Tuesday, 10 September 2013

Something to sing about

Oh I’ve had a lovely weekend.

Visits from best friends from home are just the tonic to my life gin. It means to be pajamed until 2.30pm, talking and laughing and drinking tea. It means desperately absorbing the ease and familiarity, wit and delight of a dear friend, like sunshine on an increasingly autumnal day, so enormously grateful in the knowledge that you can live on the other side of the world for five years and still pick up like it was yesterday.

It’s been a lovely, lovely weekend.

On Saturday evening we three, with LB, took in a very British tradition in Hyde Park – the last night of the BBC Proms. I don’t know how long this event has been running for (and I’m too fucking lazy to google that shit) but it’s this hilarious, slightly daggy coming together of tens of thousands of flag waving patriots, many of whom come dressed as if for Mardi Gras in the colours of the Empire, for a night of picnics, poor Terry Wogan humour and the most wonderful mix of high and lowbrow musical tastes. All wrapped up in a crumb-stained Argos picnic blanket because summer has well and truly left the building and frankly it gets chilly after dark.

Note the windchill factor.
We arrived relatively late and so were probably a mile from the stage but this meant the ability to participate in civilised conversation, a total lack of compulsion to clap when the god-awful man-boy band Blue came on to sing hits that sucked ten years ago, and space to spread out our M&S haul.

We sang along to Beatles medleys by the West End cast of whatever that Beatles musical is called, we admired the virtuoso talents of Nigel Kennedy (which reminded me of the time I got outrageously drunk on a terrible blind date only to escape to a gig of his at The Basement in Sydney where he carried my bowl of chips and kissed my hand and said “Anything for a beautiful girl” #notmyfinestmoment) and otherwise just generally murmured in appreciation for the famous tenor and that choir and that other person who performed.  Mostly it was about the cheese and Italian meat platter.

Brian Ferry was the headline act though you could have offered me a million pounds and I still wouldn’t have been able to name a single song of his. It was at this point, and with the cheese all gone, that we decided to head home.

On Sunday we managed to leave the house by midday, picking up a pedicure on the way to Angel for some idling along Camden Passage. It was a drizzly, cold day – I’m still struggling to reconcile the fact it was 28 degrees last Thursday and now it’s 16. Talk about an abrupt departure, Summer.

And so we wandered and ate cake and drank tea and browsed and talked and gossiped and philosophised and did everything but exhaust the mutual enthusiasm.

Portrait of Pedicures on Tube
Gems and I are off to Amsterdam in a couple of weekend’s time – one last hurrah on the continent before we head home – and I cannot wait.

Any opportunity to wrack up another “Do you remember that time when we…”

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