Sunday 18 March 2012: Toon
It's funny how you can have an affinity with somewhere you haven't really spent much of your life. I was born in Wallsend, not far from Newcastle, but we moved away when I was four. We did go back for holidays every year (being far too poor for foreign holidays - we had one, when I was five - get the violins out), but my parents were my only real link.
At primary school I revelled in being a little different - and it made collecting the Newcastle players in my Panini album much easier, as the other kids would just give me their swaps without me having to hand over something in return (rural Aberdeenshire at the time really wasn't a multi-cultural place, we were different enough).
And so I grew up a Newcastle fan. For better or worse.
Definitely 'better' at the moment, though this was a scraped win against Norwich. But three points are three points. Match day tradition with mate Al demands a trip to the Trent before the match (in the pic) and the Duke after the match with, if time, a final drink at the station. The station bar was closed this time though, so we meandered to the Centurion. Never been in before, but it used to be (years and years and years back) the First Class lounge and is a fab big room. Seems the venue has a bit of a reputation as a place to go as well, and we were fortunate enough to round off a great day with walking in to the 'Happy Cats' halfway through 'Fog on the Tyne', before leading a mass participation in 'the Blaydon Races'.
Great Spotted Woodpecker (uncropped)
(went for a wander in the Figgy first thing before heading to the train south).