London – day 260 (J)

One would imagine that being back in London, is much like returning to the mundane, monotonous and predictable life of before. Some, most would agree with this statement. But, on the morning after some torrential downpours and lightning storms, the city was in a gloomy, ominous mood with everything pretty much grinding to a halt, causing havoc, and people unable to get to work/home and get kids to nannies and/or school. While Ed managed to vote before we got to the train station, neither of us were going to manage to get to Raynes Park before getting in to the hospital. The road passing under the bridge was like a lake with abandoned cars resembling lily pads and the streets were awash with continuing rainwater, spurting up from the man holes. And the trains… tuna cans would have felt more comfortable, as some of the only trains that were running were crammed to the max. So, we ordered a taxi, finally organised to meet him on the other side of the flooded road and waited patiently in Waitrosse for our chariot to arrive. Ed expertly navigated the streets for the driver, getting us out past the worst of the congestion. But, paying and abandoning the hopeless endeavour near to Morden station we power walked to the tube and got the Northern line to Stockwell, the Victoria to Green Park and the Piccadilly line westwards. Ed had by this stage missed his meeting at 08:15 and was hopefully back on track to make it to the airport in time to check-in. I jumped off at Baron’s Court and legged it, already being 5mins late for my appointment. 

2hrs 50mins after leaving house, 5min run to The GIC and I was 10mins late for a half hour appointment slot. I was so bloody stressed and the sweat was pouring out of me. It was with no relief that the Dr. himself was running behind. Bloody weather!!! Grrr!!! But, half hour story/conversation cut short and all I’ll say is that it was a productive and positive visit. I won’t be returning to the secretive offices above the supermarket and should hear directly from the next group of doctors about continuing my process and transition. 

I skipped down the road, annoying Katherine over the phone with the sound of the umbrella scrapping and thumping off the footpath. And before ya know it I was at the passport office collecting my brand new shiny passport. I was beside myself with excitement. I just sat in the waiting area with the page open with all my details and stared at it. I went to Starbucks (being very good good and not binging in Burger King), but ended up getting a cheese & ham toasty, a raspberry & white chocolate muffin and a chocolate & marshmallow s’more frappuchino. Their wifi provided me with a chance to Whatsapp Katherine and share my excitement and good news about the morning. 

Managing to get in to Wimbledon on the still very interrupted train service, I went to O2 to sort out my SIM. We both changed contracts and plans to be on a pay-as-you-go for travelling, with no need of mobile data or free calls and texts while abroad. O2 never migrated my sim and I was stuck in a position to use the card that was connected to the expensive contract. A fact that the cranky lady didn’t seem to fathom in my conversation to her yesterday. But, the gentleman in store managed to sort out everything and I had another job done before waking across the ridgeway to Cottenham Park and voting on the EU Referendum debacle. It was on this walk that I noticed I had lost/forgotten Ed’s umbrella – either in the passport office or Starbucks. 

I played some board games with Alex that afternoon before leaving the Park residence. I wanted to wait and say goodbye to Narae, but with transport still buggered up, I left for Clare & Martin’s before it got too late. We had a chilled out evening with pizza and watching ‘Warcraft’. An awful film that we were happy to see the end of.  

Thursday 23rd June 2016

Travelling – day 251 (K)

Having abandoned Jayne to head up to the departure lounge and waving at her through the slightly frosted window at immigration, I headed up to the observation deck. Slightly disconcerting to watch the crew on cherry pickers hover over her plane, especially as I kept getting whatsapp messages detailing delays… Because lightening had stuck (and broken) a plane window. As the more nervous flyer out of the two of us, there was a weird relief that it wasn’t my plane but a horrible sinking feeling that it was Jayne’s… Spent my time between 9.00 and 18.00 when I was finally allowed to check in by reading books, watching films and drinking Starbucks. Secretly hoping that Jayne’s flight might be delayed long enough for another quick kiss and cuddle, I was disappointed to see that it had taken off whilst I was making my way through immigration. As promised, I picked up my own Toblerone bar before getting some dinner and waiting at the gate.A slightly frustrating moment where I had to empty my life straw water bottle of water to go through to the departure gate only to be able to refill it immediately after they had checked my bag…

Got on the plane for an on time departure, sat next to a very loud and obnoxious Australian girl who, thankfully, took some drugs to put her to sleep so that ‘people around her wouldn’t have to hear her moaning about her ear ache for 8 hours’… Watched ‘The Danish Girl’ on my iPad before trying to get some sleep – not sure how I feel about the film. Some parts of it were incredibly accurate but it seemed, to me, to be missing some of the keys issues in the transgender relationship.

Tuesday 14th June 2016