Well, we're back! The washing machine is on its second load and we're looking forward to eating a meal on a proper plate with a proper knife and fork!
Rob's girlfriend Debi was with us for the whole week and Claire Magimix joined us for the weekend making a very sociable extended family. So, here's the rundown of what went on:
Tuesday - Setting up Camp
John and I set off at 2ish but had to stop half way down the A30 to check on Iggy who just wasn't driving right. Iggy has weird suspension - instead of springs, he has airbags and these were as flat as pancakes! The gadget that inflates them had given up the ghost and Iggy was trailing his backend very low. We rang Matt (Iggy's maintainer, top mechanic
and drummer with Trigger Happy
) who found us a VW specialist in Truro. Looks like Iggy's getting springs fitted!
We drove at 50mph for the rest of the journey and got to the campsite at about 4.30pm. It is literally just a field with a shower block at one end. But no kids entertainment, shop or clubhouse. Yay! We parked the furthest away in an effort to reduce noise for the other campers. Paul turned up at about 6pm having already been to the site once, not seen where we were cos we were so far away, and had to drive to St Ives to get mobile signal!
Russell, who owns the campsite where we were, let us unload our stuff into his workshop temporarily. The suspension started working again! Yay! It seems that Iggy had just been grumbling about the exceptionally heavy load. He had a point!
Paul, the bassist from Pondlife
, came out for a beer later and took us to the Star Inn in Crowlas. We'd visited the Star last year and know it to be an exceptional place for real ale.
Four pints later, Paul dropped us back off at camp. We sat up chatting for a bit and then shuffled off to bed.
Wednesday - Five go to Falmouth
I woke up at about 9am with a nasty headache (that'd be the beer and gin mixed then!) but thought at least I'd have time to recover before the others arrived. I then looked up to see Mr DeLonghi charging across the campsite! Eh? He and Debi had left Exeter at about 7am!!! Yikes! Once their tent was up, we all trucked off to Lidl for provisions of water, jaffa cakes and smoothies. You can live a long time on jaffa cakes you know! Rob struggled with the choice of Stella or Bishops Finger and diplomatically decided both were required!
We got back to camp in time for Paul Magimix to arrive before we all headed to Falmouth for the gig. It was Falmouth week so the town was ridiculously busy. We got everything setup but the stage area is rather compact so Rob ended up looking at the back of a speaker for the whole evening. Not great for him!
Our mate (and band stalker) Andy Parsons works in Falmouth and had arranged for all his navy colleagues to come to the gig in fancy dress. There were some great punk outfits, and some not so punk! My favourite was the 6'6" penguin that kept bouncing dangerously close to my monitor. I got into trouble because Andy's wife Helen had turned up to surprise him - which I knew about but hadn't let on. Top quote of the night... he walked up to Helen and said "You look like my wife with a wig on!" LOL! He had started drinking 6 hours earlier!
We had a quick pack away and then went back to camp for suppertime beer and leftover bolognese.
Debi had been on the wine all night and spectacularly fell over the firepit which in hindsight had been left in a bloody stupid place for when it was dark. Her arms were bruised really badly but I can't deny laughing when she wandered into the tent attached to the mesh lid which had got snagged on her tshirt. Poor lamb couldn't unattach herself!
Thursday - Day Off
Andy had invited the band to Culdrose for a guide tour. Indesit, Madge and myself aren't big helicopter fans so we went into St Ives while the others went to the Navy base. Can anyone explain how Andy was functioning after the state he was in last night?
It was a beautiful day in Snives. I had three things on my list of things to do: Have a pizza in Sazbah, a beer in the Castle and see a seal.
We wandered along the harbour and almost straight away saw a seal posing for the tourists. There's three that come in every day following the fishing boats so the locals are quite used to them. It doesn't matter how often I see them, I still find them amazing to watch.
Next we went to the Castle Inn for a pint (or four) before John appeared with his sister, brother in law, niece and nephew who were holidaying nearby and had been on the Culdrose tour earlier that day. It was too nice to stay indoors so we went to the beach for a bit. The two Paul's played football with John and the kids whilst I caught up with Karen and Alexa tried to dig to Australia.
Indesit and I have a ritual of shoving each other on stage so it seemed natural to carry on shoving each other on the beach. This degenerated into a wrestling match which I lost badly, only managing to floor him twice. John's nephew asked "are they always like this?". Erm, kind of, yeah!
We went to Sazbah for pizza and were delighted to find Kayne working there! We'd been told he was moving to Kent so it was lovely to catch up with him. Hugs were had and Aftershocks were presented moments later.
Rob and Debi had gone back to the campsite to freshen up and rejoined us for games of pool and beers at the Castle before we got the last bus back to the campsite.
It was a lovely clear sky so we got the firepit going and watched the Perseids (annual shower of shooting stars) which was something else that had been on my list! Tick!
