Incognito Press

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Just back from London

Posted by E on June 2, 2010

Well, I’m back!! In more ways than one. Back from London, England as of a week now, and back on WordPress after a year of absence. I know, I know, a shitload of stuff has happened over the last year, and over the next little while I’ll be sure to update all of you on what has been going on.

But first, let me say this — despite all the trepidations about the ash cloud, etc (given as it made quite a dent in the recent London Book Fair, which was a bust for most overseas agents who didn’t get there early enough), somehow the clouds lifted during the particular week we were scheduled to leave.

To be honest, though, I didn’t let myself hope – or pack my bag even – until the day before our flight. Why bother getting all excited, I figured, if the airport was going to be shut down again? And, as if on cue, we leave on a Saturday, and the next day, Sunday, all UK airports close up. Yep. Not making this up. And they stay closed until 2 days before we’re supposed to depart.

Which made life a teensy bit tense for the partner, given a conference she was to attend the very next day in Boston….well, everything ended well. We got back to Canada, she got to Boston, wrapped up conference and came back home, and now we are….you guessed it, in another hotel room. In buttf*ck nowhere, southern Ontario. Don’t even ask. (Business, why else?)

But London was grand. For me, it wasn’t the reaction I anticipated: it wasn’t that punch-to-the-gut, breathtaking awe I experienced when I first laid eyes on Venice, or the fairytale magic of being on Barcelona’s streets, or the dizzying magnificence of Paris….no, my reaction to London (and its war-scarred architecture) was much more subdued. It was a bit like…coming home. Like settling into a comfortable pair of slippers. One that you never want to be forced to take off.

I could live there, I really could. (As I write this, I’m mentally adding it to my list of places I’d love to have a pied-de-terre in). The leafy parks, the grand boulevards, the excitement of Soho and Bloomsbury….not to mention all the great pubs and restuarants, and even the chain of Nando eateries I hadn’t expected to encounter. Not a far stretch of the imagination to think of London as a great central base for exploring Europe.

It’s definitely a place I intend to return to over and over again. And sample my new favourite drink: cider. Which I’m ashamed to say I’ve not ever had before this trip. It’s a fantastic find, I tell you — for someone who hates beer as much as I do, I finally have a substitute to make me look like I could fit in with all the cool kids and their big pints. Who’s ever to know that my pint tastes like sweet pears and apples? 🙂

More on London later. Ta-ta for now!

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