Saturday October 4, 2014: Destination Star Trek, Day 2.
Back at the first Destination Star Trek in 2012, a man named James Dillon, had an idea to create some bridge consoles, that he could erect in a hotel close to the ExCeL, purely for the enjoyment of the fans that couldn’t make the official parties. This ended up going down a storm, not only with the fans but with everyone that visited the bar. This year, James Dillon decided to bring back the bridge consoles, but added a replica Transporter Pad and a Captain’s chair, all being built a few weeks prior to DST 3, with the help of some volunteers. This project was known as the USS Riker’s Beard.
The USS Riker’s Beard, NCC-5318008, is a Sovereign-class starship, with James Dillon in command.
So, on leaving the ExCeL Centre, Len and I headed off to the Hotel ibis Styles Excel in search of the USS Riker’s Beard. After entering the hotel, we saw a sign for the bar and followed it into a spacious room with a fair sized bar. There was a pool table and plenty of TV screens, one of which was showing Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. Bonus. The bar had a special menu on, just for the weekend, which included;
- Vulcan Wings: Chicken wings with a bit of a fight
- Orion’s Onion Rings
- Klingon Curry: A chicken meat fest of fire and rice
- Chili Trek Carne: More fire and ice on a plate of rice
After purchasing a beer, we sat near a table of Federation personnel, which included a couple of Borg drones, an Andorian, an Admiral, a Captain and a few lower ranking officers, Behind them, along the back wall, were the bridge consoles of the USS Riker’s Beard. We had found her.
After a good look at the craftsmanship of the consoles and the obligatory photos were taken, we had another Romulan Ale, before going in search of the Transporter Room and Captain’s chair. It didn’t take us long to find them. We chatted with the various Starfleet personnel and alien lifeforms, that were in attendance, before taking yet more photographs. I had hoped to meet James Dillon and Darren Jamieson, but both were busy at other locations. Darren had been asked to be an Official Blogger, for DST 3, and had jumped at the chance.
After a good couple of hours in the bar, we decided that we had better make our way back towards home. So, after polishing off our Romulan Ale, we headed back to the Emirates Air Line and home. This is when The Voyage Home started.
Since we are now in the Winter Period (October 1 to March 31), according to the Emirates Air Line, the flights finish at 20:00, so we were left with a number of choices;
- Swim the River Thames to the Greenwich Peninsula and the Jubilee Line
- Catch the DLR at Royal Victoria to Canning Town
- Walk to Canning Town Jubilee Line station
- Walk to Canary Wharf Jubilee Line station
Number 1 was out of the question on so many levels.
Number 2 was a distinct possibility, but we would rather not have to mess about with trains.
Numbers 3 & 4 both had merits, but it was number 4 we chose.
Now, walking around London is a pleasure that both Len and I enjoy, but on this occasion we made the wrong choice. Canning Town was roughly a half mile from where we were, whereas Canary Wharf was a mile and a half away, as the crow flies. Unfortunately for us, this mile and a half turned in to two miles, as we had to follow roads and narrow lanes, that seemed determined to take us away from our destination. Fortunately, we eventually made it Canary Wharf Station where we didn’t have to wait too long, before our train pulled in to the station. We arrived back at Watford Metropolitan station, at 23:27, and made our way back to my house, arriving just before midnight. After a quick coffee Len left and headed home, himself.