A Trip To London

….essseeeexxxxx!

So, Anna and I left to go down to London on Tuesday lunchtime. After an uneventful flight and train journey, we met Nikolai at Oxford circus. Quickly headed to his place in Haighnult Park, which was pretty snazzy and only about two minutes walk from the underground station. We left our bags at his place and then headed out to meet Anna’s brother, Karl, and get some dinner. Had a nice Indian meal (apart from the confusion over a cheese naan) and headed for bed.

Up fairly early the next day to head into the centre of London to see the sights. This was Anna’s first time in London and my first visit for a few years so I was prepared to go and see things like the London Eye. It is pretty cool looking and you get great views on clear days, which we weren’t having. Mind you, we could see quite a distance and this is where I ended up taking most of my photographs. We were gonna head into Westminster Abbey but it was fairly expensive and you couldn’t take photos, so no point really. Headed to the cinema later with Nikolai’s sister and his friend Bina to see Lucky Number Slevin, which was better than I expected. Had a nice dinner at Pizza Express, and me and Nikolai managed to tell numerous disturbing Helensburgh stories.

Thursday we went to Tate Modern which was quite interesting, but slightly annoying as it only had one floor open to the public, one floor closed for renovations and two galleries which you had to pay for. I would say it wasn’t good value for money, but it was free so what you gonna do? Later on we headed into the city and then to Shoreditch, where Anna’s brother was staying. I attempted to book a nearby restaurant (which turned out to be completely deserted anyway). I called up and spoke to a woman who’s English wasn’t so good:

Me: “Hi, can I book a table for 5 tonight?”

Woman: “Of course, what’s the name?”

Me: “Duncan”

Woman: “Ok, how do you spell that?”

Me: “D-U-N-C-A-N”

Woman: long pause “No”

Anna and Kurt could hear all of this and found it rather funny. So did I, but eventually we got a table for the five of us, and it wasn’t a problem when Nikolai’s ex Ravinder came along. Nice meal, but a bit expensive.

On Friday, Anna, Karl and I headed off even earlier to the Natural History museum to receive an information overload. The NHM is massive and has too much to do in just one day. Especially if you want to do other things on the same day, which we did; namely picking up some gifts for Karl’s wife Sylvia. After much looking at things and not actually buying anything we went to Virgin where I picked up the second series of the X-Files and Ghost in the Shell 2 on DVD. Had a brief snack for dinner and back to Nik’s for some poker practice and bed.

Saturday was Karl’s last day and he wanted to see the Tower of London and St. Paul’s Cathedral in the one day and at least before 4 o’clock. Wow, tall order. We saw most of the Tower of London, but Anna and I were visibly flagging by about 2 o’clock. We headed to St. Paul’s and ate at a nice Italian place. St. Paul’s again doesn’t allow photography inside so it was a real brief trip. We took some photos outside and let Karl get back to his hotel so he could head to the airport. That night, we went to see the fantastic Lady Vengance at the cinema, had a nice meal and afterwards we went to the Comedy Store for the midnight showing. There were three decent comedians and the fantastic Rich Hall. Both me and Nik had the piss taken out of us, which was good but this drunk Irish couple kept heckling all the time, but they were put in their place pretty good. Back to Nikolai’s for a well deserved rest.

Anna and I got up pretty late, mainly because we were up ‘til about 1am and we were knackered from the previous day. Some more poker practice and before we knew it we were off to the airport. Our flight was delayed but I wasn’t really fussed. Gatwick is pretty quiet on a Sunday evening. Back home in a taxi, because my brother went out instead of picking us up, and that was that. Big thanks to Nikolai and Katya for putting us up for the week.

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  1. “I would say it wasn’t good value for money, but it was free so what you gonna do?”

    Poor value for money AND free? You want them to pay you when you go in eh? Damned scotsman.




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