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Wednesday, January 06, 2010

2010 Preview

So what can we expect over the next twelve months? Well so far we have only made definite plans for two Benders. Today marks 100 days till we set foot once again in Germany, as we take off to watch TSV 1860 take on Fortuna Dusseldorf. Apart from the game, we are aiming to make trips to Dortmund, home of DAB and Dortmunder Union (those are beers, for the sober/female amongst you), as well as Cologne, spiritual home of the Shoutster, or as he prefers to be known in the Fatherland, Der Kolschinator. We have a good crew assembled, there are ten of us, and we are hoping to hook up with Dance Matt and the Major. The other given, is of course our annual FA Cup Final Bender. We may actually consider moving this out of Bradford town centre, which is quite frankly dying on it's arse, as Helmets mate is no longer involved with our meatball stop, Giuseppe's. This was the only reason we continued to trek into barren wastelands of the city centre, and as the council continues to push ahead with it's ludicrous "Park at the Heart" scheme, I am on the verge of a boycott of the district. The Tesco list awaits. But I transgress. My choice would be Leeds city centre, or perhaps Wakefield. Both have an abundance of boozers, and would provide better choice than our beleaguered city.

So those are the ones that will happen regardless. These ones are more likely than not going to happen, given dates and/or finances. This summer is World Cup year, so a lot will have to be worked around England games. Of course, fingers crossed, if we should win the damn thing, it would trigger probably the greatest national bender the country has ever witnessed. Enough dreaming though. and back to reality. Captain Queso has bought himself a boat, which means but one thing. Pirate Bender. Our plan is to sail the treacherous waters of Loch Lomond for a weekend, dressed as Buccaneers and Dandys. No dates yet, and as the boat only sleeps four, we will probably have to set sail near a tavern to rest our heads. Damn and blast. It has been a while since we managed two foreign jaunts in the same year, but this year we are going to give it a whirl. The first weekend in September is the date of the annual Brussels beer festival. My plan is to catch the train down early Friday, and come back Monday morning. It is held in the world renowned Grand Place, and features hundreds of lagers, beers, ales and anything else that can be considered a beer. It would be nice to see some old timers make a commitment, I am looking in your direction King Dave, Lobon, Dangerous and the like. I have priced up the train fair at around £95 return, which is a veritable bargain, if you ask me. At the moment there are some very reasonably priced rooms, coming in around the £60 mark. Grand total? Just £155 to you! Of course spending money is another matter......

On the football front, the Away Days for the Bantams all fall on awkward days. The ones that I had my eye on, Lincoln and Bournemouth, are prime examples. First up Lincoln. I would love to spend the day watching the football and taking in a few pubs in this historic Cathedral city, but the scheduled date for the game is the 23rd of January. which is just before pay, on the longest, tightest month of the year. Lottery win not withstanding, I can't justify this trip financially. The problem with the Bournemouth jaunt is it's close proximity to our aforementioned shindig around Germany. So what are the alternatives? Well the first one is probably the least glamorous destination in world football. Accrington Stanley. It is on the 20th of February and is a short train ride away. I know that those who are interested will wonder why we don't drive over, but you can't beat going on the old bone rattler, and it means we can all drink our selves merry en route. The away day that I would like to make before seasons end is Chesterfield. I have always wanted to see the crooked spire, and I know a fellow Lowen fan who lives down that way. It is the penultimate chance to take in another ground of the season, as Wembley, via the playoffs seems miles away at the moment.

Of course there are always unexpected one's that crop up out of the blue, in fact they are some of the best to be had. I know of at least on member who turns 40 this year, Brother Helmet is in charge of organising some form of shindig to celebrate. As I mentioned earlier in this posting, there will be plenty of ales quaffed during the World Cup in South Africa. A favourable time difference, means barring one game, all the others are a very reasonable 7:30pm kick off. So that's the plan in '10, let's hope it's a good one.

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