If you’re expecting a political rant, you’ll either be relieved, disappointed, or prone to dark masochist thoughts, both. If you haven’t already slipped into a catatonic state, keep reading. I very often during a season, get the opportunity to do a double header weekend, I don’t very often, get the chance to do three games in three days, given the time and money, I would love to do seven in seven, but wouldn’t probably have the time to write this. (Stop rattling the collection tins, it’s deafening, people won’t be able to concentrate) There was only two people serving at New Street station, when I went to get my advanced tickets for next year, (Sheffield on January 1st, well it technically, next year) and then caught the train over to Shrewsbury, passing a building site just after Wellington, on where I did my education, (or stared out of the window, daydreaming about football mainly) I couldn’t help hearing a door slamming on another era of my life. I touched down in Shrewsbury, and went in The Albion Vaults, a pub I couldn’t remember if I’d been in, especially as things have a habit of changing, I was impressed though, not only at a really good jukebox, but the permanent price of £2:40 for a pint of anything from the St Anne’s Brewery, The Salopian was next, a place I’ve been in before many times, and will again.
“Those dreaded ‘half and half’ toilet rolls”
I dragged myself away from the Hearts v Rangers game, as the rest of the pub watched a game between. . . . . Oh like I care, and went in The Coach and Horses, one I definitely hadn’t been in before, and I’ve got to say, the Sunday roast smelt gorgeous, and I moved on after having a quick pint, and before I started to eat my own arm.
“I still prefer the olde pen and paper”
Gauging timing for pub visiting, football attending, and train travel isn’t as easy as it sounds, even with research, The Abbey, (The pub, not the church) was a fair mooch, and wasn’t really worth the effort. A posh estate pub, in a posh estate, (I live in Aston, nothing posh about that place)
I did get chance to just push the door open on one that had slammed shut a few years ago,
“Where’s the word?”
Have we really got to a stage, where the word ‘Gay’, isn’t good for selling houses? While we’re at it, it should be, blue and amber, not just amber, they’ll be changing coracle to just boat, next. I picked up my pace, (not in Darrell’s league) to get to where I was meeting up with Val and John, and as I ducked into The Masonic Arms for an extremely quick half, Val phoned me to see where I was, they’d beaten me.
“I know it’s a disgusting looking arm”
I could’ve cried with happiness, not only had they got me a ticket by them, in the safe standing area, but I was going to get to experience it. It’s the way forward.
As me and Val talked about football in general, and not just catching up with personal stuff, Shrewsbury scored, not a bad finish either, the Shrews haven’t had the best of seasons so far, but things are starting to look up, there wasn’t much to look down on, in truth, I was enjoying this safe standing lark, and had wondered how it would work, as unlike Celtic, there wasn’t any corners to put it, what Shrewsbury have done, works extremely well for them, they’ve put the rail seats at the back, so people standing, aren’t obstructing anyone, much as I’d love it down St Andrews, I’m not sure, the less well behaved fans, (I’ll diplomatically put it like that) wouldn’t cause problems. I was a neutral, with a family based soft spot for Shrewsbury, but I’ve got to point out that, the referee was awful in the second half, so bad, that he awarded a very dubious penalty to Scunthorpe, with only a couple of minutes remaining, justice was served, as the Shrewsbury keeper had obviously seen footage of the Blues first goal from the previous day, and kept his legs shut. 1:0 to Shrewsbury, would we be paired in the draw?
John very kindly dropped me off opposite The Salopian, and he even stopped the car, so I didn’t go bouncing down the pavement, and into the river. Another one of those Premier League games was on the T.V. and the pub was full of never attending fans, I watched the last throes of the Aberdeen v Celtic game, on my own, with the forlorn hope, that Aberdeen would equalise, they didn’t, and I moved on to The Loggerheads, I know it’s a Marston’s owned, and ran pub, with a Marston’s umbrella range, but the place is so comfy, and a true slice of Shrewsbury history, you half expect someone in the corner, to be writing with a quill. I had just enough time for a second revisit of the day, and dropped in the Albion Vaults, before falling asleep on the train, and having to get the next one back to New Street, from Birmingham International, I had done 3 games in 3 days mind.