Just a short post. I sorted out a cheap bus ticket down to London – see the related tip post on how to get these – and decided to walk into Cambridge from Colin’s to catch it. I’m glad I left in good time as I only just made it 10 minutes before departure! On the way I passed some kids being walked to school, probably just after lunch. I was expecting to either be ignored or get a load of cheek. Instead I got “Why are you carrying so much?”
So I answered that I was travelling and I carried everything I needed. Using a backpack is easier than a suitcase. Then they asked me where I was going. And why. And what makes it so different. So I told them. And we had a good natter for ten minutes until they reached the school gates.
Sometimes – just sometimes – I have a little faith in the youth of the UK. Today was one of those days.
The bus journey was fairly uneventful, and I hopped out ahead of my end point at Stratford. Picking up an Oyster card with a fiver on it (works out much cheaper than paying single tickets) I hopped onto a Central Line train down to Liverpool Street where I waited to meet Sarah. The last time I saw her, I’d been showing her around York and it’s always nice to catch up with a familar face, especially one belonging to a Kiwi who’s so much fun!
As we’d done the second time I met her, we walked over to Brick Lane (me laden with backpacks) for a curry. We got a “free bottle of wine” with the meal, then discovered why when we tried to order a second – they have no alcohol license so have to give it away! If we wanted more, we were told just to pop round the corner, buy a bottle and bring it in.
Instead, we shambled over to a bar and sank two or three more bottles in a nice, quiet boozer and nattered until Sarah was in danger of missing her last train. I walked her to London Bridge then made my way to Andy’s. Nice guy had stayed up waiting for me to make sure I got in OK. Star! Another night on a comfy bed. Joy.
The following day I chilled out, caught up with blog posts (not well enough given that I’m posting this one on July 24th…), read feeds, answered emails and became addicted to Guitar Hero. Damn you, Andy, for leaving all the kit lying around. In between bouts I managed to squeeze in a quick lunch after walking into Hammersmith, where I also picked up a couple of Sherlock Holmes books for a few quid.
Later that afternoon, Leah arrived at King’s Cross and I was there to meet her and ferry her things back to Andy’s. Another use of the Oyster Card and I’m sure on this or the next trip it screwed me. Hard to prove, though, especially when we were somewhat rushed with our flight to Bangkok being the next day!
We waited for Andy to finish work before meeting him for dinner in a local Irish bar. We were late and it was my fault as I just had to have “just one more go” on Guitar Hero. Mind, I did manage to get a perfect run on Kiss’ Rock And Roll All Night. Not bad for a beginner. On “easy”.
After dinner, it was really just a matter of Leah and I making sure we were all packed with no last-minute panics for the next day. Bookings were checked, toothbrushes inspected and ponderings made over milk cancellations. Then we realised that neither of us had milk delivered. Which was good and allowed us to sleep soundly.