Happy May Day (2004-05-03 - 6:36 p.m.)
First of all: re my whiny post from last week about my kitchen. This is what my esteemed father had to say:
Been reading your posts- I bet your macaroni
was yummy with
sharp cheese and hot mustard. Get over the poor me -- no tools, and
think of your great-grandma
coming to Alberta from London and making do with rabbit and wild berries
(don't forget you
are on an adventure !!)
sigh. He's right, of course, and the story about my great-grandmother (who did her adventure in the other direction when she headed west!) was that she couldn't even boil water when she started to homestead, having been brought up in a wealthy British household. So I suppose not finding the right kind of cheese at Tesco ranks somewhat below that in terms of hardship. And the macaroni wasn't bad, but would have greatly benefitted if I had been able to find the pepper! ah well.
So it's a Bank Holiday weekend and the city is partying. Not me, though. Or rather, I haven't exactly been avoiding partying but I didn't go out much since I knew everything would be pretty crowded. According to Francis (in his Quebec accent) "Man, I saw these two drunks fighting by ten minutes on the stairs. The bums stopped fighting halfway through this fight and had a smoke, and then they started fighting again and when the po-lice came they didn't even stop them, but they got tired and stopped fighting of themselves." Wish I could convey the charm of Francis' accent. He learned English 7 months ago (!) while he was working in Banff, from drinking with some Anglophones. Most of his sentences are horrible grammatically, but everyone knows exactly what he means. I love listening to him.
Anyway. I did go out on Friday night, as flatmate Tom (the English one) was kind enough to show me some of his hangouts. We went for dirt-cheap Chinese that actually was really good at a place at the end of Bethnal Green Road. Then we went to Bar 180, this absolutely wonderful dive bar. It was full of goths and teenagers and old guys in suits, a huge mix of people looking for cheap drinks. It was karaoke night, and the highlight for me was the skinny white guy singing a Bob Marley song in a perfect Jamaican accent (obviously well-rehearsed). Eventually a very drunk black guy climbed up on the stage as backup, and gave us a lecture about skin color and how it doesn't matter, man, as long as we've got the spirit! It was great.
We went to another place (as most bars and pubs close at 11 in this crazy town) and just sat around and talked for a while. Tom's had a rough week of it as he's just split up with his girlfriend of 3 years. Then we came home, where Rob was passed out on his bed (his room serves as the living room) but everyone else was ranged over the furniture (including his bed), talking and listening to music. It was a good night.
Saturday I got a CD player! I am remarkably pleased with this purchase. It was cheap cheap cheap (£14) but will suffice, and now I can drown out Dirk's horrible music from across the wall. I also got some much-needed underwear and a few other odds & ends.
Sunday went to a local market, which is sure to become a favorite. Lots of organic food and hippie clothes. Rob seemed a little confused by it all. "Man, they don't have things like this in Louisiana!" And today I went to the Science Museum and braved the tides of 4-year-olds sweeping around my knees. I think I will have to go back on a less busy day. Was worth seeing, though. They have quite a good exhibit on Pain on at the moment.
Anyway, must go email some people. Happy May to everyone, as apparently it's a holiday here!
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