Newcastle - god its cold!!!
Trip Start Dec 26, 2009
41Trip End Feb 06, 2010
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Well, we woke to a cold and cloudy day, fully rested and keen to go out and finish off buying the remainder of the items we needed for the wedding (I hadn't been able to find a pair of boots to wear and even though I bought a pair of pants from the petites section – I still had to take them up 7 cms so they wouldn’t drag in the snow and of course my sewing kit was in luggage number 1).
The gods continued to shine upon us and everyone was so helpful (yet again) but it started to rain and the wind was blowing a gale (the cheap umbrella we had bought turned inside out then proceeded to "die" and ended up in a rubbish bin, maybe I should have kept it to give to those homeless people around Heathrow airport who are wearing our clothes). When Kevin was in Australia a few months ago, he asked Bill if he would video the wedding – now, as you know, all the chargers, etc were in luggage number 1 – so we had to find a camera or electronics store to get a battery charger. The video camera is a Canon and apparently battery chargers are specifically made for their video cameras and they don’t usually sell them separately, so Bill had a challenge on his hands to somehow find a solution to this problem (we only had 30 minutes of power left in the battery – it sounds like the mobile phone episode in the bus doesn’t it hahaha). We found only 1 camera shop and they advised us to try a place called “Maplin” unfortunately, some people here have very strong accents and it took us a while to work out the shops name (first we thought they said Mapland, then we thought they said Maplings - it was all very confusing) and everyone we asked said it differently and this doesn’t help when you are trying to find the actual shop.
On and off various buses and quite a walk from anything else (with a number of people having to give us directions because it was very much out of the way) and we finally found it far away from any shopping centres! We went in (it was nice to be out of the cold and rain) because Bill was sure that a “generic” battery charger should do the trick (apparently the Cannon battery has 4 of these little pins on it that slot into the battery charger so you really have to use the right one and most generic battery chargers have 2 pin slots) he proceeded to search the shelves for the right charger. Side note – as some of you would be aware - after being to our home - that Bill is an absolute whizz when it comes to anything electronic (his dad taught him everything he knows) and what he doesn’t know about electronics wouldn’t fit on the top of a pin head - absolute legend -but there was nothing on the shelves that would do the trick.
This guy came over and asked Bill if he needed assistance and Bill explained the situation – the guy said basically “oh well, sorry I couldn’t help” and started to walk away – I was gutted as we didn’t want to let Kev & Sian down, we promised we would video their special day and now the odds were stacked up against us (yet again). “Come on Karyl” I thought, “do something, there has to be something in this shop that can do the trick” – but Bill was convinced that we were done – he said we just had to use up the 30 minutes of power we have left in the battery and too bad if we cant video the rest of our trip.
OK, I used the “pity card” I am not proud of it I must say but desperate times call for desperate measures – and we were desperate and Bill looked so despondent so as the guy was turning away, I said “ its just that we have come all the way from Australia for a wedding tomorrow and BA lost our luggage (twice) with the battery charger in it and we promised to film the wedding and now its all gone sour” he took one look at our faces and must have seen the sheer desperation in them because all of a sudden he couldn’t help us enough! He scoured the shelves offering various solutions, pulling things out of boxes to see if they would fit and every time he looked like he was going to give up, I would put on my “sad face” and say how utterly disappointed the wedding party and we have come all this way from Australia – blah, blah, etc.
So he kept wracking his brain (he could tell that Bill wasn’t a tosser and was in fact, very knowledgeable about electronics) so he persevered and finally went out the back and found a universal charger that just might do the trick – it was in a sealed hard plastic case so he couldn’t open it but after much technical discussion between both of them, we decided that we were desperate, it was only 10 pound and if it didn’t work we could just chuck it in the bin (maybe those Heathrow homeless could use a good charger oh, that’s right – they already have the real deal from our first lot of lost luggage hahaha)!
So off back to the apartment to see if luck was on our side and guess what – it worked! Bill and I were so relieved – we could film the wedding with a fully charged battery after all! Hooray!
The Gillinders were having a dinner at a local pub with the Australian contingency so we caught a taxi there and had the best time (this was the first time I had seen the Gillinder men since we had been here) and it was just so good to catch up with all the latest. So ends day 3 in Newcastle – tomorrow, the wedding – cant wait!!!!