Friday, 16 January 2015

Heavy Catalogues, UK Ponycon and "The N Company"!

I am very tired and tearful after another argument with Mum, but I WILL keep blogging every day!

October 21st 2011

Mum and I went to Ealing Broadway while David got his annual flu jab.  I went to the Nationwide to withdraw £200 and the cashier practically accused me of money laundering!  "This is strange...you've had money coming in and then going straight out..."  Yes, because I transfer the money from my Paypal to my bank account, and then sometimes withdraw the same sum as cash.  I'm old fashioned.  I prefer using cash to cards.  It's easy to overspend with a bit of plastic!

Our trip was fascinating for blog readers everywhere.  We went in Savers to buy facial wipes and anti perspirent, then to Poundland for headphones and Weetaflakes (except they didn't have any Weetaflakes).  Then we walked around the charity shops...but there was nothing of value to be found.  Then around the card shop in search of a birthday card for my nephew, but the shops were all full of Christmas cards by that point, of course, so no luck there either.

I did find these in H&M.  Only one of each though which meant I couldn't make the money back by selling duplicates on eBay!


Mum wanted me to pick up copies of all the heavy Christmas catalogues.  She refused to take an Argos catalogue that somebody had dumped at Boots (which would have meant carrying it a shorter way) because she wanted a "clean one".  How dirty could it have got being carried from Argos to Boots?!

David was late coming back for us, so we had to stand out in the cold for ages...with the heavy catalogues!  There was an oak tree nearby so I eventually decided to walk over to it and try to collect some more acorns for Peter.  No sooner had I walked away from my position than I heard David yelling my name from the car!

He was so broke that he borrowed £6000 from Mum, announcing that he would "pay her back when he won on the premium bonds".  Sounds like a great idea to lend money to him then!

His comments were getting more and more stupid actually.  He "now knows why he's cold at night".  When asked why, he held his fingers up and said that it was "the gap under the door" that's to blame.  No, I still have no idea what gap under which door or what the heck it had to do with his fingers!

I spent the evening bathing and trying to make myself feel good for the Ponycon the next day.  Not that it did any good!  I'd tried to get everything packed and ready to go, but I just knew I was bound to forget something...

October 22nd 2011

I got up at 6am, but my parents refused to do anything or even stir from their slumbers before it got light.

If I was feeling even slightly better about myself from all the pampering of the night before, my happiness was soon eliminated.  When it came time to comb my hair (which Mum kindly agreed to do because I was in such a panic again, I had what she described as "big tangles like dreadlocks" and ended up losing a massive hairball.  I still don't know what caused it to this day.  I guess somebody just wanted to make me feel like rubbish for Ponycon.

We drove to Sunbury-on-Thames first to collect my niece Abigale who I had promised to take with me this year.  Miraculously, despite all my parents' delays, we still got there before it opened.  However, most of the best ponies had sold before we reached the front of the queue.  While there had been an agreement that nothing would be sold before 10am, the stallholders had been able to walk around earlier and see what they wanted to buy from others' tables.  So, as soon as 10am came, they made a beeline for their favourite items, of course.  Those at the front of the queue didn't stand a chance, much less those of us further back.

I still managed to get a nice selection of stuff though surprisingly.  I thought I had so many ponies now that I wouldn't be able to find anything I hadn't got!  But I managed to find 21 new ponies as well as lots of merchandise.  I messed up and bought two Watercolour Baby Seawinkles, not realising that they were the same pony in two different states of colour changing!  I spent £329 in total (seriously, looking back, what was I thinking?), and Mum treated me to my most expensive pony ever in the auction - the very rare limited edition Breast Cancer Pony.  The pony cost a whopping great £52.  (I'll say it again - what WERE we thinking of?!)  This pony was never actually officially released but a few escaped from the factory in China, hence the rarity and value.  She's very pretty but I don't think I'd allow Mum to waste that much money these days!


I spent £10 on Abigale too, which sounds mean in the scheme of things.  But, being a non-fussy child as opposed to a collector, who didn't have many ponies, she was able to get a big bag full of ponies for that price.  Quite a few people gave her stuff for free as well which was really kind of them.  I'll never forget her face when SoSilver gave her a Breezie.  She still has that Breezie to this day!

Sebby6 was equally kind to me and gave me a free MLP comic for my collection.  Sadly, I didn't get much chance to speak to Sebby, or to anybody really, as Abigale ran everywhere and stopped me talking to anyone much.  I think I offended a few people and want to extend my (very late) apologies again if this was the case.

A selection of photos from the day, as well as a couple of films...



David really seemed to be losing it.  The Ponycon took place less than five minutes from Brighton seafront but he drove us straight home without so much as going along the prom!  He knows how much I love the seaside, and who takes a 7-year-old child that near the sea without letting them see it?  Mum and I had planned to take Abigale to Palace Pier before heading home but we didn't get to do that either, of course.

