Tuesday, 1 September 2009

Blogging is Bloody Brilliant!!

When I started my blog I never in a million years thought that I would make friends through it.....but make friends I have!! (Honestly, I have met so many brilliant people that I would never have met otherwise.....it kind of blows my mind!!).

We have just spent the most wonderful weekend in Portsmouth. 'Why were you in Portsmouth?' I hear you ask....well, we were in Portsmouth to celebrate the marriage of two of our blog friends, DJ and Chopper. (They actually got married on the 31st of July but were having a big barbecue for friends and family this weekend and I was over the moon when we were invited to join them!!). We decided, since it was the bank holiday, that we would make a weekend of it and DJ, in addition to inviting us to the barbecue, invited us over to their home on Sunday night for dinner....we had such a good time!! (See, told you blogging was bloody brilliant!!).

We stayed at a fantastic B&B called Clarence Cottage Guesthouse (If you ever go to Portsmouth then you MUST stay there!! Talk about value for money!!). The room, I say room but it was more of a suite, was beautiful (We had a big bedroom, an area off that for making tea and coffee, a separate living room AND a big bathroom all to ourselves!!) and the woman who runs the place is exactly the type of person you want to run a B&B...she was just lovely and she made the most scrumptious breakfast!! (We will definately stay there next time we're in Portsmouth!!). Anyway, we checked in, dumped our stuff and then headed to Queen Elizabeth Country Park just outside Portsmouth where the barbecue was being held.

I have to say, what a brilliant place to have a barbecue!! The views were stunning in all directions and it was very well set up!! (They have a huge barbecue for people to use, a covered area in case it rains, portaloos and loads of picnic tables....brilliant!!). We had such a good time!! DJ's friend Debs, who I recognised from the book launch, and her Aunt came over and sat with us and then we were joined by the lovely Leigh (Helen you were missed!!)....I have no idea what the hell we were talking about but we just didn't stop laughing from the moment we sat down!! We were definitely the loudest table and the most popular!! (Unfortunately the popular bit had absolutely nothing to do with our witty repartee and everything to do with the fact we had tomato ketchup and chocolates but hey....we were still the most popular table!!). Chopper (His name is also Chris so I'm going to use his blog name otherwise I'll just end up confusing you...and me!!!) was doing the man thing and standing at the barbecue wielding tongs whilst DJ was doing her hostess with the mostess so we didn't actually get to spent much time with them but we still really enjoyed ourselves!!

On Sunday we started the day with a wonderful big breakfast at the B&B and then decided to have a stroll along the harbour. Blimey, there was a lot going on!!! There was a kite festival, a circus, a car boot sale, a market and an ABBA tribute band was playing at the bandstand.....the place was absolutely heaving!! We meandered along the sea front, walked the length of the pier, went round Southsea Castle and then followed the old ramparts right round to Spinnaker Tower. We stopped for a coffee, went up the Tower....the views just take your breath away!! (It was a clear day so we could see for miles!!) and then had a mooch round the shops before heading back to the B&B to get ready to go to DJ and Choppers for dinner.

We had a wonderful night with them and I have to say.....OMG that woman can cook!!! We started off sitting in their beautiful back garden (Which was home to THE largest sun flowers I have ever seen in my life!!!) sipping red wine and eating warm home-made bread with cheese and home-made green tomato chutney (which was to die for!!) and then headed inside where we had slow roasted venison with a red wine and chocolate gravy, home grown vegetables and roast potatoes followed by home-made apple pie and cinnamon ice-cream!! (My mouth is watering at the thought!!). DJ even opened the last bottle of her home-made rose wine which was just divine...I tell you, she is a domestic goddess!!

We laughed a lot, the two Chris's got on like a house on fire (They share the same sense of humour....I can't work out if that's a good thing or not!!) and I even got to witness a random comment from N3S which went like this

N3S - 'I don't like this song!'
DJ - 'Well don't listen to it then'
N3S - 'I have to. I can't close my ears you know!!'

I knew I was going to adore him!!!


Guys, thank you so so much for inviting us along to your barbecue and for making us so welcome in your lovely home!!


HelenMHunt said...

I'm so sorry I missed Saturday. Hope I get to meet you again soon xxx

ladyfi said...

