Glasgow Girls

Trip Start May 27, 2010
Trip End Aug 31, 2011

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Flag of United Kingdom  , Scotland,
Monday, September 20, 2010

I woke on Monday morning with a frown on my face, worried that I would never be able to make it through to Friday.  It's been a few weeks since I worked five days in a row, so the prospect was a little bit daunting.  But when I thought about what I had coming up that weekend, I smiled and thought "it's not so bad, I can do it!", and got out of bed to start the daily routine - shower, breakfast, bus, train, train, walk, work, lunch, work, walk, train, train, bus, dinner, bed.  It's become such a rhythm that I could even hum a tune to go along with it.  

The rhythm was slightly disrupted on Tuesday when I was descending the stairs to go down to the kitchen for breakfast.  I must have missed a step and found myself sliding down the stairs on my arse uncontrollably, skirt around my head and causing an almighty racket.  Luckily I came to a stop at the landing and then, stunned, picked myself up and started cackling with embarrassment.  Steve was rather amused when he came out of the bathroom to find me flailing on the stairs!  I was stone cold sober as well - perhaps I'm more controlled (or cautious?) when I have a few under my belt?  Whatever the case, I wont be adding a stair fall to my daily routine, for reasons that are obvious.  And for the fact that even days after the event, the inevitable aches and pains start to surface and I realise just what a crazy tumble I must have taken.  Ouch.

"Ouch" can also be applied to the massive generalisation that was made about Australians this week, in a forum which was rather inappropriate, and which left Nat and I seething and confused.  According to an apparently uneducated Briton, the "Australian culture" is one of builders who drink, swear and go to strip clubs.  It's an interesting generalisation, considering that Britain is widely known to have a very similar reputation.  He was correct in his statement that Australia has a culture of drinking, binge drinking no less.  Tracy Grimshaw will no doubt have something to say about that.  But the last time I checked, I wasn't a builder.  Nor have I visited any strip clubs in my lunch hour of late.  The fact that this Briton needs to be reminded of, is that a lot of Australians can fairly safely say that their ancestors arrived in Australia on a boat, the origin of which was England.  Yes, those ancestors may have come from convict blood, but that's somewhat irrelevant.  I think it was an innate English trait that hitched a ride in the convicts' backpacks and landed on Australian shores at the same time our ancestors did, which has thus seen Australia become a nation of boozers.  So then, I theorise, England is to blame for the reputation that Aussies have come to embrace.  Their chav is our bogan.  We aren't that different.  (Although they are the ones who are still confused and call soccer football, so what does that tell you?)  The moral of the story is that one shouldn't be so quick to make such rash generalisations, particularly when there are two feisty Australian girls in the room ready to pounce on any inaccurate statements that may be made about our countrymen and women.  One thing that Australians do have is immeasurable pride in our country.  We also have the balls to tell people to pull their heads in when they're wrong, and stick up for our country, its people and its reputation.  You know what they say about people in glass houses...

To add insult to all of this pain, I stubbed my poor little toe on the end of my bed for the 127th time on Thursday night.  Serious hurt.  Serious profanities.  

I had my first date with Gym this week.  I was given a promise by Gym that it would be really kind to me and not drain me of too much energy.  Gym and I met on Tuesday night and made our relationship official when I visited for my first session.  I think we will be happy together and, in time, the benefits of having Gym around will start to show.  Hopefully it will be a long and fruitful relationship.  I wonder how it will go meeting the parents...

Motivation to get fit and buff came from a phone call from cousin Brooke on Friday.  She asked me to be a bridesmaid at her wedding in May 2011, and I said yes, of course!  So I'll be making a trip back to the land of Oz in May for the special occasion.  Despite my being in London, Brooke has undertaken to ring me at ungodly hours making Bridezilla demands.  But seriously, it's exciting, and I'm honoured to be asked.  It'll be my first ever bridesmaid experience, so it should be fun!  It'll be a good chance to catch up with family and friends while I'm there as well.  Who knows how long I might be here for! 

