Travelogue St Louis 1: Jo’burg – London

April 2008

Sooo… landed in London all safely and stuff. The pilot seemed to know what he was doing (we should really see if his natural talents extend to party-car designated driving) but the food was a bit drek. I think airline food and hospital food have flip-flopped positions on the blah scale, which is crap in context of which I am likely to frequent more (nooo! I meant ‘airlines’ for the pessimists among you).

It’s FREEZING in London and I’ve hence easily figured out what it was I left behind (you know there’s always something). It’s my gloves. You know, as in the category that I already had too much of and still bought another 2 pairs last weekend (under something I like to write-off as duress, but that was clearly somewhere more the off-handed suggestion side of the subtle persuasion spectrum).

Spent the day doing store visits. I’m pleased to tell you (more for my
enjoyment than for your edification) that our stores are waaaay
superior. And consistent. And clean. So always good to have a trump
card up one’s sleeve <bright side: don’t have to fight aforementioned left-at-home gloves to get trumpcard up sleeve> when going to one of these conference thingiemes. Or I might be COMPLETELY biased… which would ruin it for me. So for sake of argument let’s assume i’m right (that should spark a barrage of protest).

Had the world’s best chicken, ham and mushroom pie for late lunch. it was an unusual interpretation on the whole pie thing, with the base being big black mushrooms, then the chicken and ham bit being in a white wine and garlic sauce and the whole lot being topped with a light and flaky pastry cap. Had it with mash…. and an incredulous –
and scathing ‘peasant!’ – look from the waitress when I asked for
onion gravy for the mash. Good thing I stuck to my guns ‘cos it was a truly superlative brown onion gravy and made the mash really be all it could be :o)

Met up with Barry in the evening to have farewell drinks with his workmates. seemingly great bunch of people. Real modern day Londoners <read: few people actually from London, or Britain even. good representation of order proportion South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Venezuela, Belgium, Scotland, Wales and someone suspected to be from England, but who be can sure since no clue what the accent is like anymore>

A few swift pints later, we took on public transport and bussed our
way over to Faye’s. On best behaviour because of (Faye’s) impending
participation in the London Marathon, we nursed a pint. The pub we
were in had run out of everything we wanted to order for dinner so we beat a hasty retreat, it being 21h40 and most kitchens closing between 21h30 and 22h00. Tried a few spots without success and ended up at a Moroccan spot. Tres pleasant. Had a mezze of all sorts of things (I ordered lots of bits and pieces wildly and freely knowing Barry would ‘sort it out’, despite his protests of not being at all hungry). It was delightful, way too much… and all finished (of course).

After a great night’s sleep, we’re embracing a (whole day early!)
Sloth Sunday (on Saturday), with duvets and fold-out sleeper couches and bacon butties and bad daytime TV and chitchat and larfs. Later we’re going to mission out and lunch with Alex and Robbie (detailed menu review to follow i’m sure hehe), which holds the promise of madness and mayhem.

Congratulations on surviving Travelogue I. Stay tuned for more exciting adventures and misadventures in Travelogue II (to be posted at a time as yet unbeknownst to me). All feedback, commentary and news from home welcomed :o)