Wednesday, February 1, 2012

On getting nothing done

Rebecca's aching feet
 “I can’t believe we didn’t get anything done today", Rebecca opined as we walked in the door at 9:30 pm.  

Perhaps that was an exageration. 

We did walk blocks and blocks – along the High Street, then between bus stops, and finally under ground to find the right metro lines... and we traveled on many of them! If that were all we did, that would have been enough for me.

I would have called it the day we exercised.
Arta enjoying the tube

Duncan resigned to the tube
 But there was more than just exercize: there were jobs to do!

We left at 1:30 pm to drop Steve’s shirts off at the laundry; deposited Canadian cheques into a sterling account at the bank (an event in itself); walked to the post-office to pick up a parcel that the post-office wouldn’t deliver for insufficient postage (12 pence short); retraced our steps in the opposite direction to pick up Duncan for an appointment in Finchley; walked and then hopped on a bus for the appointment; then returned to the highroad to catch a bus and then tube for the Angel stop in central London; ran to MacDonald’s to use the toilet (plus to get a bun/burger/bun for Duncan),  walked another 20 minutes to the Russian Visa Applications place where Rebecca picked up her now stamped passport for Russia; walked to the tube to head off to Oxford Street so we could shop for a new coat, pyjamas and shorts for Duncan.

This also involved finding a measuring tape, and running between the boys and mens departments to find things to fit Duncan, who is too big for 'kids', and a bit small for 'men's'.  We managed both underwear and one pair of pajamas before Rebecca began to break.  She is not really a good shopper.  At this point, Rebecca, with flushed cheeks and tearing off the layers of sweaters and scarves underneath her coat, flopped down on a leather couch beside the Mark and Spence’s cafe and had her own shopping meltdown.  She was ready to quit, but we had promised a grand finish to Duncan: Hamleys.  He was insistent, bereft, actually that Hamleys would be the one shopping spot on the list that we crossed off, so we made a compromise:  we gave up on trying to pick a coat, and were satisfied by a quick trip to the basement of Marks & Spence to locate a potato peeler (still on the list).  
Rockin' it with the rock monster

"Luke, I am your father!"
 That task completed, we marched our way around the corner to Regent Street.  Looking around the corner, we could see the Marquis for "The Wizard of Oz", at which point Duncan realized that his mother had obfuscated the last time we were there, by telling him that Hamleys was miles away (instead of just around the corner).  oops.  [Rebecca said "Knowledge is Power.  tragic when a child finally gets some!"]  Off we went to the basement of Hamleys, where you can find the video games.  Duncan checked out the new dance moves on the Wii connect, and submitted to the demand that he pose by the giant lego statues of the rock monster and darth vader.

watching the buses go by
Finally, even Duncan agreed that we all needed nourisment. 

Alex was at a soccer practise, and Steve was with his friends at a Piccadilly pub after work. Rebecca and I had looked for a small pub, but there aren’t a lot of those at the crossroads of Regent and Oxford Street.

Instead, we let Duncan choose the restaurant.  Thus, we had our own soiree at Subway [yes, the sandwich restaurant] where Duncan ordered his favourite: a ham, cheese, corn sandwich. We sat by the window on the top floor, where you can watch both the pedestrians and the buses pass by. 

the bedraggled shoppers at the Subway
 Finally, our spirits revived by food, we headed off once again to negotiate the metro system, and get ourselves back to Woodside Park.

So it was that we got home at 9:30 pm, Rebecca, down-hearted, for as she said, “We didn’t get a thing done, today.”

Later she modified her statement to, “I mean, we didn’t get a thing done that was fun today.”

 ...night shot of the north west corner of Oxford Circus ...
Yet later, after looking at the photos she took on Regent Street, and an on putting ticket stubs (gathered over the previous months) into a family scrapbook this morning, she further modified to "I guess, it is all fun, except for those days when I don't get any of MY OWN work done!"

The fast life in London

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