Category Archives: Family


Due to a minor oversight, I had a double-booking last night. So attempted both.

Frankenstein, a Gothic Tale, a surprisingly good play, was in the fitting setting of the Great Hall, in the castle keep.

The play was pretty slow to begin with and I was really beginning to think I’d made a huge mistake, particularly since I’d persuaded my second in command and youngest daughter to come along.

But things had picked up before the intermission and, thankfully, the second half was great.

Straight after, we jumped in a cab to Gateshead Fell cricket club, to meet up with some mates at the beer festival.

Where we caught most of Ed Tudor-Pole’s set.

Then there were nightcaps in our local.

A pleasant evening.

A dozen and a half

The age of my eldest grandchild, that is. With reference to the Lovely Eggs. Who a number of us went to see last night (including said grandchild). Two of the eight weren’t too keen, but six were impressed.The support’s unusually worthy of mention. Because he was ridiculously good; Phil Jupitus.As were the eggs themselves.

Co-ordination of people wasn’t easy, but we all managed to find each other.The toughest part of the night was sneaking my grandchild into bars. But, strangely, not a single person challenged her age. Not that I’d buy alcohol for her (cough).She was struck by the resemblance between the ladies’ sign in the Cumberland Arms and her very own depiction of my second in command some years ago.


Well, I’ve spent my Friday evening and my weekend decorating my mother’s front room. It was warm and, with a hangover this morning, I thought I was going to die today. 

I’m now listening to birds in the garden. With my good friend, Mr Beck. 

Mill Dam

Today, we went to South Shields. For a food and drink festival. Where we had decent veggie food and beer and cocktails. 

Afterwards, after putting a drunk teenager in a cab, we had a couple of beers at Mill Dam. In the Steamboat.

And, later, the magical effects of beer made my hair grow. 

I might need to have a haircut tomorrow. 


I have fond memories of Schneider Weiss Aventinus from many years ago. My now son-in-law sampled a little too much of the 12% Aventinus Eisbeck when I was last in Munich, while the 8.2% Aventinus proved to be a safer option. 

I’m now back in the Schneider Weiss Brauhaus after twelve years. This visit was only for the purposes of a single Schneider Weiss original. And it was very nice. 

As is the Tap 6 Aventinus I’m now drinking. 


many years ago, my eldest grandchild believed that I was Patrick Stewart. There’s a family thing round my mother’s most Saturdays and, years ago, there would be old episodes of Star Trek, the Next Generation on TV while people were there. 

Nowadays, it tends to be 60 minute makeover, but at the time there was a lot if TNG stuff. Anyway, my eldest grandchild used to point at the TV and exclaim  grandad whenever she saw Captain Picard. 

A drawing appeared. I may have mentioned this previously. Me in my Captain’s uniform. 

Yes, that’s me, although the picture was cropped a long time ago, so you can’t see my uniform. 

The original drawing included my second in command, so for completeness I shall show her picture too. I think she’s quite beautiful both in this portrait and in real life. 

Her picture’s nicer because it’s a straight copy from the original, with no attempt at editing (well, she didn’t need any airbrushed hair). 

So, this evening, in town, in the Box Social, I became engaged in conversation with a gentleman while my second in command went to have her nails done. 

Said gentleman mentioned that he lived in Heworth, so I told him that I live in Sheriff Hill. On hearing this, he questioned whether my name was Gary and, if so, I look like my picture on Twitter. 

It turned out we’d been exchanging messages fot a while on Twitter. And he turned out to be a nice bloke. We parted company after a couple of beers, but I’m sure we’ll keep in touch. 

Apparently my eldest grandchild is pleased that her drawing so accurately depicts her grandfather. 


It all happened so fast. The thought that those look like Suzy’s legs ran through my mind before I could get my phone out of my pocket and switch to video. 

Anyway, my second in command very bravely zipwired across the Tyne. 

From the top of the Baltic – you can just make out the cables. 

Apparently, she needed a nudge to leave the roof.