big up for the organiser I know what its like to box things off and make things run smoothly. The punishment for coming last in the soccer dice league was you have to organise next year. Our Adam might be able to sort a return train to Blackpool.