Friday evening was a spot of culture. I went with my footballing buddies, Kerry and Jim (honourable girl pal) with his non-footballing girlfriend Kate, for an off-season outing to the Botanical Gardens in Sheffield to see a performance of Taming of The Shrew. Yes, it was outdoors. Yes, it rained. But it was brilliant and extremely English. (Pause for thought – should that be British? Do the Scots, Welsh and Irish also sit out in rainy gardens watching plays and having picnics or is their weather just too unreliable to countenance such weirdness or their people too sensible??)
Anyway, we had a lovely picnic with wine and strawberries and somehow made it work through the showers and general dampness by wearing waterproofs, hats, travel rugs over knees and raising umbrellas during intervals. The actors were lucky as the rain mainly held off during the performance on the entirely uncovered stage, only falling beforehand and during the interval. They were excellent; very professional, very amusing and totally convincing despite there being only 5 of them to play all the characters which involved each one playing at least 2 parts and women having to play mens’ parts as well. But it was done with such aplomb and wit that you hardly noticed. I know little about it, but suspect that they must have been very good actors to carry it off. As proof of the pudding we left with plans to come again to see their performance of Pride and Prejudice later in the summer (Jim was not quite as keen on this option and was pushing for Pinocchio instead!).
Saturday morning was a 50 minute run in the sunshine and the weekly shop. Somewhat rushed because I had to get to the train at midday to go to Manchester to meet the Velodrome Girls! Yay! I love it when a plan comes together so I was really pleased that my suggestion of meeting up was well met and that we managed to find a suitable date so quickly. These were the women who took part with me in that TV Show in 2009 and 2010. Although we’re all in touch through Facebook, we haven’t met up in real life since last spring and there was much to talk about!
Me leaving D and my new relationship with Rich (not so new now!); Kathryn leaving her husband and her new vocation as a midwife which she adores; Lindsay’s boob job (reduction and repositioning rather than augmentation); and Mandy’s new job, relationship issues and children growing up angst. It seems that meeting Steve Peters has had a fairly major effect on all of us. Our weight was of secondary importance although we have all learned loads about that too. It was wonderful to meet up without cameras staring us in the face and to be able to be honest and unguarded. Although we have not been friends for a long period and are not close in our everyday lives, we do get on well and seem to be able to get right to the heart of matters quickly; I suppose that comes from having met on a TV show exploring one’s innermost psyches!
We had a gorgeous lunch in a trendy restaurant in Manchester – Chichetti’s in Kendals. It’s a Venetian restaurant which is like an Italian version of a Spanish tapas restaurant; lots of small dishes to share. Very convivial and fun and extremely tasty, especially the gnocchi in a parmesan basket…mmmmmm…. Rather too much was eaten and drunk but hey – I’ll get back to losing ways on Monday!!
Then back home and straight back out to Castleton for Lisa’s hen night. Another lovely evening. It wasn’t a wild night with veils or weird dressing up just a group of us enjoying a nice meal and a few drinks and getting home by midnight. Perfect. Nice to spend time with old friends from Bamford who I don’t see so much of now that I’ve moved. I couldn’t do justice to the food so ended up having a seafood starter instead of a main but even then there was far too much delicious bread with olives and stuff floating around. And being full didn’t seem to stop me enjoying the wine and beer…hmmmm
I fear I may be starting P2P2 on the back foot but this doesn’t worry me – I must just commit to it and get going. Any loss is positive.
Sunday was all about golf – playing in the morning with Nigel and then watching all evening with Rich. After walking the dogs in the afternoon sunshine, we collapsed in front of the telly to watch Rory McIlroy play a blinder at the US Open. What a star! 22 years of age and leading the world’s best by 8 shots. And looking cool and happy the whole way round. I love seeing a sportsman or woman with a smile on their face – not keen on the whole grimace of triumph thing espoused by Tiger Woods or even Andy Murray. After all, they are literally PLAYING their sport – why not smile and enjoy their talent rather than make it into a quasi war?
So, all in all, it was a great weekend but I’m looking forward to the resumption of normal life this week. Which started with dancing last night – yay!