Monday, July 19, 2010

"Please try not to touch"

Missus RR and I have returned from too short a trip to England, a re-visit of some areas for me, a fresh view for the Missus. We had a very pleasant dinner in Stratford-upon-Avon with Mr. and Mrs. BB. I was concerned, as we hit the ground with feet running. I expected my jet lagged self to jabber or otherwise do damage to the 'special relationship'. With the exception of one addled detail about AB's home town, it went well, and we had an excellent dinner and conversation.

A trip is more than landing on a grid coordinate. People, mixups, smells. Yeah, the smells first. The smell o'London today is better than 1973 in memory: less diesel these days. The Tube smells much the same, less smoke . Pubs are less smoky, trysting with Madame Nicotine outside is a swell worldwide tendency. Food was better than the first visit; I will have more details later. Clothes, menswear, still has a lean and hungry look: suits use less material than here,armholes are cut higher,yielding a narrower silhouette. Did see some sweet silhouettes: from the bus, a Spitfire, all primer, outside a hangar at a museum--there was also a Concorde on the runway. A Euro-fighter; a Meteor Mk 11 nightfighter, I swear; and a current RAF turbo trainer, black and zipping, over Windermere in formation. I was tedious about the Shorts plant there, I am sure.The title of today's update was lifted froma label on an exhibit at Wordsworth's cottage, so understated, bless their hearts. Lotsa sheep and,further north, Highland cattle. 23C, 72ish for us Fahrenheit users; rain in the 'drafty parallelogram' of RLS, Edinburgh. The Scots have been busy. Cookin' ,writin' and being good culcha' vulchas. Charlotte Sq. at the McDonald Roxburghe, we had a lovely oblong room, the doors and trim were curved. Daylight 'til late, we had dinner at The Tower, with a view of the rooftops of Edinburgh, St. Giles' spire stabbing the sky. Hit the Scottish National Gallery to look at some pictures, a lovely museum,perfect scale, a way station on the trek back to Charlotte Square.

More soon.


Barrett Bonden said...

If the "addled detail" was in our hearing neither of us remembers it.

It's always more interesting to hear a foreign update rather than foreign first impressions. Most of the updates I'd confirm: less diesel (probably the same percentage but they're now more efficient - my own car engine, for instance), food better (definitely), clothes (this is fascinating - what an eye you have "armholes cut higher"). I find myself in a dilemma. I love your rat-tat-tat quick impressions but occasionally want more (especially those armholes). Interestingly your period of contrasts resonates with us - we got back from the US only a year before you took your original trip.

You are not the first American to respond to our talent for understatement. Our pals from Boston roared with laughter passing a secondhand-car lot with the rubric "At least ten Rovers usually available."

Another dilemma. Yes I enjoyed the meal but the restaurant palava kept on interfering with what proved to be a rewarding conversation. But to add starvation to your jet-lag (not too many signs of the latter, I must confess) would have been a step too far.

The Crow said...

Sounds like you and Missus had a grand time. Glad you're back and look forward to your posts about food.

Relucent Reader said...

BB:Thank you for the comments. I will be expanding my discussion of European and American cut suits/suitcoats.There will be further impressions of our trip forthcoming: I must talk about the Dyson Air Blade(?)I found in a loo....
Crow: Thank you for the comment, nice to be back and all, tho this heat is something I can do without..