It's a blind faith, a cruel waste, one bitter taste. So I know I need this sweet sensation.
23.08.2011 18 °C
London - Paris - Disney - Bournemouth
Literally picking up where I left off, had a smashing cup of tea from Rach in London and then we both went into town to meet Simon and David (my two older brothers). I got treated to my first ale since being back before David and then Simon turned up straight from work; it was then announced that Simon and Rachel are now engaged! So out came the Moet to celebrate - well happy for them both ...and what a coincidence, Simon presented the ring to Rach two days after all the looting in London.
Rach, David, myself and Simon celebrate with some Moet
After a boozy evening, Simon and Rach treating me to a meal (and me falling asleep at the table due to the time in Bangkok being 4am) I got up the next day and jumped on the tube over to the Euro Star. St. Pancras station was a mess, and took me a little longer to get through Check in than I had thought it would (apparently you're supposed to be there at least 30 minutes early - I was 5 minutes!) Then I was thumped back into normal London life; guys just happily watching poor ladies struggle with buggies, kids and bags on to the train - I literally helped three different Mums (one yummy) while people looked on bemused.
The journey went pretty quickly down to Lille where I had a two hour wait - so I grabbed myself a Chimay Rouge and read my book for a while. Finally I ended up at the Disney station and was welcomed by Larna - so good to see her again. We grabbed some food and caught up on each others gossip, generally laughing our heads off as per normal.
One of the days we headed in to Paris; god things were expensive 8Euros for a pint (believe it or not, I stuck to water). We went to the Louvre, I was very impressed with the building itself but the art work doesn't particularly appeal to me. There was a lot of fuss over some painting of a lady, but personally I think they were over looking the painting opposite which included a midget.
This girl cracks me up - inside the Louvre
Why is he so cold? He's got a cloak on!
It's OK little girl, I know how you feel
Look it's a midget!
Couldn't resist the tourist photo
We then went on a walk down the Seine river, had a little look at the Pont des Arts bridge which houses lots of "Love Padlocks" and also a number of punters taking bets on "which cup has the ball" - plenty of suckers paying 50Euro notes. Following this we posed for photos outside Notre Dame and then walked round the Latin Quarter, treating ourselves to some pastries.
Love Padlocks on Pont des Arts bridge - in the background you can see Île de la Cité which houses Notre Dame
Bonjour Madame - Larna trying on french hats
Oh Yes! Beautiful cheese cake
A number of the days Larna had to work, her normal shift of 3:30pm-11:30pm - so we decided to go into Disney in the morning and then I could wonder round the park on my todd before seeing Larna in action dancing in the parades and dressing up as characters. We headed straight to Crush's Coaster - the Finding Nemo ride, which was wicked before shooting off to Buzz Lightyear's Laser Buzz; which I obviously won. Was good to be back in Disney again "The Land of dreams" where no one is allowed to cry (unless their parents aren't buying them the 24Euro keyring they want), especially with Larna as she got us special treatment with skipping queues.
1million more points than you Larna
What a nutter
Larna managed to grab me some cheap lunch from back stage - check this out for a mark up; bottle of water inside the park 2.60Euros, bottle of water back stage .33cents! Then she left me to wonder Disney on my own - first time for everything, I was on roller coaster rides on my own; I'm cool.
I defo need someones hand to hold while on a roller coaster
Larna had told me she was going to be a Chipmunk at a particular place and time, so I zipped over to find her and her chipmunk friend signing kids autograph books and having photos with them. Then all of a sudden, Larna's chipmunk (the one with the light brown nose - I had been warned!) spotted me, grabbed the other chipmunk, pointed at me, pushed all the kids out the way and then the three of us had a little dance. Absolutely hilarious! Larna then continued in character (cheeky chipmunk) by stealing kids hats, posing the wrong way for photo's and generally causing mischief - very much like Larna herself. I then got to see her as a parade dancer in the Once Upon a Dream Parade, and then as a chipmunk again in the Fantillusion parade - again spotting me and embarrassing me.
Annmarie and Larna (on the right with light brown nose) before they've spotted I've arrived
Oh god, now I'm in trouble
Group photo after our little dance
Some poor little girls try to have a photo with Larna!
Once Upon a Dream Parade - Larna on the left with the orange umbrella
Fantillusion Parade - Tinkerbell with the chipmunks dancing on the left
Oh god, they've spotted me again (this time Larna with the darker nose on the left)
The following evening Larna treated me to a night out at "Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show". We had drinks in the bar where we were issued with our cowboy hats (4 teams - we were the Green cowboys and cowgirls), got to meet Goofy (we were first for photo's because it was Larna's mate Gordon) and then were shepherd into an indoor stadium. We were placed on benches with tables in front of us, where we got plenty of food and free beer. Can't say I really knew what was going on in the show, but I was waving my cowboy hat and stomping my feet when everyone else was. Fantastic night out and thoroughly recommend it to anyone heading that way.
