Riga Part 2 – We’re Going To Need A Bigger Boat

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So day 2 started promptly at 9am on the dot…..Our alarm call rings in and we’re up, dressed and on the way to the hotel restaurant in a flash.

Me and LJ find Andy T sitting there on his own, so we fill our plates with scrambled egg, sausage etc and take our seats next to him.

One or 2 of the other BOAD slowly file in over the next 10 minutes. Andy reports that he tried to wake GP several times but to no avail…..seems the last 24 hours were a little too much for him.

So we have a bit of banter, we discuss how shit the pub crawl was last night and also what we’re going to do today.

Not wanting to waste the day sat in the hotel bar, or any one of the numerous seedy bars we decide its time to take in a little culture, so we decide at some point today we will go sight seeing.

With breakfast finished we agree to retire to our rooms for a while, just to let breakfast settle.

Several hours later i’m woken from my nap by the hotel room telephone ringing, i answer it bleary eyed, its the Waa…..apparently they are having a few glasses of wine in their room as a bit of a warm up.

It seems that Elliot had nipped out to the local market earlier to have a quick look around.

Jebus knows how or why, but he had stumbled upon a netto supermarket (not sure how super it was though)

Whilst in there he spotted a favourite drink of his….white wine……and not just a bottle of white wine….a full 3 litre box of the stuff. (Not quite sure why it was stacked in the DIY section next to the paint section though?)

Anyway, Elliot took himself back to his room to announce his victorious find to the Waa and Clive.

“Alright lads, i know you 2 like red wine but i’ve got 3 litres of white here if you fancy a few glasses”

“I thought you didn’t like red wine?”

“I don’t….thats why i’ve got white wine”

“Well why does it say ‘Chillies Finest Red Wine’ on the side of the box?”


Anyway, they’d chinned the wine and were now ready for a bit of sight seeing, so we met in the hotel bar, had a beer and set of out into the city.

It was our intention to visit the skyline bar, this is quite a nice Lounge bar situated right at the top of the Revel Hotel on the 26th floor.

So rather than get a taxi straight there we had agreed to walk ther, taking in the sights on the way.

We saw the national opera house, various statues and memorials, including Latvia’s Freedom monument, which the Waa spent 20 minutes taking 100′s of pictures of! We also met one or two interesting people.

The one i remember most vividly was the little old lady…..that smelled of tinkle. As th eWaa had finished his marathon monument photo session, this little old lady approached us…..she opened by telling us that it was chinese new year, followed by the fact that she studied English literature at university, how she had travelled around the world etc etc…..now we all listened patiently, not only to be polite, but also to keep an eye on the huge metal bar she was carrying….Honestly, this thing was the size of a full walking stick and made of thick metal, jebus knows how she carried it around, but i’m sure she could give anybody a swift belt on the head if the mood took her……

So we listened to a few more of her stories whilst trying not to breath through our noses……and then the sting came……”could you spare a little change”…..

God love em, we’d been reeled in…..lord knows that the Latvian tramps and beggars out number the general population 2 to 1 but i hadnt seen it coming…..i really thought she was just a genuine sweet old lady…..any way, the Waa gave her a handful of change an we moved on.

A couple of minutes later and we’d arrived at the Revel Hotel. Upon entering i was quite impressed by the place.  If i ever go back to Riga i would definetly be stopping in that hotel.

So we enquire at reception how we get to the skyline bar and were given directions to the elevators.  they only go to the 24th floor so we have to walk up the remaining 2 stories.

We walk into the bar and again, it was very impressive, as the bar is so high up and every wall is just glass windows, we got a superb view of the whole city.  We got the beers in and settle down for a bit of banter.

We goto the smoke room and meet a couple of charachters…..some lads from Norway.  We have a little banter with them then go back to our seats.

Elliot mentions he’s seen a long blond haired lad that is totally wasted, we look over and notice its one of the norwegian group.  It turns out the long haired geezer is the other lads boss, and it seems like they are intent on a little revenge.  As we are looking over, one of the ladsturns around, putting his back towards his boss, drops his pants and rubs his bare ass in his bossess face whilst numerous people start taking pictures of it….no doubt they’ll be one less employee at that place come Monday morning.

It was around this point that GP finally crawled out of his pit and sent a text asking where we were, as it was around 6ish, we said we would be heading back to the hotel, geting ready and then going out.

So on the way down we by chance happen to get in a panoramic elevator…..its basically a glass evelvator on the outside of the building….not a problem for most of us….apart from LJ that is…..he’s petrified of heights….

So to make the trip go a little slowly, i press each and every one of the 26 buttons on the elevator……

So we go down one floor, breifly stop, then down another floor etc etc

LJ’s gradually becoming accustomed to the fact the even though he is high up, he is relativley safe……well….safe that is until i started jumping up and down as high and fast as i can……this causing the elevator to lurch down alot quicker than it is meant too….then the Waa joins in…..with both of us at it LJ makes a dash for the door at the next stop!…..probably for the best as im not sure how good Latvian engineering is!

So, A brief walk and a citi dog (tasty hot dog) later, we were back, showered and ready for another night out.

The night before we had spotted a couple of Irish bars, so we all agreed to meet up at them at some point.

A few of the lads went to the more modern one to watch sky sports while the rest of us went to the older styled one.

We’d struck gold….they had good beer on tap and English bar staff.  We had a chat and a laught with the barman (Mick) and the night ticked on.  At on point, one of the barmaids (a local) had come up and give the man Mick a bit of verbal…..the next thing we know he is over to her telling her he wants “A word in the office”….

