Following on from my comments in last week's entry that I had found some grey hairs in my mane, it was indeed confirmed on Wednesday night when I popped around to Phil's parents' house for a visit. The state of my hair was discussed, and then Phil and Gill had a close up look and said they could see about "20 or 30" grey hairs sitting proudly in the crown of my head. Knowing that I needed my colour done anyway, I wasn't too worried about it and thought I'd get it done at some stage. But all day at work on Thursday the thought of the hairs that I couldn't bend my neck down enough to see plagued my mind, and I took myself to Boots to pick up some hair colour.
Mistake number two:
I had an appointment for a haircut on Friday morning, so I thought I'd take my chances with the home hair colour on Thursday night, and, thinking I would come out looking like the models on the front of the blonde dye box, I drowned my hair in the concoction of bleach and whatever else you mix up in the little plastic bottle and then set about cutting up the veges for dinner while the colour developed
. The instructions said to leave the colour in for half an hour, after which time I should wash it out and put the conditioner in my hair. After 20 minutes, I went and looked in the mirror and to my horror, saw that my hair was an orange colour. "Oh no, oh no, oh no!!!" I ran up those stairs quicker than I think I've ever ascended them, and raced into the bathroom to wash that dye right outta my hair. "Maybe it'll be better when it's dry," I thought. It wasn't. The hair dyes were, as with everything else in this country, 2 for 1, so I had a second packet of colour that was a darker blonde. I thought "beauty, I'll whack that in," and went about putting the other colour in my hair, knowing full well that using that much bleach in one day was sure to be bad for me. Faced with another 30 minute wait, I went back downstairs and continued what I was doing before I spotted my orange hair. After 10 minutes my anxiety was building, and I was walking around the house shaking my head furiously at what a bad idea doing my own hair was. Julie would surely be horrified! After 20 minutes I assessed the colour again in the mirror, and agreed with the devil in me to hold off for at least another 5 minutes before panicking. After four minutes I ran back upstairs, bent my head over the bath and got the shower hose onto my head. Another glance in the mirror and a slightly improved sight met my eyes. I dried off my hair and got the straighteners onto it, and decided that it was ok. I could deal with it. It was certainly much better than before.
Mistake number three:
See mistake number one and mistake number two. I woke up on Friday morning and was horrified when I looked into the mirror and was surprised that it didn't shatter in front of me
. Despite telling myself the night before that my hair was ok, after sleeping on it I decided that I was in fact deluded, and that my hair needed rescuing. Phil kept telling me that my hair was ok, but I knew deep down that I looked like a Simpson, so I went up to the hairdressers at 10am after an earlier phone call to brief them on my dilemma and asking them to allocate a little extra time to see if they could fix my yellow head. The hairdressers knew who I was as soon as I walked through the door, telling me that "it doesn't look that
bad". They needed glasses. Deciding it was too soon to put any more colour in, they washed my locks with some silver shampoo in the hope of toning the colour down a bit so that it wasn't so harsh on the eyes. It worked, because the colour was a little less yellow than when I'd first walked through those doors. Coupled with a fresh hair cut, it looked alright, despite the fact I went home and tidied it up with the GHD to get it to look the way I wanted it to.
What an idiot. I will never ever do my own hair again. Ever.
Feeling confident enough to go to York for the weekend and not be mistaken for a cartoon character, Phil and I got in the car and headed up the motorway towards York. Stopping every few minutes to join our fellow road users in the obligatory traffic jams (so very frustrating) we were able to make a 2.5hr journey stretch out to a delightful three hours
. Bloody traffic. You can't get anywhere in this country without having to stop for traffic jams. I suggested to Phil a few reasons the roads get so congested, and finally concluded that there are just too many people in this country and the roads haven't caught up yet.
Once we got to York, the plan was to have a bit of a look around and find somewhere to have some dinner. We checked into the hotel and then walked along the old city walls into the town where we spotted the Guy Falkes pub and, realising they had Addlestone's, made that our first stop of the night. We then went down by the river for a couple of ciders and fed the ducks post-it-notes that I had in the bottom of my bag which had no doubt accumulated crumbs on the sticky bit. They loved those post-its! Once the ducks were full, we took ourselves to a cocktail bar that Phil had googled, so of course the night ended badly, after having another night on the cocktails and educating the kebab van man on the wonders of the kebab burger, telling him it's the way forward, and helping him pry £1 from an unsatisfied (drunk) customer.
