Birmingham... Digbeth Murals, A Drag Revue & My English Breakfast!

Back, back, back in Birmingham once again, I had three special steps that I was determined to take! My previous visit to England's second city had been a sober affair, I wanted to cut loose and to cautiously enjoy the most recent Lockdown relaxation. A much needed boost of 'Local Drag' was needed because my Philly show in December 2019 had been long enough! I'm ready! 

Choosing to stay in Birmingham's Southside District for a second time didn't take much thought, although I wanted to experience a different part of the city that I hadn't since my student days. Digbeth felt like the right part of the city to take a chance on, making my reservations at 'Chance & Counters' ensured that Digbeth had my word! Before I made my order at 'Chance & Counters', the journey to get to Birmingham had me on the bus, unlike the usual Midland Metro. Taking two buses, one from Darlaston to West Bromwich then a second that bridged the gap, I arrived into Birmingham with about ten minutes before my time slot was booked! Having to deal with the situation, I saw it as a blessing that I had even made it to Birmingham's city centre in the first place! Ordering a little after my allocated start time wasn't an issue, the approachable server at 'Chance & Counters' took my order without any issue. After two pints and my 'Chilli Fries' and 'Korean BBQ Wings', I was feeling much, much better! I'd highly recommend 'CC!' Game on, B! 

Dining within the kitsch and cool vicinity of Digbeth's Custard Factory, I appreciated the sunshine that was beating down onto my skin! With those Summer vibes washing all over me, it was time for me to have a much needed walk around the streets of Digbeth, the former factories and Victorian railway arches weren't going to wait for me to get my act together! Reminding me of the series 'Peaky Blinders', I headed for Floodgate Street to stand underneath the imposing railway arches that had been adorned in a colourful spray painted mural. Reminding me of Brooklyn's own 'Bushwick Collective', I appreciated that work of 'street' art. I walked around other streets to see the renovated and new art scene that Digbeth showcased. The sunshine mixed well with the colourful street art, I'm not one of those artist types but I enjoyed the variety of 'old meets new', very that! Digbeth was done, it was time for me to check-in at my hotel, I had made some fabulous plans! Staying sober the time before, I was feeling very thirsty, indeed! Go!

I love the art-form that is Drag, since December 2019 I had not seen any live Drag performances and that needed to desperately change! I have blogged about 'Alesha Tryed' before but it was time to see what shenanigans she was going to pull on stage during the fourth edition of 'Carry On Camping'. That was for the evening, it was still the afternoon, I had some pre-drinks to consume and they wouldn't be enjoyed in my hotel room! Dressed in some presentable clothes for once, I headed for the Gay Village to catch a tan and to enjoy a few beverages! The Village Inn had kept a bench free for me, I enjoyed two pints of Cider before moving onto the next venue. The sunshine felt glorious, it was amazing to be sipping on my drinks with not a cloud in the sky, yes I going a bit red but that would tan soon enough! Where to next? I listened to the quiz at Missing, it had been the first that I had visited in the Village during my first semester at UCB, I was loving that nostalgia! Enjoying that pint of Corona, those drinks were tasting fine! 喝酒! 

As 6:00 PM neared, I made my way over to 'The Fox' for the doors opening before 'Carry On Camping' started. I made my drink a pint of Guinness, why? In that moment I just had the taste for a pint of stout, my Brother had bought me a pint of the 'Black Stuff' on the day of our Dad's funeral and the taste hit right! With the venue filling up, I found my assigned seat because 'Social Distancing' had to be practiced. Alesha came to the stage and introduced herself in true style, she performed alongside four other performers during 'Carry On Camping', so stay tuned for 'Sunday's Service... Southside Nights, Birmingham' for more information about that line-up! Performing several numbers, Alesha had her audience clapping, cheering and singing along! Don't tell Boris! Meeting Alesha after speaking to (Liam) for some years was great, after connecting on social media around 2014. Meeting her in the flesh and (Liam) was great, it was amazing to put a face to the name finally! Tanked up, it was a wise idea to get some sleep! State! 

¿Qué demonios? ¡Tan temprano! ¡Dios mio! Yes, I found myself awake before 8:00 AM! I decided against forcing myself to go back to sleep, I got my things together and headed for a well needed Full English Breakfast! I might be cash-strapped at the moment but I was entitled to have a treat or three during that overnight trip! Taking my seat at Birmingham's 'Grand Central Kitchen', I ordered the biggest breakfast on the menu with an Americano coffee to boot. The breakfast itself was bang on the mark, being worth every penny I actually didn't worry about the price-tag, it was the experience that I had envisaged for my 'morning after' the first night out since January 2020! I loved my 'Grand Central Kitchen' experience, the waiters were so friendly, nothing was too much trouble for them! Customers were happy and I was feeling content with my breakfast choice. We need these moments of 'self-care', I needed that treat to help the hangover to enjoy something tasty! Birmingham had been blessed and I still had change spare. 

Remembering that I would need to take two buses back home, I tried my luck to see if the Metro service had resumed but it was the bus life for me that day. Hungover and not feeling my best I had to get on with it, Birmingham itself remained in a sunshine state of mind with another serving of glorious sunshine. The walk from my hotel to 'Grand Central Kitchen' allowed me to be part of that sunshine morning time. Birmingham was merely waking up and getting itself started during that Monday morning period, psyching myself up to take those two buses I did wonder why the Metro didn't have one 'through' replacement bus? Anyway, Birmingham had been everything and more, the drag was great and the time spent in Digbeth was equally as pleasing. The full English was worth every penny, taking leftovers from both places allowed me to enjoy them when I was hungry at another point. A certain stop in West Bromwich inspired me to plan a prospective morning out there, it'll be a 'Babbi Gurl' day out! Birmingham, I'll be back! 

Alesha 'Really' Tryed! 

Joseph Harrison 

Comments

  1. The perfect trifecta🥰 Art, drag, and deliciousness💕

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    Replies
    1. Absolutely! The perfect combination for a boozy Sunday! ❤️

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