Sorry it has taken me so long to get around to writing this. I actually didn’t get back until Tuesday and I’ve been a bit on the busy side since then.
Might as well start at the beginning. I’ve never been to Newcastle before, so I was really looking forward to this despite the fact I wasn’t going to be running.
I headed down on the train to Edinburgh then picked up Fiona at Edinburgh before we headed down to Newcastle.
Once we got there we had a bit of a wander around before checking into our hotel. This was the view from our room:
Once we had got settled in, we headed out so I could get my bearings (I get lost easily, so this was essential) and it allowed us to check out how to get up to the race the next day. Then we headed down to the quayside to take in some more of the atmosphere of the City Games before we headed for food.
Even managed to get a shot of Fiona walking in this one!
We ate, then chilled out and attempted an early night. Before we knew it, morning had arrived and we nipped out to get some breakfast and once that had been consumed it was time for Fiona to get into race gear and for us to head to the start of the race.
The whole of the city seemed to be going in the same direction. She dropped off her bag and then we managed to bump into the Sneddens so had a quick chat before Fiona decided to head down to her start so I made for the bridge.
I was hoping to get a view, but the camera crew were on the side of the bridge that I wanted to be on, so I could see nothing.
I did get a corner spot on the other side, so before the races were due to start I was people watching. There were some brilliant costumes which included The Stig, Batman, King Arthur (from the Monty Python film the Holy Grail). I even managed to get a glimpse of Mo warming up, but soon it was time for the start and I managed to capture some of it.
Elite Womens Start
I tried to get a shot of the sheer number of people there, but all I could manage was these poor attempts:
I didn’t wait around, I headed straight back into town for what I knew was going to be an uncomfortable Metro ride to South Shields.
The first 2 trains which came past were jam packed, but I’d decided that no matter what I was getting on the next train, and so when that arrived in I managed to squish myself on it. Talk about a game of sardines. It was packed with barely any standing room and of course it was quite warm.
When I finally got off the Metro at South Shields I knew I would be far too late to see the winners and there was a good chance I would even miss Fiona. I just headed straight for the meeting point and was only there a matter of 5 minutes before I saw Fiona heading towards me. She’d not had the best race, but it was pretty warm and I know I suffer in the heat so in a way despite the long and squashed journey to the finish, I was actually quite glad I hadn’t been running.
We waited for her clubmates before we headed for the beer tent. Turns out they have glasses which hold 2 pints. Fiona could hardly hold one:
We consumed our drinks which took a fair amount of time then headed for our bus to get back to the city. On hearing from other friends who had run, it looked like the journey back would be just as long, however at leas this time I had a seat, which made all the difference.
When we finally got back into the city it was back to the hotel to freshen up then out for dinner. Wagamama was the restaurant of choice and after a fabby meal there we headed back to the hotel for a nightcap and then bed.
On Monday morning we checked out of our hotel, dumped our cases in the left luggage at the bus station and headed for a massive cooked breakfast at a nearby Weatherspoons pub. Then it was time to hit the shops.
Amazingly enough we both came away empty handed, but I did manage to get the following tourist photos:
I could have stayed in the Arcade all day. There was a guy (who is in the photo) who was busking playing cello. He was fantastic and the classical pieces he was playing almost brought tears to my eyes they were so beautiful.
Eventually though it was time to bid farewell to Newcastle as we headed to the train station for the trip back.
Looking forward to running this next year. The atmosphere was great and the support along the course according to friends was amazing.
Until next year Newcastle, see you on 13th September 2015 🙂