Spent Saturday in London with friends from Root Hill. Despite having been to RH itself 5 times, this was the first time I'd been to any reunion thing. Partly because I'm not a great traveller, and because it's expensive (although, to be fair, Sam's train ticket was a lot pricier than mine), and because I'm not always in the loop with these things, and so on and so forth. But it was a good day. It was good just being around other people instead of staying in the same house all the time. Not sure how good my presence was for the other people, mind you, but it was good from my POV.
Started the day with a scenic tour of some of London's train stations while we waited for people to turn up, and as soon as we'd got the group together we went to Leicester Square and split up again for lunch - I say 'split up', although most of us ended up at the same table in KFC. KFC was, as usual, KFC, so the food wasn't anything out of the ordinary. (Random aside: my first introduction to KFC was in Hong Kong, where there was at outlet in the shopping centre that we lived on top of. We spent a lot more time at the McDonalds though.)
Then came Harrods.
I don't like Harrods.
I think I went once before, years and years ago, but I didn't really remember much. But it only took me about two minutes after walking in the door this time around before I decided that the shop really wasn't my scene. The whole building seems to be a labyrinth of small spaces, filled with far too much stuff and far too many people, with nothing to indicate where the exits are. We got split up and a bit lost somewhere around the second room, and out of the original fifteen/twenty-ish-strong crowd, I ended up touring the building with a splinter group of just 3 or 4 other people. I think I kept mumbling something about the exit most of the way around the building.
There were two bits that sort of appealed: the Lego area within the toy department (whatever some people might say, you're never really too old for Lego), and the audio-visual department. The AV area was showing a looped clip of Avatar on most of the screens, but I think they'd set up the TVs' colour balance wrong - yes, it's a very colourful film, but I'm sure the blues and greens weren't that overblown in the cinema.
The photo frame upstairs was unforgivable. They had this 5 x 7 inch photo frame (not a digital one, just a bog-standard photo frame) made of metal settings and crystals, that looked just like some average piece of aluminium and cheap-coloured-glass tat from a downmarket gift shop, but apparently this one was made of rare and expensive metals and gemstones instead… so they had the nerve to ask £35,000 for it! I kid you not. A photo frame with an asking price of thirty-five grand. I just stood there and stared in shock, and mumbled things about broadcast-quality 1080p HD cameras, very nice cars, and employing a full-time servant for a year, any of which would cost about the same amount of money.
Enough about that.
We relocated to the science museum for the rest of the afternoon, which was much better. Last time we were there, I didn't get to see the 'Birth of Hi-Tech Britain' gallery, and had a nagging sense of 'should have done that' at the back of my mind ever since, so I took the opportunity to make up for the omission.
Dinner happened in the basement of a Pizza Hut in Piccadilly. A lot of the pre-dinner conversation involved talking to Hannah about Doctor Who and the relative merits of Steven Moffat - it's nice to be able to talk to someone about DW without having to stop every two minutes to straighten out the chronology or explain what an Ood is. My younger brother and sister have some sort of working knowledge of the show, but they can't always remember what happened in what order, and they'd probably draw a complete blank if I mentioned 'Hartnell' or 'Pertwee' or something like that.
The pizza, surprisingly, turned out to be an avocado-scented sock instead... uh... no, actually, it was pizza, just like it said on the tin. I won't bore you with a long description of the pizza. You already know how it goes - dough, sauce, cheese, etc etc. (Speaking of avocado though, are you reading Fort Paradox, and if so how is your brain coping?)
So now it's over, and I'm back to the usual set of other stuff. I'm nearly finished editing the Root Hill video (just 2 or 3 months in the cutting room this time, instead of 5 ish!), and I'm starting to think it would be a good time to cut together the aforementioned trailer. Watch this space.
And finally: I'd like to say thank you to everyone who responded to my 'How much have I told you?' research exercise last week. I'll post the 'answers' - i.e. a list of who/what all those things are, and where they come from - later this week, so you can find out what those names are all about. 8]
- The Colclough