So he marches off….but she doesn’t budge…..a minute later he’s back saying “YOU…OFFICE….NOW”……she got the message this time and promptly followed him.  Upon his return he explained she was nothing but trouble….but what was much worse and totally wound him up was the way she pronuonced his name…..”meeeeeek”

He explained that thats all he hears all day every day and it was getting to the point where he was going to have a nervous breakdown if she carried on calling him that way…..Needless to say, we all called him that on every possible occasion for the rest of the trip.

After a few drinks the lads started to have a bit of banter.

Lloyd earned himself a new reputation as a bit of a story teller (Jackanory type stories!)

He was chatting to Elliot at one point….

This is Elliots version of hopw the conversation went

“He then told me how his grandad (who was a TA soldier) was told to hold of the Germans at Dunkirk and how he carried his mate off the beach when he was shot and sailed back to England.  I said oh my Grandad was in the RAF as a fitter armouer loading the bombs and bullets on to the planes out in the desert, he said ah well when my grandad got back to England they asked him to become a pilot and fly wellington bombers he got shot down 3 times made it back twice but captured the 3rd time and was march by foot across france, germany then down poland to a camp next to Auschwits!!

I just thought cant be a good pilot getting shot down 3 times, the christmas gene runs strong in his family…..a bit like the baldricks!”

Another of Lloyds conversations was with Andy Tague…..

Andy made the mistake (of talking to him) of telling Lloyd that he was a keen fisherman, and how he’d been to Winderemere on three occasions, each time catching a pike……

It was mere seconds later that Lloyds rebuttle came……

“Oh thats nothing…..I was in the caribbean fishing……they threw a load of chum in the water and we dived in to have a look at the sharks…..then we got out, got strapped into the seats and i caught a shark…..a great white it was…..”

At this point Lloyd demonstrates just how big it was by stretching his arms out.  the way he made out, it was like he had caught Jaws’ bigger grumpier twin brother…..

Andy looked at Chris…..his cheeks tightened….his sides started to clench…..and he had to make an exit before he burst out laughing in Lloyds face……

A comment made not so quietly by Chris was “The shark was only that big because thats as far as your arms will stretch”

Anyway….with the stories over we all made it over to the other Irish bar to meet up with the rest of the lads.

A few beers in and we notice that LJ is up to his old holiday trips again……Everytime we go away he always ends up making friends with and spending time with strange men…..this time was no different…a bunch of southerners this time…….I’m not judging here……each to their own i guess!

A little later we decided to visit the bar we had been in the night before…..just for a few more cheap vodkas……

Once in there Lloyd made a point of saying how he had “Sorted out the cheap vodkas last night by speaking Latvian to the barman”……his story fell apart when i pointed out to him the plastic flyer on the bar that offered cheap vodka at exactly the same price we had been paying for it……

A few (ok…a lot of ) drinks in and a few of us decided to call it a night….so we headed off back to the hotel…..but not before finding somewhere to purchase some trophy food…..Luckily we found a MacDonalds.  Now its only fair to state at this point we were all feeling the effects of the vodka we’d consumed.  So we put our food orders in, got our burgers and sat down at one of the tables…..Clive hadn’t ordered any food…his logic being why waste money on food late at night when i can starve myself and fill up on the free breakfast back at the hotel in the morning…..

Shortly after he had explained this…..he was unconsious flat out on the window sill asleep and dribbling……

I’m not sure why, but at some point between us ordering our food and eating it, the supervisor had seen fit to actually lock the door…..im not sure if this was a ploy to close up shop early or just to keep us prisoner until they had sold their daily quota of nuggets…..

Munka went over and got us released without too much bother.  We decided to celebrate our new found freedom by going to the bar next door for a quick beer…..oh and also for me to buy some more fags as i had just smoked my last one and didn’t fancy the long walk into town in the morning to get my breakfast fix.

Clivey became very amourous towards Munka…..And with Munka in a mild panic we all decided it was time to head back to the hotel.

We made it back and once again booked our alarm call for the morning.

So Sunday rolls around and we’re awake and down at breakfast shortly after 9am again…..bit of a better turn out for breakfast today…but a no show from Lloyd this morning….seems he’d ended up at a club the night before and over done it a bit…..

So after breakfast we once again decide its time for another quick nap….

After the nap a few of the lads needed to go and buy some souvenirs and some appropriate presents for those that had better halves back at home.  So Andy T has it set in his mind that he must buy his missus a fridge magnet (of all things)…so we set off towards the local market in search of one…..

A few of the lads stop and buy some bits and bats…foreign chocolate….some local honey etc etc …..

It was whilst the waa was stood queuing for some honey that he became aware of a presence near him……One of the local beggars had positioned himself as close as he could (without touching) right behind the Waa…..And qas the Waa turned his head around he came nose to nose with this extremely smelly (sweat, alcohol and possibly a soupcon of urine) individual.  Once again the favourite Latvian line was used “spare some change”……the answer of “No, Jog on” took a while to work…..it wsa like a staring match at one point…neither party wanting to back down first…..

As the tramp came back, Elliot and GP returned from yet another trip to Netto where they had purchased some cuddly toys for their kids….  As i’d mentioned earlier, we’d all agreed to take small hand luggage…a point that Elliot had forgotten whilst purchasing 3 large stuffed cows….he did fit them in the bag, but i think the bag suffered several tears during the insertion!

so anyway….we find a store that has tons of fridge magnets…but its close for the day…..so we decide to head into town to see if there is anywhere else……nothing…..we look on the map and there is one souvenir shop in the city…and its miles away…..so he decides he’ll pick something suitable up at the airport on the way back….

We retire back to the hotel…..It must be something to do with this foreign air….All we seem to do eat and sleep!