Waking on Saturday, it soon became clear that the cocktails were lethal, and had stolen some of our memories, for we both had blanks that we could not explain. Need. Food. We got up and shuffled into town in search of breakfast and then wandered through the York Minster gothic cathedral. It was quite beautiful inside, and once we got past the door bitch who I nearly had to punch in the neck after insisting that I make a tax deductible donation to the church (was the £9 admission not enough of a donation?) and who then went on to record my reason for not donating in her little notebook, we spent some time taking in the gothicness of the church
. There was a wedding going on in the abbey, and so we had to wait for a little while before we were allowed in there to have a look around. So I took a pew on one of the pews and was joined by Philo. Together, we noticed some curious behaviour from other visitors, but there was one in particular who caught our eye. Assuming the guise of a nun and displaying similar characteristics to the door bitch I encountered at the entrance, there was a woman standing near to us giving dirty looks to people who were coming up out of the crypt under the abbey. There was a fire exit sign above the door to the crypt, suggesting that people keep clear in case of a fire. It's pretty clear what this means: don't obstruct the doorway if there's a fire. No problems there. But this nutter of a woman kept going down the little steps and closing the gate that led into the crypt, telling people that because it was a fire exit they were not permitted to go down there. We laughed and at one point laughed uncontrollably when we heard the troll cry "excuse me, that's a fire exit, you're not allowed in there" to some people who dared to try and enter. Phil, thinking this was funny, called out "excuse me!" and received some unwanted attention! But it was obvious that she was just some old busy body with nothing better to do than to try and enforce church law, and in fact she was out of line telling people what to do, and we watched as she was moved along by one of the ushers who had been told about the disturbance. What an idiot!
Once we'd had a look in the abbey and finally a visit to the very uninteresting crypt museum, we wandered back towards the city wall and stopped at a cafe for a shitty caramel slice and can of cloudy lemonade that we'd discovered earlier that day . Mmmmmm. It was decided that we should head back to the hotel for a bit of a rest before heading out for dinner
. On the walk home we realised that we weren't the only ones in York who would have booze-induced headaches that weekend, having spotted numerous hens and bucks do's traipsing their way around the streets. After a bit of a rest we settled in for a beautiful dinner at an underground Italian restaurant. My gnochetti looked like little maggots, but I managed to move that thought from my mind and really enjoyed the meal. We followed up dinner with a couple of drinks at a no swearing bar and turned in for the night.
The Sunday sun rose and the cleaner in the hall hinted that we might like to think about checking out at midday with her vacuuming, so we set about finding some breakfast and waited an eternity to be served, and after scoffing that we drove back to Birmingham and looked forward to the takeaway Indian that we'd decided to have for dinner.
The news that day had featured reports of riots and looting in London following the shooting of a man by police. What started as a peaceful protest ended up in all out riots and buildings were burnt, windows smashed, cars burnt out and shops looted. What do these hooligans think they are doing? Unsettling a nation that already has enough problems on its plate. Birmingham had a dose as well with people looting and creating havoc in the city and creating unrest on Sunday night. I was certainly glad that I wasn't in London to experience first hand the madness of all the rioting. I have opinions on it, but I might leave those for next week's blog once all this madness has died down. Let's see how the government decide to deal with it.
On a lighter but sort of related note, I wondered earlier in the week what makes people such scabs
. Everyone wants something for nothing these days and thinks they're entitled to a free ride. At work there is a vending machine in one of the kitchens to fulfil the 3.30-itis cravings of employees. One day during the week a dude was in to fill up the machine and, like a moth to a flame, two particular girls swarmed over to the filler dude and started chatting away to him. Putting on their friendliest voices and feigning interest in what the dude had to say, they were told that it was his last day and that he wouldn't be back again to fill up the machine but instead someone would be coming in his place. And then he handed them some freebies, just as he'd done the last time when he was there and the girls just happened to be in the kitchen at the same time. Did he seriously not think they were just being scabs? When a Mars Bar is only 50p why wouldn't you just pay for it rather than suffer the embarrassment of everyone knowing you're a tightarse by stalking the filler dude? We work, we make money, we buy stuff. So there's no need to scab. Unreal.