Amazing! Sounds brilliant.. and apart from venison, the meal sounds delicious... One of my neighbours is a domestic goddess - got to invite myself round more often, I think! ;-)

BT said...

Wow, wow and WOW, what an amazing time you had Chris, and how lucky you are. The barbecue in the park sounds just wonderful. The B & B almost as good as mine was (I ran one for 9 years), and the walk along Portsmouth Harbour so entertaining. We haven't made it up the tower yet. Must make the effort one time when we are in Worthing.

Such fun, a circus, kite festival, fantastic.

As for that meal at Denyse and Choppers' place, it sounded amazing. Not a fan of venison myself, I find it too strong but the rest. What a domestic goddess she is. Love the comment from NS3. Brilliant. A super post, I enjoyed every line.

Amanda said...

Glad you had such a brill time, Carol x

French Fancy said...

So not only is Denyse a great writer she is also a brilliant cook - it's just not fair! Blogging does mean one meets lots of great people - virtually meeting is almost as good as face to face. Over the next few years I really hope to meet up with all my favourite bloggers - and you'll be up there with the best of them


menopausaloldbag (MOB) said...

Sounds grand lass. Perhaps one day I will get around to meeting my bloggy pals too!

Carol said...

Helen - Awww, it would have been lovely to see you again too!! It was such a shame you couldn't make it...still, next time we're in that neck of the woods...

Ladyfi - You should so cultivate that friendship!!

I love venison but have never cooked it myself. I'm hoping she gives me the recipe because it was soooo tender and yummy!!

BT - Oh you should definitely go up the Tower next time you are there...it's a bit expensive but the views are fab!!

We had such a great time...DJ and Choppers friends are just lovely and our meal on Sunday....well, I would have paid good money for it in a restaurant!!

Amanda - It's brilliant meeting up with blog friends and discovering that you like them just as much in the flesh as you do on their blog!!

French Fancy - Yes, she's a rather talented lady isn't she and she's lovely with it!! (Not fair at all!!)

I would love to meet up with you...I just know that when we do lots of laughter will ensue :-)

MOB - Och aye it was grand by the way :-)

You really should meet up with your bloggy pals...it's such a great thing to do...although it is a bit odd cause your meeting them for the first time but it's like having a get together with a really old friend!!

C x

jenny said...

I feel the same way! I have made some amazing friends via blogs and you're one of them!! :o) GLad you had a brillant visit with Dj and gang. Wish I could have been there! ((hugs))

Ann said...

I was there Carol, well I felt as if I was, ( you forgot to pick me up again ), you describe everything so wonderfully, I knew you had enjoyed yourself, when the brilliant's started to come out, we Scots just love to use that word when happy.

I can sum up your weekend;
It was just pure dead brilliant hen.

Carol said...

Jenny - Yay to blog friends!! (I consider you one too :-D). I wish you could have been there as well but I think it may have been just a wee bit far for you to travel!! Perhaps some day.... :-)

Ann - We didn't forget!! We waited for ages outside your door...beeped the horn and everything!!! Admit it...you were hiding behind the sofa waiting for us to go away :-)

Hehehehe, we Scots do use the word brilliant a lot don't we....well I don't care...the weekend was, as you have so brilliantly put it, pure dead brilliant *grins*

C x

Blu said...

woohoo, sounds like a fab time! pop over to Brittany for a glass of red?

Debs said...

Oh your weekend sounds amazing.

I love the photos, and the sound of DJ's foot is making my mouth water too. Yum.

DJ Kirkby said...

The pleasure was all ours. You two were great company, I felt completely at ease which I desperately needed after havin sensory overload from the BBQ. The two Chris's are a lot alike, height, 'humour', ability to drink copious amounts of alcohol and appear completly sober and so on. And, you have gorgeous teeth! Oh yes you do. Well be round with sultanas and pate sometime next May.

Mark said...

Sounds great. I was in France this weekend meeting up with some old friends at their slightly wacky but relaxing hotel - it's nice just to chill with good people.

Kevin Mullins said...

Excellent - 'tis a wonderful world on't tinternet. I suspect on many occasions my wife and I have probably been in the same pub or shop as you in Malmesbury and not even known it.

Ann said...

