Saturday, July 02, 2016

Macclesfield - the centre of the universe?

In the early 90's I met a girl, Elaine, from the UK who told me the town she lived in was the centre of the universe and that town was Macclesfield. That was 24 years ago and I've been to Macclesfield three times over the years and it's very unassuming for such an important place in the universe. This week we went for a little road trip to the centre of the universe and back which was only 402 miles each way.

Our first stop for sustenance was in Pitlochry which I've featured on here before, as it's becoming a favourite of ours. We went to Hettie's Tea Rooms for breakfast and indulged in two very Scottish choices, porridge and pancakes. Ken thinks the inside of the tearoom looks like the inside of a dolls house - how he knows this I'm not quite sure.

As we were walking down the street we noticed this interesting window  - the windows are boarded up but someone has painted this one to make it look like someone is sitting having a cup of tea.

Whilst we were having breakfast it started raining and it didn't stop until we got to our destination - monkey was quite disgusted by it all. It was particularly awful when we were going past trucks due to all the spray. It wasn't just me and Ken in the car, we also had Bramble Jelly with us, so we had to make regular stops for her to stretch her legs.

This was the view from our hotel room looking over the train lines and a shop of loveliness. The shop, Arighi Bianchi, had some beautiful furniture in the windows and two pink flamingos. When I looked up their website the flamingos were nearly £500 each!!! I didn't even look to see how much the lovely purple velvet chair was after that.

Elaine told me that one of the highlights of any trip to Macclesfield was visiting the 108 steps so we make sure it's part of our visits to the town. The history of the steps is a little unsure but they are mentioned in 1696 so they are quite old. When we'd reached the top I was gasping like I was about to expire, so felt very unfit when we discovered a lady being filmed as she'd just run up and down the steps over 30 times!!

This is the view of the town from the top of the steps.

This quirky little house is at the top of the steps and must feature in the photographs of people from all over the world. If it was my house I'd put something really silly in the window to amuse people.

Me on the steps as we're about to go back down - imagine the history that those steps have seen.

One pilgrimage I had to make whilst we were in town was to the Moss Rose stadium which is the home ground of Macclesfield Town Football Club (that's soccer for all the non Brits) otherwise known as the Silkmen. When I moved to the UK I thought I should choose a team to support as it's such a topic of conversation, so because of it being the centre of the universe I decided that it was the team for me. A bit like the town, it's an unassuming team that likes to give other teams a sense of well being by letting them win.

Another day another breakfast, this time a yummy vegetarian brekkie in a really nice little cafe called Bella Vista - it actually did have quite a nice view.

As we were heading back to the car the heavens opened with torrential rain which gave us the excuse of going into yet another tea shop. We refrained from food for a change and just had a hot drink whilst we tried to dry off a bit.

Our reason for the road trip was to catch up with the gorgeous Elaine, she of the centre of the universe comment. It was so lovely to see her and wished we could have stayed for longer.

I thought I'd include a picture of the two of us from the year we met, 1992. We don't dress like this normally, it was a fancy dress party - I was a gypsy and Elaine was a punk fairy. I don't think we've changed that much, just slightly greyer hair (and smaller glasses for me). I should mention that at the same party Ken was dressed as a baby and he even had a baby's bottle but it didn't have milk in it.

On the way home when we stopped at yet another motorway services we found this kiddies ride with Dick Dastardly and Muttley which was made for Ken - such a shame we couldn't have Bramble inside as that would have looked perfect.

Speaking of Bramble Jelly Sassypants, here she is after the only time she made a fuss in the 804 miles. We'd obviously been driving slightly longer than she wanted so we heard about it with whining and barking telling us to stop - she's such a good girl.

Here's my beloved with Bramble - for anyone who's read any previous posts you may notice that she's getting longer. It's just over the last couple of weeks she's really stretched out and is getting taller - I know this because she can now jump onto my knee when I least expect it, even if there is a cat in the way. You can imagine how impressed the cats are by this and how scratched my thighs are getting.

Driving home it rained again but then we were rewarded with this beautiful double rainbow.

I hope you've enjoyed this road trip with us and getting to see the centre of the universe. Until next time, be good, stay safe, and take a few moments to think of all the things you've got to be grateful for.

Pamela & Ken

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