Rest Day 6

on Jun 4, 2010 | 7 comments

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What an absolutely great night I had last night! Okay I’ll admit it, I was slightly worse for wear because of it this morning but…face…bovered?! It felt like it’d been so long since I sat and had more than just a pint or two and knowing that I wasn’t walking today, well, that was all the excuse I needed after yesterday’s marathon walk to seriously kick back for the evening.

After checking in to the Britannia Hotel and sorting myself out I had the best of intentions of going out, finding somewhere to get a decent bite to eat and then maybe hop in to a pub for a couple of well deserved pints. As it goes, that’s not quite how it went, best laid plans and all that?

Yes I went out. Yes I did indeed start to look for somewhere to go and eat but as I walked down Victoria Street I heard the sound of a guitar sound checking…loudly! It was coming from over the road in the Giffard Arms pub and this was like a siren to a ship, a light to a moth, a Nandos to Lee, and I made my way over the road and went in.

How does that song go? Heaven, I’m in heaven… It was almost like walking in to the old Intrepid Fox in London: dark, bats and things on the walls and Annihilator and Maiden playing loudly – home sweet home!

Pint ordered I sat down to enjoy the tunes, promising myself that I’d stay for a bit, go and get some food and then come back again to carry on the drinking. What was that I already said about best laid plans? The evening didn’t quite go like that as I ordered another pint, then another, and another – I think you get the picture? I was enjoying the tunes so much I just couldn’t be bothered to leave and eat, a liquid dinner was just fine thank you very much.

For a good part of the evening it was like I’d travelled through a wormhole and was back in the 90s as the DJ wasn’t playing anything newer than about 1996, playing old Limp Bizkit, Tool, Maiden, Machine Head and Rage Against The Machine tracks. It was just like being back at the Lair in Gillingham! At one point I was expecting Walk by Pantera to come on but unfortunately not. I got the band right, just the wrong song – the DJ played Five Minutes Along instead. I had to laugh though.

It was also funny that I was THE most un-metal looking person in the place and I clearly knew more of the songs being played than anyone else there. I even found myself tapping my foot along to Rammstein, Ministry and Cradle of Filth! What’s all that about?!

I was supposed to have been seeing Slayer with Andy and Neil last night, well it should have been back in November but it got postponed a couple of times, so we were texting and the like during the evening. Neil sent me through a picture of a bottle of Dog (Newcastle Brown Ale) so I thought I’d join him for old time’s sake. Hadn’t drunk that for nearly twenty years! Talk about a night of reminiscing

It was a great evening out and by the end of it, and seven pints later, I was feeling rather intoxicated so I made my way back to my room. At the hotel I quickly logged on to their wifi in the lobby – it’s the only place I seem to be able to connect – and uploaded the day’s blog post, making a couple of mistakes I have since corrected. That done I went to my room, ate a few cheese thins I had in my pack (dinner?), put my iPod on and promptly passed out on my bed.

Next thing I know it was 5:22am and infuriatingly I was awake – doh! Why can I not break this waking up early thing?! Determined not to rush about I dozed until about 8:30am and then just lied there trying to relax. I didn’t bother getting up for breakfast and I eventually left the room at about 10:30am to wander round, get some food and sort some supplies out.

I had a good stroll round the centre of Wolverhampton, taking in the only site of any historical interest from what I could find. This was, so I was told by a notice, the oldest place in Wolverhampton where by the 10th century a monastery had been established. The monastery is no more but St. Peter’s church and gardens are now on the site. The only part of the old monastery that now remains was a cross shaft dating back to 9th century.

Cultural visit over with, short as it was, I wandered in to the high street again, booked an appointment for a hair cut and went back to my room to chill out for a bit, still feeling the after effects of last night. It’s my age I swear it is. My hangovers are definitely worse than they used to be.

I sat in the hotel lobby for a bit so I could connect to the Internet and sort out tomorrow night’s accommodation, which I did, and reply to a few emails. It was nice to see that a few more people had sponsored me – less than £500 to go to reach the £2000 target! It really is making all the blood, sweat and tears worth it.

I chilled out in my room for a bit more listening to the new Silent Civilian album – thanks Lee – and writing up the day so far. Far too quickly the time came for me to go and get pampered by the lovely ladies at Tony and Guy. Very nice it was too. As I was sat there the song Sylvia by Miike Snow came on and it reminded me of the girls dancing round the front room to it at home; nice thought for the afternoon.

I tried to have a Skype call with the girls this evening but it failed miserably. I hope it was the wifi network here in the hotel and not my netbook playing up. It didn’t work with Russ either so it was definitely something my end of the connection. Hopefully I’ll be able to try again tomorrow where I’m staying as they’ve got free wifi. If it goes wrong then it’s definitely something wrong with my netbook and the only thing I’ve changed is I installed the Windows Media Player 11 update today. If that’s screwed it up I’ll be very angry as not having the video call with the girls today really upset me. We’ll see tomorrow how it goes.

I made it out for some dinner tonight. I went to City Bar and had a lovely three course meal so I’m now feeling rather full up.

I’ve got to sort out tomorrow’s route on the GPS yet as it’ll now be different to the original one due to yesterday’s change of plans coming in to Wolverhampton. Once I’ve done that I’ll sort the rest of my stuff out and hit the sack, hopefully getting a good night’s sleep as I’m feeling rather tired. Fingers crossed.


If you want to find out more about this day you can see the photos I took.


  1. Neil

    June 4, 2010

    Heres another point of interest for Wolverhampton, I think Percy Plant comes from there and he supports Wolves I believe.
    Slayer was stonking, apart from some poor bloke getting stretchered off to hospital!

    • Darren

      June 4, 2010

      Glad Slayer were good, as if they’ve ever been anything other than fantastic every time we’ve seen them?! Gutted I missed them but glad in some ways as it could have been me getting stretchered off as I was aiming on having lots of fun at the gig. Maybe next time?

  2. Matt

    June 5, 2010

    Sounded like the perfect night bruv!! Its funny because I was only talking to Ian and his neighbour yesterday about drinking rather large amounts of Newcastle Brown in The Northforelands all those years ago!!

    • Dave

      June 5, 2010

      And the Bullseye, and Churchills, and wherever we could get served, followed by a fight with the “casuals” in Rochester High Street on the way home! Great days, crazy times! Next you’ll be going on an Old Speckled Hen-fest and trying to belch “Archbishop of Canterbury” on the bar 😉

      • Darren

        June 5, 2010

        The Bullseye and Churchills…those were the days 🙂

        I think a challenge has been duly laid down for this afternoon/evening there Dave. I always managed to get to “Archbishop of Cant” and then seemed to run out of gas, literally. We’ll see if I can do any better today 😉

        • Dave

          June 5, 2010

          Seem to remember Treacle hitting it once, in the Prince of Wales. Did we really drink in that many pubs? Stupid question actually, of course we did! You gotta video it mate – not that we wouldn’t believe you but it would make great Youtube 😉

          • Darren

            June 5, 2010

            Of course we drank in that many pubs! It would have been rude not to!!

            I distinctly remember Lee doing it in the middle of McDonalds in Canterbury before an Exile/Downtrodden gig round the corner. The look on people’s faces when he did it…priceless!