Day 7 – Portsmouth to Swindon Town

Peter slept in the van last night. I didn’t think he would but he did. And the boys missed him so much that each of them took turns to snore for 5 minutes apiece. I drifted off eventually and probably ended up joining in too. Only one more night and we’ll all be back in our own beds where we can snore, mumble & fidget as much as we like.

In the mornings, if the mood is right, we’ve been known to have many and varied topics of conversation. From the correct way of cooking a steak, to whether it’s acceptable to have a kink for football mascots, to tractors… Just tractors. This morning was no different. In Tour2, Peter and I were talking about quantum physics, how relativity affects our lives, and how, apparently, our body clocks run on 25 hours rather than 24 (best ask Peter about that one as I still can’t wrap my head around it). During a break between stadiums I went over to Tour1 to find out how the guys were doing and what the topic of the morning was. It was poo. They were talking about poo again! To be exact, their top 5 worst ‘brankers’. Apparently, the place we stayed in Brighton was not suitable for a good one. Very disappointing. I went back to Tour2 to contemplate what constitutes a top ‘branker’. Answers on a postcard please.

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We’re still wondering if those pallets were moved on Saturday at the Millennium Stadium

Fortunately we’ve been invited back to The Millennium Stadium so we’ll be able to see if the pallets did get moved! And we’ll be going into the stadium for some photographs pitch side. But we also will be checking to see if those pallets are gone…

Last year Franny Benali carried out his “Benali’s Big Run” challenge in order to raise money for Cancer Research UK. His challenge took him around the 20 Premiership grounds, including Swansea City. As Tour94 had just started to get the ball rolling on our own challenge we went down to the Liberty stadium one Saturday morning to greet Benali as he arrived at Swansea’s stadium. While there we spoke with Franny, and his two children, Luke and Kenzie about their fundraising and also our own. From that day Tour94 remained in contact with the family.
Today, Franny Benali welcomed us to Southampton’s home ground, St Mary’s Stadium. Himself and a member of staff from St. Mary’s showed us around the ground and sent us off again with a signed Cancer Research UK t-shirt. Thank you Southampton, Franny Benali & family for your help! It is very much appreciated!

Driving along the south coast of England:

Me: “I bet Topper is tamping.”
Matthew: “Why?”
Me: “Look at that house! I bet they have loads of squirrels in their garden.”

Peter & The Bike Lights

               One beautiful summer afternoon Peter was driving through the charming city of Exeter. He and his two companions stopped at some traffic lights. While they were waiting, Peter exclaimed,

“They’ve got bike lights! I’ve never seen bike lights before!”

And sure enough, where there were usually 3 coloured lights for the traffic, there was an extra light. A green bicycle had lit up right next to the green traffic light.

Outraged, Peter added,

“They don’t pay tax but they get their own lights!”

And as Peter and his two companions continued on their journey they heard him mutter ever so slightly under his breath, “bastards…”

The End

Sitting outside a McDonald’s somewhere around Yeovil we were discussing how the language barrier was an issue when ordering food. In particular when Matthew went to order his BigMac.
But I don’t think it was the language barrier. I think it was Matthew’s specific requests when it came to assembling his BigMac. If some body asked any McDonald’s employee, anywhere in the country, what Matthew was after then they would have had the same blank look and confusion.

You see, Matthew doesn’t like anything on his BigMac. Matthew wants, and I quote,

Cow and bread! That’s all I want!

That night instead of getting our heads down in Swindon we carried on to Bristol where we could get an early start in the morning. And I think I speak for everyone when I say that that drive was one of the hardest. It wasn’t about the distance or the lateness. We were driving home, but not quite, and the signs reading “South Wales” both lifted our hearts and left us longing to follow them home.

When we arrived at the hotel however, thoughts of home were put on hold. As we were checking into the hotel in Bristol:

Darren: “what time does the bar close?”
Hotel staff: “what time do you want it to close?”

That hotel was an excellent find, Darren, thank you. It was definitely the nicest hotel we stayed in all week. Except for the ducks… Creepy.


