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Friday, October 12, 2007

Last week

Since it was my last week in London, I resolved to get out and about as much as possible.

Monday night, Kelly and I walked to a pub called The Gun, which is quite close to my apartment building on the Thames. Unfortunately, upon arrival, we found out it was closed. And, even more unfortunately, there is absolutely nothing nearby. So, we treked over to the Radisson Hotel by my building, which you may recall was the scene of the steak sandwich incident.

We had a light dinner of wine with cheese and crackers and just enjoyed chatting.

Tuesday night after work, I spent some time sitting in the courtyard of my building to watch the sun set, and I just enjoyed being sort of introspective about the past six weeks and writing in my journal about how different experiences change us. (If you are curious, I was contrasting two thoughts: One, that "wherever you go, there you are," which is an expression I've always liked. And two, a sculpture exhibit I saw at the Tate Britain, which represented the idea that we become different people in different spaces, and sometimes that difference is physical.) Then, I went to my new neighborhood Italian restaurant (the site of the free open house last week) and had a FANTASTIC meal of veal parmagiana and vanilla panacotta with raspberry sauce. The veal had fresh buffalo mozzarella and came with roasted peppers, roasted potatoes and vegetables, and it was just so tasty.

Wednesday night brought a field trip with David to Brick Lane for Indian food. This is a very big thing to do in London, and I was really glad to check it out, although David's food was much better than mine. (I ordered chicken tikka masala, which is a very classic, popular Indian dish here, but it was too sweet -- too much coconut milk or something.) Many of the restaurants have people outside to make you "special offers" to eat there, and we got a complementary bottle of wine that seemed quite it had been watered down, which was possible, since it had not been opened in front of us.

David has gotten some new glasses, which I should have taken a photo of, as we could call him PD (Preppie David) when he's wearing his glasses.

Thursday night, I went for drinks with a Brazilian guy named Adriano (I have assembled quite a collection of Portuguese-speaking colleagues, and if I were staying here longer, I could create a little club!). He made a bet that I will end up back here within six months with a permanent job...if he's right, I have to buy him dinner. I said that was a bet I'd be happy to lose!

Now, I am mostly packed, and it's my last day at work. We went to a very British place for lunch, where I had duck confit and potatoes dauphinoise (scalloped potatoes). Perhaps I should have gone with bangers and mash, which is also very British, but they do have that at RiRa in Charlotte. Then, I got a little photo happy...

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