It's funny that I said I wouldn't go there again, on the count of so many rude people there; in hindsight, that's not really the problem. I'd rather people act how they really are, than put up a charade of pseudo-friendliness, like here in the UK. For the second consecutive year, I gave up my seat on the bus for an elder, only to be scowled at. I'm beginning to think that manners are quintessentially a British custom. I was pretty inebriated in a bar, in the Jewish district, and I ended up playing some Mercury Rev, and Echo and the Bunnymen songs on a Piano; which was a particular highlight. The low point, being on the first night; my 'beer compass' must have needed recalibrating, as I didn't get back to the hotel til' 5am; after walking up and down in the snow for what seemed like eternity. I wanted to go and see inside the churches; and there was a few orchestral concerts on; I hinted to my mate about going, but I think he was just interested in the beer. Which wasn't a bad thing; but next time, I'm going to go for longer, and do what I want to do, as two nights wasn't enough.
This week I've been attempting to keep busy. I've done 30 miles on the bike so far; and I'm intending on doing another 70 before the weeks out. 100 lousy miles; Considering last year I'd do 100 in one day; this isn't really acceptable. Yesterday I took my dog across to Hilbre Island, which is a small group of three Islands off the coast of the Wirral; which you can walk over to at low water. The intention was to test out my new (ish) camera by photographing the Seal colony; but they were not there; they must have been frolicking on some sandbank somewhere. So I just took some of the Island.
Lifeboat Launch (1849) - Last used in WW11
I made my way across through the morning mist; and when I got there, it was beautiful. I was the only one there. For a twenty minutes or so; I took my hat off to Tom Neale. I'm reading Tom's book at the moment "An Island to Oneself" in which he tells of his 6 year stay on a tropical Atoll in the south pacific. Just as I was beginning to appreciate the solitude; a family arrived, running amok; and a group of young hoodlums, one of which was a 'brummie'- he was louder than the American woman on the bus in Poland. Forgot to tell you about her, didn't I? Anyway...back to the concrete jungle I went.
I bought my self a concert ukulele to take to sea with me; which over the past week, I've managed to master. I've been working on all different types of fancy strumming techniques, and I have to say that I love it. I don't go near my guitar any more!
Another 6 weeks or so, of PHD level procrastination awaits me, before I finally go to sea. I suppose I'll get stuck into to some rule of the road; and go over all the academic stuff from phase 1.