Day 6 – Leyton Orient to Brighton Hove Albion

You remember I said on yesterday’s blog, “watch this space”? Right at the end. Regarding the boys and their warning to Peter? About his snoring? Yeah?
So we were all settling into our bunk beds, showered and clean, our bellies full of food and sleep creeping up on us quickly. Slugger had just finished rolling around on the carpet (to dry off, he left his towel in the van) (Jez: “you fucking otter!“) and everyone had picked a bed to sleep in. I swear not 5 minutes went by before it started… Now, I’ve shared a room with Peter before and I heard nothing because I had passed out before him. The only way I can describe it is if you had a cement mixer, turned it on and chucked a brick in it, then threw the whole lot into a wood chipper. And no matter how much Lipsy hit the side of the bunk bed it didn’t wake Peter. Darren shouted and still Peter didn’t stir. Both of them took the van keys and went to sleep in the vans. Me? I passed out again. Honestly, since we started this trip I could sleep on a chicken’s lip.

Needless to say that everyone was a little quiet in the morning, including myself. Coffee was a must after we finished the first couple of stadiums. When we reached Chelsea we received a Facebook comment from Peter’s wife, letting us know that Peter would be sleeping in a van tonight. Everybody ‘liked’ the hell out of that comment. Sorry Peter! We do love you!

CB chatter III

Guy on frequency: “Can you make it tomorrow?”
Jez (in Tour2): “I can’t make it, I’ve got the dentist.”
Guy: “I’ll see you tonight.”
Lipsy (in Tour1): “That’s a bit late notice I’ll be honest.”


Tour94 visiting Millwall

We had an amazing welcome from Millwall. It blew us away!
The team were having an open training session for the fans and we were invited to go pitch side and get our photographs. It was a great experience and as Jez so eloquently posted on Facebook:

It’s quite surreal when you are standing pitch side at Millwall, drinking a cup of coffee, standing next to the manager, Neil Harris, while watching the players train in front of a couple of hundred people and 2 cuddly lion mascots walking around nearby.

Lipsy was interviewed in front of the Millwall supporters and managed to resist the urge to give the audience a song. To be fair, he did a great job. We were originally asked which one out of us had the most South London accent in order to address the crowd. I guess Lipsy sounds the least Welsh?

SATNAV. Satellite Navigation. Technology. We’ve come so far as the human race. But now our SATNAVs have minds of their own. They have personalities, and we’ve grown quite fond of them. That’s how it starts though… Skynet anyone?

Optimistic Olga‘ is a glass half full kind of SATNAV. Her confidence is amazing! She has so much faith in us that she knocks off about 25% of the travelling time because she knows that Tour94 is above such mundane things such as space and time. An hour long journey to a regular SATNAV is but 40 minutes to Olga. Thank you Olga! But you’re wrong. A lot. We appreciate the faith though.

Sally‘ is a bit of a douche bag. She’s temperamental, critical and loves changing her mind at the last minute. And her voice? You know the narrator from Masterchef, India Fisher? Well, Sally sounds exactly like her. I keep expecting Sally to tell us that our raspberry coulis is not up to scratch and that we’re being sent home. When this is all over though, I think I’ll miss her trolling us. No more counting exits at roundabouts.

We have a hero in our midst. An incredible sacrifice took place in Stamford Bridge. In aid of Cancer Research UK and Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research a bet of sorts was made between one of our team members and a friend of his. This team member loves Liverpool, LOVES them. For a £20 donation to the charities, this Liverpool fan had to pucker up and kiss the Chelsea badge. And this moment will forever live on in cyber space for all to see…


But then again, look at that. Eyes closed. Savouring the moment. Enjoying it a little too much?

Breaking news!


In a surprise move, Chelsea has signed Postman Brian ‘Lipsy’ Lewis for the 2015/2016 season. Lewis told our reporter, “This is a momentous moment for me. I would not be here without the support of the Colonel, who has seen me through thick and thin. I snap a salute every chance I get.”

