Myself (left) and bride-to-be Mel in our Pink Lady finery before we indulged in some 24-hour Greggs
What goes on in Newcastle, stays in Newcastle, according to the rules of Hen Dos – so despite my exhaustion and a few potential scars (both physical and mental) I am unable to share the details of a weekend that shall go down in history as one of the more ‘epic’ of my life.
However one abiding memory from this excursion to the North East, dressed as a Pink Lady (obviously) is the food.
Though previously a virgin to the concept of a 24-hour Greggs, I have now learned it is possible to obtain a sausage roll at 3am if the fancy takes one.
It was conveniently located next to the police and ambulance pop-up, presumably in case somebody’s arteries fur up after an unwise intake of pepperoni pasty or deep fried doughnut during a valiant attempt to sober up.
But what remains even more deeply ingrained in my memory is the city’s late night answer to soaking up those unwise shots – and a Newcastle speciality – Parmo.
Though it sounds like a tender Italian delicacy I can assure you this deep fried chicken schnitzel coated in breadcrumbs then topped in white sauce and cheese is not for the faint hearted – but when teamed up with chips is deemed the booze-soaker of choice.
I should not have been surprised at the bride’s desire to try this – she is the woman who tried and failed to persuade me chips and cheese is a good idea – but I’m afraid I ‘chickened’ out.
Here in Lancashire we have our own solution for the late night need to carbs and salt and I am myself a huge fan of chips and gravy – a dish introduced to me as an incoming southerner in my late teens.
It is much preferable to the home counties preference to chips and mayonnaise.
Perhaps every area has a calorific food of choice – do they really eat deep fried Mars Bars in Scotland for example?
I have deep reservations about the East End preference for Jellied Eels – and as for donner kebabs – no thanks.
But I do have sympathy for the Lancaster uni students who caused a fire this week making cheese on toast – in a toaster.
Where is Greggs when you need it?