an idiot in london


Friday, 11th August.

After work today I bought two CDs (the uplifting Nevermind by well-known Seattle popsters Nirvana, and XTRMNTR by Primal Scream), a roll of film and then rocked on over to A Car Rental Firm to collect the hire car I'd booked for the weekend.

Because of car availability (or more precisely, car unavailability) I was given a higher class of car than the el cheapo one that I had booked. To my delight I discovered that the car had a CD player, tape deck and radio! No big deal for other people, but I haven't had a car with a stereo or radio of any description for years and years.

This evening Jules and I were just slumping about the house, and I said to Jules: "Do you want to have a look at the car?" We were so monstrously bored that that would do for entertainment. (Two blokes in their 20s, why weren't they out on the town? Well I needed an early night because I was going to be getting up ridiculously early on Saturday morning, and Jules is a working lad at the moment and spends all his spare time transcribing tapes, what a way to make a living.) I put on my thongs and we slouched into the sidestreet to have a look at this automotive marvel.

It sat, nearly gleaming under the streetlights, in the prime parking position in the street. We hopped in, and decided to take it for a spin. "Is it against the law to drive barefoot?" I asked Jules. "If we get pulled over you can put on my shoes." said Jules. Good plan, let's go!

We zoomed down Munster Road, through Parsons Green, and onto the New Kings Road. We waved to all the beautiful people drinking outside wanky pubs, showed our appreciation to all the lovely ladies along the way, and grimaced at the female impersonators. Jules pointed out all the expensive eateries, and soon we were on King's Road, Chelsea, lifestyles of the rich and famous. Well, perhaps not. We hung a left and drove past Big Name Fashion Houses, voicing our opinion of each. Names, sweetie, names! Then left into Brompton Road, past Harrods lit up like the gaudy institution that it is. Knightsbridge, and we stopped at a car auction house, which specialised in vintage and speciality cars. We stood in front of the shop window discussing just how we were going to get enough money to buy one of the four-wheeled beauties. (We only came up with one legal way to do it.) Then Fulham Road, past the hospital from Sliding Doors. (The lads know Chelsea Westminster Hospital fairly well, since they often have to do ward rounds and the like there. We were watching the end of Sliding Doors and there's one scene where Gwyneth Paltrow is leaving the hospital. The lads are all yelling out "Why is she going that way? It's quicker to take the elevators right there. Look! You've passed them, what are you doing? Don't go that way! It'll take ages!") Jules hinted that we should stop and worship at Stamford Bridge, Chelsea's home ground, but I said he had two chances of that happening. Past Fulham Broadway tube station (I tell ya, I'm living on the set of Sliding Doors) and back to the Dawes Road Palace.