Later that evening a few of us decide to go for a last meal….We’re going to find a steak house and each get the biggest baddest b*stard they will sell us……A “cut its horns off, wipe its arse and bring it me on a plate” type of steak!

A couple of the lads are already in a bar so i give them a bell to see if they fancy a meal…they’ve already eaten…..plus it seems the bar they are in sells food…including steaks….so we make our way there and each order a fillet steak (around £20 worth each).  The food arrives and Elliot takes one bite then compains that he can;t eat it as he is having trouble with his teeh this weekend…..The other 2 lads, Munka and Hammer, are on his steak like a couple of vultures….it looked like they hadn;t eaten all weekend!

So with the food chinned and a pint done in, we decide to go back to the hotel as we have booked a taxi for around 9:30 in the morning to get to the airport…..

I lay down and it seems as soon as i have closed my eyes,  its time to get up again…..

So we check out and pile into the taxi…..At the airport Andy Tague spends some more time trying to hunt doan the elusive fridge magnet….but to no avail…..he decides to bring his missus a bottle of the local traditional drink, most of the lads have already bought a bottle of this stuff each too….

A quick beer and its time to board the plane….Once onboard and in the air, we all have a snack and another little nap and then we back in the good old U of K…..

We file off the plane, go through security and assemble outside while we wait for our pre booked taxi man to turn up….

It’s at this point that Andy T realises that he has left the bottle of alcohol he bought on the plane……Looks like No present for Mrs Tague on this trip then!

So we make it back to Lancaster and the first drop off is Munka…..As clive lives away from the taxi route, Munka offers to dro pclive off in his car, to which TBC gladly accepts…..

It was the dsay after that we found out…..when Munka had come to start his Corsa, he’d apparently left his cabin light on over the weekend and the battery was as flat as 14 year old boys chest……so Clive ended up having to walk even further……

Hehe…It ain’t easy having pals! ;-)

So with that trip signed off, we now have a couple of months to wait before our next one…..

Roll on Andorra and the Skiing / Snow Board Holiday

Riga Part 1 – The IntRigaing Case Of Lloyd Christmas

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So….the first BOAD trip of the year……

If you read the last blog you will know that one of the BOAD was having trouble finding his passport……he never did find it…..so our numbers were down to 11 from the start……9 from the north and 2 (hammers brother Graham and his mate Lloyd) from the south.

After a full day of work on thursday, i went home and packed my flight bag….we had all agreed before hand to only take hand luggage, so that we didnt have to check in at Liverpool airport or wait for out suitcases at the other side.  And as we were only there a few days, we wouldn’t be needing much luggage anyway.

So i pack my case then head for a shower and get a bite to eat.  I then go for an hours kip as our taxi was picking us up at 3am and i knew it was the day ahead would be a very long one….

So i wake up around 8pm and paranoia kicks in….did i pack my jeans? what about my toothbrush? have i got enough shirts in there?

So i carefully unpack and repack my luggage again,….just to be sure…..

So with a few hours to kill, i spend a bit of time loading my ipod up with some music and videos to keep me occupied throughout the flight, I have a chat with a few friends on messenger.

Then around midnight i get quite a panicked sounding phone call from Munka…..

“Alright mate….you know when you booked your hotel room….did you get a confirmation email?”

“Yeah mate….got it here in fact”


“Why….? whats up”

“…….Just checked my email and the last one i got from the hotel was back in november and it said i need to send them some details to confirm my booking”

So i give him the hotel number from my booking email…he rings them, and discovers that they have in fact, still reserved his room…..quite a twitchy moment for Munka as he was sharing the hotel room with hammer…..and seeing as hammers birthday was the whole reason for actually going on the trip, it would have been quite a let down if the birthday boy had nowhere to stay.

Anywho…time was ticking on, and as the taxi was leaving from morecambe, i had said i would pick a couple of the lancaster lads up from their houses and bring them back to morecambe for the taxi.

Paranoia struck again…..have i packed my passport in my luggage? did i have my boarding cards? where have i put my holiday cash?  did i pack more than 1 pair of socks…..

No careful unpacking this time….i opened my luggage and tipped it out…..

I carefully packed AGAIN..making sure i had everything in there….once done i locked it so i wouldn’t be tempted to pack yet again…..

I go pick the lads up, drop my car off and we head off to the first of the taxi meeting points…..the chatsworth estate (chatsworth road) . Most of us were meeting here at 3am, and a couple of others were being picked up at the shrimp roundabout.

Half way round there, around 2:55am, we get a phone call from LJ saying the taxi man is here and they will come and pick us up…not much of a problem as we were only round the corner by now….

The taxi scoops us up and we land at the 2nd pick up point…the shrimp…..nobody is there….we circle the roundabout to make sure they are not waiting on the other side etc, then finally park in the car park.

I phone GP….no answer….i phone him again and he answers ……

“Where you at mate? we’re at the shrimp waiting for you”

“Well i was just trying to sneak out and leave the house quietly so i didnt wake the missus up….but my phone kept ringing…I’m on my way….I’ll be there in a few mins”

“No Probs…but get a hustle on as the taxi man is already a cheesy b*stard about waiting around”

so GP’s on his way….but still no sight of the Waa.

I phone him…no answer…..jebus…..this is getting hard work!

I phone him again…..he’s just got out of the shower and will be with us shortly……

So with a quick head count, thats it….there’s 6 of us in the taxi and 2 on their way……..Hold on a minute…..Aren’t there meant to be 9 of us all together…who the fecks missing now?

A couple of minutes later we realise that Andy Tague (GP’s brother)  is missing. No worries we think….Gp will have picked him up earlier so he’ll be with him…..

