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we had our very last bank holiday for the year last weekend (sad- now i’m desperately hanging out for christmas and new year hols) and a friend coincidentally managed to get Hard-To-Come-By tickets for a manchester united home game at old trafford, so off we went on a road trip up north! i also hadn’t been in a car for over 5 months so was quite secretly glad to be travelling in one instead of having to leg it via public transport once again.

i was a little worried about the infamous London Traffic on motorways/highways on weekends- especially on a long weekend- after chatting to a colleague but thought nothing more of it…..until we were stuck in the car for 7 hours on the drive from london to manchester. by the 5th hour i was so ready to jump out the car and walk the rest of the way…if only it wasn’t so ridiculous an idea i definitely would have done it. note: normal time it usually takes to drive up- 3.5-4 hours. to be fair a) there was an accident on one stretch of the motorway, b) it was a long weekend, c) people were probably travelling to manchester for the game and d) there was a music festival on on that weekend too. a train ride would have taken us…a mere 2 hours in comparison. uh huh. but we made full use of the car as you shall see later!

the boyfriend was driving the last stretch and it was quite Mission Impossible towards the end of the journey *cue theme song. the game was due to start at 3pm and we were still crawling along on the motorway at 2pm (having left at 8am that morning, mind you). by 2.30pm we’d arrived in manchester but still needed to find a park and make our way to the stadium (not knowing how far it was on foot) so everyone was a little bit anxious and on edge. we were a car that could have used a good dose of Xanax.

we missed kick-off and a goal from fulham but still made it in time for the rest of the match. phew. and what an exciting match it was too, as there were goals aplenty.

stalls outside the stadium selling soccer paraphernalia

not only did the skies threaten to open up and rain down on us, but it made good on its promise too. luckily the stadium was covered so it wasn’t a repeat of the olympics episode where we were completely drenched.

the crowd was 75k strong that day, but you never feel the sheer volume of this number whilst seated, do you?

half-time

the away team leaves the stadium in their team bus. home players get to drive home in their own ride (never knew this!). here’s the carpark where people were waiting to get a glimpse of man u players leaving in their own cars.

and this is just the crowd waiting to get into the store after the game, as the store was already packed to the brim with people currently shopping inside. no thanks!

we stayed overnight somewhere in manchester in a pretty neat little hotel which was So Comfy and still had the car the next day, so drove on to Oxford and even made a pit stop at Bicester Village. what did i tell you about squeezing every penny’s worth from the car?

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