We managed a decent clocking off hour, around 8-9ish when the sun was just setting over Brighton. The place we were staying in was so nice that I took a card and planned to go back there again. Plus 2 cocktails for the price of 1, Thursday to Saturday. Swish.
We all sat out on the front porch and, because we hadn’t really relaxed together since the journey began, we ended up having one of those silly moments. You know the ones, when you’re doubled over and crying laughing? Just because Jez had noticed a random woman had a crack in her windscreen, which was particularly filthy. She noticed, which made us laugh even harder.


More bunk beds, happy Slugger!

Day 5 – Stevenage to Arsenal

What a morning we had today! Fire alarms were triggered in the hotel which meant an evacuation of the building at 06:55. Lucky that myself, Darren, Matthew & Lipsy were early risers that morning and were pretty much ready to go. I’m relatively certain that the guys in the other room had one hell of a shock.
As I was coming down the stairs to leave I passed Matthew who was standing at the bottom, over a table of continental breakfast, buttering toast and handing it out to the team as we were walking past. No sense of urgency over a fire, but urgency instead for feeding the boys. I think his priorities were slightly off! I know mine were. I cast one glance toward the firemen but found I was too knackered for an all-out ogle. I regret that now.

Number of C-bombs dropped in Tour2:

  • 8 (as of 08:38)
  • 10 (as of 09:19)
  • 11 (as of 10:01)
  • 12 (as of 11:59)
  • 15 (as of 12:20)
  • 16 (as of 13:42)
  • 17 (as of17:28)
  • 18 (as of 18:52)

The culprits will remain anonymous. However, when they realised that I was counting, the number of times the word was used dropped dramatically. We need a graph or something to make this more official. Anyone?

We had to drive through a really picturesque village on the way to MK Dons. Cottages, neat gardens, just beautiful. And as we were admiring them, Darren piped up:

Look at this house! Fuuuuuuuuck… I’m jealous of anyone who has trees and squirrels in their garden.

Same, Darren. Same.

Soundtrack to our drive through the country this morning…

Darren: “You don’t want to swear when you hear this song. Almost like when your mam is stroking your face as you’re going to sleep.”

“Give peas a chance” – painted on a bridge on the way to Watford

Britain has no apathy when it comes to food. The support I’ve seen for peas and pies is inspiring. Keep it up Britain!

Inside Wembley Stadium:

Jez: ……….
Darren: ……….
Jez: ……….
Darren: “We’re in Wembley Saaaaaaanz.”

And they giggled like man-children.


No doubt the greatest experience we’ve had on this challenge so far is Wembley. I don’t think I can begin to explain how it felt but I will have a try.
When we pulled up outside the stadium I was all business. My main concern was fitting the whole stadium into the shot along with the vans. It literally took me a couple of minutes but by the time I looked up the boys had already gone! We got our wrist bands (which we’re still wearing), and waited in the reception. I can’t speak for the guys but I was shaking slightly, like stage fright.
Walking out of the tunnel into the stadium was phenomenal. If you’ve ever been to Wembley then you know just how vast it is. It’s overwhelming, particularly pitch side when you know that legends, some of them our idols, had walked out of that very tunnel and seen what we were seeing.
The best stroke of luck on our visit was when we were passing the changing rooms. Our guide called to another member of staff and asked if we could go inside. You should have seen the boys’ faces! An amazing opportunity and we cannot thank the staff at Wembley enough for that.

Once in a lifetime…


At Barnet FC – Champions of 2014-2015 season

CB chatter II

A number of times we have heard other people talking on our CB frequency. And rather than just eavesdropping, the boys have been meddling with these people’s lives. For example, Darren’s pallet moment on the Saturday we left Cardiff. I do wonder if the pallets have been moved yet…

Woman on frequency: “Hello? I’ve got a delivery.”
Jez: “Can you go around the back door? Just ask for Lionel.”

Assume that woman goes to back door…

Woman: “Hello? I’ve got a delivery and I’ve been told to ask for Lionel?”

