Sunday, 12 July 2009

London pt.2 - Lollipops & British Cops

Descending into London I noticed how green everything was. They say living in Australia you never come to know what the colour green really is. I looked down at the countryside below and thought fair call. Flying in closer I noticed how similar the houses looked and how close they were together. Wondered once there how long I could wander around without coming across the skyline again.
Finally landed in merry old England. Looked out the window to the tarmac people guiding the plane in. Reminded me of a conductor the way he was swinging his hands around. Thought about whether a conductor is just a failed musician and how hard it would be to become one. Not that hard I imagined. Mentally added it to my list of career plan B's one down from tarmac guy. Thought about how depressed the woman at the school crossing got when they said they were going to replace her with traffic lights. Wasn't sure I could handle such rejection and listed it one up from a lollipop lady.
Walked out the plane past the first class seats. Tried not to look but couldn't help notice the seats had rubbish and packagings left scattered everywhere. Disgruntled now thinking back to the cabin crew asking us to pick up our rubbish like the commoners we were back in economy class. Thought of Prince Charles calling up his assistant to pick a note out of the bin for him after he dropped it in there by mistake. Wondered what I would say in response to such a request if I was the assistant he called. Couldn't think of one that'd allow me to stay in the country. Hoping things don't come to plan C.
Was a long walk to where they check you out before you can officially enter the country. They separated you into UK, All other countries, and Other. Curious as to who they were. Must've been a flight coming in from Nigeria at the same time because I got caught up in the line with a large group of them. Needless to say they held up the line. Problems with passports, reasons for visiting etc. Every second one ended up being interrogated for something. For the first time in my life I was preferring a race of people to be American.
Surprised to see how smartly dressed the Nigerian men were. Wondered if I could pull off an internet scam I'd still be in the line wearing trakkies.
There was one lone American lined up two people behind me. The man between us was Nigerian. Felt sorry for him when he put his bag down to get something out of his backpack and got told off by the American man in that irritating accent to keep it with him at all times or he'd call security. Did my best to disguise my laughter with a cough. Tried to think of 9/11 to compose myself but the thoughts kept wandering. Telling myself to think serious thoughts only led to me remembering a news headline I read before I left: Prince Philip tells 10 year old aspiring astronaut, "You're too fat for spaceship". Set me off even more. Wishing the line was not still over 40 people deep. Starting to get some weird looks. Nigerian man behind me just looking grateful I took the heat off him.
Finally got through to the baggage. Mine was there as soon as I got to the belt thing. It's one of those seamless shell looking bags bought during the Shappelle Corby days when everyone was paranoid baggage handlers were slipping in drugs. Since gone out of fashion now we all know she did probably it.
Watching the belt go round reminded me of an invention I came up with while I was sitting on a train back home. It'd revolutionise transportation and essentially solve all the worlds problems. Basically.. eh, forget it - you'd just pinch it. All great ideas come to people on trains I've found. ie. Harry Potter. Or from Mexican kids telling us the genius of a flat bottom taco. Not once in all those years of stuffing them to only fall down did I ever think of that. Kicking myself.
Walked out to where all the family and friends wait. Looked into the crowd for my sister Amanda. Saw a guy that resembled Robert Patterson and mental noted to tell Julie later.
On the tube back to Amanda's we sat across another Australian and some British girl flirting with him. Noticed the guy had no chin. Remembered an article I read about how all important leaders in history had big chins. Wondered if this guy knew what valuable asset he was missing. Hoped for his sake his ambitions weren't too high. The girl had two orange streaks down the front of her hair on each side and a fringe that was too short. Thought the same thing about her.
Also across from me sat an exact replica of Gareth from The Office. Was pretty chuffed since I had only been in the country less than half an hour.
Got off at Fulham and walked straight into the sight of a double decker and policemen wearing their silly hats. Thought if I had to wear one I probably wouldn't feel silly because I wouldn't have a choice. That got me thinking whether I'd feel stupid wearing a chicken suit down the street even if no one knew it was me in it. Couldn't decide. Didn't care to know once I thought of the only way to find out.
Fell in love with London the moment I saw her. Granted she was putting on a good show. And I was still yet to see the state of the Themes. But the weather was perfect. Everything about her was perfect.

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