Wednesday 19th NovemberOur plane was due to depart at 18:05. Me and Stealth got on the Greyhound coach from a rainy, cold Cardiff at 14:40. There was a child who started being loud but he stopped shortly after, so I'm guessing that he was subdued with a horse tranquilser or chloroform. We got to Bristol a while later, where we were met by the School of Bitches' publisher's parents, who had all the Issue 4s and From the Ashes books. We checked in, only to discover the bags were over the weight limit, so a furious Stealth had to pay £60. He tried to forget about it, but we then bought a baguette and mocha each, which cost around £8, and were shit. A toasted baguette should be nice and warm, not warm and cold. On top of this, he'd forgotten his lighter, so had to pay £2.50 for a new one. Big spender.
The gate was fucking rammed. And in typical Ryanair fashion, the plane was late, and we were late boarding, and late leaving. 45 minutes late. Thanks Ryanair! Upon landing, Stealth's ears started to really hurt, so that must have sucked. We got off, met Dhalia (who had arrived in Malta a few days earlier) and got a taxi, a really fast taxi, to our hotel; Rocca Nettuno Suites. Holy shit, this hotel was paradise. Each room was the size of a flat. And it was pretty damn cheap. Me and Dhalia were on the 5th floor (together again) and Stealth was on the 2nd. We took a walk and found a open all hours shop and each bought a big bottle of water and a can of Cisk, the local beer. We sat on the water for a while, then went back to the heaven hotel.
Thursday 20th NovemberI barely slept. Not that I wasn't comfy. The hotel bed was damn fine. I guess I was just too excited. I got up at 7:30, a time I haven't seen for an incredibly long time. I found a supermarket and bought milk, PG Tips and some croissants. Custard filled croissants I later discovered. I met Stealth and Dhalia and we headed out for food. I, however, needed to buy a belt, as I foolishly left mine in Cardiff. I bought one for €15 in good old BHS. I then saw one a couple of doors down at a stall for
€5. Fuck sake.
We sat at a place and had a smoothie each, then carried on to Tex-Mex. Stealth and Dhalia had a full English breakfast while I opted for the American breakfast because it had pancakes. It was huge, came with a hot drink and a juice, and only cost €10.95. Not very cultural but a fucking bargain.
€2 brandys, say no more.
Friday 21st November
I got loads of sleep. I got up and did all that morning shit, went for a short walk along the water in the baking hot sun, then met Danny and Dhalia. We went to a cafe called 'The Road Devil Seafront'. It was a really nice place, with an awesome view of the sea.
I had a ham and cheese roll with chips which was lush, and cost €5. It was at this point that we started to realise how beautiful Maltese women are. Literally every minute we'd be turning our heads and saying, "She's win". We told Danny that some women in the UK walk around with a fag on, whilst pushing their screaming child, on their phone either staring at it or arguing with a boyfriend. Stealth joined us shortly after. We headed back to the hotel where Dhalia met his friend Danielle. She was Australian. Which I would later start to point out a lot. We went back to Black Gold and had some food and drink. I had honey pork which was damn tasty. School of Bitches collaborator Jasper Schellekens met with us. He is easily one of the coolest people I have ever met, and he even has an IMDB credit. We had some drinks on the water then headed to a pub where Jasper was quite the celebrity. Everyone was friendly which was quite strange for me, as you don't get a lot of places like that in the UK. They tend to be full of roid-heads and people who don't like strangers. We eventually left and got lost on the way back to the hotel.
Saturday 22nd November
I went for a walk and found a spot on the water which was amazing. I sat there for an hour or so then headed to the Devil Seafront, which was fast becoming my favourite place. I had the same meal as the previous day, and then Stealth randomly turned up. He had some food and did some drawing. We headed back to the hotel and I went to the roof. The view was awesome. I headed to my room and drank my Halib strawberry milkshake.
Dhalia's younger brother Dylan came over, and we went for food. I had a huge meat feast pizza.
Sunday 23rd DecemberWe all met for breakfast at our favourite place. Stealth, Dahlia and Mini Dhalia were already eating breakfast, which I had just missed, so I had a chicken baguette.
We left, and Dhalia took Mini Dhalia home, and Stealth went to buy some medicine so I went for a walk. I stopped at a souvenir shop and bought a postcard and a bottle opener. As I carried on walking, someone shouted my name. It was Stealth again, who was sat with cool Jasper. We had some drinks then left. Me and Stealth went to New York Best Take Out, and had a cookie shake and a double decker New Orleans burger. What a massive burger, Jesus. We met Dhalia and went for drinks.
Monday 24th NovemberToday was the last say in the hotel. Sad times. We checked out at 11 and left our bags in the hotel. We went to our favourite place for the last time and sat there for ages. We went for a walk and sat on the water, and we all ended up drifting off. We looked homeless. We returned to the hotel to pick up or bags and were picked up by Danny who drove us to his place, where we were to stay for the next three nights. It was a sweet apartment and had a nice view.
