Tim really needed to get some work done. So we decided to take Daniel and Becky into the City Centre for a few hours. I had the idea that I might spend some of my birthday money on a new game or two... I was particularly interested in the 'Traders and Barbarians' expansion of Settlers of Catan, since it apparently contains several interesting variants on the main game. We knew there was a good Games Workshop shop near where we usually park, so that was our first port of call.
I hate making decisions, and spending money even when I've been told that I MUST spend it on myself. But we browsed, and I pretty much decided that this expansion looked like a very good one. We were also interested in several variations on Carcassonne - not expansions, but different games altogether. I had already played the 'Hunters and Gatherers' variation, which our friends own; but didn't think it quite as good as regular Carcassonne. However, we rather liked the look of another game - another standalone - called Discoverers.
There were many games that didn't interest me at all - violent ones, for instance - and we decided against getting a double-12 set of dominoes as the set was so very heavy, and our space flying back to Cyprus is going to be limited.
Having ascertained that the shop was open all day we decided to return later - which game me more time to ponder.
We went and had some coffee in one of the malls, and showed Becky the famous bull statue of the Bull Ring. We spent some time in Waterstones bookshop but didn't buy anything other than a couple of good value DVDs. Then we decided to walk along the canal for a while. While there, we saw that one of the narrowboats operated a cafe, and thought it might be fun to eat there, despite their dubious spelling and punctuation:
The photo doesn't make it obvious, but they had two Gs and an apostrophe in what should have been 'baguettes' .
We were able to find a table for four, and Daniel and Becky - who were on the MV Doulos for so long - felt right at home eating on board a boat, gently moving in the water:
The food was very good, and pretty good value too.
We'd paid for four hours of parking, so decided to wander back. We went into the Games shop again, and I bought the two games we had looked at, plus another called Thurn and Taxis, which had won an award in 2006, and is made by a German company (Germans seem to make by far the best games). When I later looked it up online, it's given excellent reviews.
We decided to try out the new variation on Carcassonne, which proved quite interesting and different in several respects. Here's how the board looked at the end
Daniel did try seeing if he could use the card left over from the tiles (which had to be pressed out before they were used)....
.. but we decided it was simplest just to recycle them.
In the evening, we were all asked out to an Indian restaurant by some good friends and had a most enjoyable meal. At the end we were each given an After Eight (made by a company I would never buy from... but since they were given, we at them anyway and enjoyed them) and our friends' son challenged us to turn the wrappers inside out without ripping them.
I succeeded and was told I had made a Darth Vader helmet: