Well, I've decided to resurrect this blog. I have returned, very much enthused, from the socialist party's annual Socialism event down in London.
I'll give a quick overview of my impressions of the weekend.
Stoke branch of the SP managed to get a record amount of people down to socialism this year, packing out a 16 seater mini-bus. The combination of hungover students and a lack of sleep on my part did not help matters, and despite the bus being a Mercedes it was most uncomfortable. Luckily the company was good, even though the conversation was a little muted because of the factors mentioned.
We arrived down at the ULU for about midday, and had a three hour wait to kill before the sessions started. Luckily there was the socialist book shop set out for me to spend my hard earned cash on. £30 seemed to evaporate within about ten minutes. I bought Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi, NHS plc by Allyson Pollock, a CWI beer glass and some vegan goodies from the coffee shop down stairs.
I turned up for a very interesting discussion on the NHS at 60 (I'll be posting about that later) led off by socialist party councillor Dr Jackie Grunsell.
The evening rally at the good old friends meeting house was, as ever excellent. In my estimation about 1100 turned up as the main seating area was rammed as well as most of the balcony area. There were a few speakers of note, Nikos a comrade from Greece gave a short talk about the CWI's work there, Fang Guoli from China gave a talk on how their work is progressing and their perspectives for the Chinese working class in the upcoming recession. Also a short report from a ford transit worker on their fight against job cuts in their Southampton factory.
After the rally I accompanied A very public Sociologist, sister A and brother G to Euston Station to watch them refuel on a murder king. Many bad and sick jokes ensued. The social, as per usual was rammed full, the bad situation was made worse by the really loud music. Honesty, all people want to do after the rally is catch up with people who they haven't seen in ages, have a few beers and relax in good company (or maybe that's just me, and maybe I'm getting old).
5 of us Stoke comrades made our way to the hostel in the pouring rain, after a minor (read: huge) navigational fuck up, we finally got there. I crashed out in my room at about midnight, only to be rudely woken up at 3am by some SP members trying (and failing miserably) to have 'quiet sex', cringing I tried keeping the pillow over my head to block out the noise, only to hear those dreaded words 'want to do anal?' whispered. In a show of stamina and prowess (for both included) this continued for another 40 odd minutes. I'd be surprised if she could sit down for any of the Sunday sessions after that. If you're reading this, you know who you are- and yes someone could hear!
Anyway, I went to the sessions on Greece and marxism and the big bang on sunday- reports to come from them later.
Achieving an almost impossible feat of endurance I stayed awake for all the sessions, even the closing rally when I found myself flagging after 5 hours of sleep.
All in all it was, as always, a very enjoyable weekend, I learnt lots of new stuff, had some quite frankly harrowing experiences in the hostel, and a good laugh on the way back from London.