skew_whiff: (come into the factories)
skew_whiff ([personal profile] skew_whiff) wrote2013-04-15 07:02 pm


Last Friday was my 24th birthday. Which means I am now undeniably in my mid-twenties - although also, mercifully, just about used enough to the concept of being a twentysomething that I'm no longer thrown into mild panic just by the thought of it. (God knows why it bothered me so much, given that I hated my teens, but it did. No doubt this is going to keep repeating itself every decade or so until I either mature enough to stop caring, or become senile enough to stop noticing.)

Anyway, over the past few years I've established the habit of celebrating my birthday by going off on a trip somewhere, and this time round I went to Manchester. Which I've visited before, but never for long enough to really appreciate it, and usually I've either ended up lost or quite drunk or both. It's a big, sprawly sort of city - not quite so much as London, but certainly enough to easily overwhelm a visitor who hasn't got a map handy. Luckily, this time I did have a map, and I had a thoroughly good time of it.

- So, I spent a great deal of my time mooching around museums and galleries, because they're usually free and they make me feel all intellectual and whatnot. The Museum of Science and Industry is vast and impressive (albeit not much different from other science museums I've been to in the past), but unfortunately at the time I was visiting was absolutely swarming with small, horrid children, so I ended up just taking a look at the planes and making a hasty exit. Mercifully quieter, and more unusual, was the People's History Museum, where amongst other things they've got Harold Wilson's pipe (well, one of them) and the 'donkey jacket' that got Michael Foot into trouble.

In a similar vein of things of interest primarily to history geeks, the Imperial War Museum North is absolutely fantastic - the building is small but they fit a hell of a lot in there, and I appreciated their efforts to showcase not only the familiar bits of modern warfare but also highlight the aspects which don't get so much attention. I've already made a mental note to find out more about the Burma campaign of WWII, and have a new favourite historical figure in Flora Sandes, a British woman who somehow ended up fighting in the Serbian army during the First World War. Really fascinating temporary exhibition on battlefield medicine, too, not to mention a rather gorgeous Harrier jump jet that's one of the first things you see as you walk in to the main exhibition hall. Seriously, if you get the chance, go.

- Rather annoyingly there's not much out in the cinema at the moment that's particularly exciting, but I wanted to see a movie on my birthday, so I ended up watching Trance. 7 out of 10, I'd say - it starts off well, but by the end it tests one's suspension of disbelief somewhat. The cinematography and soundtrack are fantastic, though, as you'd expect from something directed by Danny Boyle, and I did appreciate all the nice close-ups of James McAvoy and his lovely face. (It's also, I think, possibly the only film I've ever seen in which pubic hair styling preferences turned out to be a plot point. Which is at least distinctive.)

- [personal profile] newredshoes, I walked past this place and thought of you. I looked it up and it's not just a historical/Shakespearean reference, either, the Percy brothers actually were (distantly) relatives of Harry Hotspur. Which is pretty cool.

- I spent Friday alone, but on Saturday some friends came to meet me for a meal and a night out on Canal Street. And, well, I won't go into details, largely because I can't remember it in much other than in vague outline, but any night which starts with a generously-sized martini and ends with getting the number of a cute Australian bloke is a damn good night.

So yeah. Pretty decent birthday, I'd reckon. I think I'm just about starting to get the hang of this adulthood lark.
alexdamien: (Default)

[personal profile] alexdamien 2013-04-16 04:30 am (UTC)(link)
So it was your birthday? Congratulations! I'm also 24, but my birthday was in december :P
Did you take pictures of your trip? It sounds very nice!
newredshoes: radio tower on top of the world (hollow crown | but by the chance of war)

[personal profile] newredshoes 2013-08-18 04:57 pm (UTC)(link)
Like an asshole, I have had this tab open since April meaning to reply. /o\ That picture is EPIC. Thank you for sharing it!