Things were pretty busy last week. I had re-arranged my trip to Swindon to see a friend and her little boy which should have been when I took the New York trip. Even though I only stayed one night with them, it felt like I'd been there for much longer.
We fit in so much stuff, including a trip to the soft play. People I know with children are always threatening me with this when I visit them, and telling me horror stories, and yet it was perfectly good fun! Admittedly the weather was atrocious and so it seemed like not many people had turned out, but still, I think I had almost as much fun in the ballpool as her little boy did.
We also went to a playgroup kind of thing which was also quite interesting, especially the part where I had to try and remember nursery rhymes that I haven't sung in about 25 years. Having said that, by the time I got back on my train on friday afternoon, I was so tired I thought I might sleep and never wake up.
However, I did have to wake up as early on saturday, I was off north to see another friend for a girlie night out, and this one had been planned for ages. I was really happily surprised with Chesterfield and it's bars and pubs. I expected it to be a bit run down and naff, but actually, the bars were quite funky, the atmosphere was really nice (not sure if everyone was in the Xmas spirit and that had something to do with it). The bars were all busy, but when we wanted to sit down, we could find seats easily.
It seems that the drinking culture there is one of having a drink and then moving on to the next place, so we saw many of them same people in different bars throughout the night and the bars felt full but not uncomfortable because there was constant flow in and out. The downside of this was that you hear some of the popular songs multiple times through the evening as every bar is playing them.
I noticed that the crowd was a little older than I was used to as well, probably most of the drinkers were around my age, there weren't very many groups of late teens/early twenties, and I think this probably added to the vibe being a little nicer.
We were pretty sensible and didn't go too mad, left when we got tired and got home not too late. Sunday wasn't a write off either, we managed to fit in the arcades at Matlock Bath and then also a lovely carvery meal before I caught the train home again.
The manic nature of the last few days did help me to realise just how much I enjoy train travel; I find it really relaxing and peaceful and a good opportunity for those little sewing projects that I have on the go. I love to stitch a bit and then daydream as I watch the world go by. Here's the poppy that I did on the way back last night (apologies for the shadow!)