7.39am, Monday 3rd October, London Bridge, London, England
Well, folks, the good times had to stop rolling sometime, and sure enough it’s London – city of one million stairs – where reality kicks in. I went into town on the tube last night for dinner because my favorite rib joint that serves the best “burnt ends” this side of Kansas City is in Soho. It’s called Bodeans and last night “tha joint were jumping”. London is having itself a fine old time during it’s unseasonal October heatwave, and the city was packed with semi-clad folks soaking up the sunshine and everything that goes with it. As you can imagine, in Soho, it was like a massive street party.
But the tube folks. Picture this, sweaty hot bodies jam crushed into tin tubes that are even hotter, with seriously restricted airflow, hurtling around under this massive city – connected by a series of passageways where oxygen is at minimal levels, all joined to the surface street level by a maze of stairs and the occasional escalator. This folks, is the bloodstream of London, and it’s groaning badly! Imagine the same system come August – even hotter – with millions of visitors for the Olympics!
But I wanted to see how the new bionic knee held up, and how the long suffering other one would cope. And the tube nearly won last night!
And so to today. The gods of good luck have decided to step in, and both lifts in the hotel are not working. I’m on the third floor and have just gone – very slowly one step at a time – down to get breakfast from the Pret a Manger shop next door, and come back up three flights of stairs. Sometimes you just know there’s a tough day coming! And don’t you love it when the folks on the front desk suddenly don’t speak good English and have no idea when things will be fixed. The porters will earn their money this morning getting the luggage!
So get set, and we will see how London treats us this week – with sore knees but great expectations!