Tuesday, 28 May 2013

Beside the Seaside

You know what's good about living in Preston.

Besides parks that have hills you can roll down obviously?

It's only a wee 30-odd minute train journey from the mecca that is Blackpool.

Bank Holiday Sunday was full of the sun again and The Person and I know not to look a sun-horse in the mouth and took ourselves off to Preston station, paid our £8.10 and headed off to wonderland.

I hear a lot of bad stuff about Blackpool and some of it may be true. I have yet to experience a night out in Blackpool which is probably what colours a lot of people's notions about it. But for me it is glorious.

Stay right by the front, don't bother crossing the road (except when you need to visit all the Poundland shops to buy a pair of sunglasses because you left yours at home) and just delight in walking along by the front. It is clean as a whistle, and with the sun shining and the smell of fish and chips in the air I have absolutely no idea why anyone would have a bad word to say about the place.

It's been a long while since I've been to Blackpool - almost three years in fact. The biggest addition is the Comedy Carpet which left me absolutely gobsmacked. I'd heard about it, but had no idea just how big it was. We spent ages, wandering over it, laughing, beckoning to each other to come over and read something we recognised - it was a brilliant idea and whoever was in charge of commissioning it should be given a round of applause.

Just ever so slightly less new is North Pier which we took a stroll down a couple of times because once just wasn't enough. As the old-time songs wafted past our ears from the speakers and we looked at the sweet old couples sat on the benches, The Person came over all romantical and told me he loved me. I'm putting this down here because he will deny it ever happened and I will show him this post and go HA. YOU LOVE ME. and then we will go about our ways.

Some of it was naff. In fact a lot of it was naff, including the guy who beckoned us over to the stall where you throw darts into playing cards saying "Come and have a go and win your girl a teddy". That nearly made the feminist inside me rise up and bite - I was tempted to take up the darts and throw them myself but remembered at the last minute that I can't throw darts and probably wouldn't prove a point worth making.

As we wandered along The Person said to me "This is funny isn't it? Because we're enjoying it in an ironic way and also, just enjoying it."

And enjoy it we did. The Person is blase about the sea because he grew up with it literally at the end of his street. I grew up about an hour away from the sea (let's say it again in case some of us are new and some of us have forgotten - Hull is not on the sea. It's on an estuary. Trust me, you don't want to go swimming in it.) and hence behave like an excitable Jack Russell when I get near it, immediately wanting to get in it and paddle about and feel the sand between my toes.

How I know I'm a blogger - I take photos of my feet in water

The Person feels this need much less. When the sea is on your doorstep you know you don't need to go in it at all costs - especially when it's the end of May and the Irish Sea is approximately -3 degrees. Whatevs. You lose all feeling in your feet after a while when it's that cold anyway.

We also found the holy grail on our wanders. A bar that is literally on the sea front and isn't tacky. The Beach House was lovely and although we didn't eat there (why would you when you can get a chippy from a stall?) the food did look lovely. The Person drank his pint and I drank my bucket of gin (seriously. Put cucumber in your gin and tonic. It will change your life. Also. Drink Hendricks gin. It is out of this world.) and yeah it wasn't the cheapest round I've ever bought but it was worth it to sit and look at the sea and gawp and judge people's bad parenting skills.

We took our frazzled little, slightly sunburned selves back on the train and collapsed on the sofa for the rest of the evening.

With Bank Holidays like this it almost makes it worth working for a living.


  1. I love the sea, it makes me so relaxed and happy. I think I've been to Blackpool once, I have vague memories of the Pleasure Beach and riding on some rollercoaster.
    I think one day I'd like to live near the sea.

  2. what a lovely day! I'm one of those people that isn't keen on the thought of a day in Blackpool but I have wanted to see the comedy carpet since I heard about it and it doesn't look too bad from the photos. Maybe I'll give it a try one day! I get very excited when I go to the sea as it's a rare thing for me. I grew up almost as far from the sea as it's possible to be and living in the midlands, am totally landlocked!

    1. Oh god I know - living in the Midlands now I can't believe how far away I am from sea!

  3. I have never been to Blackpool but I love going to the seaside! Me and my boyfriend often go to Weston Super Mare and pretend to be pensioners! :)

    Maria xxx

  4. I loved your recap of your day,your writing style is so entertaining. Loved the bit about enjoying it ironically, but also just enjoying it. I don't like it when people are snobbish about places. You've made me crave the seaside now :)

  5. I loooooooove this post mostest of all <3

  6. I'm such a fan of cucumber in the gin and tonic - its what led me to liking it eventually though it took a long time and my stomach does not appreciate this new acquisition.

    Not sure I'll ever make it to Blackpool but it looks cool! So sweet of the Person...wish I had my own!! Aw....xxx

  7. I too relish the seaside! It's so good to get some sea air and chips on the seafront x

  8. I think I said on Twitter, my good friend and I used to hit Blackpool on summer Sunday afternoons after a day of work on the bar. So much fun to play on the beach and eat fish and chips in the car.


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