Archive for August, 2009

The Travelodge of DOOM

Now I’m no snob but even I like things to be clean! My recent stay at a Manchester Travelodge was well… less than clean. I can’t fault the room size, it was mahoosive, and after asking a few others, it seems all the room sizes were massive, which begs the question who designed the rooms, as its seems a few extra could of been squeezed in with some re-jigging, anyway I digress…
Massive room below;
massive travelodge room

So I enter the room, and after travelling all I want to do is put my bags down and ‘powder ones nose’ however the toilet was erm, shall we say ‘stained’ and the rest of the room wasn’t much better.

There were;
Fag burns on the carpets and sofa
Dirt on the carpets and sofa
Dirty cups
mouldy shower curtain

Not only that but the room was like a furnace and the bed left alot to be desired, creaky and bumpy and overly bouncy. Not great for one’s back you see!

The best of all was this;
minging bathroom travelodge
What it was i dont know, i tried to put it down the plug hole but it came back, bigger!!!

So on the morning of my birthday when I awoke, i was grumpy and unclean, preparing to travel to Edinburgh. A nice breakfast will sort me out… or so i thought…

No sausage, bacon, beans, mushrooms, tomato, milk for cereal or coffee, so i ate egg on toast. Clarke had coco pops with no milk! highly disappointing!

When i told the girl at reception about my room she said “sorry, you should have let us know last night!” well, i dropped my stuff and went straight out, and got in late… derrr


Edinburgh Roadshow (AKA My Birthday!)

I’m now officially 24 years of age! Bah! After a disastrous breakfast, Mark, Jason, Chris and myself piled back into the car for jet another mamouth leg of the journey. I have to say, once you get north of Manchester the views are just incredible. Stunning views of the lake district, although we never actually saw the lakes! We had a quick rest stop at a service station which Chris thought was hilarious as its called Tebay (T’ebay as Chris says, like T’internet) Anyway Tebay was fantastic, for a services it was top notch, it even had it’s own farm shop and a selection of CD’s which we all raided for better musical entertainment on the rest of the route.
Stunning ViewTebay
We eventually hit Scotland and more incredible scenery which I was desperately trying to take pictures of as we were moving along. We headed into Edinburgh Airport first of all to pick up Jules, she was delayed getting her luggage so we kept getting moved on, around and around the airport we drove until eventually she appeared, on to the hotel! As it was Edinburgh Fringe the streets were packed with entertainers and bright colours, and traffic. We found the hotel, parked up and jumped out of the car! After listening and singing along to the best song in the world!!! oh yeah!

Upon arrival at the hotel I was presented with a gorgeous bunch of flowers from Red, which were beautiful. Me and Jules headed up to the room where I was treated to another gift! Woo Hoo! Dinosaur paper to boot! I got some scrummy smellies which were perfectly timed as I was FINALLY able to get in the shower! aaah to be clean! It was quite lovely!
After Jules and I got ready, it was then time to head to the first bar where Clarke, Elaine, Dave, Fraser and many others were tucking into some grub and a few drinks. Elaine and Dave gave me a wicked card (there is an in joke there). After some grub and a cocktail we headed off to the venue for the roadshow. There were plenty of people there who kept bringing me wine and cocktails and various other drinks. Even the boss man Mark bought me 3 mt gay and cokes to drink! gah! I even got the birthday bumps (and bruises to go with it) the boys giving me the bumps had a strange method of counting – 1,2,3,4,7,12,24!!! Hurrah! There were then some odd positions with my legs and Jules’ shoulders and things – there are photos, but im not putting them up here!
We headed back to the hotel, via the chippy for chips cheese and gravy!!! ooohhh yeah! Some interesting late night chats with some very drunk people and I headed to bed, to yet another REALLY HOT travelodge, but at least this one was clean! A great breakfast in the morning with everyone before saying goodbye and heading off on the LONG journey home. This is a map of the journey, google maps said -17 hours in total! No wonder we were all wiped out for days after!

Manchester A4U Roadshow Roundup!

