Article by Nick
I would like to start with the relief that I didn’t get illuminated by June, as I kept clear of ringing her before 10 am on the day of the Blackpool trip. Onwards with the story of the intrepid explorers and archaeologists from the Growing Zone into the outer plains where many people from Yorkshire fear to tread ....Lancashire! The beginning of the day for me was started very smoothly as the Growing Zones very own suave and sophisticated Bob the Builder, Robert eased me through his very relaxed driving over to the mini bus at West Ardsley. Arrived safely there with Margaret and Dana ready to mix in with frivolities of our day trip out to Blackpool.
It started with a little wobble as dear Gavin wasn’t suited to be a passenger at the back of the mini bus, but as soon as he was upgraded to the front he was absolutely hunky dory whoever they may be. Luckily we didn’t have a lot of “are we there yet” as we took our journey in our stride. As we got closer we could see the Tower lunging into the air.
Finally we arrived and parked up, with us definitely having a few of us wanting the call of nature, and I don’t mean the sound of seagull or woodpecker! Then one of the few dramas of the day happened. Chris nearly got locked in one of the public toilet cubicles. We didn’t have to bust the door down and behave like action heroes, instead a kindly woman attendant sorted our problem out. Then we traipsed off for our refreshments with a mixture of teas, coffees and other beverages at Cafe Chicco. I didn’t realise that one of the recent past X factor finalists had opened a Cafe! Lovely frothy coffee went down well amongst the friendly ambiance of the place with large photos of the past and present Blackpool adorning the walls. Also noticed was a great big furry toy spider dangling from the ceiling smiling at us, already preparing itself for Halloween. Off we toddled down to the pier where the big ferris wheel resides, along with a number of fun fair additions. After the energy of our drinks plus our fresh warm sweet lovely tasting doughnuts we were ready to burn some rubber on the dodgems.
Off we went into the amusements with shove pennies, ball through a hoop and not forgetting moving toy horses running races by placing different types of ball, to gain a winning score. One way or another there were many winners big or small. Some of the cuddly toys we could have won would have only enough room for the cuddly toy to get in plus the driver! We managed to do our song and dance Fred and Ginger style without not planning to avoid jumping into the puddles surrounding us. Then to wrap up the proceedings before we saw the illuminations we went into a pub called the Dickens. Whether Dickens is able to say “what the Dickens”. As we sat down in the pub there was an alter for preaching, and sermons on Tuesday and Thursdays by being led by a reverend Vicar, even disco tube lights were used. Here endeth the lesson and know we can join in “Oh what a beauty”... then after Chris got a bit giddy on the beer compensation drinking and his mini microphone, he certainly made use of it with his captive audience.
The Main Man on the MC it was time to make our way through the everglades and dangerous environment. Then it was off and away to make our pilgrimage to the beginning of the illuminations, with happily no more muck ups. After 15 to 20 minutes wait in the queue, became the shimmer of lights beautifully burgeoning on roundabouts, big ferris wheel and the tower as well shown off. Seeing a mixture of Dr Who, the Gold Rush in America, somebody in animation attempting quite successfully to bring to life our time and space programme. The people from West Ardsley were all mystified and mesmerised by the event.
As we moved with ease seeing the shimmering cosmic wheel and the flashing lights of Blackpool Tower. Chris decided to do a marvellous running commentary on the event and I totally confused him by saying “we had a Smokey on our tail” as I was transformed back to Convoy and CB radio from the 70’s and 80’s. We waved goodbye to our day in Blackpool and soon smoothly on our way on the motorway. Little did I know that it would become a magical mystery tour round the suburbs of Leeds as we neared home and dropped people off. The main thing we all arrived back in one piece with lots of many memorable memories of the day.
I was advised next time if I went on this trip, that I would be assisted to help me on my way with my own bag of gobstoppers, is somebody trying to tell me something. A bit like the last reminisce of the day with the vision of a group of people from the local nursing home wearing their beautiful crocheted rugs of many a colours on their laps fabulous. But my final anecdotal story of the day is when I went in to see gypsy Rose Lee for her to stare into her crystal ball and asked her when would I become a shy retiring person with only a few words and sentences to say, she replied “I can’t see that far into the future”!
Ta ta for now and will be back soon with some of the sea shanty skulduggery that June and young Nick plus West Ardsley performed on the canal boat trip. Must mention a very big thank you for June’s dad Alf for his magnificent unselfish gesture of generosity he has given us towards our tea break with biscuits and small cakes. We salute you. Also the generosity of some people who haven’t see us for nearly twelve months but have given us a cheque for £1,000 from their raffle fund raiser at a recent dinner dance.