If I reflect on the last few days, they represent what London has to offer a couple of Saffas like us. It’s been good, bad and, to be honest, downright hideous!
I walked, stiff-muscled into the weekend, thanks to completely overdoing it at body conditioning, Pilates and latin aerobics at the end of last week. My dance class always ends the week for me on a high note – even though it usually means I can’t sit down without groaning for about 72 hours. Or walk up or down steps without going ow-ow-ow-ow-ow. Friday’s class was no exception; the four of us in the class followed our delightful instructor step for step, well, kind of, and I realized I would probably look more Latin if I didn’t try and dance like I was in a Broadway musical. Perhaps this week I’ll try and tone it down a notch.
Saturday night we were invited to some friends for supper and to watch our guilty pleasure: X Factor. The auditions continue, and one thing you can be sure of is that every episode offers its fair share of great singers, of junk singers, as we say in SA, as well as a few sob stories and a whole bunch of tension and drama. Every ounce of pathos is teased out to its limit and wrapped and tightened around our we-should-really-get-a-life curiosity till it hurts. Oh dear, maybe I should really get a life …
On Sunday we started our day with church – which was amazing – and then went out to a riverside (Thames-side) pub for lunch with some friends. When the chilly wind moved us indoors, we discovered there was live jazz playing upstairs … aaah, my favourite! It made for a wonderful afternoon, although we sat next to the carvery so had hungry punters eyeing our food while we ate and they queued for their plates full. We ordered a dessert platter – three heavenly sweet dishes and four spoons – yum! It was slightly spoiled, though, by a group of queue-ers watching us in disbelief, nudging each other and making muted comments to each other about the decadence of our desserts. One of them eventually looked at me and, rather subtly, said, “Piggies.” I don’t think English was his first language, but perhaps it would have been helpful to point out to him that that wasn’t such a polite thing to say to us.
And our day ended with an outing to a playhouse in London Bridge – south east London and not far from where we live – to see a production that had been put on as a celebration of …. (I will leave out the words here, to protect the innocent). We had no idea what to expect, which is just as well, as we certainly wouldn’t have gone had we known what was in store: an evening of amateur, stand-up comedy and poetry, if you could call it that. First up was a man dressed as a woman, with an improbable name and an even more improbable repertoire of poetry, short stories and “comedic” props. It was all so contrived it was embarrassing, and honestly I would have rather watched my toenails grow than listen to a poem about “pixies that fly, uninvited, through my letterbox, so I put them up on the elf-shelf” as well as a story of a lion cub who had cheese graters for legs and ended up on a desert island. Next up was a sit-down comedienne (she sat and played a keyboard and a ukulele) whose songs and comedy comprised of random one-liners. The compere, who had been caught in traffic and arrived just before the interval, invited us to get a drink at the bar and join them for the second act … we looked at each other, reminiscent of our SpiroGyra moment, and ran out the door and for the bus home!
I do love that we are getting to experience all aspects of London life. It’s a bit like a marriage, really – when you realise that it’s not all romance and fresh breath. And that’s ok too!
Sunshine signing off for today.