Friday - Praa Sands
We all started surfacing from around 9.30 but for some reason, took a ridiculous length of time to do anything constructive. As a result, the whole day was spent sitting around not really doing anything.
At about 3pm, we went for another trip to Lidl before getting our stuff together for the gig. We got to Praa Sands for about 7pm which gave us loads of time to setup. After Wednesday, it was great to have lots of room. There was a band playing in a small marquee on the beach which was very cool. The Sandbar has an amazing view with windows the full length of the pub overlooking the beach.
The audience were pretty up for it from the very start but the chairs and tables around the outside of the room hampered the dancing a little until people couldn't contain themselves any longer and just pogoed anyway. No More Heroes was mad! It was great to see an audience aged 7 to 67 there, all dancing and enjoying the music. It was also nice that so many people remembered us from last year and had been looking forward to us coming back for so long.
As well as Indesit and I shoving each other, we also stand on each other's feet a lot. I felt somewhat picked on when suddenly I had Indesit standing on my right foot and DeLonghi on my left! No fair!
As we were packing away, Rob gave me a big hug. "Oh how sweet", I thought until I realised he was farting and passing on the vibrations! Urgh! Dirty smelly boy!
It was too damp to get the fire going back at camp so we sat in the tent for a while drinking before bed time. We're averaging 3.30am bedtimes at the moment.
Saturday - Hayle: The Hottest Pub in Cornwall
Indesit and Madge went into Hayle to watch the Chelsea match so the rest of us got a taxi into Snives. I went down to the beach and saw a seal about two feet away from me! It was amazing to see it so close!
We managed to grab a table on the Sundeck at the Sloop and got a couple of drinks in. Madge arrived with Mrs Madge (Claire) who'd got the train down to join up with the group and Kayne called in to catch up with us. The Sloop has a great location and beer garden but just can't compete with the Castle on beer which sadly doesn't have an outdoor area. Boo!
The Copperhouse at Hayle was pretty warm when we were setting up but proved to be insanely hot during the gig. I'd brought a towel to the gig which I never do normally but was very glad of it. Rob, Indy and I all ended up using it and we were all drinking gallons of water. I honestly don't ever recall such a hot pub gig! John literally wrang out his tshirt after we'd finished!
Sophia from Birmingham band, Bitch Mother, sang along to pretty much every song and almost wet herself laughing when we did Seasons in the Sun. That song never fails to impress!
An old guy had been dancing all night (I'd nicknamed him Crazy Legs) but proved himself to be a brilliant bouncer towards the end of the gig when he stopped the moshing from spilling over the monitors.
Once again, it was great that so many people remembered us from last time and had been keeping up with us on the internet.
Back at camp, Paul got the acoustic guitar out and resurrected some songs from our Calling Orson days as we all sat around the firepit.
Sunday - Back in the Lion's Den at St Ives
We had planned to play Pitch and Putt today but time slipped away from us once again! God, we're crap!
We got some food in Hayle and then went back to the campsite to get a taxi into St Ives. Paul went to watch the Liverpool match, John and I went for a walk along the coast path and the others went shopping.
We rendevouzed at the Castle for a couple of beers before getting the bus back to collect the van and gig clothes. Parking in St Ives is tricky so bringing the van down for the whole day wasn't really an option.
Halfway down the hill in the van, we spotted Tony and Bettina so stopped and did hugs through the window, said a quick hello and then carried on before we caused a traffic jam.
Paul and Nigel from Pondlife appeared shortly after we'd started playing and were pogoing madly to White Riot. Paul demonstrated his party trick of throwing beer mats at an alarming velocity and accuracy. One beermat hit Rob's bass and knocked it out of tune. One hit me between the eyes! Hmmmm! We're wondering what Pondlife gig to go to with our own missiles to throw!
Our next obstacle was toilet paper. There had been discussions at the bar about "back in the day" you showed your appreciation for punk bands by throwing toilet paper at them. Apparently. And so Kayne found a couple of bog rolls and we got wrapped up like Andrex puppies! This was proving a most bizarre gig!
Paul had woken up to find his left hand bitten or stung by something during the night and his hand was swollen like a balloon and very painful. He'd tried ice and anti histamines to no avail, so he decided to go for alcoholic anaesthetic. Obviously I had to keep him company, so we hit the Jaegerbombs whilst John went to get the van to pack away.
It was a dry night so when we got back to the campsite, we got the firepit going again and John got stuck into the gin in an effort to catch up. Bedtime was about 5am!
Monday - Time to Go Home!
If I'd thought we had too much stuff on the way down, it felt like even more when it all had to come out of the tents in the morning to pack down! It took ages!
Madge and Claire had to disappear quickly to pick up Mini and Micro Madge from their grandparents'. The rest of us packed away and then drove to Cafe One for lunch before driving back to sunny Devon.
P.S. There's more pics available on our facebook
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