What an amazing few days! The second and final a4uexpo roadshows were in Manchester then Edinburgh, and fell right over my 24th Birthday! Yes I know I look older, but anyway! Mark the boss man decided he would drive us in his car, all the way to Manchester, then on to Edinburgh, then all the way back, which is where I am currently writing this from.
We left the office at 10.15 am on Tuesday morning, before heading over to get Jason from Easy Content Units. We then headed up to Bristol to get A4U Expo’s very own Chris Johnson! We were picking him up from a roundabout and the bugger was late so we spent quite some time going round and round two different roundabouts, getting VERY dizzy before he finally turned up (wearing pajamas!). There were some strange music choices which involved Oasis, Buddy Holly, Neil Diamond, and any other random act you can think of! The highlight for me was the whole cast recording of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour dreamcoat! Chris was less impressed!
We hit some traffic joining the M6 from the M5, and eventually Mark turned off and we followed his Sat Nav, voiced by John Cleese, round the back rounds until we finally arrived in Manchester at around 3.15. I breifly saw my parents who were travelling home from Liverpool and had bought burgers for the boys but not me :(, then it was into the hotel room for a quick change and straight back out again! The hotel room will be a whole new blog post! YUCK!
We were all starving after our journey so instead of going for dinner, we headed straight out for Nando’s! mmmn Nando’s! Neither Mark, Jason or Clarke from Paid on Results had eaten Nando’s before, so what a treat for them! Myself and Chris are veterans so we were chuffed to be eating one of our favourite foods. After devouring our respective chickens we headed off to the venue to find the guys from CJ already outside waiting for us! And so the partying began! CJ had kindly sponsored the bar so the 80 or so people were drinking for free! hurrah! It was awesome to finally meet people I had chatted to through facebook, and the a4u forum and twitter for the past few years! It’s a bizarre world I work in whereby most of my close friends I have only met once or twice! I manged to get through a couple of wines before insulting Alex from ASAP Ventures. When he said he was from Buenos Aires, and I said ‘thats in Cuba’! Knowing fill well it isnt, its Argentina! Stupid me! I love the musucal Evita, so what i was thinking, i really dont know! Myself and Lee McCoy drank the bars tiny stash of Mount Gay before being forced to drink other rums… yuk! I should thank him for buying me a Plymouth Gin and tonic for my birthday (which he said he will be expensing)! Helen from the it guide came out with a great idea of getting her wedding sponsored, so we had a mini plot of what we could get sponsored! God, it was a random night and it hadnt even begun!
Many people began dribbling off to various bars with shots or strippers or both but as we were travelling we all decided to go and get some food, so off we headed to China Town. We found a Chinese and myself, Chris, Mark, Jason, Darren from Linkshare and Steve from the Gift Experience headed inside. The food was, erm, not the best and I’m thankful I only ordered a starter for my main course. Now, as I was with 5 boys and it was minutes away from being my 24th Birthday I felt I would have to ask for my own cake. Which I did! They didn’t have any cake, but the nice waitress took it upon herself to find me something! So after the meal, the lights dimmed, the crazy Chinese happy birthday song came on and out she came with an icecream witha candle and an ‘ice fountain’ (which my client, Night Sky Lanterns sell).
Ice Fountains
After all the excitement, we decided to walk home, following Jasons directions… never again. We ended up having a major trek around Manchester and we must have passed the hotel at least 3 times before we finally got inside! Straight to bed to catch a crazy Ben Fogle programme on the Peak District and I was asleep.
minging bath
The next morning, I couldn’t shower as my bath had stuff growing in it, I headed downstairs for breakfast, which was yet another major FAIL… There were a few broken faces that morning as I attempted to get breakfast! It was then time to set off on the next part of the journey, up to Edinburgh!

I’m Off To Arcane Festival – Oxfordshire!

That’s right campers, I’m off to a festival! Hurrah! The Arcane Festival is held on Horsenden Meadow, Tetsworth, Oxfordshire!

I think everyone should come on down! it’s gonna be AWESOME!

By popular demand Arcane Festival is returning for it’s 3rd year! TICKETS AND MORE INFO HERE

We aim to make this year’s festival bigger and better whilst retaining the intimate atmosphere by limiting the number of tickets available. There will be live music stages, dance tents, food, drink, performance art, local stallholders and a green area promoting awareness of various issues. Plus kids’ art workshop using recycled materials. Following the enthusiasm surrounding Halfcut Art’s grafitti wall last year we will be introducing a ‘free for all’ grafitti wall which, as the name suggests, anyone will be able to add their artistic touch to! Halfcut Art will, of course, be continuing the original famous and ever-expanding grafitti wall this year!

Arcane Festival 2009 Lineup

Main Stage – the finest selection of local talent…
A Silent Film
Mephisto Grande
The Goggenheim
Joe Allen Band
Tristan & the Troubadours
Motion in Colour
Reload The Radio
Death of a Small Town
The Shakellers

Queen of Clubs Stage – QoC cabaret & dancing as seen monthly at the Isis Tavern!
Anton Barbeau
Horns of Plenty (Oxford’s street band)
Scarlett in the Wilderness
The New Moon
Ivy’s Itch
Hugh Blaza
Maria Ilett
Plus: Comedy, Poetry & QoC open mic – sign up for the chance to win a paid slot at QoC @ The Isis!

Square One – Hard Dance, Hard House, Hardcore
DJ Fear (ft. Kathy Blockley Live)
Sam Eeles
Matt Storm
DJ Cruze
JB Project (FINRG Set)
B-ill (107.9fm)
MCs: Gsus, Brookzy, Ballzee

Pure Alchemy – Dubstep, Breaks, House, D’n’B
DJ Kyte
Micky Ry

Lucid (Formerly Baraka Records)
Nervous Interface
The Phonographist

Fully licensed bar, on site camping, Food from local traders, Greener Arena (with laughter yoga, facepainting, art from scrap & more), The Fantabulous Fete (Pimms, Cream Teas, Croquet, raffle & more), Local Artists & Live installations, the Halfcut Art Grafitti wall, Free for All Grafitti wall, Comedy, Jugglers, Spinners etc, Workshops & more.

I’m going to party after hearing the terrible football news yesterday.