Blogs from Greater Manchester, England, United Kingdom, Europe

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Europe » United Kingdom » England » Greater Manchester » Fallowfield August 18th 2022

40 years ago is very topical this week. The UK is in a mini meltdown and inflation has reached double digits for the first time since 1982! TFB has disappeared on another holiday to avoid the inconvenience of the removal men calling - Greece this time. Dilyn the Downing Street Dog and Larry the Cat are no doubt breathing a huge sigh of relief. Meanwhile, the Great Pretenders are jostling for the top job in a race to the bottom - a race full of petty squabbles and insults - and apparently no credible solutions. Tuesday, so it must be Perth - who shall we insult today? The press have the one branded Poundshop Margaret down as the winner by 4 lengths. All of which ironically brings me back four decades. As comparisons are made between ... read more
Manchester University
White Swan, Fallowfield
"Toast Rack" Building, Wilmslow Road

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Greater Manchester October 17th 2019

It’s hard to see your hometown through a visitors’ eyes. It’s like asking yourself the question ‘Am I a nice person?’. I can’t answer that, you’d have to ask someone else. Actually, maybe you should ask someone else about Manchester. Truth be told, I’ve never considered it to be a tourist magnet. Its beaches aren’t the best, you won’t need the factor 30 sun cream, the skiing is rubbish, and the ancient monuments aren’t ancient. Yet it is the third most visited city in the Britain with around one and a half million per year (London is first, Edinburgh is second). So, it is a tourist destination, even if I’m not sure why. Of course, I think Manchester is a fantastic town (we don’t say city), but I’m biased. I’m going to try and answer the ... read more
Centre at night
Take That at the Arena
Old Trafford

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Greater Manchester » Castlefield August 16th 2019

It’s Pennine Way day. Well really it’s Pennine Way day minus two. Thanks Bun for getting me to the airport and for the nice goodbye kiss. Something to remember. Julie wasn’t far behind and despite having checked in electronically the same inching queue was our fate. No drama just frustrating. And the matches I so carefully took from my hand luggage and stowed in my luggage needed to be retrieved. Walkers need to carry matches (compass, whistle and the like) to make them feel like real walkers. No longer is a T-shirt proclaiming ‘I walked the Coast to Coast’ good enough. From Melbourne and as of now 12 hours towards Doha. In flight data has informed us that in just over 2 hours we should arrive in the sunny capital of Qatar where the expected temperature ... read more
The obligatory airport shot.
Both ready.
Always the tourist.

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Greater Manchester April 18th 2019

We have a slightly later start than usual today. Our flight out of Tenerife is not until 15.05. This is a forty day + travel taking in Manchester overnight, Sheffield / Rotherham overnight, Worksop, Nottinghamshire overnight visiting family, Derby for lunch, Aston Clinton, Bucks for lunch, Slough, Berkshire (Donna) and Bagshot, Surrey visiting relatives, then flying out to Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE) for ten days, boarding a Royal Caribbean cruise for fourteen nights, stopping at Muscat, Oman, Mumbai, India, Cochin, India, Penang, Malaysia finishing in Singapore where we spent a further six nights. This concluded with one further night in Dubai, three nights in Gatwick, Crawley then a flight back to Tenerife South. We got the timings slightly wrong, and our hire car had to be back for 11.00, so we had a four hour ... read more
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Europe » United Kingdom » England » Greater Manchester March 31st 2019

It can’t be denied, the trip to Vietnam is a gruelling one. A seven-hour flight to Doha in Qatar then another connecting hop to Hanoi that weighs in at another six hours. That’s quite a journey. Not one I’d recommend you do regularly. Flight #1 on Qatar Airlines was everything you’d expect. Only just big enough seats that you pack with your possessions creating a sort of flying wheelie bin. Eating a meal feels a little like keyhole surgery. A seat-based entertainment console played a frankly poor selection of movies. Not QALs fault of course, its just a time of year when genuine blockbusters are thin on the ground. For my entertainment I watched: Can You Ever Forgive Me? And what a good movie it was. Melissa McCarthy doing some proper acting and Richard E Grant ... read more
More bizarre sculpture, this time used as a play ground

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Greater Manchester » Manchester August 24th 2018

This morning we drove over to Ashton (-under-Lyne) in the rain. We parked the car in the park and ride car park and then just sat wondering how we were going to get to the tram stop without getting soaked because it was absolutely chucking it down by this stage. So we sat ... and we sat ... and we even contemplated giving up on going into Manchester and returning to Stalybridge! Fortunately the rain let up and we were able to make our way across to the tram stop ... just in time to see a tram arrive and depart without us. The next tram was due in 10 minutes so that gave us plenty of time to work out how to buy our travel cards from the machine. At least here we can buy ... read more
Vintage sewing machine window display
Penny Pendo-bee-no
Mr Bee’nn

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Greater Manchester » Manchester August 23rd 2018

Kath and Albert have a full house. In addition to the pet budgie they have us staying with them and this morning the gerbils from next door were dropped off because the neighbours are going away for the Bank Holiday long weekend. Creating even more chaos was a builder in the entry hall busy replacing the front window. The window guy replaced the front door yesterday while we were out and about ... at the same time as the plumber was back with the spare parts to fix the boiler! We missed all the activity yesterday, but have offered to hang around the house today while the front window is out because Albert has to run Kath to the hospital where she has an appointment this afternoon to have a suspicious spot cut out of her ... read more
Man at work.

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Greater Manchester » Manchester August 20th 2018

On a day that had dawned grey and drizzly it was time to leave Shrewsbury and head back to Stalybridge. On the way to retrieve the car from the long stay car park we popped into a shop around in the Dogpole area of Shrewsbury to price some ‘Solar Pal’ novelty characters that we saw in the window of the local tattoo and body piercing parlour yesterday. You know, the silly toys that have a small solar panel so that they jiggle around when the sun (or artificial) light falls on it?Kerry is a big fan of these particular characters, and they weren’t very expensive, so we bought all three in the set for Kerry to put on her desk at work. I can’t name them here in the (albeit unlikely) event that Kerry actually reads ... read more

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Greater Manchester » Manchester August 14th 2018

This morning we headed towards Salford again, this time to visit the intu Trafford Centre which is the third largest shopping centre in the UK. We were sort of looking for some new waterproof walking shoes for me so had hoped to find a few of the outdoor stores represented here. Unfortunately, the only outdoor shop in the centre is The North Face and they didn’t have much in the way of footwear. We did, however, find something a bit more interesting than sandwiches for lunch sampling burritos today from Barburrito. The food court area had very subdued lighting and a blue, cloudy sky painted on the ceiling. It reminded us of being in a casino in Las Vegas more than in a shopping centre in England! Just to have some photos to post for the ... read more
Cloudy sky?
The dome from the inside
The Dolphin Fountain

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Greater Manchester August 10th 2018

We had a very lazy day today so we caught up on some washing and then went over to Denton to check out the outlet shops. On other shopping trips to Denton we have found some great bargains, but today the offerings were pretty well non existent. We bought a few greeting cards and I bought a sleeveless blouse. I thought it was a bargain at its ticketed price of £8.99. Imaging my surprise when it was called up on the till at £3.00!! Determined to make my exercise and move goals I went for a walk after dinner up Quarry Cough to Old Mottram Road, turned right and walked along Old Mottram Road then walked down the hill on Mottram Road until I reached Bower Fold and then it was back up the steep hill ... read more




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