"Nightmare"...and other London things / by Leslie

We are back safe from our eventful trip to London. Hopefully if you had been wondering about us last Thursday, when the bomb went off, you somehow managed to get the news that we were fine and didn't worry too much. We spent most of the day indoors watching the news and while we were relatively far from the bombs we were still, once again, a little too close for comfort. It's just so sad these things keep happening. Later in the day when Regina and I were too restless to stay put and we managed to convince Chris that the television reporters saying "stay where you are" only applied if we planned on using the underground, we walked around Kensington and ended up riding one of the old hop-on-the-back Routemaster buses. It may seem strange that the day a bus was blown up we decided to ride one, but the thing is that we had been looking for the old ones because they are taking them out of service and we wanted to have a ride before they were all gone. It just happened that was the day we finally found them. We think it's because they brought the old ones out of service to help ease the pressure that the closed underground caused. At any rate, all our London friends applauded us basically giving the terrorists the finger by not being scared. Going underground was another story though, and while we ventured down for a quick two stop ride on Friday, we avoided the tube until Sunday by taking taxis, buses and walking.

Otherwise we had an amazing time with old friends and new ones. Corran and Arran are always inspiring and I always leave with a new project in my mind. This time it is old fashioned letter writing in the style of their grandfather, who writes a personalized letter once a day. I'm not that ambitious but I'll start by writing a letter to them. We got to know Arran's girlfriend Kelly better, who has got to be the sweetest girl ever and who diligently writes about her dreams and we met Laura, Corran's girlfriend, who taught us how to speak like a local (whateva' minga') and is in a band called She Makes War. Fred and Zoe were all moved into a great two floor flat in Kentish town and their son is as cute as ever. We had a picnic with them all at Hampstead Heath on Sunday. Of course we spent loads of quality time with Regina too, who shared our flat with us and introduced us to Tree and Adam and arranged an evening out for us to see our old pal Candy.

Favorites things in London were: Interesting Pub names like Old Dr. Butler's Head, Bag O' Nails, The Owl & The Pussycat, The Queen's Head, The Two Woodcocks and The Dog & Duck (which we visited in Soho). The Thames river boat tour to Greenwich and once there the Prime Meridian (0 degrees longitude), Trafalgar Tavern and the foot tunnel under the Thames to the Docklands. Shopping on Neal Street in Covent Garden and at the gigantic Forbidden Planet comic store on New Oxford Street. Graffiti by Banksy, The Tate Modern in the retrofitted Bankside Power Station building and Riverside Walk in Southwark.