FINALLY we leave, after, like, 70 minutes or so. Quite surprised we fitted so much in tbh. And now we can go back any time in the next 12 months for free, woohoo. On the way out I wanted a photo of the elevated terrorism risk but there were now two coppers stood by it, armed to the fucking teeth. Think I'll leave it...
Next on the agenda was a trip to Southsea to collect pebbles, but not before that slight diversion of what promises to be a fossil exhibition, out on the main drag. It's called the Genesis Expo but we don't twig until we're inside that this is an exhibition - full of actual genuine interesting fossils - which tells visitors that fossils, right, they explain about 5% of jack shit ... and the reason they can't is because God.
Yes, we'd stumbled into a creationist museum. Holy shit indeed.
I want to go back, as for some reason I didn't enjoy it anywhere near as much as I am now enthusiastic about the place. There are 15p printed pamphlets teaching you how the biblical flood really happened and stuff. There's a video to watch. And downstairs there's a shop chock full of bible DVDs and other proof that God God God God God.
Anyway, back outside and waiting for a bus next to the scrotes by the bookies. There is supposedly a bus every 10 minutes and it probably takes about that long for a number 1 to turn up, which crawls slowly to Southsea South Parade pier.
It's fucking fantastic. The pier is desolate and derelict and boarded up, although maintenance crews are working on it. It looks magnificent. Opposite is a worryingly blue hotel, occupied seemingly only by women over 65. And all along the coast is a long pebble beach, which is perfect because we're here to collect pebbles. Helen is an ace painter and decorator, by which I mean she knows how to decorate her flat well, plus she does drawing and painting. So we're there to collect flat pebbles for her to paint, and interestingly shaped and coloured ones, plus shells. I help, sort of, but mostly take photos of the pier looking grim, and of the peculiarly interesting flocks of birds above us.