Tag Archives: Southend-on-Sea

A Marvel-ous lunch

AKA Spider-Newman and her Amazing Friends

Hi I’m Stan Lee*

IMG_2752Today Marvel fans we find ourselves in sunny Southend-on-Sea where we join old webhead, Spider-Woman, Iron Man and Captain America at Pizza Express.

Of course any self respecting superhero won’t be in several hundred bounds of Southend as they’ll probably be plenty busy at something like San Diego Comic Con, it was of course Isabelle who had just so happened to have donned a top featuring this fantastic foursome.

Not that it’s that often you hear a peep out of Spider-Woman – or Mrs Spider-Man as Iz called her – so that was a nice surprise for her to pop up on the top and say hi.

Iz’s Marvel-ous pink 3/4 sleeve top displays Captain America, Spider-Man, Iron Man and Spider-Woman, with the two Spider folk sporting a somewhat glittery look over their red. Not sure that will follow in the new reboot. She loved it and knew all of the characters, almost.

And it really set her pink converse off perfectly.

I spotted it in Tesco and was just genuinely pleased that there was a superhero top available for girls and not just another My Little Pony or Frozen, not that there is anything wrong with either of those franchises but it was genuinely refreshing to see that the Marvel universe wasn’t just perceived as a boys only universe. Because it isn’t.

SupergirlMarvel’s Black Widow and Sue Storm might be flying the flag for Marvel but with the new Supergirl TV series and Wonder Woman sorting out Superman and Batman , perhaps DC may be more female friendly than Marvel? Besides, Iz loves a little bit of Supergirl.

*Clearly I’m not, that’s just how the likes of The Incredible Hulk and Spider-Man and his Amazing Friends cartoons were introduced in the early 1980s.

Raindrops keep falling on our heads…

IMG_3179Last year saw Isabelle’s second birthday party take place in glorious sunshine, it was pretty much text book and perfectly timed being in a garden complete with a bouncy castle.

Flash forward and it’s more of a case of happy bathday as we spent it at Marsh Farm on a day that was so wet that roads were flooded and even Southend sea front was under water and that was when the tide was out! In fact if it had rained any more they would have had to have renamed it Southend in Sea. Cue clever shark related photo from the Sea Life Centre, how very SharkNado!1236726_10151825992329819_794541111_n[1]

As it turns out Marsh Farm was thankfully less Marsh marsh but boy did it rain and rain and rain. All of which meant I don’t know of a group of people who were ever so pleased to be spending a longer time in a piggery. I’ve also never been so jealous of pigs sat on dry straw under warm lights.

IMG_3203Talking of pigs, thanks in no small part to the Peppa variety, all the children weren’t fussed by the rain (to be fair even gathered parents were amiable enough – although I predict a years worth of undercover birthday party invites from attending  children for the next 12 months!)

The deluge may have made us damp but it certainly didn’t dampen our spirits and the brushing the pony experience went down a storm, which is rather fitting as the rain really clattered down on our parade at that point although again we were under cover so it mattered not a jot. It did give the kids to per some goats, although I’m not so sure the baby goats were quite as pleased to see ten pairs of tiny hands reaching for a feel.

IMG_3183It was then back outside for the world’s bumpiest tractor ride that hit every pot hole possible and had to be driven by Sandra Bullock as it was like they weren’t able to slow down, the only thing missing was the bridge jump.

Turns out we could have done with Sandra and her tractor on the way back due to the obscene amount of water on the road, parts if the a127 were flooded which meant we had to drive on the path in parts and had a Speed ‘stay on or get of moment’ learning that one section of the road had submerged cars in it.

IMG_3189We travelled as a convoy which made it feel like we were storm chasers from Twister, although the cars on the path moment was probably more akin to the scene in Dante’s Peak where cars try and cross the river.

Speed, Dante’s Peak, Twister – all these disaster movie titles being bandied about seems quite apt as when we finally got our wet selves home we were greeted by The Poseidon Adventure in our kitchen which had let water in.

The rain though was like water of the proverbial ducks back to Iz and she loved her day surrounded by her friends. And we enjoyed being surrounded by some of ours as well, who had travelled hundreds of miles to walk round and get wet, that’s friendship.

IMG_3219Of course, it would have been no birthday without a cake and this year it was of the Scooby-Doo variety, which seemed a popular choice with the gathered children and fitting with the er ghoulish weather, as was the sparkly candle which Iz took great delight in blowing out not once but twice.

IMG_3229As she sat, flanked by her friends either side, munching on her lunch I knew that despite us all looking a little bit like rats of the drowned variety Isabelle had a birthday that she would remember for all the right reasons even though for us grown ups it will be for all the wet and soggy ones.

Loving Rossi’s Iz-cream

IMG_1431 IMG_1435 IMG_1439After building up an appetite going bonkers on the beach Iz was rewarded with her first Rossi’s ice-cream of the year. She made a meal of it alright, then a drink of it and then a dogs dinner of it, sharing it with Missy.

IMG_1409We hit the beach tag-team style as one of us had to stay with Missy (sorry Miss, so close yet so very far and all you wanted to do was join in with Iz) and the pushchair.

When the sun was out it was rather glorious, ruddy windy mind but rather nice all the same, until the sun shot behind a white cloud to catch its breath.

Not that Iz was arsed or that she paused for breath, she was all for going into the water but I managed to disuede her of sorts by saying that we didn’t have any towels with us. Far more logical to a 2.5 year old than saying the sea of Southend-on will be very fricking cold.

IMG_1395And of course where Isabelle went Anxious the elephant wasn’t far behind, when she wasn’t being dropped or left to rise in the pushchair. When Iz stormed the beach with her it was like she was saving her like a character from Baywatch.

I’m actually surprised that half the stone-filled beach isn’t here after being brought home in Iz’s pockets, she has brought bits of it back every other beach she has been on. She did do plenty of picking stones up though so she was obviously contemplating it.

IMG_1412Alas they weren’t the skimming kind, it’s a dad thing that has to be normally done with your son or daughter on the beach, it’s the law, but Iz and Sarah did go exploring, all of which filled Missy with increasingly paniced bark as they got further and further away.

They of course returned, posing here for a rather nice mother and daughter pic on the steps down to the beach.


What the Dickens!


We had some snow in Southend yesterday so I went to the top of the building at work and took this rather nice vista of the town, including the pier. I thought it had that nice ‘A Christmas Carol’ feel to it with all the snow on the rooftops etc.

Naturally it also included the longest pleasure pier in the world.

creditI sent it to the local paper, the Echo, and they used it ruddy large in today’s edition which was rather nice to see, and I got a credit to boot.

echo pic