Larna and I with our cowboy hats on at the bar
Goofy on stage with the band
Having a photo with Goofy (Larna's mate Gordon)
The next day Larna sorted out a day at Davy Crockett's Adventure park - similar to Go Ape in England. Larna had vague directions of where to get the bus to, but we ended up on an hour and a half trek through fields - climbing over fences, bridges over motorways - then eventually hitch hiked to the venue. Once we were geared up and had our safety briefing we were allowed the choice of levels 1-6, 1-2 is for kids, 3 is 25 metres high not to demanding and 4-6 are high up and physically demanding. We chose 3 to start off with and it was class - clipping yourself on to wires, walking along tight ropes and swinging down zip lines.
Zoop Zoop! Ready to go
We could pretty much handle the obstacles, but some bits were a bit tricky. Once we had finished Larna announced "Right lets do level 6" ...this girl is mental. I told her no way, she could do it if she wanted but the max I'd go to was 5 - I'm scared of heights for god sake! After she had a little paddy, she gave in and joined me on level 5; after three difficult obstacles she agreed that she was glad she wasn't on level 6.
Larna coming down one of the zip lines
Then we got to a 16 metre Tarzan jump - you have to swing from one tree and then grab on to a rope ladder; "No way" I say while hugging the tree for dear life. "Don't be such a pussy, I'll do it!" Larna responds. Next minute she's strapped to the Tarzan rope and swung across with a cheeky little scream to accompany her. God, why does this girl always push me into these things - after 5 minutes of sweating and panicking I've swung across with a huge girly scream; accompanied by the outrageous laughter from Larna. Cheers for the support.
On my last night, we took the train into Paris and went up the Montparnasse tower - 59 floors up you get a cracking view of the Eiffel tower and the rest of Paris. Absolutely wicked. The day I was leaving was Larna's 21st Birthday, we met all her friends at an American themed diner near Disney for breakfast which was great, before I had to say goodbye and jump on the Euro star back to London.
Quite a View
I got some funny looks on the Euro star and then the tube seeing as I had 2 blocks of French Brie smelling out of my bag, and a cowboy hat on my head. I spent the night at Jon's in London and then we drove down south the next morning; ready for a weekend of carnage in Bournemouth for Chaz's stag do. We picked up Chaz and Chris and shot down the road to Bournemouth where we found Andy waiting with his bike for us. Grabbing some cans of beer we got down to the beach and found a ball to play with, such a good laugh to be back with these four guys I've known for over 13 years. Jon treated us to some cheeky cocktails before we met up with a couple of Chaz's uni mates for some food at Pizza Express; don't think the families and couples in the restaurant appreciated us playing drinking games at the table.
Jon, Chaz and Andy gay it up on Bournemouth Beach
While Chaz downed his beer, Andy decided to rugby tackle him
Chaz being pretty arrogant while playing arrogance in Pizza Express
Later on Chaz's brother James and brother in law Steve showed up and we hit it pretty hard in Bournemouth, playing drinking games and checking out some fancy dancing - memory is a bit of a blur to be honest with you.
Drinking rule - if someone placed a condom on your shoulder and a photo got taken without you noticing you had to down your drink. Drink up Chris
Looks like I've been caught out here - before introducing a game, make sure you're good at it.
Phil - you're a bad man
The Phelan brothers rip it up
We were booked in for Go Ape the next day, which we sacked off for a weatherspoons breakfast - god it was amazing! I had gone over 4 months without a good English fry up, no sausages or proper bacon - it was good to be back! It was the Bournemouth air show that weekend, so we all went down to the beach and watched the planes over head - stunning weather considering that Bournemouth had been flooded two days previously. At the end of the day we heard the sad news that one of the Red Arrows had crashed on its way back to Bournemouth airport after putting on a display down by the beach, killing the pilot Flt Lt Jon Egging.
Shot taken from Bournemouth pier
The guys watch three planes fly over
A bomber flies over Bournemouth pier
In the evening we dressed Chaz up like a Mexican and hit the bars of Bournemouth again. We bumped into a group of girls who were on a hen do, they gave us some fantastic ideas - including a list of dares which Chaz had to do - I have made a pact so I can't go in to details ...however he did have to apply for a divorce from a stripper Sunday morning. We then got to a club called V, which is a church and had a Hedkandi night on. Some how we managed to get in to the VIP section and danced until the place closed at 3am - amazing club!
He doesn't look a very happy Mexican...
...But once you get him dancing he enjoys himself
Such a wicked club this
A few sore heads in the morning but we all made it down to breakfast for another fry up. Afterwards we went to see the Inbetweeners film, hilarious - but nothing compared to the TV series itself. Now I'm back at Tregidgo HQ looking forward to the weekend of football and nights out in Portsmouth and Reading - Bring it on.