Then i realise that we are BOAD and nothing is every that simple…..

Another quick phone call to GP confirms that Andy isn’t with him…..last he heard he was heading to Chatsworth road for 3am….

So we ask the already grumpy taxi driver to head back and get “the one we left behind”…..he mumbles a few four letter words and something else about a  piss up and a brewery…..

So back at chatsworth we find a nervous looking Andy T, wondering why he was the only one there…

We get him then back to the shrimp….the Waa’s there now…..as we are just about to set off….Gp comes into sight…obviosuly wanting to look cool, he is half walking and half running….but still keeping it together…..

We load him on and then we’re on our way to the airport…..

A bit of excited banter, a couple of beers, and an incident involving Elliot, a plastic bag and an amount of vomit and we’re at the airport.  We head to the bar and get the pints in, the smokers yo-yo in and out of the building, trying to keep the amount of time without nicotine to a bare minimum.

Munka dishes out the last of the BOAD hoodies that we had had printed up and we slip into them…..Everybodies looking good in their hoodies, then Elliot put his on….now he’s not the smallest of lads and had ordered a “small”…

It took him a couple of minutes to lever it on….and when he had eventually got it on, it only covered half of his stomach….it seems he thought the last batch of tops we had got done for a trip, he had ordered a medium and it was like a dress on him, so he though a small would be perfect…..upon checking…..his last top was actually a large, so he should have been aiming for a medium!

Then it was time to start heading for the plane…I think it was the point when we were sat in the bar and saw on the departure board, our flight number go from green to yellow, then amber, then to red and then to flashing red that we thought it may be a good idea to get a move on.

A few of the more nervous types had set off a few minutes earlier to ensure they would get on the flight…..as we were walking down to the security gate, LJ shot past us in the opposite direction….

A quick yell of “What the feck you doing you plum…it’s this way” and a reply of “My bags to big…i have to check it in!” and we understood why he was rushing…..a few minutes later a very worried phone call from him asking “Does anybody have any cash on them, they want 28 quid to check my bag in and all i’ve got is foreign!”

Munka hustled down to the check in desk to bail LJ out and they made it back to the aircraft with minutes to spare.

Minutes later we are in the air and on our way…..a snack and 40 winks later and we’re landing at Riga airport. LJ collected his bag from the luggage belt and we headed towards the security gate……where there was a sniffer dog roaming about.

Now don’t get me wrong, none of the lads take drugs…..we all rely to heavily on alcohol and fun times to have either the time or inclination to start putting stuff up our noses…..but either way….we all knew we were clean, but we were all doing our very best “Of course i’m not a drug smuggler, eyes straight ahead nervous walk”

We all sail through……apart from Clive…..the dog pounces and nearly knocks him over.  In a flurry of limbs, it looks like the dog is either trying to mount him or his bag.

The latex gloves are snapped on and TBC is pulled to one side for “A word”

Earlier on, Clive had mentioned that he was bringing something over for a friend he used to work with and that now lives in Latvia…..I hadn’t realised he meant an 8 ball of coke though ;-)

The guards root through his bag, but find nothing apart from his clothes (which include only 1 pair of boxer shorts…..Jebus Clive….we’re there 3 nights mate…!!)

So when they find nothing of interest so they start to question him…..has the bag been near any chemicals etc etc etc

It turns out that Clive had used the bag when he had visited his brothers farm and it may have been covered in cow shit….just imagine his difficulty in explaining that to a foreign guard that only understands 8 words of english…

Some of the mimes TBC used to try and explain included clapping his hands together and saying the word “COW SHIT COW SHIT” over and over again in a slow loud voice……comedy gold!

Anyway, they realised they weren’t dealing with a member of a major cartell and let him through.

Gp then realises he’s left his new book on the plane, Joe Calzhage’s auto biography….but by now it had probably either have been blown up or stowed away in one of the flight attendants bag.

The smokers took their opportunity to get 3 or 4 smokes in, just to make up for the time we’d lost on the plane, and then its time to find the hotel.

We’d done a bit of research and found that the easiest and quickest way was to get on a bus rather than a taxi.  So we followed the signs to the city bus and got to the stop just as the bus turned up.  the bus sets of, we show the conducter (a 60+ year old woman) the address of the hotel and she sells us the appropraite ticket costing 0.40 lats (around 50p), she then comes to LJ, looks at him, looks at his suitcase then looks back at him and issues him a ticket for 1.20 lats!

I think she either just didn’t like him or had heard about the BOAD bag incident at liverpool on CNN and was taking the piss!

A little bit into the trip, the very helpful conductor had actually gone and found somebody on the bus that spoke English, and had called me over so she could explain where we needed to get off and where we needed to go.

Very simple instructions….get off at the big shopping centre, take the underpass under the road and walk straight ahead….how hard can it be!!

So we arrive at our stop, thank the translator and the conductor and head for the unederpass.  LJ gets his phone out that has sat nav built in and we set off…..

We go under the underpass and out the other side and LJ confidently says…”It’s this way lads….got the hotel on my map here!”

So we walk a few blocks and ask LJ to check his map again…no problem he says…..just gotta turn right down here….

So we walk another few blocks and ask LJ to check the map yet again….

Why is the little red dot that is us getting further away from the little red dot that is the hotel mate?

So we spend a couple of mins looking at the map and then we realise that he hasn’t got it lined up the right way round and we have been walking 180 degrees in the wrong direction…

So we figure it out and plot our route, when we got off the bus, we should have turned left instead of right! BOAD is as BOAD does!  It was around this point thats LJ’s phone credit (£7 in 2 minutes!) ran out on his phone, so we wouldn’t be able to consult the map any further.

