Following the wonderful fence job by Matt yesterday, I reattached the jasmine this morning and have to say, it looks much better and a good deal happier.
Then, just before lunch, Nicktor arrived to pick me up and we headed north.
It had been planned for a long time but there was a good deal of cancellation threats for various reasons (mostly to do with Basil’s advanced age) but, eventually, all was settled and we arrived at the date for our Boys Away Day Football in the North Tour (or BADFINT as I’ve just decided to call it). Originally we were three for the initial leg, but then, for reasons more to do with laziness than true football support, Steve From Number 11 decided against joining us in this great adventure.
While it was a truly epic drive, the fact that Nicktor and I haven’t seen each other for quite a while meant we had lots of
bollocks important stuff to chat about, making the miles just fly by. So we didn’t miss Steve From Number 11 one bit!
Finally, the two of us arrived in Holmfirth and we tried to find the entrance to the hotel car park. The traffic was horrendous. Nicktor had deliberately planned to miss the peak hour because the single road into Holmfirth is pretty skinny. We missed the peak hour but managed to be part of the school pick up time.
Nicktor decided that we could somehow cross the river somewhere up (or down) stream and headed away from the hotel. He was right and we were soon going around, approaching the hotel from the opposite direction. I did point out that this was actually a good thing because it mean turning left into the car park rather than across the traffic but I don ‘t think Nicktor heard me.
Happily parked up and out of the car which had been our home for the last 3,000 miles, we checked into the Bridge Inn and had a brief relax before heading for the bar and some delightful Black Sheep Pale Ale.
Neil Ward, who comes to the cricket with us each year and used to work at the same place as Nicktor, and who lives in Holmfirth but can’t come to the football tomorrow, joined us for a few beers. It’s always lovely to see Neil.
Of course, now he’s retired and plays golf four times a week, his conversation isn’t full of the problems in South American Transport Hubs and other dull things to do with worldwide logistics. I almost managed to get him onto containerisation but Nicktor told us both to shut up.
Neil also volunteers at the Methodist Church. I was sorely tempted to quiz him on this but he’s such a lovely chap and I vaguely heard him mention food for the hard of paying that I let it hang in the air.
Having had a few ales we figured we should have some food. I had only had a packet of pork crackling before leaving home and Nicktor had stopped after breakfast so we were in great need of sustenance, mostly to soak up the beer. I said I quite fancied Japanese, a suggestion that was met with derisive laughter.
We settled on tapas (there are two tapas restaurants in Holmfirth). We went to the newest, an excellent tapas place called Mezze. I asked for a glass of rioja but was informed with a delightful smile that you could only buy rioja by the bottle. I looked at Neil and he nodded vigorously. The rioja was very good, the tapas was delicious and the conversation lovely. All round, a jolly good night of food and friendship.
There was one odd moment when a mixed table near us asked Neil (he was closest) if we could stop swearing which, obviously we all agreed to, shamefacedly lowering our voices for a bit. Later, Nicktor and I couldn’t work out when we’d been swearing. Neil doesn’t swear so we knew it wasn’t him. We decided that the table had misheard something we said when we were discussing duck hunting…or something.
Following our perfect feast, we headed over to the Nook for a nightcap before the very short stagger to the Bridge Inn and bed.