It was my first visit to York and it’s a beautiful place, full of Tudor buildings and fabulous, winding, cobbled lanes. Unfortunately it was also full of people with cameras who feel it is their right in life to stop suddenly in front of you and while you are still on tiptoes, arms pin-wheeling helplessly, trying to regain your balance without knocking them off their feet, they then step backwards (to get a better photo) and crush your poor abused toes. I say poor and abused because, just for once, I was wearing cheap shoes. My Gran used to say that you should always wear good shoes and sleep in a decent bed. How right she was.
The bed that Claire and I shared in York (stop it, you smutty minded so’n’so) was perfectly adequate, but some genius or other had decided that not only was a mattress protector required, but that it should have a plastic backing. Add to that the fact that somebody had turned the electric heater up to “blast furnace” and the result is Claire and I waking up at 6:30am and looking accusingly at one another because the bed is soaking. Don’t worry, it was just sweat. If you’ve ever had rude thoughts about Claire and I sliding around on a bed, then there you go. Although I feel it only fair to let you know that we were both clad in rather fetching jim jams.
Going back to the shoes, I was seduced by the call of pretty, cheap shoes. They’ll do thought I. Pah! Bloody awful uncomfortable things! I ended up limping into M&S in York, grabbing a passing member of staff and begging her for comfy insoles. I was rather perturbed when she returned with a pair of the most phallic looking, gel based creations I have ever witnessed. Phallic or not, they were paid for and inserted into my boots rather sharpish, which involved Claire and I sharing a disabled toilet and making rather interesting sighing noises as we introduced our soles to the joy of gel.
There was a rather interesting array of market stalls in York. I (in my usual manner) would probably describe it as a “Hippie market”, although we overheard one woman refer to it (in finest BBC English accent) as “Ethnic”. In probably the same tone that she would command Jeeves to “Move those nasty Ethnics from the lawn”. Still, whether it was Ethnic or Hippie, the fact remains that odour emanating from the Pot-Pourri/Incense stall was exactly the pong I remember from 1970s bus shelters. Someone suggested that it was the mixture of whiffs which achieved this effect and whilst I’m sure there is at least the tiniest ring of veracity to that, I’m still shocked that A. Nobody outside our raiding shopping party seemed to notice and B. The stall owner hadn’t searched out the offending items and binned them.
Anyway, there was of course more to our weekend than pongy stalls and crippled feet, but I feel it has been covered by Laura and Claire, so if you really want to read about the river with ideas above it’s station, the fabulous food and company or that thing with the two girls and a sheep, then off you pop over to their respective blogs.
 To add insult to injury, on the soles of my feet destroying shoes, it says “Your feet feel wonderful”. I can tell you that this is absolutely not true.
 Ok, I made that one up… Sorry.