Thirty Thousand Streets

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Extra brain, Barnet Fair, Whitstable, Wedding.

Well this has been one of the nicest weekends since records began, which in the case of this blog, has been going on for two years now. It was the weekend of my friends Sam and Kays' wedding, but more on that later.

My booking wound up on Thursday, which was fine. It was in Victoria, which I can never get too excited about, though I did get to work on some design, which was good.

On Friday I went to the Graphics Centre on Camberwell New Road, which in keeping with the trend currently sweeping independent retailers in London, is shutting down. Shame really, as they had a really good range of art supplies in general. They were pretty cheap anyway, but on this ocassion were flogging everything around half price in an attempt just to shift it.

I bought a stapler, which pretty much sums up the direction my life is going really. I think it'll be handy for keeping receipts together, or just generally feeling good about having a stapler.

I also bought some ink, a couple of hard backed pads, and a few mini Pentel sign pens, with lanyards attached. I've 'formed them like Voltron' to create a kind of portable brain for me to store information. Granted my own brain is fairly portable, but my memory for numbers and addresses somewhat hazy. Besides, I, like anyone who's ever made a mixtape, secretly delight in lists.

I also got my hair cut at Fish in Soho, which I was pleased with. More expensive than the guy who usually cuts it Manchester but smart nonetheless.. just what I wanted. I don't think I've had my hair washed by anyone else since I was about three however, so that was quite a strange experience. The guy who was cutting my hair suggested I should get a Christian Dior suit to match the haircut, which would be good if I could afford such things. I did however spend some time in Liberties covetously fingering an APC jacket, which was, in the end, just a little too small. I left it.

After that I hooked up with Al and Dunc at the John Snow for a couple of beers. Dunc was just arrived back from Barcelona where he's been variously teaching English and trying not to get arrested, with some success in both. After that, we rolled back to Camberwell, where we got a bite to eat at Tadims on Camberwell Church street, which is as cheap as the chips they copiously garland your plate with. Tadim's are not – by default – advocates of any low carb diet. Still. it's not bad. Decent enough.

After that, wandered over to the Hermits Cave, which is mentioned in a book by Paul Ewen, called London Pub Reviews, which is actually a quite surreal series of vignettes involving boozers, rather than a more prosaic set of opinions. We sat there quite late, before rolling back to mine and sitting up even later.

Saturday was the day of the wedding, so we were up with the lark to catch the train, though the lark had a distinct advantage in the gift of flight, which negated having to catch the sweaty 436 bus to Victoria. As we did. There we met up with Peed outside Marks and Spencers, who'd left his shoes at Liams, so would have to wear his suit with trainers.

We got to Whitstable and checked into our accomodation.. one of those utterly unremarkable Travelodge numbers, which are completely interchangeable with one another. Indeed, it's quite fitting that there is hardly any stand out between the main rival brands (Travelodge and Premier Travel Inn) so mundane is the format overall. After that we had a bit of a wait for our taxi, which was booked for three, but annoyingly, arrived over quarter of an hour late.

This had the knock on effect of making us late for the ceremony, and rolling up like chumps after the vows had been exchanged. Still. We got the gist I suppose.

After that, we headed to the reception. which was held at the The Sportsman Inn in Faversham. The setting by the sea was amazing and it was a gorgeous day for it.. with a clear blue sky and the sun beaming overhead. Sam and Kay looked crisp in informal wedding attire, the bridesmaids looked lovely and in general everyone had turned out in their freshly ironed best clobber. The food was great too – a buffet with a seafood bias along with other bits. I baulked at an oyster, but that was mostly because I was still feeling slightly wobbly from the night before. We went down to the beach nearby and skimmed stones and drank beer, and I sang the refrain from 'Sea King' by Hawkwind until Will intimated I stop.

I love weddings, and wedding receptions. Where else do you ever find yourself dancing to the O'Jays next to someone thirty years your senior whilst wearing brogues? Actually, that'd be the modern soul room at a northern soul night wouldn't it. Anyway, after an impressive speech by Sam and the best man, the big dawg, Dan, his brother, the tables were cleared and music supplied by by him and Sam's colleague and DJ partner Leo. They turned the party out until around half eleven, when the sound system chose to pack up for half an hour. After that, people jumped in taxis and headed home, mostly somewhat unsteadily.

This morning we headed to Whitstable for breakfast. I chose now to give an oyster a try. Not bad. Salty. Whitstable seems quite a nice place, quite olde worlde without being overbearingly cheesy. There seemed to be quite a few charity shops, and we even found a gallery selling lots hip prints by people like Keith Haring, Paul Insect and the ubiquitous Banksy.

I've heard that when you drown, it is as though your life flashes before your life, and it is fitting that Whitstable is by the sea as our walk around it felt much like the night before being replayed, as we bumped into people from London who'd been at the reception.

We ate at a place called Tea and Times, which was OK. The food was nice but the service a bit wonky, and after that, caught a lift back home with Ade and Rachael, after bidding a fond farewell to Dunc and Peed, off to Barcelona and Stockport respectively.

Home is quiet and I was the only one in. Rustled up a simple pasta dish from a George Locatelli recipe. I've just finished watching American History X, and I might go to bed now, and read a little of The Knight by Gene Wolfe, which is about an American kid being transported to a fantastic land where he becomes a Conan-esque hero. It's quite opaque and mysterious like much of Wolfe's stuff, but from I can work out, I think he's actually in a coma, and his visions are inspired by Second Life style online gaming. Quite odd.

No work tomorrow (as yet) but lots to be getting on with.


gridrunner said...

Slap on the wrist for not going to Premier Travel Inn instead of Travelodge. I'll have you know that PTI is far the superior, and they also do breakfast. Their hotel is also much closer to Whitstable than Travelodge’s.

Perhaps, if you'd seen some of Dare’s online advertising, or received the e-newsletter, you'd have made the wiser decision. Premier for a reason, Tom. Premier for a reason.

(And much more expensive.)

The Eyechild said...

Ah, and did you know Prmier Travel Inn is actually owned by none other than Gangstarr's DJ Premier, who once a year plays a top secret gig at a Premier Travel Inn somewhere in the UK, randomly selected by pulling a name out of a giant purple hat.

Apparently when deejaying he uses slipmats with the Premier Travel Inn logo on them too.

Zeno Cosini said...

Jesus, look at my paunch!

Speaking of photos, where is The Photo? You know, the one that's going to put a stop to the internet?

The Eyechild said...

Here's that pic..

Alastair said...

Hi Tom, sounds like it was a good weekend at the wedding, the place seems chilled from what you wrote.
Cool pic also of Dunc & I, I forgot you took them in London that day.
Catch you soon,

Al Scott.