Ladies and gentlemen: it’s official. This blog is bipolar. I’m in a serious love/hate relationship, you know, the ones that go on forever, where you just can’t let go despite knowing better, because the good moments are amazing and the bad moments are, well, pretty bad, but hey, it’s not all that bad really, it could be so much worse, but DAMN, sometimes you just want to drop everything and say “right, that’s it, I’m not ‘avin it”.
I’m talking about YOU, Manchester. Don’t pretend you didn’t know this was going to happen one day: you’ve finally driven me insane. You make me rant before I even get out of bed in the morning, you make me smile for no reasons, you make me drink, fall down stairs, talk to strangers and hug the pavement*, you make me want to prod, poke and even punch you sometimes, and you’ve taught me that wellies are just another item of clothing that can be quite useful far away from muddy festival weekends. You’ve gone bonkers a long, long time ago, and I’m following you down the red brick road to the crazyhouse at last.
In other news: to celebrate my newly found enlightenment, I visited the Westfest, West Didsbury’s very own independence day this weekend, which is really just a synonym for “I stuffed my face with silly amounts of food, again”. Having missed the first WestFest last year**, I was looking forward to spending some time wandering up and down Burton Road, peeking into the shops I normally give a miss due to the rather scary price tags attached to all the pretty offerings on display in their shop windows, and sampling some food.
Unfortunately, Frankie’s Fish Bar had run out of veggie fish&chips – I would have loved to try the heart-attack-on-a-plate that is battered halloumi cheese – so I settled for a huge portion of chips, cheese & onion pie, and peas. Great, sturdy food, but the actual highlight was the waiter who accidentally charged us for the “free” side orders and simply explained “sorry, I can’t be held liable for this, I’m still drunk”. Quality.
The deep-fat-fried-goodness-induced food coma following my visit to Frankie’s makes the events of the day slightly blurry, but I remember the ladies outside Crazy Wendy’s dancing on tables, with one of their cooks ecstatically banging a pan lid as makeshift drums, buying raffle tickets at the WDRA stall and Moth, repeatedly bumping into people I know (figuratively speaking), ice cream, delicious punch from the cheerful chef outside Rhubarb, live music at Silver Apples and a rather busy street party and Prince’s “Raspberry Baret” playing outside Loft.
Somehow, I found myself with a bag full of food I must have bought at Thyme Out Deli, choosing a delicious slice of chocolate tart from the nearly raided cake buffet at Love2Eat. There’s no flights to catch tomorrow, so I might return for drinks tonight (rumour has it there’s a special “WestFest cocktail”), celebrating Manchester, West Didsbury, my insanity, and the weather that’s just about to go terrible again.
* Don’t ask. Seriously.
** Except for rather accidental drinks at Folk and even more accidental cocktails at the Drawing Room on Sunday night which made me miss my flight home the next morning. Damn you, Tom Collins!