Friday 16th March, 2012. ~ The King comes to London
The day started with Emma, Erin and myself heading to Rickmansworth, in the morning, just for a change. We got a bus there and started to mooch around the charity shops. A few good bargains were found and then we checked out the other shops. Soon, Erin started to get hungry, so we headed to ‘Caffè Nero’s’ so that we could feed Erin and we could have a sit down. We then had another mooch, before getting a bus home. After a spot of lunch, I headed upstairs to change my clothes and get ready for the afternoon and evening.
Len arrived just after 15:30 and, after he had got changed out of his work gear, we had a beer each and headed off to Watford Metropolitan Line Station. We took the train, which was one of the new trains, to Finchley Road, where we changed to the Jubilee Line and continued our journey. We arrived at North Greenwich just after 18:15 and headed towards the O2 Arena. Since the doors to the show didn’t open until 19:00, we decided to head into the ‘American Sports Bar & Grill’ for a drink. We then went to the ‘Union Square Bar’, as it was closer to the arena doors, for another drink. At 19:00 we bought a souvenir programme each and joined the queue to enter the arena. Within moments we were through and heading up the escalator into the Arena proper. We then made our way down the steps to find our seats were on the Arena floor, about 60 feet from the stage. How cool is that?! At exactly 20:00 the house-lights went out and the sound of ‘Also Sprach Zarathustra’, by Richard Strauss began. Then the screen was illuminated with the legend:
16 – 03 – 12
The screen then showed a view of the Earth from space, and started to zoom in on London. Then it zoomed in on the O2, then cut to a handheld video of the outside of the Arena. Then a door opened and Elvis was seen to be walking along the corridors backstage, before appearing to walk across the stage, rip the curtain apart and launch into a searing rendition of ‘See See Rider’. Within a few minutes, I had completely forgotten that Elvis was purely a projection, because I was sure that he was there on the stage with his TCB ‘Taking care of business‘ band. And for the next two-and-a-half hours, we were treated to one of the best live shows I have ever had the good fortune to witness. When the show did finish, Len and I made our way to the ‘Union Square Bar’ to discuss what we had just witnessed. This also gave us a chance to miss the chos of trying to get on a train, as most other people had gone straight to the platforms. After we finished our drink, we headed back to the station, which was only 200 metres away, and boarded our train. We changed at Finchley Road and, because of a faulty signal and the fact that I needed the loo, we alighted at Northwood and got a taxi home. We arrived at my home just after 00:30 and had another beer, while boring Emma to death with details of our evening. Before long Len fell asleep on the sofa, so Emma and myself headed off to bed. What a great day and evening!
Saturday 17th March, 2012. ~ St. Patrick’s Day & RBS 6 Nations Super Saturday.
Although the weather had been nice all week, the weather wasn’t meant to last into the weekend. Fortunately it did, so the BBQ went ahead as planned. Emma made some fresh coleslaw and browned off the lamb cutlets for the Irish stew. Then she chopped the vegetables, leeks, carrots, potatoes, and onion, before the entire stewing pot was transferred to the charcoal firepit. Soon after Len and Emma Jayne arrived, followed by Alex and his son, Jacob. As everyone started to arrive, I started to cook some of the exotic burgers. (Kudu, Water Buffalo, Horse, Zebra, Spring Buck and Wild Boar with apple.) My favourite of the day was Kudu. The burgers, like the lamb cutlets, were purchased at ‘G. Gibson’s’ in Watford. G. Gibson’s has had a stall on Watford Market since 1976, and their most famous product is the Gibson Sausage. Recently they opened a shop, at 13 Charter Place, where they sell fresh British meats, vegetables and exotic meats and burgers. These include, Impala, Kangaroo, Ostrich, Zebra and Moufflon amongst others. They are definitely the best butchers in the Watford area and well worth a visit. Then my mum arrived, bringing with her some pringles and some West country burgers. So, we all settled to watch the rugby, while the stew bubbled away. Scotland had already won the ‘wooden spoon’, having been beaten by Italy earlier in the day. Wales were taking on France as we enjoyed our burgers, and it was Wales who would go on to win the Grand Slam. Steve B arrived, as the match was coming to an end, so he had a burger, while I went to dish up the Irish Stew. As we ate, the third and final match of ‘Super Saturday’ started. England v Ireland. I will say it was a good, and deserved, win by England. Ireland were inept and lacked the focus that I expect of them. Anyway, as the rugby finished, everyone began to leave until only Steve B remained. So we sat and watched some TV, until even Steve had to leave. We then relaxed and got Erin sorted and ready for bed, before turning in ourselves.
All in all a great few days.
Until next time…
May it be well with you…