02 January 2010

Hooray for Starbucks!

Hi readers
I need to confess immediately that I am a Total Techno disaster.  I've been sitting here in Staarbucks for 20 mins trying to work out how to log on..  Why is everything so complicated?  Anyway, now I have to type like the wind before a) my coffee goes cold and, b) by battery goes flat.  By the way - IT IS SNOWING great big fluffy flakes today!  It's wonderful, though I do agree that when it stops snowing and everything goes to slush, it is not nearly so lovely.  Photos.  I must give you some photos.  Here goes...  Below is the Manchester Town Hall, in all its Christmas glory.  That giant Santa glows in the dark by the way.

The shoes, ladies.  The shoes!  I've been meaning to tell you about the huge variety of Size 42 shoes, designed for the woman with a Good Grip on the Earth.  There are so many to chose from!  I am agog.  And most of them are hugely on sale.  They certainly know how to do a sale here.  Anyway, I am in shoe heaven even though I am not a shoe fashionista - but if I was, I would need to buy another suitcase.  Speaking of shoes, the Ugg shop is huge here and the variety of sheepskin boots available is phenomenal.  Considering the Ugg is an Australian icon, I wonder why we never see these boots at home?  Yes, of course it is far too hot but nevertheless....  Prior to leaving on this holiday, Spud was adamant I have the right footwear for cold and rain but you should see what the locals are wearing!  Yesterday we saw a man, dressed like a man, until we saw he was wearing thigh-high stiletto boots! And New Year's Eve brought out all the young ladies in glittery frocks and 6" heels.  It makes my eyes water. The men in general seem to be far more fashion "edgy" here in Manchester and we have seen some outrageous looks that I am 100% sure I will NEVER see in Queensland.

Yesterday, New Year's Day, we went for lunch at The Three Fishes pub restaurant at Mitton with Spud's brother and sister and families.  It was a lovely drive in the countryside where we saw snow on the Pennines and ate lunch in a cosy pub with open fires It snowed just a tiny bit, while woolly black-faced sheep munched grass.  It was extremely bucolic and we finished up by visiting the medieval church next door, to walk off our Wainwright beers and Lancashire hot-pot.

Tomorrow is our last day and we fly out at 3pm so we are doing some last-minute shopping in the city today.  Spud picked up a lovely leather overnight bag reduced from 150 pounds to 25 pounds (now THAT's a sale) which will be handy for our extra bits and pieces.  The book shops here are scrumptious but I know better than to try to bring any books home and instead, we are making a list for amazon.com upon our return.  I am looking out the window of Starbucks now, onto St Anne's Square, which is covered in snow,  It certainly makes everything look pretty! 
Might try to write more from Heathrow tomorrow afternoon, after our "thrilling" flight back from Manchester.  It's a very short hop (about an hour by 'plane) and it's always quite hair-raising because it seems that the pilot pulls out of London really hard and fast, then we fly along for about 10 minutes while peanuts are tossed at us by the flight attendants, and then we're heading down again.  It's exhileratingly terrifying...  Cheerio! 

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