When London Says Good Night

Posted: May 29, 2011 in Photography
Tags: , , , ,

Our final day in London – and a long overdue, St. Andrean reunion.

Number 9 Albany Park Reunion! With our former flatmate and – as it turns out – present scientist at the Natural History Museum, Lorna. (We literally had no idea that she worked there, otherwise we would have just dropped by the day before.)

She gave us the complete backstage tour.

To clarify: we’re wearing the lab coats out of policy, not (just) for funzies.

Post-tour we went out for lunch, and to catch up on the four years since we last saw each other! Then, making plans to meet up again that evening, Lorna went off to the (opera? ballet?) while John and I struck off in search of Harrods. There was actually a sale on in the menswear department, and I found two items for less than £20 combined – utterly unheard of given our location. While they were being rung up, John asked if I could get his (now-infamous) cardigan at the same time, bringing the total closer to a hundred. It was until after I’d paid for them that he explained I was actually buying him a second birthday present. :\

My wallet dented, we then made our way to the “Pet Kingdom” on the fourth floor: 11,000 square feet dedicated solely to our furry friends. Goods ranged from the sublime (if those French bulldog puppies hadn’t cost a mere £3,500, I might have had to change my cats-only policy) to the ridiculous (I wouldn’t pay £40 for human shampoo, let alone the cat variety). Curiously enough, they were also selling the very same cat sofa that my mum had found the month before – at about four times the cost she’d paid for it in a local pet shop. It was originally intended for her own cats, but – after they refused to go anywhere near it – was re-gifted to us in the hopes of Alf getting better use out of it. This was…sort of the case? I mean I’m not saying my cat is stupid…

…but the first thing he did when he got his new sofa was crawl under it and try to wear it like a hermit crab.

To his credit, he did get the hang of it eventually.

And how.

After Harrods, we continued to the very same Jean Paul Gaultier boutique that had been closed the previous day. Here, John continued his tradition of buying a JPG item whenever we’re on holiday together: in this instance, a Spring/Summer 2011 collection scarf that cost more than my flights to Canada. Granted, he does wear it on a near-daily basis (which is just as fucking well, really) and it was worth it just to hear John describe his JPG necklace to the sales guy, who not only knew exactly the one he meant but described it – with fantastic absurdity –as a “kind of punk story”. Oh, fashion: how I adore thee.

And then – just to contrast the preceding events – we picked up two bottles of discount wine from a newsagent in the tube station and went back to our hotel room to get hammered.

It was – coincidentally – the birthday of the gayest man I know: Lindsay Tsuji. Have I mentioned recently how much I ♥ my BlackBerry by the way? I message Lindsay in Canada like eight hundred times a day and my phone bill for February was £5.40.

Lorna’s friend, Sunil, joined us for the evening festivities…

…allowing himself to be dragged to a gay bar within 10 minutes of meeting us. Evidently it wasn’t too scarring since I had lunch with him just a few days ago while he was in Glasgow. This is the Green Carnation in Soho: an establishment that purports to be Oscar Wilde-themed but, in reality, just has a few of his quotes peeling off the walls. Their black vodka cocktail was, however, amazing – which made it all the more tragic when they ran out of it after our very first round.

♥! Let’s not wait 4 years before we do it again.

Lorna and Sunil left at a semi-reasonable hour – both having to be up for work in the morning – while John and I stayed ’til a decidedly unreasonable hour being that we had to check out of our hotel first thing the next morning. We then made our way through the streets of London at three in the morning until finally (and possibly literally) stumbling upon a taxi to take us back to our hotel.

Miraculously, we actually did make it up in time to catch our train the next day, though I have a horrible feeling I may have left the shirt I’d worn the previous night in our room somewhere since I haven’t been able to find it since. I also found further evidence to support my theory that I’m electromagnetically challenged after my oyster car and Glasgow underground ticket both spontaneously erased themselves on the same day. My mutant power? Static discharge. Christ, I’m almost as useless as Jubilee. (Granted, John’s cousin has since explained that her BlackBerry holster did the same thing to her tickets, but that still doesn’t explain why I’m electrocuted by escalators, dishwashers, cookers and my cat on a near-daily basis.)

And here we are, on the train back to Scotland…where, evidently, I was too tired to take my camera out of my bag and resorted to using my phone instead. (I did, however, muster the energy for a shot on Jane Badler.) I was a tad hangover by this point, and less than thrilled to suffer through a five-hour train journey just to return to Glasgow. All of my complaints were soon forgotten, though, with the sight of Alf keeping vigil for us in window (as he’d apparently done every day we were gone), and the realisation that I’d missed him so unhealthily much while we were away.

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