Saturday, 22 September 2012

Weekend Update.

I've been terrible with the blogging and I'm sorry. I should also apologize as I haven't been taking the new camera with me (as we've been so busy flat hunting during the day), so most of my photos are still from my iphone. We are still staying at a friend's parent's place in Balham, and fingers crossed, have landed ourselves a very cute little flat a block off Northcote Road. I say fingers crossed, as it is the first play we looked into that wasn't through a letting agent, so there is definitely an element of risk. I'm not sure I'll feel completely excited about it until we have the keys in our hot little hands. He seemed legit, well spoken, and kind, but he does have an envelope of our money, and if we don't ever hear from him again, I guess it will be a learning experience! The flat hunt was horrific. We walked our feet off and viewed flats for about 10 hours a day for 7 days straight before we had any luck. We saw places that looked like University frat houses, places with mold, places with mouse traps, holes in the floor, no furniture despite a furnished advertisement...the list goes on. My friends had warned me that it would be like this, but nothing could have prepared me for how discouraged we felt night after night. Here's to hoping our cute little flat off Northcote Road is the real deal!

Yesterday I dragged S on a field trip to my new school. Truthfully, I wanted a partner in crime to navigate the train stations with. I know I'll get the hang of it eventually, but it's the constant hustle, numerous platforms, and complicated diagrams that currently stress me out every time.

The Journey to school (I still don't like trains!)

Welcome Tents (I think- wasn't brave enough to go in them!)

We literally arrived in the town where my school is, found the lecture theatre where I need to be on Monday, checked out the fitness club, did a five minute walk around the campus (it's not that big), and headed back to the train. It was scary! I felt like I was 17 and checking out a university for the first time. I can confirm that this is going to be a year surrounded by asymmetrical haircuts and tight jeans. I'm not sure I'm ready (although I guess that's better than long flowing skirts, frizzy hair, and dangling earrings!).

As I am the self designated social-coordinator for the two of us, I arranged for us to meet up with a British friend that I met in Barbados four years ago. We met him and his friends at a Polo Match, and then again a couple of evenings at the Island's local bars. As these evenings generally involved countless Banks (Barbados' own Beer), and rum punch, I couldn't remember much about my vacation friend, and I'm sure he would have said the same. I was so impressed that he took the time to come and meet up with us, and even more impressed that he recognised me after only meeting a few times years ago. M brought his friend from the Military (now a teacher and rowing coach), and met us at Gordon's Wine Bar in the centre of London. Gordon's is London's first wine bar (It was established in 1890). The place is extremely convenient because it's only about half a block down from the Strand exit of the Charing Cross tube station. It's easily missed from the street, and if you didn't know it was fantastic, you would probably walk by. Upon entering, you head down the stairs, and if you're lucky (which we were) you can find yourself a table in the back cavern. This is a dark cave-like space lit with candles. On this particular Friday evening, Gordon's was absolutely packed. S and I found half a table, and then by the time the boys joined us, the other half had vacated. 

Delicious Camembert and Gherkins

M showing he can rock a purse, wine glass, and leather jacket.
Clearly M is well practiced with purses (Flashback to Barbados 2009).

As Gordon's closes at 11pm, we hopped in one of London's Black cabs and headed to Soho. This was my first time in Soho (at least I think!), and I was not disappointed. We hit up a lounge (Boheme) where I had a fantastic Martini called 'The Porn Star', and then a famous Jazz Club called Ronnie Scott's (that we eventually had to vacate as the B.O. from the salsa dancers was out of control). We capped off the night with Italian espresso, freshly baked pizza (not your average 'buck-a-slice'), and large bottles of water, before cabbing home to Balham.
Overall an excellent first night out in the Big Smoke. If this is even partly a reflection of the year ahead, I can't wait.


  1. If this was FB, I would "Like"!! Looks like you're having a great time! I hope you get the flat you want. I'll be thinking of you on Monday :)

  2. Thanks Ange! I've been thinking of you guys and how the year is starting off at CW. Wish you were here to hold my hand on the first day of school ;)