We get closer to the hotel and the area suddenly goes down hill….there’s boarded up buildings, broken pavement, scary looking people….the lot!

We make it to the hotel….it was 5 mins away from the bus stop!, but at least we got a 30 minute walk around  to orientate ourselves a little!

We agree to dump the bags and meet in the hotel bars 5 minutes later.

So we do that, get a beer in and start to relax a little.

As i mentioned earlier….there were 2 lads from down south that were meeting up with us later, actually, they had flown in a day early, meaning that they had had a night out to sniff out some half decent restaurants and bars etc.

Hammer then mentions that the 2 southerners had text him before we had set off saying that they had had a little trouble the night before and had been ripped off.  We’d all read a few horror stories of bouncers threatening people, so we were all expecting the worst!

A few beers in, the 2 cockneys turn up and we find out what had happened.

They’d been in a bar last night and a couple of very attractive girls had approached them saying “we know a really good pub, come on, we’ll show you where it is”

Like P.T. Barnum said…..”There’s a sucker born every minute”….so I’m guessing that these boys must have been born 1 minute apart.  I’m not being harsh here, just truthful……these lads aren’t lookers, they don’t look like the affluent type that may attract model quality girls…..so they should have been on the back foot from the start!

Anyway….they arrived at the suggested pub with the girls where they order a couple of pints, the girls order 2 glasses of wine (or something similar) and then the bill comes……55 Lats!   That’s around £70!!

Now the BOAD have been known to splash out on nice/posh drinks quite frequently…..but £70 for 2 pints of john smiths and a bottle of Blue nun is taking the piss!

They try and complain, but the girls call in “The Men”…..i.e 3 meat heads, who promptly collected the cash from their pockets and wallets.

So with this still fresh in our mind we ventured out into the city for a few beers.

the 2 southerners had offered to show us where the “good bars” were…….Looking back…..we should really have known better than to follow 2 plonkers who had been parted with their money so easily….

Anyway….we had a beer in the first bar and then onto the second bars where it was only 1 Lat for a pint of lager…..

We walked in, ordered the drinks, then several of the lads started asking….fecking hell lads…who’s farted? It stinks…!

Nobody owned up….then we looked at the bar…our beer had arrived…..and it stunk!  No wonder it was only 1 Lat per pint!…..

Anywho….we sipped away at that ‘Orrible beer and had a laugh, then onto the next bar.  A few of the faster walkers broke forward and it took 10 mins and several phone call before we were all re-united again….was quite an odd little bar…..the door to the toilets was actaully disguised as a book case?

We’d all chilled out a little by now and were ready for soem decent bars (as we hadn’t visited any yet) so we headed off to try and find some…..We explained to our make shift guides (the cockerneys) that we were after some bars with maybe a little atmosphere and maybe some tunes on…..and where we wouldnt be the only people stood in the F-ing place!

So they led us in a new direction saying they knew just the place…..5-10 minutes walk later they announce that “we’re here” and then promptly disapear inside a restaurant……

Not knowing if they were just popping in for a toilet break we patiently wait outside….a couple of minutes later they come out and announce…its ok lads….i’ve managed to get us a table in here….

I look around…..i see The Waa’s face, Munka’s face, TBC’s face….all equally as blank and not quite understanding what the cockney is on about….

So i say “what you on about you plum….thats a fucking restaurant….we’re not going in there…we’re off to the pub…!”

They have a quick rant about how they have just told the lady there will be 11 of us going in – and they get a reply along the lines of “Jog on knob head”

As we are walking away, they quickly catch up and over take us…(not wanting to lose there place as tour guide!)  they then direct us to a pool hall.  At this point we hadn;t had a beer for about 10 mins so we unwillingly go in and get a beer……

All in all we were there for around a fecking hour……Fecking Friday night and i’m stuck in a scruffy stinky pool hall drinking beer i dont like the taste of and watching foreigners play pool…..how much fun!!!

At around the 45 minute point i was actually considering phoning the airport and seeing when the first plane out of this dog hole would be in the morning. But then somebody mentioned going to the next bar…thank feck!

We were all geting a bit peckish now so we decided to go to a half decnet restaurant and get a nice big steak each, or soomething along those lines.

Up piped Lloyd….I know just the spot…..we went there last night…really good food and its all you can eat for a fiver.

The majority voted for this option so we set off walking…..and walking…..and walking……

10 minutes later we pulled the cockneys up and said

“Look….do you actually know where we’re going or are we just wandering around aimlessly?”

“Oh yeah…we know exactly where it is……you see that white sign with the red writing on…around 4 blocks away….thats the spot”

“So, after a gracious apology for doubting their navigation skills, we arrived at the “white sign with the red writing on”…..it was a fecking ladies clothes shop!……I give up!!!!

So on we trecked…we eventually found a restaurant….and the southerners claimed that “this is the one we were on about”…but by this time, all their credability had been shot to pieces…..

We went in and it was a Latvian self service food shop…..you get a tray then buy different elements of your food….e.g. a piece of meat is 1.5 lats….rice or chips are 1 lat etc etc…..

It was singularly the worst meal that i have ever had the displeasure of forcing upon myself!

Plus the only beer they sold was either a very dark beer that look ffar to dodgy to drink, or a bottle of lager with added lemon flavour. (piss water!)

With the food rushed down, the toll of the day started to take its effect on a couple of the BOAD……Hammers eyes won the battle and finally closed. and also LJ was head down, arms folded on the table…..

It was time for a scientific experiment….I had heard the urban legend of that if you put somebodies hand in a warm bowl of water whilst they are asleep, that it forces them to wet themselves…..

