Thursday, August 21, 1980

Thursday August 21st

Andrew got me up at about seven-thirty because I was going to get the Sheffield match tickets. Andrew kept saying that he reckoned I was going too early, and that nobody would be there queuing, but as it turned out, the earlier the better.

I unsuspectingly walked down the road and as I turned the corner I got a shock. There must’ve been 300+ people waiting, and there were still two hours to go. I almost immediately faced a dilemma, because there were four different queues (Stand and Season tickets, Wellington Lane, Shed and Easterby End), and I wanted tickets for different areas. I could either get four for the Shed and then go to the back of the Easterby End queue and get six, or I could just get all ten for the Shed. Because I wanted to be sure of getting DK’s tickets, I chose the latter.

The whole thing was total chaos. There were loads of people milling around from one queue to the next, people queue-jumping and generally an air of disorganization. All the tickets went by afternoon. I needn’t have been worried about getting ten tickets; a woman in front of me wanted 14 and a bloke behind wanted 20. It was pretty annoying to see all the once-a-year brigade queuing just to see Sheffield obviously.

After I got my ten, I felt almost jubilant and kept a firm hold of them in my pocket all the way home. Mum and Dad went out at about eleven I suppose, to do some shopping in Knowlesbeck, and dead up twelve o’clock David Kilpatrick rang from work. At first when I told him that I’d got him 6 Shed tickets he said “Oh, bloody hell” and said that it was “bad.” Why I don’t know. Whether he thought I’d got them stand tickets or what I’ve no idea. Anyway, we arranged to meet at twelve fifteen at the top of Cairn Road, opposite Egley Lane, and he seemed really very grateful – “. . . you’re a good lad . . .” etc. – which made me feel quite good.

After all this high excitement (!) I felt bored at home, so I took back my library books (the three insect ones, “A Choice of Catastrophes” and “The Ape Within Us”), all of which were unread except for the last one, which I’d nearly finished. I got into Easterby at three, and went straight to the Main Library where I spent two hours choosing “Collins Field Guide to Archaeology in Britain” and “Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance.”

I got back at six or so. Robert had rung up about the tickets. In the evening I played records and watched television.

This Polish strike is good, and it riles me to see so called “peoples’ governments” refusing to allow free trade unions and free speech. The West, for all its faults, is at least democratic in that (pathetic) governments are elected by everybody. Why the “Communists” do this I don’t know.

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