Tuesday 25th NovemberWe all got up quite late and just watched TV. Danny cooked us a tasty breakfast. Me, Stealth and Dhalia headed to Valletta so they could sort out the exhibition for the Comic Con. We stopped off the get a mocha each, and I bought a Nutella tart. They even did a slice of apple crumble. What. We got to St. James Cavalier and realised we were late. The familiar faces of the Comic Con organisers; Christopher Muscat, Chris Le Galle, Fabio Agius, Samantha Abela and Mark Ellul, along with graphic designer Kenneth Micallef, were talking to the volunteers. They all went off on a tour while we stayed and sorted out the images. We got the bus back to Marsarscala (or Madagascar as Stealth kept calling it) and met Danny for food at Summer Nights. The food was huge.
Wednesday 26th NovemberThere was a hell of a storm. Like, end of the world stuff. When it finally stopped, me, Stealth and Dhalia headed to Valletta again. The roads were flooded and my shoes were ruined. We got to St. James Cavalier and Stealth and Dhalia sorted out the rest of the stuff for the exhibition. We headed to lemon and Lime where Danny worked and drank all night. Me and Stealth bought ourselves a crepe from down the road. Tasty crepe. Mosquitoes struck again.
Thursday 27th NovemberToday was the day we checked into the Santana hotel in Bugibba. We had breakfast at Lemon, and packed and called a taxi, which took ages to arrive. While we waited in the street, we were surrounded by loads of cats in what looked to be a turf war.
The taxi ride took forever, and messages kept flashing up on the screen saying "Engine fault". We were going to die. We arrived at the hotel, dumped our stuff, and headed to the place we loved the previous year; O'Reilly's. I had the massive burger again.
Friday 28th NovemberI had breakfast in the hotel where I ran into Sean Azzopardi. Me and Stealth sat in cafes all day. Dhalia eventually joined us. We went to a place called Bognor??? and had some food. I had ravioli again. There was a large couple sat behind us who ordered every starter under the sun. We met the rest of the artists and guests in the fancy bar at the hotel. We spoke with Michael Dialynas the majority of the night. He's a really cool guy.
Saturday 29th NovemberThe first day of the Con! I had breakfast and sat with Steve Scott.We got the coach there and School of Bitches set up.They did very well, and so many people came to the table. We were in the same room as Mike Collins (Who is also from Cardiff), Paulina Vassileva, Mickey Lam, Mario Alberti, Marama Corlett (Who was in Guardians of the Galaxy and was awesome), Clíodhna, Clint Langley, Steve Scott, Dean Fenech, Yannis Roumboulias, Joseph Bugeja, For Gallantry, Art of Zrinz, Mike Lawson,and London Horror Comic – John-Paul Kamath. I did loads of filming. Dhalia dressed up in the hazmat costume, and I walked around taking pictures of him. He almost died because of the heat. Later on that night, all the artists and guests went to the karaoke in the hotel.
Sunday 30th NovemberWe got to the Con after a ridiculously bumpy coach ride. Stealth and Dhalia had a Q&A session at 12, which began with a tour of the exhibition where Dhalia dropped in his 9/11 conspiracy theory. The Q&A was hosted by Chris Thompson. Stealth and Dhalia did very well, and made the session very fun to watch. I went to McDonalds for lunch. Big fucking mistake. As I already knew, there wasn't a queuing system, and it was like being in a bar. Being ousted by a group of teenage girls was not cool. And leaning over the counter to get the girls' attention and saying, "He's next" and pointing to the little boy stood next to me was surreal. And then a mother with three screaming girls stood next to me, and it made me want to fall into a coma. We packed up at 7, and that was the Con done for another year. The mosquitoes struck again.
Monday 1st DecemberI missed breakfast so went to a cafe on the water called Bayside. The view was great. I had a sausage and cheese ciabatta which was too much.
Tuesday 2nd DecemberMe & Stealth headed to the square and had an American breakfast each. Dhalia joined us shortly after. We left to get the bus to Mdina. It was an amazing place. It was like going back in time.
A little sparrow started getting brave and got really close to us. We kept giving it little crumbs, then Dhalia decided to give it a piece of his pizza crust. Then one of his sparrow pals swooped in and stole it. Poor guy.
Wednesday 3rd DecemberLeaving day. Me and Stealth had breakfast in the hotel, and he hated it.We checked out out at 11 and went for one final wander. Chris Muscat picked us and Mike Collins up from the hotel and drove us to the airport. We were on the same plane and same bus journey home with Mike. Dhalia was staying in Malta for another month, so we said goodbye to him. I had carry on luggage that made security stop us. Fuck. Had Dhalia left us with a parting prank? The bag was so cramped that the scanners couldn't scan it, so it had to be checked manually. They confiscated sellotape. (?)
I had the window seat which was awesome, and I spent the entire journey looking out the window. I kept imagining that there was "Something on the wing". We flew over the Alps.
We had the worst landing ever. Seriously. We had a bad landing in Bristol last year too. And it was freezing. The three of us got on the Greyhound coach and set off for Cardiff. I only ever get travel sick on the road, and that doesn't happen too often. But this was the worst I've ever had it. I dived off as soon as we arrived in Cardiff. We shared a taxi home with Mike.
I spent a lot of my hotel time watching German TV, which included German South Park and German Family Guy. I also watched A German music channel, and the Weakest Link.
The prices are so good. The amount you pay for what you get is more than reasonable, and they have it right with the not paying until you leave system. But, you wouldn't be able to trust anyone in the UK, because people would definitely leave without paying.
And obviously, Malta is beautiful.
Another trip in Malta over. And having spent a long time there, I miss it even more.