Sunday, January 13, 2008

Manchester Continued.

The Manchester Eye?, originally uploaded by Phoole.

(From my paper journal 5 June 2007)

We arrived in Manchester at 7:30 a.m., went through passport control at top speed, found our gigantic luggages [I miss Higgins so much right now. She is a brilliant fellow traveler.], and got into the Niftiest Taxi Either of Us Had Ever Experienced. Clean, shaped like those London black cabs, but covered in bright graphic ads, and very modern inside. Lovely. We giggled like idiots all the way to the B&B, the Pymgate Airport Lodge.

Do not let that name deceive your American face into imagining a crappy motel. This was a 19th-century coachhouse converted to a hotel. Gorgeous! Cute. Quaint and all those other words you want to use.

But for some reason I was unable to comprehend what Jenny was telling me: it was 7:30 a.m.! I rang the doorbell a bunch of times, and then felt terrible for having done so. As it turned out, our hosts actually were awake, since they had breakfast to serve at 8:00 -- but we wouldn't be able to check in until 2pm. We prevailed upon our kind hosts to allow us to leave our gigantic luggages in their small sitting room while we set out to explore a Sunday in Manchester.

We had to walk a mile in the rain to get to the train station...and in my confusion and haste, I left my umbrella, raincoat and LET'S GO Guide at the Pymgate. So we got wet and cold -- chilled right to the bone.

As unpleasant as it was, I miss it. I miss English cold rain. It lances through, chills the bone, makes you want tea.

The land was green! So green! And hedges and sheep and cows, and little tiny houses, in Cheshire where Pymgate is. Two houses were for sale. I daydreamed of buying one and growing old in it with Tom, two dogs and two cats and a goat.

We broke our fast at, of all places, a Subway, a British one, because nothing else was open: proper coffee! And bacon and egg sandwiches, very good, filling, energizing, surprisingly.

It was then that we realized that England is the Land of Extremely Hottt Guys.

The dialects only make it worse: High fashion + wit-based culture + friendly demeanors + dialects + attractive genetic features = DOOM for two married women, and of course Tom is cuter, and I hope I don't fall in your estimation by going on about the Brit-cute, but the whole ordeal was really just miserably unfair.

I just have never ever seen such a large number of Tom Charney/Mike Duffy/Rick Cleveringa-level hot guys before. It was ridiculous. We just stared at everyone.

So, eyeballs assaulted on all sides by extreme cuteness, we took a train to Manchester and wandered around in grey mist amid the hustle of a weekend shopping crowd.

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