Newcastle – a never ending love story

18 Dec

**I must admit that I have been writing this entry for a few weeks now, knowing that the build up to me actually and FINALLY leaving would leave little time and reflective space. But please don’t expect anything grand. It’s really not.**

If you don’t think you can fall in love with a place, you’ve not been to Newcastle. If you’ve been to Newcastle and you didn’t fall in love with it, you clearly didn’t meet the right people and you didn’t go to the Cumberland.

Newcastle Upon Tyne has been my home for the past 6 years. I arrived as a blonde, slim (ha!), twenty-something with one degree and one email address and I am leaving older/wiser, with another degree and email / facebook / twitter / blog identities. I can’t really put my feelings for this place into structured and meaningful sentences, so this is very much a stream of (semi)consciousness of random fond memories – in somewhat of a chronological order. This will undoubtedly mean more to people who know Newcastle, or at least the UK, but I hope it will somehow give an idea of the canny time I’ve had.

First day, September 2005 – sitting on the steps of Monument eating my first ever takeaway sushi from Pret a Manger watching people walk by, baffled by the mix of winter coats and flip flops. It’s really sunny and I am hoaxed into thinking that the weather in the UK isn’t actually that bad. During my first walk along the Quayside, the Millennium Bridge starts moving – I am the only one around and start thinking I am clearly going mad. Move in with 5 other students – piece of advice: don’t go from living happily by yourself for 2 years to sharing a house with 5 strangers. First night out and I end up at Sea (now Riverside) getting chatted up by a guy and then a girl who wants to leave her fiance because he can’t remember her mobile phone number. After 2 uneventful weeks at uni, there is this guy on my course and we decide to visit the Biscuit Factory for an assignment. Decision to go to pub immediately after (11am) turns into all day pub-crawl in the Ouseburn in the middle of which I have a phone interview and get the job! Day turns into night and the guy ends up being Mr Fab for 5 years. I meet a bunch of lovely people (same day still) and get introduced to the magical world of the Cumberland Arms, eating Ciabattas, drinking Ale (bit strange really) and one guy plays the guitar who will 6 years later be instrumental in getting me a job in Berlin. I never show up for the first day at said job as I decide it’s rubbish. The Cumberland becomes my spiritual home. First of many trips to the Lake District leaves me speechless (NOBODY in Germany knows about the Lake District by the way). First Sunday Roast. Pigs in Blankets. Sticky Toffee Pudding. Discover Argos and Primark. Volunteer for Northern Lights Film Festival. Suggestibles improv comedy workshop where I get frustrated with not being able to think quicker in English. Start working in the Cumberland – me, who has NEVER worked in a bar/pub before suddenly serves Real Ale. And loves it. AV Festival. First folk gig. I turn 25 and decide to do the Great North Run. First summer in the UK and it is hot, hot, hot. Training is really though. Starting to expand my condiment horizon with Branston Pickle and mint sauce. Move in with boyfriend. 4 days before Great North Run I hand in Masters Dissertation and apply for about 15 jobs on the same day. Start working for Arts Consultancy, not really having a clue about anything. Trips to London and Wales. The UK is really very green and there really are a lot of sheep. I become an aunt. Want new job. Start stressing. Stop stressing and decide to join boyfriend in Cannes for Film festival, meet Newcastle Film Producer and get myself a job at Superkrush, where I will work for 4 1/2 years. UK summers really aren’t that great. Facebook. Miss Havishams. Buy house with boyfriend. New friends start popping up everywhere. Boozy dinner parties. Another trip to Cannes where I turn 27. Ski trip to Les Deux Alpes. The Wire. Abersoch. Marocco. Twitter. Ski trip to Meribel. Royal Television Award. Still can’t get the hang of Guinness but Cider is starting to make a lot of sense. As does putting milk in tea. Ski trip to Mayrhofen. True Blood. I become an aunt again. Friends are getting married and are having beautiful babies everywhere. Another 2 half marathons. Move over to the dark side. Press Play. Become MD of Superkrush. Relationship ends sadly but amicably. Move into lovely new flat in Heaton. Stop eating wheat and start spending a fortune on beauty and spa treats. Mad Men. HSDS. New bozo housemate inflicts serious curry addiction upon me. Common Purpose. Barcelona. Professional coffee. Start writing blog. More trips to London and Edinburgh. Turn 30 and celebrate in style. New friends and many cocktails. Peggy, the House Sausage. Malaga. Decision to move to Germany. Bucket List. Leaving Party. Auf Wiedersehen Pets!

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2 Responses to “Newcastle – a never ending love story”

  1. Emily December 18, 2011 at 5:23 pm #

    Fabulous Fab, please keep the blog going it is an endless source of entertainment, thought provoking and often inspiring….also make me feel envious of your ability to write! You will be much missed and i hope that the love affair with newcastle means you return to see us. Bon Voyage lady wishing you joy, happiness, and success in your new life. xxxxxxx love and smiles em

  2. Beth December 18, 2011 at 8:06 pm #

    Wow. Was an absolute pleasure to be part of your adventure. Bring on part two – the Berlin years. xx

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