Thursday, December 22, 2005

I long to go a wandering.....

For those who came in late…

We left Wellington on the morning of Tuesday the 20th of December for a three and a half week trip to England Ireland Germany and The Peoples Republic of China (read: Hong Kong). We being Kenny and I. It was a chance for me to check out the other half of the world (not that I’ve checked out my half yet), meet family for the first time and see Sister number one for the first time in her adopted home of London. It was also Kenny’s first trip on a plane and indeed away from the office for the first time in six months.

I had initially planned to give a blow by blow account of my trip and places I have been to etc etc, but you’ve all got friends and im sure that some of them have already done the big trip to London and so you probably know already whats its like so I will try not to give too much detail on the actual trip.

A couple of highlights of the trip included gathering at the back of the plane with a few of my fellow travellers and setting up an open international bar of sorts. The stewards were only too happy for us to help ourselves to the booze and food in the galley and went on about their business smiling and agreeing with everything we had to say. A big thumbs up to Cathay Pacific. They were very friendly, the food was more than tolerable and overall a pleasant flight. The movie selection was nothing short of atrocious with such howlers as The Dukes of Hazard, Wedding Crashers, Stealth (bleuch), Four brothers, and 40 year old virgin headlining the options. The one redeeming feature was The emperor’s new groove, which was on the kids channel with some other crap film and so could only be watched a maximum of 5 times. By the third time I was reciting the words and doing a fairly good impression of David Spade.
I had an aisle seat but was next to a fat guy with bad B/O who was hankering for cigarettes and by the time we landed in Hong Kong he was shaking and getting pretty ratty. We had been on the plane for 13 hours, one of which was spent sitting on the tarmac in auckland. I want to an air traffic controller.

Anyway nothing exciting happened on the plane, so I arrived in London, to the news that I had to use plan B and get myself to meet sister number 1 at Earl’s Court Station. The underground system is excellent.
Sat waiting at Earl’s Court station for one hour. Sister number 1 was also waiting at Earl’s Court station for 1 hour, a mere 5 metres beneath my feet unable to receive text messages. I had wandered up the stairs from the tube to catch the connection to her stop in Wimbolden. She had gone down stairs to meet me as I stepped off the tube. Shit happens.

After a shower and a shave at Sister Number 1’s excellent Broadway court flat, we left for Abbey Road and SN1’s first day surprise for me of a trip to Lord’s Cricket ground for the Lord’s Tour. Kenny and I got up to some hijinx as you can see in the following photos.

After that we met some friends of SN1 and went up the London Eye. Pretty good views.

We popped to some pub along the Thames (pretty big river) where I started to nod off. Unfortunately, while it was getting pretty dark outside, at 4pm the night was but very young. Stumbling around and nearly falling asleep into my Guiness, we managed to make it to the tube for the trip to Camden town and a Christmas party that a mate had arranged. I drank about 3 cokes and a very strong double coffee thing that the comely bar wench assured me would keep me awake. It seemed to work and we went to the restaurant in some fine form. A big thumbs up to Dave for the Xmas party which was really a collection of strangers linked to either Dave or Jamie. Had a blast and was awarded the nights top prize of unemployable man of the year. Here is my prize.

One interesting aside was the announcement of the closing of a section of the tube after a person had thrown himself in front of a train. ‘The Northern line to Euston is currently closed due to a person under the train.’ Nice.

Merry Christmas all.



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