St. Helens

“Where’s your wife?”
This was the first question I was asked at my family do I went to this weekend in St. Helens.
You do expect this sort of thing at family dos.
Along with the more common “Ooh, haven’t you grown” and because I have lost a lot of weight since last year “Aren’t you thin… in a good way”.
As it was a big do, with lots of family that I had not seen in decades, there was a lot of “So who is that then?” and then trying to fit them into a mental picture of how they were related to me.

Also, there was a revalation of the courting days of my parents.
My Dad did not eat cheese, and so when my parents moved in together and they went to the supermarket for the first time, my Mum put a packet of cheese in the trolley.
My Dad said, “I don’t eat cheese”.
To which my Mum replied, “You will”.

One of the funnier episodes of my weekend was a monologue by my uncle Mike, during a quick visit, about the holidays that the local people of St. Helens go on. He has a wicked sense of humour and expert delivery, such that he can repeat the same story and it is still as hilarious the second time around.

“Oooh. I went to terriermoleanus for me hols. It were grand. We found a fantastic pub on the beach on the first day! Run by a husband and wife, Bitish mind you, him for Rainford and her from Southport. It were fantastic. Had Pale Ale and Boddies! And an all day breakfast, full English, none of that foreign muck, with sausages, two slices of bacon, and black pudding! Would you credit it, black pudding in terriermoleanus. And all this for only 700 pasaytas, thats about 4 pound you know, and it were great”
“So, did you see any Spanish people”
“Oh no. You don’t have to!”

I went out with my brother and my cousins after the party, and had a good time on the town. I did not get that drunk, considering.
St. Helens seems to have a very lively night life. Almost every other building is a bar.
Since comming back I have done the maths and worked out that we were drinking about 60 Euros worth of drinks an hour!
Drinking culture in Britain is so expensive.
No wonder no one can afford the housing there.

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