Monday, November 7, 2011

Last London day & the move south

With the possibility of a brief return to my previous typical London day, on Friday I went in to London to potter around one last time before moving down south. The heavy rain seemed to miss the city centre completely & carrying a raincoat around all day seemed to be adequate to ward off any precipitation whatsoever. A bit early for my appointment in Putney, I strolled around Trafalgar Square, up Haymarket & then down Waterloo Place (here I found where Sir Keith Park's statue had been relocatoed), St James Park, Admiralty Arch & then back along to Embankment & the rickety District Line. Further west the Thames was looking good with a few interesting boats on it & thousands of golden leaves lining it. My shoulder is immeasurably better after a quick adjustment - now just have to see what the specialist thinks next week.

Less that three-hundred days until the next Olympics

Back in the city, I (shock horror) went clothes shopping, for the second time that week, on Oxford Street. It was crazy busy, which was a good incentive to make quick decisions & then scarper. I spent a bit of time recovering by people-watching & reading more of my book. More aimless wandering took me under Marble Arch to Hyde Park, further around the West End & then north all the way to Regent's Park to kick leaves around. More reading until it got too dark & then back on the tube to head up to West Hampstead to meet Micah, a uni classmate, for a couple of pints. Great to hear how he & Hayley are doing - not to mention the places they have been around Europe recently.

Much more catching-up to be done when I met, Te Puke & school mate, Levi in Covent Garden. As I knew it would be my last chance to get something resembling poutine for a while, we headed for the Maple Leaf. Disappointed that I couldn't have a drop of Rickard's Red, I was appeased by the poutine (although some proper cheese curd wouldn't have gone amiss), the wings, ribs & proper onion rings. More good stories, Marki turned up & the night progressed to some other bar near Tottenham Court Road tube before I had one last walk back to Charing Cross & just managed to grab the second-to-last train of the night home (the last one is never much fun as the proportion of intoxicated passengers is quite high).

Saturday was supposed to be set aside for packing, but between my book, the Four-Nations rugby league test & the new season of Chuck it was just as well that it didn't take as long as I expected. Trish went to great effort for a farewell dinner, Ray & Jill joined us & said their farewells. More goodbyes as I left Sunday morning, yet another home to leave behind & miss. The day cleared nicely as I neared my new home, things looked good & I was pleased. More mundaneness of moving - unpacking (but I do have my room just so) & that first big grocery shop. My first day at work today was pleasantly short to ease me back into it & I met an awful lot of people of course (I shouldn't go too wrong if I'm stuck for a name just going for John - it felt like I met plenty). Now to sort some lights & mudguards for my bike so I ride the short distance & the car can stay put.

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