Okay, I admit it Carol, I was hiding behind the couch, the problem was I couldn't find ma teef hen, I know I put them in a glass, or was it a cup, ah jist canny find them, then the dog ran away with ma wooden leg, ma red wig shrunk in the wash, and to cap it all, you know the jumper I knitted, I was going to wear it on my day out, knowing it would impress the heck out of you both, well I put it on, and it was so heavy, and with me being legless, I fell over and could not get up again, that's ma excuse anyway hen, brilliant wan, don't you think.

JJ Beattie said...

Oooh, sounds a lovely weekend. And yay to blog friends too!

Queenie said...

Blogging has indeed changed the world and blogfriends are ace, as are fun-packed weekends away. Really glad you had such a good one.

Carol said...

Blu - Just you try and stop me....I'll have a large glass!!

I'm thinking that when we come over to France to visit my Dad (not sure when that is going to be yet) then perhaps we can arrange to meet up!!

Debs - It was fab seeing her again and her food was absolutely stunning!!! (hehehe, your typo made me laugh)

DJ - Noooooooo....not the pate....anything but the pate!!! (LOL)

It was a wonderful night!! As I said to you at the time....good company, good food and loads of wine...you can't beat it!!! I'm already looking forward to May :-D

Yep, the two Chris's are the same height...the height of nonsense!! *grins*

Mark - It's just lovely meeting up with old friends (and blog friends that feel like old friends) and just chilling out!! (Your friends hotel sounds intriguing!!)

Kevin - I know!! We should be ashamed of ourselves really!! We have absolutely no excuse for not getting together do we :-)

Ann - LOL!! (you are bonkers you do know that don't you!!)

JJ - It was a fab weekend!! (Your ears should have been burning as Leigh, DJ and I all agreed that you are rather fabulous!!)

Queenie - It has hasn't it!! What on earth did we do before computers and the internet?

Here's to blogging, blog friends and good weekends *raises mug of tea* (Well, it's a bit early for wine!!)

C x

Ann said...

Aye hen, I do.

Two weeks ago I had a friend and her family over from England, met on a forum, it was wonderful, who said the internet was bad for you.

Lily Sheehan said...

Chocolate gravy!!!! OMG sounds like heaven. I love Portsmouth. I may check that B&B out.

Absolute Vanilla (and Atyllah) said...

It sounds like you had a totally fabby time - I do so love the way we get to make friends out in the big wide blogosphere, it's so very cool! :-) xx

Carol said...

Ann - Well, at least you know :-D

The interweb is such a wonderful place isn't it!! Perhaps the next time we're in your neck of the woods we could get together!!

Lily - I'd never had chocolate gravy before and I have to say that it was absolutely divine!!

If you're going to Portsmouth then you must go stay there!! It was such a lovely place and Tracy made us so welcome...you won't regret it!!

Absolute Vanilla - It is very cool and I have to say that I am very much looking forward to meeting up with you when you are over :-)

C x

Ann said...

That would be wonderful to see you both, anytime you want, though is it okay if I hide my stash of wine ha!.

Tessa said...

Wow! What a great weekend - and how fab to meet up with blog pals in real life and find that you like them just as much (if not more) that you do in Blogland. And YUM! DJ's meal sounded just perfectly perfect!

LittleBrownDog said...

Sounds like a totally fantastic time you had there (and not just for the sake of the ketchup and chocolates). It's so nice when you meet up with a cyber friend and discover they're just the same in real life. Did like the sound of that place you stayed. Fab photos, too.

Carol said...

Ann - Heheh, you are so going to regret saying that!! (and No, it's not ok for you to hide your wine :-D)

Tessa - I've met quite a few blog friends now and I'm never disappointed!! Perhaps I should try and arrange a Wiltshire blogger get together...what do you think?

Little Brown Dog - I would love to think that it was the conversation but in reality I know it was just the ketchup :-)

The place we stayed was wonderful so if you've ever in that neck of the woods I can highly recommend it!!

C x

Ann said...

I regret it already Carol, if only for the sake of my wine.

Though when friends were over a couple of weeks ago, many bottles were partaken of, my own fault, I would insist in filling up glasses, one for you, two for me, suppose I had better go out and replenish, just in case you both suddenly appear on my doorstep.

You do know I live in Australia, don't you Carol.

Carol said...

Ann - LOL....I have your address so there is no escape!!! Don't worry...we're pretty good guests...we bring a number of bottles with us!!!

C x

Anonymous said...

Just seeing if this works :-)

M x

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