Andy’s Party And Other Happenings Up North

This is my third and final attempt to write this journal entry without something terrible happing that causes me to lose it in it’s entirety.

Spent a long weekend (Friday to Tuesday) in the North-West of England, firstly at Andy’s party, then later visiting my folks in Preston, with Claire. Details follow…

The weekend started at Andy’s 21st birthday party, in Bury/Bolton/somewhere-in-that-whole-Northern-Greater-Manchester-area. It was an absolutely fantastic party, with beer flowing freely down our chins and onto the floor, interspersed only with drinking other things, including but not limited to helium from a great quantity of balloons we shouldn’t have been left near. Now that other people I know are passing the great 21-barrier, I don’t feel quite so old (at 22).

Andy’s speech was beautiful and heartbreaking. The food was great. The company was even better. It was great to see folks who I’d not seen since the end of term (and, in some cases, who I won’t see again for some time). Later, we retired to Andy’s house and lounged around drinking and talking until approaching 5am (I, sadly, fell asleep at about 3:30, as Claire had some hours before).

You can read other accounts of Andy’s party here, and here, and here too. And yes, I know it’s bad practice to make a list of links like this, but I don’t care: this is my third attempt at this entry, okay?

The following morning, we played Mario Party 4, and Claire won!!! With a hangover, no less. This is her first time as the ‘Party Star’, and she seemed glad of it: as my entries on 30th June and 7th July, among others, show, I have a bad case of winning whenever I play. This was, I believe, the first time I’ve ever not won. I came second. Barely. ;-)

After this, Claire and I continued to Preston to meet my mum, my sisters, and my gran, who’s visiting from Hartlepool. I hadn’t seen my gran in about a year, and it was good to see her again… although she still insists – most strangely, somewhat favouritistically, and at least slightly tactlessly, that of her two children and five grandchildren, I am the ‘favourite’ – the ‘special one’, as she puts it – old people, eh? [photo removed]

Played lots of Super Monkey Ball 2 and Mario Party 4. Sarah, the elder of my two younger sisters, and the self-dubbed ‘white sheep of the family’, is getting to be really good at the former. Spent a great deal of time at the pub. Watched “Sinbad: Legend Of The Seven Seas”, a very well animated and clever cartoon feature film from Dreamworks, with an all-star voice cast. Apart from some confusion over the motivation of the evil goddess Erin, and a little over-frequency of ‘saw it coming’ (probably less of an issue for the children at whom the film is targeted), this is a very good film.

Back in Aber now, and have loads of work to do before a deadline on Friday. Better get on with it.

Monday Morning

Another new week. I’m surprisingly jolly about it. Spent the morning so far discussing corporate image with my boss.

[quiz results removed]

Gotta love Mondays.

I won at Mario Party 4 again last night. But Claire didn’t come second… she came third, beaten to it by Paul. You’d think she’d be pleased. But no.

She kicked all our asses in a Flag Rally at Cel Damage, though. D’oh!

Back From Lancashire, Continued

Spent the last four days in Lancashire and elsewhere in the North of England, visiting my folks (among other things). Details follow…

Saturday 28th June 2003
Dan’s Mum’s House, Preston
More video games. Yet again I won at Mario Party 4. Claire is starting to get really pissed-off with always coming second-place. I don’t think she’d mind being last or second-to-last all the time, but coming second-place time and time again really seems to annoy her. Particularly when I proceed to dance around the room chanting “I am the Party Star!” at the top of my voice. Ah well.

Horton Tower, Horton
Went with Claire and my family to see the annual symphony orchestra at Horton Tower. It wasn’t as good as last year, but it was still fun. Taught Claire to waltz.

More to follow…

Back From Lancashire, Continued

Spent the last four days in Lancashire and elsewhere in the North of England, visiting my folks (among other things). Details follow…

Friday 27th June 2003
Dan’s Mum’s House, Preston
Played on Claire’s Nintendo GameCube with Claire, my mum, and sisters. I won at Mario Party 4.
Went to meet the managing director who’ll be taking over from my dad upon his retirement. He didn’t seem remotely scared enough by the idea that if my dad fell under a bus (oh; the irony of a transport consultant being run over by a public transport vehicle), I’d be his majority shareholder, nor did he seem to believe all the stories the rest of the staff told about me. He’ll be taught to fear me, yet… <evil grin>

Later, met up with Andy, Dan’s co-webmaster, and played more video games, before going out for KFC and to see Bruce Almighty at the cinema, which was a pretty damn cool film.

Finally, retired to my mum’s house for yet more video games. I won at Mario Party 4. Again.

More to follow…