Tuesday, August 04, 2015

Things to do in London when burning with passion and life (II)


  Thursday morning I had one of only two breakfasts at the hotel. It’s expensive and not really giving you much for your money.
  I left the camera in the hotel room, deciding on a whim to experience London without it that day, temporarily falling back on my old, misguided conviction that dragging a camera around lessens a given Journey.
  I usually stay in Bayswater, close to the Central Line stations of Lancaster Gate or Queensway, but this time I stayed in Paddington, just a minute’s walk from Paddington Station and the Bakerloo Line. The Central Line would have taken me to Tottenham Court Road (it’s closed most of 2015). Bakerloo takes everyone (or at least me) straight to Piccadilly Circus.
  Dorothy and I met up at Costa, in Covent Garden, one of my favorite coffee shop chains. We have known each other for twenty-seven years and we share two children between us. We’ve always enjoyed an off/on relationship and have never really split up. Fairly long periods of absence have been coupled with intense moments of reunion, an «arrangement» suiting us both.
  We first encountered each other on the beyond memorable Midsummer Night of 1988 and moved into a squatted house together not long afterwards. The next five years should be one of the most amazing periods of our lives. She, more than any other person, showed me what life is about.
  She had great news for me this Thursday morning. I knew that, just by looking at her, before she even started speaking. She had actually managed to gather most of the old gang, doing so for the first time in years. I felt how anticipation filled me. We were both excited beyond words, an excitement clearly visible to everyone else present. Some were angry at our loud voices, while others loved our sizzling exhilaration and mounting joy.
  Usually I sit a while and enjoy my time at a coffee shop, but this time I devoured my giant cappuccino in no time, and we were off to the nearest pub, having decided to start the celebration of our reunion early.
  It’s always a strange feeling for me to be in the company of a given woman… and being unable to take my eyes off her. It’s almost like I try to imprint forever every single line of her face on my cerebral cortex. Her stare was equally intense. We didn’t mind and sat there toasting and cheering and drinking Guinness as if our last day had come. Sometimes later we had dinner at a great non-expensive vegetarian place north of Oxford Street. We were back at devouring Guinness not long after that.
  Usually I don’t drink much alcohol in London or when traveling at all, since I’m high enough just by the act of traveling, but this time was different.

  We ended up on my hotel room, celebrating our reunion the rest of the day and evening, keeping it up until we fell into a deep, deep, dreamless sleep.


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