Anyway….we didn’t have a warm bowl of water so i had to settle for a warm glass of beer (there was plenty spare)

I carefully tried to lift one of his hands to put into the glass, but i hadn’t realised that this was a load bearing hand…..so as i lifted his hand, his head raised at the same time, then his head slipped off his hand and straight into the waiting table top.  With a recoil faster than a magnum, LJ was awake and bolt upright, not quite knowing what had just happened…….but at least he was awake now.

So we all finished off and it was time to move on again….

We demoted our 2 tour guides and turned on the BOAD intuition…..a few lefts and rights later we happened up a smallish bar…..there were people in there, they were playing good music and they sold vodka and red bull…..

It ticked all the boxes so we all steamed in there…

After around 5 hours of trailing round what are possibly the shittest and most boring bars in Riga, the BOAD had actually found 1 half decent bar.

We settle in, have more than a few vodka’s then notice that at the end of the bar there is a curtain?

As some mangy looking girls, wearing more than too much make-up make an entrance through said curtain, we realise what is behind there…….a cheap knocking shop.

Me and Munka are deep in conversation at this point…..then we realise there is a blond girl hovering awkwardly behind us…..the minute we make eye contact with her, she smiles and tries to talk to us……she is given the abrupt response of “We’re trying to have a conversation here….do you mind…….jog on!”

She quickly gets the idea that we aren’t gonna be spending money with her anytime, so she moves onto her next victim, which happens to be one of the southerners…..Lloyd Catley…..

Now before we had arrived in Riga, Hammer had told us that Lloyd “The Cat” Catley was quite a shrewd and wise geezer…he was well travelled and pretty streetwise when it came to dealing with foreigners in various cities….

Not only had this shrewd geezer been ripped off on his first night here…but it now looked as though he was going for round 2!

All the real BOAD lads kept well clear of “the curtain”….apart from Lloyd…..he seemed to disapear for 20-30 minutes at a time….and everytime he did re-appear he would make a point of coming and telling each and every one of us that we really don;t want to go through the curtain and downstairs…..

I think it was after his third visit downstairs, and his third time of telling us all that we really don’t want to go downstairs that he got told in no un-certain terms that “Look Lloyd you fecking nugget….you’re the only fecker thats daft enough to want to go through there in the first place…..so take your own advice and stop bothering us!”

It was at this point that we christening him “Lloyd Christmas”…..after Jim carey’s character in “Dumb & Dumber”

Time was getting on by now and most of us had been up a good 36 hours with around 1-4 hours sleep, so we decided to call it a night and go and get some well deserved sleep.  We left and walked back at seperate times, some earlier than others…..

Our group left and made it back to the hotel in desperate need of something to eat, due to the very poor meal earlier!, so we asked at reception if there were any local takeaways. She typed away at her computer and showed us the screen with a pizza menu on….Top One!! We’re in we thought……we chose our toppings then asked her how long it would be……so she phoned the takeaway up and told us….. it will be a half hour and one…….it took a minute for it to sink in…

“What…?  you mean it will take an hour and a half to get a frigging pizza?……..nevermind flower….we’ll be unconscious by then!”

So we booked our alarm call for 9am so we didn’t miss breakfast and retired for the night……

12 Men Enter…..1 Man Leaves – Aka – 12 Get Hammered In Riga

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So…..the first of this years BOAD trips has finally come around.

We’re all packed and ready to set off to Riga in Latvia, to celebrate Hammer turning 40 this month (It’s all down hill from here mate!)

Actually, I say we’re all ready…..but as the saying goes…..Being BOAD is never easy.

12 of us booked on for this trip, and as the departure date got closer we all slowly started our preparations…..exchange a wad of sterling for the local beer vouchers, wash, iron and pack clothes, buy a suitable amount of alcohol for the taxi trip to the airport, locate passport and check that it hasn’t expired etc etc

Not a problem for the majority of the lads.  But unfortunatley young Lee ‘Leethal’ Jackson is currently in day 4 of his search for his passport!

Apparently the last time he remembers having it was when he recently went out for a night out in Morecambe.  I can understand his thinking…..the difference in night life between Morecambe and Lancaster certainly does warrant the use of a passport!

Latest reports as of 12:14 today say that the location of his passport is still eluding him. He has considered other options…..with it being to late to goto Liverpool and get a lastminute.com passport issued, he is now considering using one of his kids passports, and hoping that the staff on the security desks aren’t to “with it” at the ridiculous time that we have to check in by. Other options were to borrow his brothers passport, but apparently he lives in Leeds, so its a long drive for a chance that probably wont work…..

Anyway…..we all hope his missus gives him his passport back in time…..err…i mean we all hope he finds his passport in time….

Usually I look forward to any of the (many) trips we take as a group, but this time its a little different…..a touch more dangerous than usual. And by dangerous i dont mean filling the likes of Clive, LJ and Andy tague up with alcohol and letting them loose on a city.

As ever we have done a little research on where we are going…..

Not only is the average daytime temperature around -2…..the average temperature at night drops to around -15.

Apparently the majority of Club bouncers are heavily armed and enjoy intimidating tourists into paying huge amount of cash to Leave the club…..(not a problem for the BOAD…we’ll just stay there until we’ve drunk them dry!)

We have the added danger with a couple of the BOAD…..a few members don’t get out very often with the lads and therefore take full advantage of the chance of freedom, and get dangerously drunk.