Unfortunately we went out of range so I guess we’ll never know if she delivered that parcel or whether she did actually manage find a Lionel.

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We actually managed an early finish. We postponed Leyton Orient til the morning as we were all exhausted and dying to use a knife & fork again, in other words, eat something that wasn’t a sandwich! It wasn’t all it was cracked up to be though when Peter unscrupulously stole Matthew’s food (still having trouble sharing look), Lipsy attempted to pilfer my own food (he was honest and returned it) and the chef who was cooking Darren’s steak obviously did not know what a 10oz was. We got there in the end though and everybody was well fed and watered.
The room was outstanding. You should have seen how thrilled Slugger was at having to sleep in a bunk bed. But not just any old bunk beds! Triple bunk beds!
Harvey was warned by Darren & Lipsy that he better keep the snoring to a minimum. Watch this space…

Day 4 – Chesterfield to Southend United

Last night was as close to a home as we were going to get this week. My aunt had graciously agreed to take us all in and give us a bed for the night. The guys had to be paired off, Slugger with Harvey, Jez with Lipsy and Matthew with Darren (for the third night in a row I might add…) and I was to share with my aunt. I woke up this morning to the sound of a cat meowing and pawing at me. Apparently I was in Silver’s spot in my Auntie’s bed. Oops.
Auntie got us underway with toast, tea & coffee and we departed to fill up on some more breakfast in a restaurant, as today was apparently going to be “a right slut of a day”.

The walkie talkies are still a novelty with the team. I probably shouldn’t share the handles that are being radioed to each van but I will say that they’re related to the male anatomy, and I’ll leave it at that. They’ve come in real handy when spotting pedestrians walking around in onesies or cork hats. Useful!

Darren: “One walkie talkie later and I feel like Jack Bauer.”

The North has the most amazing breakfast buffet selection I have ever seen! Yorkshire puddings and gravy, not even lying! Jez actually pointed out that if you chucked some of the sausages and the potatoes on a plate with the Yorkshire puddings and gravy then you could have dinner for breakfast. Or Brinner for you Scrubs fans!

The sausages actually tasted good today, however…

Jez: “They’re scruffy looking sausages though, a bit overdone.”
Lipsy: “That’s just down to poor sausage selection.”

Oh friends! Weird toilet cubicle friends!
Lipsy ended up having an impromptu one way conversation this morning. He was in a toilet cubicle when he heard Matthew come into the men’s room. Lipsy assumed that Matthew had gone into the cubicle next to him. And decided to strike up a conversation with him. However! Matthew was not in the cubicle. Matthew had gone. Lipsy was unaware of this and called to the next cubicle:

“How’s your branker going then son?”

Nothing like asking a complete stranger how their bowel movement is going!


Brian Clough with Plate Guy

Matthew: “SATNAVS don’t like car parks.”
Darren: “Doggers like car parks.”
Matthew: “So do I.”

Breaking news!


Peter Harvey has now been signed to Derby County! Total cost of the transfer is unknown but a contact close to manager, Jeremy “Tooting-Toots” Dummer, said that he was confident that Peter will be able to really find his way with the team and make excellent progress over the coming days.

Good luck Peter! We know you can do it!

We had a little bit of trouble getting to the Norwich City ground today as they had a game on, which we didn’t know about. The traffic was absolutely horrendous!
The annoying thing was that drivers, who had every intention of going left, were using the right hand lane to get to the front and then cut in. Darren’s road rage got the better of him as he swore that he would not let any of these people cut in front of him. As a lorry goes past though:

Darren: “I’d let him in. Because… he seems like a genuine guy!”

His criticism continued when a young women pulled up beside us in a Mini Cooper:

Darren: “I hate that.”
Me: “What?”
Darren: “Young girl, 23 or 24, wearing a cardigan! You are never getting married!”

The thrilling saga continues…

Lipsy: “I fucking hate cardigans.”

The end of day 4 finished a lot later than expected but we knew that it was going to be a tough day. There have been some amazing moments though! We can’t thank the volunteers of Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research enough for their support. And the clubs we visited today were absolutely wonderful in welcoming us to their grounds.

