Sunday, January 01, 2012

All Buzzcockian - Ever fallen in love?

The Love of my life - who wasn't in the Butty Bus.

So, there we were, looking out the steamed up windows of my little car as the rain lashed down – as it had done all day. I could see my English visitors were impressed at the wetness of it all. I told them the Clisham Mtn was under that big grey cloud, the views would have been lovely had we able to see them, Luskentyre beach was the best in, in, possibly the best in or should I say on Harris and that the fact that the galleries and cafes were all closed, was not because it was Sunday – it wasn’t but because it is a special time of year when only special people bother to visit. We needed a cuppa all the same and I remembered the Butty Bus in Obbe. Dashing over to the equally steamed up bus through the wet from the car, we found a lone figure sat supping his tea. “Bit damp out there I ventured”. To which the little human nodded sagely. “ Just showing my English chums here round the place – they have never been before.” The man looked at me with a weary eye, glanced over to Butty Bus man urging him silently to deliver the ordered eggy sandwich – quickly.

Hang on” I thought out loud  ”you’re John Maher, the former Buzzcockian”. I might have included the current drag car engine maker, pixel-peeker and night walker – but I didn’t. Or at least I don’t think I did – tis all a blur now. The little man looked at me with his head leaned to one side looking again for the eggy butty – which actually turned out to contain tomato as well – and in a bun, then retorted “and you must be Wiesmier”. I stood back [well, back as far as you can in a little bus on the side of a harbour in the Outer Hebrides with the rain lashing down outside] amazed. “I am as it happens but you can call me Andrea – since that is my name – Wiesmier being merely a nom de prune" [or whatever it is]. Mr Maher explained to my bemused English chums we both take snaps with cameras, both post them on Flickr but have never met. Goodness knows how Mr Maher knew me since the other rare snaps of me to ever appear online are both blurry and / or odd! Still, I played along with the new-found chumminess introducing the lovely Jane and Rodney – Jane who used to be the same cycling club as myself and the Rodney I used to work with at the Manchester Velodrome. “Manchester Velodrome? Did you say Manchester Velodrome?” All of a sudden Mr Maher became really animated. “I love cycling, follow the tour de france and everything and I’ve just been reading Mark Cavendish’s book - you are not THE Rod Ellingworth that Cavendish talks about are you?” . "The very same as it happens” the Rodney one replied “Been coaching Cav since he was 17” he added with his typical cheeky grin. All of a sudden our loose bond became closer, coffee’s ordered, and seats warmed up by bottoms three. And photos snapped up too. Mr Maher Sir was questioning Rodney to an inch of his life about the life with Cav and the boys of the Sky cycling team. Then I chirruped in. “Hgmmm.” I coughed trying to get a little attention – Jane looking on as ever, the resigned but accommodating creature she is – also working for the Sky cycling team and having heard this sort of thing a hundred times before. “Hgmmm, I’m in Cav’s book as well’ I said rather less meekly than perhaps I should. The day was made.


mbt said...

oh yes I forgot happy new year to you and Eve! Time runs away from us sometimes..

gz said...

meeting people, like that, is so unbelievable and exhilarating...whatever the weather!
All the best for 2012

Ed Wenn said...

Great story, Andrea. I've loved the Buzzcocks forever and now my kids are getting into them too, which is wonderful. One thing though....I can't read white on black for more than about 30 seconds before my head goes funny, so your blog quite literally does my head in. Suspect that'll please you :-)

Mr Leica Man said...

Ahhh, I see. The John chap's name rings a bell now. Is that the Flying Monk?

A lovely piece of literature.

John Maher said...

Hi Andrea, great post! However, as you might expect, my recollection of events is slightly different ;-) ... you and I started discussing medium format cameras, at which point you retrieved an old Hasselblad 500 from the boot of your car. While I was showing great interest, for what must have been several seconds, you only went and mentioned the 'C' word. Well, it's not every day you get to meet the Manx Missile's coach, mentor and car valeting advisor on the Butty Bus! Granted, we've had various TV celebs on there before but we're talking about a bona fide person of interest here, as in someone with talents and skills that consist of more than gurning in the direction of a TV camera.

Bearing in mind Rod and Jane were only here for approx 48 hours, they spent the largest proportion of their daylight hours on the rock making a 140 mile round trip between Tolsta and Leverburgh, the ultimate goal being a cup of tea on the Butty Bus. Beats a visit to the Callanish Stones in my book ;-)

I suspect Rod was actually on a scouting mission for a new team Sky Hebridean training base, with the Butty Bus might being in the running to become the professional cyclists' tea stop of choice. After all, Majorca is so last century nowadays. You better warn Brad... the proprietor told me he's restricting entry to those who've made the TdF podium. Come the end of July, the egg and tomato rolls are on me ;-)

windy said...

Lovely post and a Happy New Year to you and E x

And, for the record I did once fall in love with someone. It was 30 years ago now. But it wasn't someone I shouldn't have fallen in love with ;-)

Laurie said...

Love this story, the pic and the comments! Happy New Year!