A Tweet-up in Winchester
This blog very nearly didn’t happen. I’ve only missed one since I started writing it just under a year ago. This week was nearly the second. It is late Thursday eve. I edited this morning, did a workshop this afternoon, have walked the hound (and our ‘on loan’ hound) have cleaned the cooker, swept the floors, ironed, cleaned my son’s post-camp-caked-in-mud boots, tidied the garden, cleaned the bird bath, cleaned the unused-for-weeks sun lounger, not to mention fed everyone, including moi! Now breathe…
Last Friday, I wended my way to Winchester to visit the lovely Jane Howard (@JaneHoward on twitter) Now, normally, when I do one of these tweet-up kind of things, we DO something… write or sketch usually. Well, ever so sorry to disappoint, but we didn’t! We were far too busy jabbering, eating, and making merry in the local public hostelries. We kind of forgot! However, we did watch some synchronised shopping trolley dancing in the rain by some youthful and rather well-proportioned men, the purpose of this being that last weekend was the Hat Festival, held in Winchester every year, where street performers deck the streets of The Winch to do stuff. Well, not this time… because there was The Rain! However, some folk, like the synchronised shopping trolley feast for the eyes dancers, bravely turned out despite the weather, as did a very nice silver man who bore a striking resemblance to Norman Wisdom… well, in my rain drizzled eyes he did anyway.
We also had a couple of lovely walks with Archie (the border terrorist – if you haven’t seen Jane’s blog post about him you really should) including a visit to the Hospital of St Cross, which was rather beautiful. Archie behaved remarkably well for a border terrorist, bar a minor moment of madness and hatred directed towards a boy with a MOBILE PHONE – how very dare he! And there was the hoo-har with the man with THE WELLIES – (gasp!) But apart from that, he was a complete darrrrrrhhhhhling.
There were some lovely moments… the whole three days were fab actually, including my train journeys where I met some wonderful folk and got a quite bit of writing done. Trains and platforms are my fave places to write. But I think the highlight has to be The Black Boy pub, which was so bizarre and so completely inspiring, that when Jane popped to the loo I got out my notepad and wrote a page or too. I think the pics, though, probably say more than words ever can. So here are a few to give you a taste of the place.
There will, I’m sure, be a scene set here… not in the toilets, you understand… in my current novel. The scribblings I did whilst there are written in the main protagonist’s voice – something I have got quite used to doing while out and about. The Black Boy is up there with some of the other bizarre settings and places I’ve visited over the last few months or so and which have woven their way into the novel. Some ideas just can’t be found at home!
Thanks, Jane, for a fab weekend 😉
What bizarre places have inspired your writing?