London – day 261 (J)

As the world awoke to news of the UK’s decision in the vote to Leave/Remain in the EU, the posts and comments on social media and news feeds was hard to stomach. People that were ‘out’ were now regretting it, finding out their repercussions – with the truth becoming clear as the morning progressed – and finally realising what their decision has meant, stood for and what will / won’t happen. The people who voted ‘in’ were equally vocal; writing tirades of comments, directed at no one in a way of venting their frustration and anger. The two sides were equally amusing and yet not funny at all. The implications for Katherine & I with our travelling is just one of the many aspects of how F**ked up the whole situation has become. My transition with the NHS was a close second. It just struck a cord and I would love to present a lot of people the Darwin Award. 

But, life goes on and my clothes were grateful – they would have jumped in to the washing machine themselves after all the running around yesterday. Then I ploughed in to the pile of redirected post that has been coming here while we’ve been away. Nowhere in the bundle of letters and statements was there a letter from work back in October. The new one had arrived and I would deal with that in due course. With films on in the background I was easily distracted and had a quick dash to get ready to leave for the evening. 

I needn’t have fretted. With trains still severely disrupted because of the weather I was lucky to find a train passing at all, with the PA saying it wouldn’t stop and everyone hesitant to board when it did pull up. Thus, I joined Clare only a tinsy bit late in the Cabin for a pre-show drink.

Our walk across the river, jostling between commuters, tourists and the kamikaze bike riders was, for me, one of the few things I didn’t miss about being in London. Do people ever learn to look around them before they slam on the brakes and take a photo?? I had far less patience and tolerance for it in the city than I did in most of the countries I’d been travelling through. How odd!!

The walk did prove fruitful, with the discovery of a newly opened Five Guys next to Charing Cross station. The question of where we should eat for dinner was easily answered and I was able to tick off another ‘I Miss’ item from my London list. The guy at the till gave me the funniest look, trying to be as positive as possible, when I said I wanted all the toppings. When you pick all the items in black on the menu it’s called ‘All the works’. When you order the extra few items in red, on top of the ‘works’, they look at you like a gluttonous idiot. Thus, to go with our Cajun chips and Cherry Vanilla Diet Coke, I had on my Bacon Cheeseburger… mayo, relish, onion, lettuce, pickle, tomato, green pepper, jalapeño pepper, mushroom, grilled onion, mustard, ketchup, hp sauce, BBQ sauce and hot sauce. Of course, only writing it out now for the blog am I aware of what was actually on the monster burger and I possibly might have toned it down (just a notch). The musical ‘Funny Girl’ was incredible. The seats weren’t the best, with the the rails in front slightly obscuring the view and the unfortunate souls directly in front of the rail leaning over so far as to block everyone else’s view (despite being told not to several times). But, you needn’t have seen the stage – one was there for the songs, in particular from the leading lady, and wow did she deliver. Natasha Barnes is a good friend of Katherine’s and she was gutted to miss such a big show. They went for drinks one evening after her performance in ‘American Idiot’ and Tasha told her all about being the upcoming play and how she would be the stand-in for Sheridan Smith. It was the same show that made it big for Barbara Streisand and Tasha got her chance to shine when Ms. Smith was indisposed due to family circumstances for a bit. The air in the Savoy Theatre was charged and I had goosebumps when she hit some of the high notes. At the interval I’ve never seen so many people buying a program and they were all looking her up in the biography section. I was blown away and one of the first to jump up out of the seat for a standing ovation. She had recovered from a funny wardrobe malfunction with a moustache and delivered a performance that people will remember forever. Clare and I were both signing the infamous lines of the songs on our walk back to the train station, stopping briefly to take a photo under the London Eye, all lit up for Pride Week.Friday 24th June 2016

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