Last week was a big week for us, Friday to Sunday was our first big show of the year. I have been doing shows for roughly five years now and never had good shows this time of the year. However this year some friends on the show scene recommend this show at the weekend. The Shooting Show.
The early part of the week was spent getting organised. In my wisdom I travelled to Coventry on Thursday to drop my stock off at the stand and partially set up. This is different for me, I normally turn up an hour or so before the event starts and wheel my stock in and twenty minutes later I'm tucking into a bacon roll waiting for the off. I arrived on the Thursday to the normal carnage of exhibitors parked all over the place, vans and piles of stock everywhere. Couldn't find a high vis clipboard carrying power crazy bod anywhere. I found an electrician who had a plan of the event and kindly showed me my stand. They had given me a nice corner plot, happy days. I was so prepared I even brought my trolley along so wouldn't have to carry the stock. I need bigger wheels on my trolley as it wouldn't navigate the gully just outside the doorway so had to carry everything from there. I put everything into the stand and went off to find the office to collect my passes etc, blimey the show was huge. When I got to the office the lad there (no high vis) told me I was in the wrong location and marked on my new shiny plan where I needed to be which was the other end of the row. I didn't mind too much as it looked a better location, and as it was indoors I could use my trolley. So off I trotted and started moving everything with the trolley into the new location. We have tarted up our stand this year and had some black sheets designed to cover the back of the stand to make it look better. When I say designed, what I actually mean is Tesco designed some flat bed sheets which happened to be the correct height and were selling them for £9, bargain. I had just finished putting them up and admiring my work, ignoring the fact I should of ironed them, when one of those monsters in high vis turned up waving his clipboard to tell me I'm in the wrong location..I tried to show him the shiny new plan I was given but he was already on his radio talking to the young lad at the office, the lad at the office was telling him how he had told me where to go and I must of made a mistake...None of them would listen to me, instead they kindly offered to help me move. I did what I do best, spat my dummy out, told them to not touch my stock and in my rant started to carry the stock back forgetting I had my trolley. After two loads I regretted my dummy spitting but was too late, they had gone..I did remember the trolley so moved back and set everything up. No more dramas etc
I got up bright and early on the Friday travelled back to the show ready for 7.30am and the off. It was good to catch up with some friendly faces such as Steve Cheese and Fudgie (Shaun).
Friday was a good day, never overly rushed but we chipped away and sold well. My Dad came for the day and managed to not been thrown off the stand, a first for both of us. My Mrs came down on the Friday night and was staying for the weekend. In my wisdom I thought perfect, a romantic weekend away whilst working and earning money...
We had a nice meal and a drink in the hotel and set the alarm as the Mrs wanted to wash her hair in the morning . Woke up in the morning to find there was no hot water..called reception, no answer. Went down to reception, no one there. Heard someone singing, I found the night Porter with headphones on singing away whilst setting up for breakfast. Couldn't resist tapping him on the shoulder to which he pooped himself. Told him the issue with the water and he said 'I know mate, I've started the boiler and it should be hot later'. It was pointless discussing it as we needed to get away so off I went to boil the kettle so the wife could wash her hair.
We went off to the show and had a really good day, during the day I called the hotel to check the water was hot etc, I explained that when we get back if it's not hot we will check out and go elsewhere as I couldn't have a cold shower two days running. We got back and checked the water and it was lovely and hot. Went out for a meal at a lovely pub had a great evening, I'm putting that meal down as her Valentine's treat (lucky girl), and headed back to the hotel. I fell asleep quite quickly but then was woken by the words "Ant, Ant there's water coming through the ceiling". That's not something you hear everyday. It took me ages to register that I was now stood in the bathroom looking up at a large crack in the ceiling with water pouring through. Part of me wanted to simply close the door and go back to sleep but then I thought I wouldn't be able to have a shower in the morning so I telephoned reception. They said they would move us to room 57, so I packed all our stuff whilst the Mrs collected card and then off we trotted to room 57. I then used the card to open room 57 to immediately find a man on the bed shouting "what the beep are you doing" , I quickly closed the door. He then proceeded to open the door stood in his underpants asking what we were doing. We again trotted off to reception, told the lady that someone is already in there, she replied it's empty, I said go and have a look for yourself, there is a very angry middle eastern looking man in his underpants in there. She declined my offer and found us another room, we had to sit and wait whilst she went and checked it was empty before sending us up there. So we eventually got into the new room around midnight, alarm set for 5am and no more dramas. Wasn't quite the romantic weekend I had planned, from the Saturday morning brain freeze to disturbing the man in his pants..but there is never a dull moment and it gave our friends on the show a laugh.
Sunday went well so was a really good three day show and will be back next year if they will have us.
Hopefully less drama this week but still productive..
Fudgie eyeing up the cheese
Puppies missing us