Sunday, 10 June 2007

Fartlek, Films and Nostalgia

Saturday morning was spent with Phoebe dog doing fartlek in Tring Park. (If you think fartlek is a condition due to eating too many German sausages then I recommend you google it). Poor old Phoebe didn't know if she was coming or going. Had great fun.

I was up in the motherland (Northern England) for the rest of the weekend. On Saturday Rosie and I visited eldest daughter Vicky in Nottingham to see her graduation exhibition. She has just finished her degree in Design for TV and Film and they all had a display of their work. Vicky has worked like a Trojan on her projects and produced some stunning work as well as getting the most work placements including working on 'Recovery' starring David Tennant (aka Dr Who) and on 'Hyperdrive' starring Nick Frost (Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz). There are others on her course with more natural drawing skills but it takes more than good drawings to be a good designer. It's going to be difficult to break into the insular TV and film industry but if anybody deserves it Vicky does. Good luck my darling.
We spent Saturday night in Doncaster at Rosie's mum's. She's currently in the middle of a course of chemotheraphy. She's been battling with non-Hodgkins Lymphoma all through the period we were struggling with Tony. Let 's hope the chemo works.
This morning I ran from Rosie's mum's to my mam's (note the shift from middle to working class there) which is 10 miles as it turned out. (1h 9 mins if you're interested). They live on opposite sides of Doncaster so I thought I'd have to run through Doncaster until I found out that yet another road closure (see previous post) meant I could use a traffic free back road instead. It turned out to be a real nostalgia trip. I went past Thorpe Marsh power station, the destination of my first 'proper' bike ride (all 8 miles of it) when I was only 6 or 7 years old. My little legs must have spun like bees wings to keep up with my dad. I remember being mesmerised by the enormous cooling towers.
I then took a small detour through Kirk Sandall to see the first house Rosie and I bought. (We were looking at Minis the other day. They cost more than our first house did.) It hadn't changed much since we left it for the last time, at 1 o'clock in the morning on 15th April 1985: the day Vicky was born. Vicky was three weeks late in being born and decided to arrive on the day we were to move house. Poor old Rosie left in labour in the middle of the night and never went back (neither did I for that matter). Rosie's dad saw to the removals. The birth was horrific but that's another story. Suffice to say she finally arrived weighing in at 9lb 8oz and 22 years later she's finishing her degree in Nottingham.
Just round the corner from our old house I then ran past the house that Dave Harcombe (see previous post) used to live in back in our school days. A mile or so later I ran down the bridle path that I first ran down in our school cross country a staggering 38 years ago (very scary being able to say something like that). I'd be very interested to know how fast I ran it back then. The bridle path joins the two villages of Edenthorpe (where I used to go to the youth club where I was first exposed to Northern Soul) and Armthorpe where I grew up. As you approach Armthorpe there's the only conker (horse chestnut) tree for miles. It was still there, looking just the same as 30 years ago which is a miracle considering it gets battered to death each conker season by the youth of two villages trying to bring the conkers down.

The bridle path becomes Mere Lane as it enters Armthorpe. All of my schools from being 5 to 17 are in Mere Lane. I ran past my first class room where in 1963 I joined my first class with teacher Miss Darby complete with Dusty Spingfield hairdo and horn rimmed glasses. Behind the infants is the junior school where I was once chased across the school field by a herd of bullocks that had broken through the fence. I'd been to bottom of the field to get twigs to make model wigwams. I screamed my way across the field hearing the stampeding bullocks behind me while the whole school watched me through the windows. Hhheeeeeelllllppppp!!!!
Good old Mere Lane Stores is still there. Memories of sherbet flying saucers and liquorice twigs. The chipshop where fish and chips used to cost 9d (about 4p in 'new' money) is now a chinese takeaway.
I ran across the crossroads by the police station where my dad was knocked off his bike by a milk float of all things breaking his collar bone, then past the high school where a uncanny number of teachers had names relating to their subjects. We really did have a music teacher called Mr Tune, an English teacher called Mr Shakespear and a geography teacher called Mr Ireland to name a few.
Out onto Church Street I passed the graveyard where my dad's mother's parents are buried along side their daughter Peggy who died of a brain tumour aged 13 years. Behind the church was the coal mine where I spent a couple of years underground, training to be a mechanical engineer. It's now a housing estate thanks to Maggie T.
Round the corner to my mother's house on Barton Lane. Barton is, coincidently, the surname of Vicky's young man Tom. A fine young man (especially if he's reading this. Hi Tom). They met at the wrap party for Hyperdrive. That's them in the top photo. If you missed the first series of Hyperdrive then catch the second out this autumn. It's like a cross between the Royal Navy and Red Dwarf.
In the afternoon we called in to see Tony's wife Max and the kids. Young Marcus who was born in the middle of Tony's illness has shot up into a lovely cheerful little toddler (who keeps walking into the camera when you're trying to take his picture) and Eve is now a very chatty young lady and jigsaw expert. Lovely kids and a tribute to Tony and Max.
A good weekend by any standard.


aquaasho said...

Those kids are SOOOO cute! Look at the little lad's cheeky smile!

And as for you; 69 minutes for a 10 mile training run is just showing off. Hmmmph.

Mick said...

Tony's kids are as cute as they look. It's tragic their dad's not there to help raise them.

As for the 69 mins, I only have one speed so it would be 69 mins in a race. I'm also suspecting that my Polar speed pod needs to be recalibrated so it might have only been nine and a half miles. It was also very flat. I tend to go backwards on the hills.

aquaasho said...

Yeah yeah whatever Mick, stop trying to scare off the Jungfrau opposition.......

Seriously though those kids are so small to be without their Dad, that's so sad. Like you said, Tragic.