I wandered off to London yesterday morning. It was time.
I was heading for Lenn's house. That oasis of Kiwi-ness, the home that allowed me to feel anchored back when I was quite unmoored in the world.
But I know a little of London now and so chose to weave my way here, quietly enjoying the stunning Spring day that we had yesterday. I made the wickedest detour, to the Russel Square stop ... visiting one of my favourite bookshops, in the world, called Judd Books.
Once I arrived in that part of London, I realised my first-ever exposure to Carluccio's happened over there too. So I popped in for an espresso, as you do.
Judd Books was as mind-blowing as ever. I left when I picked up a new but heavily reduced copy of Jane Rogoyska's book titled, 'Gerda Taro - Inventing Robert Capa'. I have quite a few books on, or based on, these two war photographers but this was one I had never imagined being able to own.
I started reading it on the Underground out to Alperton. It was as good as I had imagined it might be.
I also picked up The Wasted Vigil', by Nadeem Aslam - the prose is quite beautiful, although the story is tough, or so I read. I always check on the first line, or paragraph, when buying a book unknown to me. This one ... 'Her mind is a haunted house.'
And I couldn't resist picking up a very cheap copy of 'That Summer Book', by Tove Janssen. The story seems like one I might love and I have enjoyed anything I have read by her, and about her too,
Then I stopped off in Hammersmith to refill my USB modem. It's meant to last one month but it didn't work out that way. And so that was me, back at Vodaphone talking to Prince, on ways to conserve it.
People who know London say, 'Hammersmith??!! Why Hammersmith?' It's fairly simple. need a wee hub. Somewhere that had a bank, a phone company, a printer, some department stores ... all within easy walking distance. For some reason I decided on Hammersmith. It's on the way to my Alperton stop, and it has all that I need.
I met Emily on the last part of my journey. She was kind. That story unfolded like this ... on recognising she was a Kiwi, I may have launched into enthusiastic conversation with her. We didn't have long to chat but I did enjoy meeting her.
And finally I arrived here at Lenn's place. Planet Rock was on the radio, like it always is. Nugget, the regal black cat, seemed happy to see me. And that was me, happy to be some place familiar.
This morning finds me curled up on Lenn's big blue couch, enjoying unlimited broadband, while trying to cough, sneeze and blow my nose quietly, as one of my allergies does its ridiculous thing.
My policy of ignoring these allergies seems not to be working. Disappointing, to say the least.
Everyone else is still asleep, even Nugget, who took over my bed the moment I climbed out of it. I might quietly bake that Apple Sponge soon. I promised Lenn one ... an Edmonds Cookbook fruit sponge, like my Mum and my Nana used to make when I was a child.
Just a glimpse from this world ...