You would think my brother’s visit up North would be much more eventful than my mothers, wouldn’t you? Well, you would be wrong. It was as if God had it in for me the weekend my brother came to stay, like he was saying haha you can’t have it both ways.
Going back to Uni in third year was a massive shock to the system- immune and mental. My first day back and it was already “let’s go to the pub for one”. Who has ever been to the pub for one? This seemed to be an ongoing thing for the next three weeks, and this along with doing 6 hour stints in the library, was bound to fall on me with force by the time my brother came to stay.
Imagine this- my last year of Uni and the only family member who’d come to visit me was my Mum. The excitement of seeing my brother-after he explained he had been partying in Edinburgh- was huge, but this excitement would not last long. Blinded by the city lights, a bit too much for my sensitive eyes after being at a festival the day before, I collected him from the coach station. I promptly told him we were going to the cinema, NOT the pub. It was a Sunday after all.
Halfway through the film, I looked to my right and John had fallen asleep, mouth hanging open. Great, I thought, I guess it’s just me then. Little did I know it’d just be poor little me for the next 24 hours. My alarm went off at 8.30am, and I woke up feeling terrible. I dragged myself downstairs but Sod’s Law was that the only time my brother had come to stay, I was bed-ridden and infectious!
The next day was a huge improvement, but I had still hardly seen my brother. Whilst I had been festering in my bed, John had been living his life, seeing his friends (even if he did get lost on the way home), and chatting to everyone except me. It’s safe to say I was jealous and DESPERATE to do something with him! Considering my under-the-weather state, I took him off to a cafe in the much more upmarket Didsbury, which lasted about 20 minutes before I closed my laptop and said “I’m done”. “Thank god, so am I” said John and put his head in his hands- evidently, trying to work wasn’t going to happen, but anything else slightly active still seemed too much for me. Poor John.
Not surprisingly, we ended up at the pub on Tuesday night, and I came to the startling realization that my friends liked my brother more than me. I was still a tad touchy from the day before, scrunched in the corner, listening but not speaking. John on the other hand, was taking one for the team. He was on fantastic form cracking hilarious jokes that everyone seemed to be laughing at, and basically talking for the both of us. There was one moment when John whispered in my ear “I love your friends Mames”. Perhaps he was enjoying himself after all.
I was sad to say goodbye to him the next morning. He’d managed to survive a visit to Manchester, fall asleep in the cinema, impress my friends with his sharp wittiness and-on top of that- had survived getting my illness. But never in a million years did I ever think it would be more civilised than my mother’s visit. What an unexpected outcome. I just hope he enjoyed himself as much as I did.