Sunday 20th May 2018, 2.30pm (day 2,460)
A happy 50th birthday to brother-in-law Pete: we celebrated in Manchester and I tried not to dwell on the fact that in 462 days time, I too will reach the half-century…
Last day before the return to work, and fortunately, the weather seems to have relented (for now) and decided to give us a taste of spring. A day for a short walk in the woods then. I like the formal qualities of this shot, the way the parties on the other bank gather themselves into groups; though the two in the middle background seem to spoil it just a little bit.
After spending the last four days almost entirely at home, claustrophobia was definitively overcome by having a day out here. Looking rather different from its last appearance on the blog in August 2016, Llandudno was all built in the 1850s and 1860s as a massive piece of real estate speculation by landowner Lord Mostyn and architect Owen Williams. And I have to say, you can see their point.
I have been to a lot of football matches in 2017 — around 25, give or take (I have lost count myself). But one distinction was claimed by this, the last match of the year — it had the biggest crowd. Around 52,000 were present at St. James’s Park, Newcastle, today to see them take on the mighty Brighton and Hove Albion — and everyone to leave rather underwhelmed by a 0-0 draw in which neither team seemed willing to take on the initiative. Frankly if there’s one thing the year’s football has shown me it’s that the 220 people at Mossley v Kendal Town last week (5-4) may well be getting rather more for their money. But we keep coming back, week on week. Amazing what tribalism can do isn’t it?
Second Monday morning in a row where I have to haul myself up before dawn and onto the 06:59 train. Not my favoured way to start the week. I certainly felt like the first person up in town this morning; though I guess this suggests that either the proprietor of ‘Brocante’ beat me to it, or they just left the lights on all night.
Monday morning, and it’s raining, and you’ve just bought a weekly ticket for the first time in ages (meaning you’re going into Manchester every day this week) and the 06:59 turns up as a two-carriage piece of obsolete shit as it always does, only today the previous service through was cancelled so by Littleborough it’s already achieved full CTS (Cattle Truck Status) and we haven’t even had the Rochdale passengers on yet. Happy Mondays.