This long Easter weekend Erica, her boyfriend Dean and their two friends Rebekah and Laura came up from London to
see me see the sights of Wales. I met them in Cardiff after taking advantage of cheap coffee and free wifi in the food court to be welcomed with hugs in the middle of the road and led to the nearest Walkabout. With Erica being Australian, I'm sure she can sniff these bars out (or at least saw it on the way to her friend's hotel). We drank cocktails and waited on the girls to meet us there before proceeding on to a bottle of wine and two rounds of shots which probably weren't a great idea. Walkabout was crammed with at least three stag parties or very lavish lads night's out as they all had shirts with their names on and were being obnoxiously loud. To add to the noise of the bar an acoustic duo played cover songs for a few hours (they were very good and also amazingly kind when Erica convinced them Oasis wrote Wonderwall about her and made them play the song). After dancing in a bar where nobody was dancing and dragging along a few stray stags to join us in dance, we ventured out in search of Japanese food.
Now, I'm not the most cultured person and I've never tried anything Japanese apart from sushi so when we settled into Bento's restaurant which was sandwiched between bars I was a little concerned that I wouldn't like the food. Erica suggested I try the mixed tempura (deep fried sea food and vegetables on a bed of rice with Japanese mayo and teriyaki sauce) and I am so glad I did as it was delicious. I'm definitely taking boyfriend there the next time we're on the hunt for a meal. I even managed to 'master' chopsticks during the meal so I felt rather accomplished. We met a Tibetan monk who was best friends with Joanna Lumley too which was an experience. I have no idea if he was actually best friends with her but we took it as gospel as he regaled stories of Tibet. Plus, we're also famous as we're on the wall. Yes, that happened.
On the hunt for cigarettes and discovering that literally all the newsagents were closed by dinner on Good Friday and that none of the bars had licenses to sell cigarettes, we ended up holing up in a Wetherspoons without drinks but for warmth before we headed back on a train to Newport. We discussed how people in Wales just don't seem to feel the cold considering we lost count of the amount of girls in tiny dresses with no tights or jacket and even a lady in a bandeau bra and hotpants. I'm not being judgey due to the clothes themselves but I honestly cannot find the logic in going out dressed like that in almost zero degree weather. I'd catch hypothermia, I'm sure of it.
After leaving the girls, Erica, Dean and I headed back to Newport to meet up with boyfriend for a drink in a club that was packed to the hilt. Needless to say we stayed for one (after apologising to boyfriend for walking out to town for just one drink) and headed home to chat for a few hours and give psycho pup the amount of attention she obviously required.
Part two is coming tomorrow - our adventures in Caerphilly but as for now I am tidying the house and thinking that these incredible people have inspired me to travel more, see more and do more as I am far too tired of being envious of their incredible culture. Go check out Erica as she'll have far more eloquent thoughts on this weekend than I do (plus more posts and better photos as she's here until Monday).