I had NO IDEA how huge Newcastle is! I thought it would be a breeze finding the uni, but let me tell you it wasn't. The Geordie's aren't big on their internet cafe's and I wandered through town trying to find one, getting so distressed as time was ticking on and I didn't want Murray to give up on me so had to eat the most delicious lemon donuts with gooey goodness on the inside just to calm myself
. Tried to get some money out of an atm and it ate it so that was £40 gone (got it sorted out, don't worry) and in my distress I just caught the first bus I saw that had a sign saying "shops" in it coz I though thats where I might find internet. I ended up in West Denton, at least half an hour drive from where I was supposed to be meeting Murray and had to ask the help of some poor librarians once I got there (because although I had gone for "shops", it was after 5pm and these particular shops had already closed). Managed to get on facebook and sort stuff out, got on a bus back in, missed my stop because I'm a blonde, got off the bus, crossed the road, got on another bus, found my stop, hug-raped Murray coz I was so damn happy to see him and then I found £5!! No kidding, I wasn't just highlighting how much of a sharn (shit yarn, for you non-kiwis) that whole story was, I actually did find £5. Then Murray and I went and got bread, jaffa cakes and beer from the shop and went back to his place - thank god for the great chat the whole way, I was an emotional wreck when I met him and he calmed me right down! We cooked dinner together, chatted, laughed til my tummy hurt, watched Angry Boys - the new show from the same guy that does Summer Heights High! So so funny. A crap day had turned into a really lovely one and I slept well that night!
The next day, got up early as the room I was sleeping in had a skylight so the sun woke me which was lovely
. I just pottered around doing not much til Murray woke up and after some yummy porridge, we walked to the tube station where we got a couch surfing photo and he put me in the direction of some of the sights of Newcastle before I was to catch my bus all the way up to Dundee. I stored my big pack at the train station and went for a good wander - the sun was shining as much as it possibly could (I managed to get some nice colour!) and I was in a great mood after having met so many awesome people in a row on couch surfing! I walked across one of the many awesome bridges to look at the Sage which is a big events/meeting centre that a piece of artwork in itself (it looks like a massive shiny glass slug) and the baltic centre which is a contemporary art gallery. They were showing an exhibition by Robert Breer who was very influential in movement and animation art - I won't go into it because it's all beyond me, but it was actually a very interesting exhibition, my favourite part being the flip books or mutoscopes that he made (look it up). Went back down the cool see through glass elevator to go and have a closer look at the millenium bridge right outside the door of the baltic, which is a very clever piece of engineering. A walking bridge which rotates on its axis when a boat needs to go underneath it. I have pictures/ a video showing what it does in essence, but its really quite hard to explain on here. Cool though! I got to see it moving and walk over it which was fun.
Just carried on wandering through the town after that, grinning at myself and soaking up the rays. Got a baked potato from Fatsos (nom nom nom) and found those lemony donuts again that I'd talked about (couldn't resist, had to buy another one). Then hopped on the bus to head off again for Scottish adventures!
So. I made my way to the bus station early in the morning, thinking i had a good 10 mins up my sleeve in case I got lost. I didn't get lost. I just chose the completely wrong bus station. So I ended up being 5 mins early for a bus that was leaving from a station that was 10mins drive away and had to catch a taxi which cost me more than the bus ticket to Newcastle had cost me. Luckily the bus driver was busy enjoying a fag and was running a couple of minutes late so I managed to get on the bus. The trip itself was fine, but I had left my battery charger and UK powerpoint converter in Cambridge so my phone died on the way up and so I had no way of getting in touch with Murray who I was supposed to meeting around the University when I arrived.