day 2: london

tribute to abbey road

Originally uploaded by mikefranklin

It was a fun-packed day of waiting, walking, meeting, and eating.

The original plan was to meet Adam, Nik, Andrew and Ryan around 12:00, then Nathan and Jimmy around 2:30. Andrew noted earlier that Ryan was out of town this weekend, so he was scratched out early. We planned to meet at Starbucks in Leicester Square, then proceed to a dim sum brunch in London’s micro-Chinatown.

As the morning ground on towards noon, Adam texted that he was on his way. Andrew texted that he wasn’t feeling well and would meet us around 2:30. Nik texted that he wasn’t feeling well and would likely get in from Manchester at 2:30 or so. As we left Danny & Eva’s flat at 12:00, I texted Adam that we were on our way…

Exiting the tube at Tottenham Court, we walked to the Leicester Square tube stop to find Adam, who couldn’t find the Starbucks which might have moved to a different location. A couple of Eva’s friends, Tina and Robin, were going to meet us for dim sum, but cancelled, so we instead headed to an EAT, which had no available seating, so settled on Cafe Nero across the street.

Tina (from Australia on holiday), and Robin (from South Africa and currently working in London) joined us, and we had a merry time. I tried to use my Rolleiflex, but just managed to mis-load the film and waste a roll. Adam played with my iPhone, and then Eva and I started shooting each other with our d70s and d80.

Andrew texted that he wasn’t feeling well enough, and would meet us on Sunday. Nik texted that the earliest train would get him in at 3:30; Nathan texted that they were eating in a subway… and we decided to meet at the Leicester Square tube station.

Eva, Tina and Robin went shopping; Danny, Adam and I trooped off to Leicester Square to find Nathan and Jimmy without problem. We wandered into a less busy back alley so Nathan and I could exchange a 40D for cash, without too many prying eyes.

From there, we went to Paul Frank so Nathan could shop. As Danny, Adam and I were sitting outside the shoppe taking photos, a couple of older gentlemen walked out, and one asked me if there was “someone famous” inside the store that we were waiting for. er … Nathan? 😀

As Nathan and Jimmy were finishing up, Danny went off in search of another friend, Matt (dude with the crazy eyes) who he’d recently met. The remaining four of us met up with them a few minutes later.

By then, Nik had arrived in Euston, and after a couple of texts, we agreed to meet at the Tottenham Court tube station. After a bit of waiting, Danny and Matt decided to get a beer in the pub across the street, while the rest of us waited for Nik. Jimmy played with my iPhone. And yes, of course he and Nathan are waiting in line to buy one when they appear in the UK.

Nik arrived, and the now five of us crossed the street to collect Matt and Danny in the pub, and we started off to the Regent Street Apple store. Along the way, we found a protest at the Playboy store, so stopped there to take some photos, and be amused by angry people in bunny suits.

The Apple store was immensely packed; we headed upstairs to meander about and take random photos. Nathan finally played with his new camera, Adam left to go home, and Nik, Jimmy, Nathan and I did a little Abbey Road tribute as a group photo, with Danny providing direction and taking the shot.

From there we were off to Piccadilly Circus, with Matt taking some crazy burst shots of Danny. After a bit of gawking, it was off to happy hour at On Anon where we met Eva, Tina and Robin. Various pitchers of mixed drinks arrived, but I barely noticed even the hint of a buzz, and Danny later chuckled and referred to them as “flavoured water.”

Two more friends of Danny and Eva showed up – St. John (who I’d met here in January) and his girlfriend Maria, from the north of Spain. Nathan and Jimmy left to stop by the Hard Rock Cafe before heading to Euston to catch a train back north; Nik left a few minutes later to leave directly to Euston.

A bit later Tina and Robin left for parts unknown, leaving just 6 of us: me, Danny, Eva, St. John, Maria and Matt. We chatted for a bit over another pitcher of flavoured water; St. John played with my iPhone. Then it was off to micro-Chinatown to have dinner at the HK Diner. Matt left not long after seeing cooked geese being hacked up (he’s vegetarian). I found that I did have a little bit of wifi access to The Cloud, which I’d arranged before left the US, but it was pretty limited in the restaurant.

Well sated, we all went our separate ways, and now it’s time to start another day…

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One Response to day 2: london

  1. Nathan Makan says:

    It’s quite fun to see a written account of part of my day. Although, we never did quite make it to the Hard Rock. Danny must have gotten confused and sent us to Planet Hollywood (pretty easy mistake in all fairness), so we wandered around Leicester Square looking for the Hard Rock. When asking someone else, they also directed us to Plant Hollywood (damn Londoners!). This made us a tad late, so we had to rush through Euston – paying no attention to the ‘Departure’ and ‘Arrival’ segments on the board. As I think I mentioned, we went to the *arriving* train from Piccadilly (platform 4). Our actual *departing* train was on platform 13.

    We missed the train; had to deal with the HORRID Virgin staff (rude, arrogant, negative); and each pay £40 for a new ticket on the 8pm train, which got us into Manchester around 12am.

    Reached the car park and expected to pay £13 for the day, but it was actually just £3.50 with it being Saturday but, as we headed home, Jimmy got pulled over by the police doing their ‘random’ (read: teenage boy driving car – must be on drugs and drunk) check. As I laughed in the car, the 5-0 informed Jimmy they’d let him keep the car “on this occasion”, but has to present his documentation at the station. I guess, since he just passed his test a few days ago, his information hasn’t been updated or something.

    Trans-UK fun. Awesome!

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