A few months ago, Nat and I had booked a weekend in Glasgow, almost as soon as we arrived in the UK in fact.  Our trip to Glasgow crept up so quickly we barely had time to pack our bags.  Friday was a casual day at work though, meaning I could pack less clothes for the weekend and reduce the risk of Ryanair slugging me with an overweight baggage expense.  I wondered if they'd remember me from last year when they docked me 80 euros for having so much baggage.  The charge never showed up on my credit card statement, and when I noticed this I felt like going back to Edinburgh International Airport and give the bird to the very unhelpful woman who served us that day.  When I walked up to the check-in counter on Friday night I was hoping not to see a "wanted" poster up on the wall with my picture on it.  Thankfully this didn't happen.  What follows, however, is evidence of my blondeness.  In my case, it wasn't the size of my bag that was an issue, but rather the contents.  

Items Heidi had to decant into smaller 100mL containers:
- cleanser
- pre-cleanse

Items Heidi had to transfer from her bag into the supplied zip lock bags:
- tinted moisturiser x2
- liquid foundation
- mascara
- hair product
- makeup primer
- concealer
- liquid eyeshadow

Items Heidi had to discard:
- shampoo

Items Heidi had to surrender to the friendly customs lady:
- industrial size hairspray aerosol - what's wrong with that?
- aerosol deoderant

Items Heidi smuggled through (or which were overlooked by the friendly customs lady):
- hand moisturiser

"You can take my Dermalogica cleansers and other toiletries, but you'll never take my FREEDOM!".  

I hadn't been on a plane since I flew over from Australia, so it was nice to be in the air again.  My anxieties about flying have eased somewhat in the past year or so, now that I've finally recovered from the Delta flight I took last year to New York.  Channelling his best sensationalist American accent, the pilot demanded "ladies and gentlemen take your seats immediately, we are experiencing some extreme turbulence, this includes all cabin crew!".  Talk about freaking out 200-odd passengers and making my hangover 10,000 times worse!  The rides at Thorpe Park weren't even that scary in comparison!  I think I ordered a beer shortly after the pilot's urgent announcement, but I can't be sure - it was such a traumatic ordeal that I think I've forever repressed the memory.  

So having escaped mid-flight panic attacks, excess baggage charges and fines for taking too much liquid on board (it could've been a litre bottle of whisky, geez), we made our way into central Glasgow, courtesy of a deaf taxi driver who charged us a tidy 60 for the trip, and then bombed out in our hotel at around 1am.  

Before we left London, we'd done our research to try and find out what there was to do in Glasgow, whether there were any sights of interest and whether there were any must-do's.  Our research failed us, because sadly, this was all we could come up with (with input from others):

1.  Go in search of fried Mars Bars.
2.  Go to the pub.
3.  Avoid getting mugged.

We woke on Saturday morning and headed into the town.  There wasn't much to see.  It was a dull, boring looking place with lots of men hanging around and looking suspicious.  So we went to the pub.  For breakfast.  One pint down and we thought we better have some food, so we made our way to another pub which was celebrating it's 111th birthday.  The food was great, the music better.  Somehow we became fans of an old band of Scotsmen playing fifties swing/jazz music.  We were told that our popularity might've had something to do with the fact that we were the only people in the pub under the age of 100.  We requested the clarinet man to play Stranger on the Shore, which he did, and it was announced that "two lovely young girls have come alllll the way from Australia just to hear this song".  I began to feel like Kate Hudson in Almost Famous.  Nat displayed some impressive dance moves with the trombone player, and got some un-kosher photos with the musician playing a Crowded House hit. 

A few hours and a few pints later, we'd had enough, so we decided to head home, despite both having three-quarter full glasses.  So we just took them with us.  Nat threw hers into the river, I tried to throw mine into a rubbish bin but instead it landed on the ground, shattering not only the glass but the silence, as everyone in the vicinity turned around to get a glimpse of the menace that just dropped her drink on the ground.  Menace is the right description, given that a few minutes later we went to a restaurant, ordered up big, and then did a runner when we realised neither of us had any money.  In our eyes, we'd recovered the cost of the taxi ride.  Very naughty, but hilarious!  

Sunday saw us heading back to London - train, plane, bus, train, bus, walk, collapse.  

Glasgow, nice place.  But to adopt a line from Forrest Gump, "...that's all I have to say about tha-at".
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Nat on

Best blog ever! hahahaha xx

Kylie on

I spent 5 days there and it was 4.5 too many!! :)

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