We set off in the direction of Soho and during that journey realise an invitation to join the good Dr Stanistrength has arrived via text, while we were sitting with ‘The Artist Formerly Known As Lummy’.
A quick call established that she was indeed still in the general vicinity but was considering heading off for somewhere to eat. We had already booked a table in Dean St, so declined food but would meet for a quick pint.
Rain fell and fell again and then it fell some more, joined by dusk.
Several lifetimes passed and tempers came very close to fraying as we trotted fruitlessly through the labyrinth that is Soho/Covent Garden.
By this point I’m sure we had suddenly been transported out of London and dropped onto the set of Bladerunner. Rain falls like glass stair rods, lurid neon screams everywhere while Orientals ate strange looking sweetmeats, and parts of lizards, in steamy alleys. For a moment I’m Deckard and warily on the lookout for belligerent replicants. A giant zeppelin floats overhead broadcasting Sky News headlines on its gondola. It occurs to me that we might be the unwitting participants in some new reality TV show like The Truman Show.
Numerous calls later and still map-less, having stopped in umpteen shops and bars asking directions, we finally arrived at Souk Medina and find the good Doctor in rude health. A quick diversion to The Crown next door where the eyebrow raising order was ‘two gin & tonics and absolutely the strongest beer you sell, please. I’ve just had one of those days!!!’
The very briefest of chats with Debs, who when taken out of her Liverpool environment sounds oddly more Liverpudlian than normal (?). It’s mainly about cameras and which Euro-gig would be best for those UK MB fans not prepared to fork out £140 a ticket for a festival set (i.e. shorter than normal) at the last ever Camber Sands.
Before too long Cold Beer ‘n’ Hot Jazz were a calling and we made our farewells. We had booked a table in Dean Street but had no idea, in the dark, how near or far this was.
Hailed a taxi and he shook his head pointing towards the street across the road, we were already there.
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