I was tagged by the lovely @Mummy_Misfit to share 10 things you didn't know about me. So here we go. Not all of them are particularly interesting, and as I've mentioned quite a few things about myself in previous blog posts it's been quite hard to think up some new ones, but I'll do my best.
1. I've driven a reindeer sleigh.
It was during a holiday in Lapland. We'd already ski-dooed (snow mobiles) across a frozen lake, tried our hands at ski-ing (not very successfully in my case) and witnessed a New Year's Eve firework's display that belied every health and safety law ever written, so I'd fancied something a little more relaxing. And learning to drive a reindeer sleigh seemed the perfect thing to me. So, yes, I can drive a reindeer sleigh, and it was fun. Part of a holiday I'll never forget.
2. I once fell on Simon le Bon!
It was purely by accident, you understand. It was way back in the early 80's, when I was a teenager and Duran Duran were at the height of their fame. Andy Taylor from the band hails from my native North East England and back then he was in the process of opening a bar in the coastal town of Whitley Bay called 'Rios', and the band were due to turn up for its opening night - along with quite a few screaming girls, of which I was one. I was pushed right up against the barrier when they finally turned up, and as Simon le Bon walked past me someone pushed me really hard from behind causing me to fall forward and grab onto the nearest thing I could for support - which happened to be Simon le Bon! He was very nice about it, smiled at me, asked if I was alright, and then disappeared into the bar with the rest of them. I went home one very happy young lady that night, believe me.
3. I secretly love Michael Buble.
Although it's probably not a secret anymore, is it? Probably not that weird in some people's eyes, but as a real rock fan who could happily listen to AC/DC and Guns 'n' Roses at high volume without incurring so much as a tiny headache, a lot of people probably wouldn't put Mr. Buble at the top of my iPod favourites. But he is. Enough said.
4. I should be a lot taller than I am.
When I was about 11 years old I contracted a muscle wasting disease - I can't for the life of me remember the name of it, but as far as I can recall it was loosely linked to some form of polio - which was, apparently, quite common in the elderly but extremely rare in children. It meant I couldn't get up from a seated position or from the floor without it being incredibly painful, I experienced loss of balance, general weakness and I couldn't walk long distances. The plus side of all this was that I had to get taxi's to school, couldn't do P.E. for a whole year, and was spoiled rotten! On the negative side, I couldn't play out like I'd used to, couldn't ride my bike, and the steroids I had to take made me put on weight. The disease also stunted my growth, but luckily, because I'd been quite tall for my age (I was 5ft 2 inches at 11 years old) that wasn't as huge a problem as it could have been. But, according to my consultant, at the rate I had been growing I would have ended up around 5ft 11 inches if I hadn't fallen ill. Anyway, it took about a year for me to fully recover, and the only signs that anything were wrong at all are a scar on my left arm where the doctor's took a muscle biopsy, and the fact I'm a few inches shorter than I should have been.
5. I met a half naked Gary Lineker in the Everton F.C. dressing room.
Long story this one, so I'll try and make it short. Once upon a time I was a big football fan - before they all turned into ignorant, overpaid, egotistical idiots. In my opinion, of course. And I was a bit of an Everton fan (don't ask why, because I can't actually remember!). And it was during the 1980's, when Gary Lineker was an Everton player, that me and my dad visited Goodison Park on a match day and were taken round the ground, and into the dressing room before the game. And Gary Lineker was there, wearing only a towel round his waist. I've got a picture to prove it somewhere...anyway, he was a lovely guy, him and a few of the players spent a bit of time talking to me and it was a great day all round. But my biggest memory was what a fantastic guy Peter Reid was. So, so lovely, always smiling, and he made sure I met everyone I wanted to meet.
6. I'm a little bit Greek.
Both my mum's parents were from the Greek Islands originally, coming over to the UK during the Second World War, unable to speak a word of English. So I've got Greek blood in me, but unfortunately, as far as looks are concerned, I've inherited my dad's side of the family's blonde hair and fair skin rather than my mother's dark hair and olive skin! However, the Greek part of me might explain my ability to smash plates on a regular basis...
7. I'm addicted to 'The Only Way Is Essex'!
Don't laugh. I only tuned into the first episode because there was nowt else on tv that night, but after 20 minutes I was hooked! And now I can't wait for the next series! It's quite worrying, but I really need to know if those rumours abour Arg and Lydia getting back together are true...
8. I'm a trained Nursery Nurse.
I never really wanted kids of my own, but there was a time when I wanted to work with children, so I trained to be a nursery nurse in the late 1980's. And I loved it! It was such a happy place to be, the nursery environment. Unfortunately it wasn't a career I pursued for too long, as my heart was really in the Performing Arts, but I've got some great memories of Nativity plays and Christmas parties that will stay with me forever.
9. I desperately want to ride a motorbike.
I think it's the rock chick part of me coming out again. I just have this day dream in my head of riding pillion on a huge motorbike with a handsome, tattooed biker (who wouldn't look dissimilar to Keanu Reeves) up front. You can see why I'm a writer now, can't you? This imagination of mine never gets a rest...
Anyway, not sure if I'll ever get to do this as my husband once had a motorbike and now considers them a deathtrap after losing a friend in an accident, but every time I see one race by, there's still this little part of me that wishes I was on it.
10. I've got a rather large crush on one of The Hairy Biker's.
Simon King to be exact - the Geordie one. And I appear to be still hovering around the biker theme here, but there's just something about this man that makes me go slightly weak at the knees. Especially when he's knocking up a corned beef and potato pie or a chicken curry! I don't know what it is exactly - and the Geordie accent might have something to do with it - but for a big bloke, he's really quite sexy!
So there you go. Ten things you didn't know about me, and probably didn't need to know either!! I don't know if any of those were surprises to anyone, but I hope you enjoyed reading them anyway.
And if anything here has made you in the slightest bit interested in finding out about what it is that I actually do all day, check out my other blog Michelle Betham: Author - It's All About The Books to find out more information on all my books - taster chapters, reviews and buying information.