Friday, 2 September 2011

A slight change of subject before the next part of the trip...

Another blog posting I read today showing a scene from Wolverhampton reminded me of this slightly different scenario.
I once stayed in Wolverhampton.
 There was a mix up with my accommodation when sent to Birmingham on business for a week and since there was a show on at the NEC, it was only after a long search by my firm's administration staff that somewhere was found for me. It was in Wolverhampton, nothing was available anywhere closer.  On arriving, I was met by my landlady and shown a room which was temporally vacant for the next three days and after that I would have to move to another room when that became vacant later in the week. The room I went into had been empty for several days and was incredibly cold.  Despite being April it had snowed most of the day. There was no heating and the sheets felt like cold water as you slid into them. I awoke at about one AM shivering violently and chilled in all my extremities. I had to rub my arms and legs to get sensation back into them and stop shivering. I managed to warm up enough to get back to sleep after I had moved around enough to generate a little body heat and I awoke early, before six, fortunately free of hypothermia.  I dressed  and went to the dining room which I knew was heated, prepared to wait there in the warm. I was a little early for breakfast, I thought, but was greeted by my landlady with a cheerful ‘Morningg chick’ In strong Wolverhampton. She was already preparing breakfast and delivered a plate of fried cholesterol surprisingly quickly. I mentioned the fact that the room was cold and she told me that she may be able to sort something out for me for tomorrow night, she would let me know.
When I returned that evening, I was told, ’Oive got you in the spare bed room chick.’ and she showed me upstairs to the attic. This room was in the roof space and was the same size as the whole floor plan of the house and it was full of furniture. The room was not actually a spare bedroom as I had assumed, but a room in which she stored the spare beds. Hence spare bed room.  In one small corner she had made up a bed and Luxury! It had a warm radiator right by the bed.  I had already eaten at the hotel where my more fortunate colleagues were staying, so I sat in the small dining room cum lounge with some of the other inmates to watch TV. This turned out to be a slot meter TV where the guests were expected to feed the thing with 10p coins. It seemed it was  by general consent a sort of round and so each of us took turns to put a coin in the meter at about thirty minute intervals when the dial showed it was getting low. About ten o'clock, one man had just put a 10p piece in when suddenly the door to the kitchen opened a crack, a hand shot round the corner and pulled the mains plug from the TV. ‘That’s enough for tonight. Oive got to get oop uarly and do the breakfusts. Goodnight.’ And the door slammed shut.
A stunned silence followed by some murmuring of discontent as we all sidled off to our respective bed rooms.
I was happy enough to have a nice warm bed room and soon was able to get to sleep. At six I woke up and was about to strip off to wash when the door burst open and in came the landlady, saying, ‘Come on chick, no one oversleeps here. Your breakfast is getting cold!’ and walked out slamming the door. After washing, I went down and sure enough found my breakfast on the dining room table slowly congealing. I was not very hungry that morning for some reason. I was saved the next day by someone having to go home early from the rather more up-market hotel where the rest of my colleagues were staying and I was able to get in there, but I have never forgotten my Wolverhampton landlady and her strange brand of hospitality.


  1. K went to University in Wolverhampton. It has an odd effect on people.

  2. I'm sorry that you had this strange experience, Snafu. I guess such things happen anywhere!Wolverhampton is a wonderful city with much to recommend it and usually the hospitality is second to none. It most certainly did not have an odd effect on me and I always felt very much alive there, encountering people who were generous, kind and good. x

  3. Elizabeth, Don't be sorry, it was supposed to cheer you up, it was funny. The stars are still shining up there and talking of stars - well planets - Jupiter has been particularly bright these last few days, with three of its moons easily visible with binoculars.

  4. And it did, Snafu. Thank you. The boys told me about Jupiter and they have been looking through the telescopes, but I can never tell whether I'm looking at what everybody else is lookimg at in these things! x

  5. Hilarious story, Snafu and one to be sure to include in your memoirs!

  6. Singing Postman? ! ** (yes, I do remember. and now I'm going to be singing that stupid song all day! Molly Wimbley, she smo(a)ked like a chimbley.......) I lived in Norfolk for a while. Took me ages to stop saying 'roit' when I told people what I did for a job.

    Apologies to anyone reading this thread who has no idea what I'm talking about!

  7. Thanks for your wonderful comment on my 'H' post. Very well done! Loved this story about your digs. It takes all kinds!