I got very dizzy and tired on the way back, probably from lack of food and drink.  I still somehow managed to spend two hours with the other kids at Emma's house...I've no idea how I managed not to collapse until I got home!

October 23rd 2011

I still felt really ill - headache, nausea, dizzy, tired...all the usual.  I felt marginally better after eating dinner and ice cream but soon relapsed.  It was obviously something to do with sitting still all the time, meaning I couldn't do anything else now I really needed to work on my fitness if I couldn't even take a day at Ponycon without taking ages to recover!

We went to Grottsville that night to collect more eBay sales items, as well as my Keypers collection and another box of ponies.  David seemed surprised that I wanted to bring stuff back to Woodberry.  Well, why did he think I wanted to go to Grottsville in the first place?  Didn't he want to empty the house?  The truth of it was that he was just in a fowl mood and a hurry to go to work all night, having wasted the day in the loo again!

Mum told me the reason that she had treated me to such an expensive pony.  It was "my 21st birthday present, just in case she died before then".  Great.  Nice cheerful thought.  Apparently her stomach pains were not only unpleasant, but they were going to kill her now!

October 24th 2011

Mum didn't get me up until 10am so as to give me a rest.  Despite being annoyed about having wasted the morning, it did seem to work.  My headache was gone!  However, I had another mysterious scratch on my right arm.  I think the boogie monster came out and attacked me in my bed each night!

My hair loss was disturbingly bad again.  My head was sore and covered in hardened dry hair shampoo.  Lots of hair would fall out along with what Mum referred to as "white biscuit crumbs".  For God's sake, any fool can see that one of my biggest problems was refusing to wash my hair!  But with Mum (the only person I had to talk to) telling me that washing my hair would make me go completely bald, I was too scared to try.

We walked up to the South Ealing charity shops but found nothing, and then to Lammas Park and the entrance of Walpole to look for more acorns for Peter.  Just as well because Peter (and his "girlfriend", who he now brought with him) kept coming to the door to beg for acorns now and we were running low!

Another unusual kiddie ride had been listed on eBay - The Owl and The Pussycat Boat ride, made by the mysterious "N Company".  I had nicknamed this manufacturer as such due to the capital "N" which would always be somehow integrated into their designs, either in the paintwork, or footplates etc.  But I still had no clue who the manufacturer was.  I wrote to the seller to ask if there were any manufacturer's markings and he was very helpful, actually opening the ride up to check all the internal workings.  Alas, there was nothing.  He did tell me that he thought the ride was over 40 years old and that it still had an old Wizard of Oz cassette tape inside though.  The original tune had been "Somewhere Over The Rainbow" apparently!  He also gave me permission to use his photos, but those were some of the others lost on the infamous computer that crashed.

By pure coincidence, I came across these flyers on arcadeflyerarchive.com on the same day...


These pictures were taken from a Universal Visual Audiotronics Corporation leaflet, probably dating from around 1980.  Apparently "N"s rides were distributed by this company within the USA.  I was still certain that the rides were MADE in the UK though, so it didn't help me much in that respect.

October 25th 2011

We "walked the long way" (according to my blog notes!) to Lammas Park.  God knows what the long way was.  I'm pleased to say I no longer consider any route to Lammas Park a long one!  We found that they were expanding the playground there though and had blocked off a lot of the paths, so we couldn't walk all the way around anyway.

Mum told me that the robin had "come through the open back door and sat on the arm of the sofa next to her" before I got up that morning.  Yeah, right.  Isn't it enough to act as Dr Doolittle towards the creatures in the garden?  Why make up crazy, unbelievable lies?

I was still depressed about my thinning hair.  I knew myself that I lost more the greasier it got, yet I still refused to wash it!

David had announced that he wouldn't be coming home from work until "after midnight".  I'm glad I'm not a civil engineer if it means working all those hours for no overtime pay!  But he enjoys it, of course.  Anything to get him out of the house and make him feel useful and part of a team.  What a pity he doesn't feel like that where DIY and housework are concerned!

Two more kiddie rides - a Jolly Roger My Little Pony and Whittaker Bros. Pongo - showed up on eBay.  They were located just up the road from us in Hayes.  Oh, if only I had the space.  What I would have given to own a MLP ride.  From what I remember, they were in badly marked auctions and only ended up selling for about £20 each as well!  Crazy.  And, of course, I even lost the photos on that darn broken computer.  *Sighs*


Time for bed at long last.  Just as well as I keep writing entirely the wrong word.  I have a big, probably painful day tomorrow.  But you'll hear more about that after another three years of catch up blogging!

Best wishes,
DesirĂ©e  xxx

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