I’m finally in London, staying in Angel… The English all think it’s very warm and sunny but of course I’m shivering, as I’m always too cold (except when I’m too hot, obviously). It’s funny how in French we say frileuse and in Chinese they call it pa leng, “cold-fearing”, but of course the stoic British don’t have a word to describe people like me who always want the heating on and worship hot-water-bottles. However they do have the word “bracing” in their vocabulary… I was born to live in warmer climes!
My flight with Etihad was very good, overall — and thanks to my liberal consumption of Imovane, I actually slept for several hours, which has to make it the most successful flight I have ever taken. When not sleeping I read The Year of the Flood, and it is a credit to Margaret Atwood’s talent that even though I have only very vague memories of Oryx and Crake, it was a great read and extremely engrossing. I think it was a good book for the plane…
I went to a sort of… performance? last night, with Ollie, which involved a sort of labyrinth set up in an art gallery-warehouse, populated with dancers and actors, and including a tiny little grill-room (where a real skinned lamb hung from a huge minotaur skull over a barbecue upon which you were encouraged to prepare yourself lamb skewers), as well as a bar, where bottles of gin hung from chains and boys skipped up and down ladders preparing drinks for us. The whole place was full of bizarre shadows and almost-nude girls crouching under furs staring at the visitors as we crawled our way through the labyrinth. After traveling for over 24 hours and struggling with jet-lag (not to mention the very strong gin and the smell of the dead animals and the straw) the whole experience was very bizarre!
It’s been really good to see so many of my friends from uni, and London is still London (although I feel a bit touristy). In a bit I’m going to extricate myself from my bed (where I am engrossed with my book When God was a Rabbit) and meet Ben and Sarah in Covent Garden for a spot of… shoe shopping (what! I need them!). Two more days till James gets here! Three more days till France!