An example was on the trip to Poland last year……

Ahhh…..Memories of Andy Tague being leathered in a nightclub, not wanting to pay the 20p entrance fee to the toilet, urinating on the wall outside the pay turnstile (still inside the club) and then promptly having the Police called on him.  It took a brothers love (Granpa) to stop him being carted away in the local paddy wagon…..well that and a laaaaarge handfull of Zloty’s (Polish currency) as a suitable bribe.

Another Polish incident involed LJ (#2) attempting to drink his own body weight in vodka and then falling asleep, head down on table, in the posh steak house we were dining at that evening.  Obviously, being mates, we did try to wake him up as we were leaving, but alas….he was out for the count.  So we gathered our bill money up and left it balanced on his head as we left.  The LJ incident didn’t end there though unfortunatley.

After he’d been woken by the staff (or possibly the cleaners at the end of the night), we all met up back at the hotel where LJ had now turned into #4 (twice as bad as number 2!).  He thought it would be fun to start kicking several bells out of the huge ornate terra cotta plant pots outside…..Something he later came to regret on checking out as he was presented with a “special bill”.  But being BOAD, he had blown all his holiday budget on booze and didn’t have enough money to pay for the damage, actually, he didn’t even have enough cash to pay for his room!  The Bank of BOAD covered his short falls though.

Hopefully this trip will be a little tamer than that though…..but i’m guessing that it will turn out to be very messy.

The majority of us will be looking forward to a relaxing chill time, a few beers, a bit of sight seeing and as ever…a side splitting laugh with good mates. (I don’t know what it is about going away, but we always seem to end up laughing until it litereally hurts.)

But i know there will be a certain element of the group that will inisist that they visit the local strip bars etc…..All i can say is….good luck lads, and i hope you have your credit cards on you…..you may need them to pay to get out!

This trip should mark the start of the BOAD new year (we’re always a little bit late – BST)…..

Time to shake off all the post christmas blues and thoughts of the credit crunch and time to start living like a true BOAD once more…..Something that our allies over at Whop Central have pledged to do.

It seems that they also have adopted the BOAD mentallity and decided F.I.G.P (Feck it, Get Pissed)

you can read their pledge by clicking here

Hopefully we’ll manage to have a few more regular nights out as a collective group this year…..at least that way we’ll have somebody else to blame for our raging hangovers the morning after ;-)


Anywho….the camera’s memory cards are empty and the trip is due to start in around 12 hours time……

So no doubt there will be plenty to report, and maybe one or two snaps to see……

Stay tuned

Men Are Just Happier People

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Courtesy of T.B.C (The Boy Clive)

This is worryingly accurate…..!



If Laura, Kate and Sarah go out for lunch, they will call each other Laura, Kate and Sarah.

If Matt, Dave and Bill go out, they will affectionately refer to each other as Fat Boy, Godzilla and Four-eyes.



When the bill arrives, Matt, Dave and Bill will each throw in £20, even though it’s only for£32.50. None of them will have anything smaller and none will actually admit they want change back.

When the girls get their bill, out come the pocket calculators.



A man will pay £2 for a £1 item he needs.

A woman will pay £1 for a £2 item that she doesn’t need but it’s on sale.



A man has six items in his bathroom: toothbrush and toothpaste, shaving cream, razor, a bar of soap, and a towel

The average number of items in the typical woman’s bathroom is 337.
A man would not be able to identify more than 20 of  these items.



A woman has the last word in any argument.

Anything a man says after that is the beginning of a new argument.



A woman worries about the future until she gets a husband.

A man never worries about the future until he gets a wife.


A successful man is one who makes more money than his wife can spend.

A successful woman is one who can find such a man.



A woman marries a man expecting he will change, but he doesn’t.

A man marries a woman expecting that she won’t change, but she does.



A woman will dress up to go shopping, water the plants, empty the trash, answer the phone, read a book, and get the mail.

A man will dress up for weddings and funerals.


Men wake up as good-looking as they went to bed.

Women somehow deteriorate during the night.



Ah, children. A woman knows all about her children. She knows about dentist appointments and romances, best friends, favorite foods, secret fears and hopes and dreams.

A man is vaguely aware of some short people living in the house.



A married man should forget his mistakes. There’s no use in two people remembering the same thing!

Top One, Nice One, Get (Taxi) Sorted

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It’s a wonder any work ever gets done by any of the BOAD.
Yesterday was a prime example…..

Between 9am and 5:30pm 250+ emails were sent between each other, try as it might, this work thing certainly doesn’t seem to get in the way of BOAD communications.

Thing is, 250 emails is not even close to the record number of emails in one day.

It’s not that we are all insecure and need constant interaction with each other (although not a day goes past when we don’t all chat to each other in one form or another), the conversations we had yesterday weren’t even that interesting.

It started off as a continuation of the day befores conversation about booking a taxi for 10 people to goto the airport for the trip to Latvia.

It then evolved into a discusion about what t-shirts we would be getting printed for the trip.
I think we are all going to have to order XXL just to fit everything on.

So far we have…

On the Back of the shirt
Dates, Location and Event information
A List of the 12 attendees’s names and nicknames

On the Front of the shirt
The BOAD logo and crest
A Hammer Logo (it is his birthday trip afterall) that actually looks more like an ice pick!
A Latvian Flag
FK Riga’s logo
Skonto FC’s logo
(The above 2 are there in an effort to not get shot and blend in with the local football fans)

50+ emails into the conversation and neither the taxi or the t-shirt discussion had been resolved.

As none of us actually speak Latvian, it was then proposed that in addition to all the other stuff on the t-shirt, that we actually get some large icons printed on the shirts aswell.
The icons would be a pint of beer, a burger, a taxi, a casino etc so that in the event that we couldn’t make the locals understand us by speaking slowly and loudly in English, that we could just point to the relevant icon for the service we required.

