It is very rare these days that an extended period of time is spent in the capital city. On this occasion I was lucky enough to enjoy 3 days and nights in the place.
When I first hit London having travelled the M4 scenic route (I love driving by the way), I really do feel great, and my half full pint of enthusiasm is certainly topped up with the additional extras like avoiding one way streets, finding a car park outside the congestion zone, and paying through the nose for it! Having managed to park, with map in hand, I head for the tube. “Oh the tube how I’ve missed you, no part of you is laudable, the atmosphere is so absorbable. When you go all shutty downy, I go all miserable and frowny. Love the Tube! Hate Pace!” Yes I love the tube as well.
The presentation and meeting that I was heading for was somewhere near Green Park, and fortunately the googled A to Z map took me straight to my destination. A few hours later, and I was ready to find out what it was like to work in the smoke. A good meeting is always followed by a good beer, and fortunately just round the corner was the recently owned Guy Ritchie establishment The Punch Bowl, where we sampled its offerings. The place was packed, and with the price of one beer around the cost of two chickens (which always gets me down), there was certainly no sign of the credit crunch.
Friday was less hectic. ASDAs free parking certainly eased my dehydrated mind, and I found time to do plenty of follow up work from the day before. My day passed by quite quickly and it was on to more research of Mayfair bars. This time it was The Only Running Footman as a start point. It was oddly not as busy as Thursday, but nonetheless just as pricey! You did get the feeling however that the clientele had been there a while, and had nearly all run out of steam and money. A couple of conversations with some interesting unknown characters about my name and what I do did amuse me somewhat, although not the most unique of topics I have found over the years.
Saturday was the big day. Our final Everest meeting. Our final Lords net session. Our final Team Tenzing meal. So much to do, and all day to do it in. The meeting like all meetings had its high and low points. The high was most certainly the revelation of Nokia as our expedition sponsor. Nets came and went, with many a beading forehead. The Tenzing meal had full attendance bar one who was otherwise occupied, puppeteering in the Fulham area I believe. Keen to bond, with our last real get together before the off, the beer flowed, and soon enough when the ice cream and coffee had finally been dispatched, it was off to a trusty Walkabout for a surfboard of shots, and some good old snake bite and black. The night went faster than any could realise, and with a glance at the clock reading half four which actually meant half five, it was felt that for the good of our now highly trained athletic machine like bodies, we should draw stumps and call it a night.