Now for a leisurely drive to Stevenage, admire the views along the way and bed down for the night.

Day 3 – Newcastle to Doncaster Rovers

I had a fantastic night’s sleep I’ll be honest. As soon as my head hit the pillow I was out like a light. The boys? Well, I’m certain Peter had a good night’s sleep, but I’m not quite sure how the others slept. Apparently not that well! I think the trick is to get to sleep before Peter does because I had no idea at all that he was snoring.
The atmosphere was really quite unpleasant and I don’t mean moral. I mean, some wise arse decided that hot & spicy and chicken tikka pizzas were a fantastic meal to have at 12 o’ clock at night. Even the Right Guard Jez was spraying around the room could not compete. It was a relief to get out of there, but then we had to navigate corridor after corridor to find the breakfast room.

We had a pretty productive morning, apart from Lipsy “losing” his Cancer Research t-shirt and then finding it where it was supposed to be. (Jez: “Soppy troll”.) Newcastle was a straight forward stop and we quickly got the photos out of the way… Thanks to us stopping traffic again. For the third time. I’ve started to keep a tally of how many times we’ve done that! First time at Burnley, the second at Blackpool and now Newcastle. (Actually we can make that four! We managed to stop traffic at Hartlepool too.)

Report Card for: Peter Harvey

Peter is coming on leaps and bounds! He is learning to smile more and is mixing well with the other children. However, Peter is still having some difficulty with sharing.

Smiling: 7/10 – still needs encouragement
Sharing: 4/10 – needs work (see Darren Topper)
Getting lost: 10/10 – full marks on this, outstanding

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Matthew, driver of Tour 1 this morning

We had a brief recess this morning while Jez and Lipsy enquired about our entry into Sunderland. The following statement from Slugger started a whole thing…

I could murder a 24oz steak!

Darren: “You may as well eat a whole cow.”
Slugger: “Just hand everyone a knife and fork!”
Darren: “Well, we’ve got 2 vans! We could easily rustle a cow!”

Just a quick note, we did not rustle any cows today. All cows in the north of England are present and correct.

Favourite SATNAV name of the day: “Sloppy Troll” – Jez

DSC_0203 (2)Hull’s emus. I couldn’t not!

While trying to find Hull’s stadium we had to drive across an area of land that had not been developed on yet. Matthew and I were sitting in Tour 1 when Jez said, “What a shitty space of wasteland!
Jez… In general, the term “wasteland” means that it’s derelict, rough, a literal waste of land.

Parmo – A Middlesbrough delicacy

During a fuel stop in Middlesbrough Jez was talking to a gentleman in the petrol station, who said that as we were in Middlesbrough, we should try “Parmo”. A chicken dish, with a whole load of deep frying and cheese. The kind of thing that would clog up some arteries! Unfortunately we didn’t have time to stop off to try it so I dug around a bit (I googled it) and found a recipe for it. Intrigue!

Serves four

For the béchamel sauce:
5 tbsp butter
4 tbsp all-purpose flour
1l (1¾ pints) milk
½ tsp freshly grated nutmeg

4 chicken fillets
1 egg
150g (5½oz) breadcrumbs
approx 1.5l (2¾ pints) vegetable oil, for frying
110g (4oz) cheddar cheese

In a medium saucepan, melt the butter over a low heat. Add the flour and stir continuously until smooth. Heat the milk in a separate pan until it is just about to boil. Gradually add this to the butter and flour mixture, whisking continuously until very smooth. Bring to a simmer, lower the heat and cook for 10 minutes, stirring constantly, then remove from heat. Season with 2 tsp salt and the nutmeg. Scrunch up a piece of greaseproof paper and soak in cold water. Smooth out the paper and place on the surface of the sauce, and keep it warm.