We then spent another 30+ email recollecting events from previous holidays, such as the boxing matches we used to have, the human pyramid towers we used to do in the pools and the trouble we got in with laser pens etc etc. (JEBUS!!! some of those Lads holidays were 14 years ago now!!)

Then the conversation pointed back towards the original subject….getting the fecking taxi booked for our next trip.
This was left in the capable? hands of T.B.C (The Boy Clive)
It seems that the taxi driver didn’t want to do more than 2 pick ups and didn’t want to drive down small streets, and with there being double numbers of lads, meeting points had to be agreed upon.

It seemed more hassle than it was worth so it was suggested that if the taxi man can’t be arsed doing the job he was being (well) paid for then we could just drive ourselves there.
It was then pointed out that the drivers obviously wouldn’t be able to drink  on the way there and back, so that idea was promptly quashed.

So, we finally got the taxi booked.

Then it was time to do a little research about where we are actually going and what there is to do there.

It seems that one place to see and be seen at is a cocktail bar at the top of a hotel. A little discussion was held about this as one or two members of the BOAD weren’t willing to pay the £11 per drink price tab they have there. (come on lads…it’s gotta be worth it!)

On reading a few reviews about the town we are going to, it seems that we may need to prepare ourselves a little.

Not only do the majority of the bouncers on the clubs carry guns, it is also a favourite passtime of theirs to intimidate tourists and extort large amounts of cash from them.

Add to that, at the moment the temperature drops to minus 20 at nights….I think we’ll end up spending most of the time locked in our hotel rooms huddled around the fire!

Who chose this location? I also vote that we formally move all the BOAD’s birthdays to the summer months from now on.


Oh well…..BOAD is as BOAD does…..should be a belting trip!

2008 Thats It Thats All.

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‘Cause You Can’t You Won’t And You Don’t Stop
‘Cause You Can’t You Won’t And You Don’t Stop
‘Ah Well You Can’t You Won’t And You Don’t Stop
Come BOAD drink another shot’

So this blog isn’t meant to be a review of the year or anything (read all the other blogs if you need to catch up) however a couple of things need mentioning firstly Uni got himself a MN10 (Marriage License) TBC was issued a P45 and the BOAD are all considering AK47’s ahead of our trip to the Balkans for MC’s 40th.

The BOAD has long enjoyed lucrative sponsorship deals however the credit crunch has force the brotherhood into a few changes in 2008 Redbull came and went Triple Wadka* had a flirting relationboat before it’s demise, even HQ was put on temporary permanent position. I can however report that we have secured the services of rennie for another twelve months and we have been given assurances that HQ will only supple BOAD or BOAD affiliated members (BOWD) with (low) quality Vodka so things are looking up. We also have a new mineral water sponsor EVIAN however you’d have to be naïve to think we’ll actually get any free H²o. Waa was also personally sponsored during the Blackpool Stag Do by Big boy Lubes but I think we’ll leave that there.

* like Vodka only a cheap alternative probably from Poland / former east Germany

Another tie in launched in 2008 was the twinning of the BOAD with “Whopever” the female equivalent, while in recent times joint activities have been quiet no doubt radio silence with likely be broken in 2009 and Thursday Neet Garyoke sessions will resume. Sorry.

At this time of year there are many prestigious award ceremonies so it is only right that a few worthy winners get a mention:

The Elliot Pyrah award for longest telling of a story or re-enactment of an event

Nominees : (Winner indicated in bold)
Sidney – for the Oranges sign language story
#2 – The coke a cola mineral water story
Sidney – The best man speech (sorry this was pulled from the awards last minute)

The James Eastwood 24 hr Party people award

Nominees: (Winner indicated in bold)
Biff – Jan – Dec 2008 inclusive
#2 – For making it owt on three consecutive nights without being arrested
TBC – Xmas do / leaving do not getting served in Bottom Withers @ 9:30am “Your not getting food, soft drinks or alcohol so get owt!”

The Kenny Award for looking like a celebrity (Winner indicated in bold)
Big A – Jeremy Clarkson
#2 / LJ – Red Rum (Please see Leeds pics)
Lethal – A Zeppelin Race
Waa – Gok Wan (see pic with LJ’s bin lids on)

The charming haggler award for best chat up line: (Winner indicated in bold)
Munka to Chloe (hustle) Gives her a shot of Sambuca following by the walk of shame after the drink was rejected.
#2 – “I want to lick your face” – to his own father
Waa – The bums of steel / Artic Monkey Craig incident -
Biff – for tipping a bottle of water (Evian perchance????) over a XXL toot then running away classic!

The BOAD Special award for servicing above and beyond the call of duty (Winner indicated in bold)

Becky – (HQ) for getting Red Square instead on Wodka* cheers!
Craig / Artic Monkey – For making sure we have exactly 5 ice cubes per drink
Dan for Wibbly Wobblies yeah cheers mate
Lauren (Shot Seller) for jumping up and down on one leg just so we’d buy a test tube top girl !!!!

So anywho it’s the first FNA of 2009 so I have to be elsewhere but I’ll leave you with a couple of recent quotes which nicely sum up what went down during the final few days of 2008.

“Quote un Quote”

Hails, “Is that your mate?” pointing at TBC
Munka “Might be why?”
Hails, “He’s gone to ask the DJ to change the tunes”
Munka “So?”
Hails, “We haven’t got a DJ on tonight!”

“Look Sonny this is dog sh1t” LJ pointing to his triple & lemonade
Trainee bar tender “Sorry?”
“I think the lemonade has gone mate” Munka
Bartender back at #2 “Oh right you should have just said instead of being a dick!”