Now I’ve been living in London for over four years now, still very much digging it, but what always provides a refreshed look at what the city has to offer is when friends come to stay, and best of all, when my little brother’s in town.
But (in his eyes) no London visit is complete without going for one of the Thai Vegplaces dotted round the city, a self service buffet of Thai food with dumplings, beef, chicken and prawn dishes (like the one in the picture above).
All very convincing in appearance and taste – it fooled a couple of my friends who didn’t even bat an eyelid – only it’s all made of soya and quorn, imitation.
You simply don’t find novel places like this in the little city my brother and I are from.
Anyway, last time he was down we checked out this amazing exhibition at Westminster University which my architect-cum-designer of a housemate had heard of, Vertical Works by the artist Anthony McCall. Set in a vast and very dark room, it consisted of four projections coming from the ceiling in a row, cones of light, thin strips which made gradually moving simple lines and shapes on the floor.
It was awesome, people were lying down in the light and looking up, and the reason that doing so was so mesmerising was that the room was filled with a thin layer of smoke, which formed swirling and fantastical shapes when it passed through the beams of light, giving you a brilliant 3D sense of the space. Pretty epic.
Following this, a little spaced out, we strolled over to Goodge Street and met another friend for a good cheap pizza. It was fascinating because the Man United v Arsenal FA Cup Final was on, yet you could hear the game fine as the place was half full of deaf people, all conversing enthusiastically in sign language, some of them through the window to their friends outside – fascinating to watch.
My brother was sad we didn’t see that there was a Thai Veg just a few doors down, sowe walked him through China Town and past Leicester Square, the land of all the film premiers, and rounded off the evening by going to a bar called Byron for an Oreo Cookie milkshake.
- Hangin’ with my brethren: perhaps you know it, but ‘hanging out’ means like chilling, spending time with your friends for example, and brethren refers to your brothers, which can be used as slang to refer to your friends, though it’s not exactly common!
- Digging it: slang for ‘liking it’
- To go down a treat : to be a success with others, quite literally ‘for people to like you’
- Bat an eyelid : to blink, in other words ‘to react’, always used in the negative way of saying that someone didn’t even respond to something
- Architect-cum-designer: basically meaning an architect who has begun working more in the realm of design
- Spaced out: chilled out, ‘not with it’, saturated