Pound the chicken fillets between two sheets of greaseproof paper until they are flat and thin. Beat the egg in a shallow bowl. Season the breadcrumbs and pour on to a large plate. Coat the fillets with the egg, then dip into the crumbs, covering them evenly. Heat the vegetable oil in a large saucepan or deep frying-pan to 160°C and deep-fry the chicken fillets until they have turned golden brown. Leave to drain on some kitchen paper.

To serve, pour the béchamel sauce over the chicken fillets then sprinkle over the cheese. Place under a medium grill
until the cheese has melted.

Driving through Huddersfield with Lipsy and Matthew when we spot a garage with a Mini Cooper stuck/glued/nailed above the door of the place. Impressive but probably a fake Mini right? Hm.

Matthew: “How do you reckon they got that up there?”
Lipsy: “Slugger drove it?”

End of Day 3. The rain has poured, the traffic has been annoying and moral is looking iffy.

Day 2 – Liverpool to Carlisle United

When you wake up after 4 hours sleep, you kind of lie there and think, “Is it going to be a terrible day? Or am I going to be so loopy from lack of sleep that everything is amusing?” While sitting at breakfast this morning I decided it would be the latter. The reason for that decision was a real “WTF” moment that had us all sniggering into our coffees.
A young guy, with presumably his girlfriend, sat in the bar/restaurant with a plastic crown on his head which he had placed around his afro. That immediately drew our attention. Then he sent his girlfriend (again, we merely assumed) to get his breakfast for him, and then complained when she didn’t bring him a big enough glass of orange juice. Obviously with it being 7am we lacked the brain function to wrap our heads around this lad, and so in the usual Skewen way, we dubbed him “any guy“.

Breakfast was not an altogether pleasant affair with the most important item on the breakfast menu being missing. Bacon. Bacon was missing. Well, actually, I think Jez got some bacon. But everyone else had to wait for the bacon, and even after they got the bacon, it was rubbish bacon. Apparently the establishment had won an award in excellence? Darren Topper disagrees. Oh! And the jam was not up to standard either. Disappointing.

The first night we had divided into two rooms and, honestly, it sounded like I got away lightly with the snoring. Actually, in a strange turn of events, Darren’s snoring sent me to sleep. Because it sounded like my dad snoring and I thought I was home! The guys thought that was weird and I should include it in the blog. So, here, see my weird.

The snoring stories do not end there however! As I mentioned, I got away lightly with regards sharing a room with minimal snorers. Peter began almost instantly snoring as soon as his head hit the pillow and Slugger, according to Jez, sounded like he was gargling mud.

On the tour team we have a range of football supporters. Manchester United (although, whether that’s still true is a different thing altogether (see our Old Trafford tour94 update on Facebook for details on that)), Leeds, Arsenal, Swansea and Liverpool. I want you to focus on the last one there, as we had to visit their derby rivals this morning.
Everton was our second stop of the day after Liverpool. The van was positioned in front of Goodison Park, the boys were set up in front of the van and I started snapping away. As I was doing this I noticed a gentleman walking over to us in a blazer with the Everton badge emblazoned on it. I had seen him, however, Jez had not. Naturally as a Liverpool supporter he was giving Everton a hard time (that’s putting it lightly).

Me to Jez: “Oh my god, dude, shut up… Seriously, stop…”
Lipsy: “You don’t suppose they have microphones in the car park do you?”

And then the security guard walked around the corner.

I could barely hold my camera steady while I finished taking the photos, I was laughing so hard. And the cherry on top? Jez asking the security guard if it was possible to get pitch side. You have to admire his moxy!

After a chaotic morning, Lipsy finally got his McDonald’s breakfast at 10:08. He was happy by 10:30. This was important for some reason.

I’ve struggled to get smiles out of these guys. Well, actually, that’s not 100% true, but I have had to give certain members of the team some encouraging (keep massaging those cheek muscles guys!) The one time I didn’t have to do this? When it was absolutely lashing it down outside The Macron Stadium. If you take a look at the Manchester City update you will see six absolutely chuffed Welshmen.
You can take the man out of Wales, but you can’t take Wales out of the man.


