Well..... [draws chair closer], a couple of friends called Phil and Toni from Birmingham were visiting Oxford for the weekend. Excellent! And before you ask, yes, they do speak with Birmingham accents. Not strong ones admittedly, but pronounced enough to give me something to take the mickey out of.
Click here to hear a Birmingham (Brummie) accent. [With thanks to the excellent Brummie Blogs]
Another interesting fact, is that the Birmingham accent has been voted the 'least sexy' accent in the UK..... every year...... without fail......since 'Woolly Mammoth Kebab' was voted the nations favourite dish.
"Stop banging on about their accents!" I hear you cry, "what did you get up to with your chums?"
Blimey. What didn't we get up to?
First of all we (including Izzy and Izzy's dad Steve) decided to visit the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford, which had recently reopened after a major Architectural revamp... and on that note.... please let me introduce the day's photoblog.......
Pic.No.1. Phil (left) and Steve trying work where the entrance to the Ashmolean Museum is..... it's behind you! ...... Oh no it's not! ...... Oh yes it is!
Pic.No.2 Clockwise from left: Steve, Phil, Toni and Izzy outside the Ashmolean. Yeh, I know that if you look at Phil and Toni's hands, it looks like they had been playing with Superglue, but they hadn't
Pic.No.3. Inside the Ashmolean Museuem. The juxtaposition of contemporary and traditional palladian architecture results in a Machiavellian design experience (do I win 'wank-word Bingo'?)
Pic.No.4. It wasn't long before we realised that the museum was full of 'old pots and statues'
Pic.No.5. Well, except for this mummy. He's been dead thousands of years ...... cool!
The Egyptian section of the museum was definitely the best bit because it had dead people in it (albeit muumys), and looking at dead people is cool.
I shouted, "Hey Phil, come and look at this.... it's a dead bloke! And he is wrapped in bandages, just like the baddies in Scooby doo!"
But bizarrely, not all people are fascinated with dead people, as I soon discovered. I was eavesdropping on a conversation between two people standing next to me who were examining the same exhibit. They were looking at the text on some stone slabs found with the coffin, and their conversation went something like this; "the content seems to be mostly written in provincial Babylonian, and can be divided into two sections. Though there is some dispute on the matter, the first section seems to contain references to the various rulers of Babylonia, Assyria, Mitanni, Arzawa, Alashiya, Cyprus and the land of the Hittities and their dealings with Egypt and each other."
They came up with that, and I came up with Scooby Doo. I felt weak. My attempts at 'wank word bingo' had been well and truly blown out of the water, mashed up with a sledge hammer, and then puffed away like snuff.
Pic.No.6 . When you get bored of the pots and statues, take comedy photos next to the exhibits (me left, Phil right)
Ok, we weren't exactly culture vultures, but we did last 2 hours in the Ashmolean Museum before we finally concluded that we couldn't face seeing another pot, or statue without a nose. Or arms. So we headed off to find a cafe where we could grab a coffee. A short walk later, we dodged down a side street and happened upon a cafe that I didn't know existed until that point (it's just like finding a 50p coin down the side of your sofa).
Pic.No.7. Inside Cafe Bar Brasil, and what a gem it was too. They had a huge array of unusual Brazilian food, and the prices were exceedingly reasonable. Marvellous.
Pic.No.8. After the Brazilian Cafe, we wondered around Oxford (Phil is giving Izzy a piggy-back in case you were wondering what is clamped around his waist and neck), when it started drizzling a bit
Pic.No.9. Hang on, the rain is getting heavier
Pic.No.10. A downpour suddenly strikes, making everyone run for cover
So after a trip into Oxford, what is one to do in the evening? Visit the Bat and Ball Inn, in Cuddesdon for dinner of course!
Pic.No.11. Toni and Phil in the Bat and Ball. Phil is very focussed on his beer, a bit like a snake looking at a lizard [note to self: need to catch up on the rules for past participles, because I had a senior moment and couldn't remember if the spelling was 'focused' or 'focussed' - I still think that 'focussed' looks wrong. FRAN! Are you there? You're a teacher - which is the correct spelling?].
Pic.No.12. My Haddock Chowder. I didn't like it because I don't like fish. Which left me wondering why I ordered it in the first place (what a joey). Toni, who does like fish, said it was '"very tasty" and asked me why I ordered it if I don't like fish? Good point, bloody well made.
Pic.No.13. After a very enjoyable day, we all headed back to my house for coffee and maltesers (I didn't have any hors d'oevres to hand)
Pic.No.14. Then we tried to recreate the famous Queen album cover. To be fair, I think we got fairly close.... but the Cooli hat (aka Laura Ashley lampshade) on Toni spoiled the end result
Bring on Sunday! [Phew, I am knackered]