Anfield – Honestly, you can tell who is the Liverpool fan and who is the Man. Utd fan

Blackpool turned out to be quite a talking point. And I want to say that not all the views published here are shared by the entire team… But they probably are.

Now, I’ve never been to Blackpool so Lipsy decided to break it down into simple terms for me:

It’s like Neath Workies. It’s just one, big Neath Workies.”

I understood that reference!

The subject of Blackpool continued when Lipsy swapped vans with Peter. This time though we were discussing the seafront and how seafronts like Blackpool and Aberavon had changed over the years. These days there are retailers along the seafront, and when we passed a Poundland this really seemed to annoy Matthew.

Matthew: “What is going on? What’s going to happen in a few years time? £2 Poundland?!”
My suggestion? “Around a Poundland.”

Watch this space!

And then there was the moment where Matthew unleashed his inner grumpy-old-man. Blackpool Illuminations? I’ve heard of them, my Mam uses them as a sarcastic slight when I leave a light on in the house. Never seen them though and the tackiness of them intrigued and charmed me. However…

Matthew: “You pay good money for a hotel with a seaview and all you end up with is a view of Sootie & Sweep and Basil Brush!”

I couldn’t argue with that.


Steve Jones meeting the guys at Fleetwood Town FC

Day 1 – Swansea to Crewe Alexandra

The end of day 1 of Tour94 and it’s been quite an experience already! We had a great start to the day at The Liberty Stadium, who were lovely enough to allow us in the ground for some photos to start us off. Even allowing the guys to take their families into the stadium for some farewell pics.

After dropping my memory card underneath the van I was hoping that it wasn’t an omen for the rest of the journey. But it’s been a very productive day and we have completed 14 of the 94 stadiums on our route around the country. Only 80 to go! We encountered some slight delays and unfortunately one of them was my fault having not checked to see if the laptop charger I had bought for the van worked before we left. A rookie mistake. Fortunately having Darren with us we had an inside man in Machine Mart who could contact the Coventry branch in order to get a charger that did work. £23 out of pocket but the social media side of the trip was saved. Thank goodness!

Another heroic Darren moment occurred this morning when we were at our third stop, The Millennium Stadium. Having bought walkie talkies for the two vans so as to communicate on the road, we were occasionally picking up other traffic on the frequency we were using. Outside the Millennium Stadium there was work being done and pallets were left around outside. We had started to pick up communications between the workmen on the site and Darren, and I don’t know how he managed to stay serious, got onto his walkie talkie and asked the workmen to move the pallets and be more professional! We laughed. It was funny. However, what we were not expecting was another workman to get onto the frequency and say, “Come on guys, we need to move those pallets!” Perfect.


Plate Guy with Darren and Slugger at Birmingham City

The I-Spy game between Darren and Slugger was another moment which brought me around from my cyber world of social media. And this was when Darren “wrecked Slugger at I-Spy”. His words.

Darren: “I-Spy with my little eye, something beginning with ‘C’.”
Slugger: “What?”

You’re supposed to guess Slugger!
Round 2 was just as amusing with it being Slugger’s turn to pick a letter.

Slugger: “I-Spy with my little eye, something beginning with ‘A’.”
Darren: “……..”
Slugger: “It’s Anti-Freeze!”
Darren: “Slugger… That’s De-Icer!”

Needless to say, they stopped playing after that gem.

Getting lost. Always a nightmare. Particularly when you’re in a convoy and you’ve lost the other van. I lost count of the amount of abuse our SATNAV received today. Mostly Peter though, as we did get lost with him twice. Sorry Peter, but it’s true! Even though Matthew was referred to a couple of times as “Wrong Lane Jenkins” he managed to find the stadiums. We did get there in the end though!

I will say, that the highlight of my day was when I took a moment to look up from my laptop as we were travelling down the M6. And I looked up just in time to see a bridge with, “VOTE PIES“, painted across it. That really brought a smile to my face and I’m really looking forward to more antics and weird happenings on our trip.

The Stormtroopers in the middle of Cardiff this morning for instance, bizarre!