The phone on Monday.
“Ingrid, erhm, welcome to London …”. That voice.
Some absolutely worthless information about London.
I’m off to my theatre group.
The Girl In The National Portrait Gallery
Even though I am still not relaxed enough to really enjoy London, I did visit the first item on my to-see list : The National Portrait Gallery.
Now 2 cool things about London to begin with :
many museums are open until 21.00 Thursdays and Fridays
and really a lot of museums have free entry! (how fantastic is that!)
So I felt like seeing something else than my computer for a while, jumped on the Piccadilly Line, jumped off on Leicester Square and walked the 200 meter from there to the NPG.
And he said “Oh welcome back!”.
“Well, thank You very much, it’s nice to be back ! And this time I will stay in London”.
“Oh yeah, you were the Danish girl right ?”.
“Well, the Dutch girl from Denmark, yes indeed”.
“I remember” he said, “the European girl !”.
“Yes”, I said smiling at him (and quite impressed) “that’s what I like about London, the mixture of cultures, all the different languages”.
And he said “Yes that is a good thing about London”.
“Welcome back, and Welcome to London” he said smiling at me.
“Thank you. I will be back here often, I love this place”.
“You are welcome”.
He smiled and I smiled and outside the sun was shining.
Who he was ? He was the owner.
And one day I have to have a talk with him about TGITC.
I could bore you with loads of things that happened today, but I am so tired that you have to do with this pathetic poem I wrote in the plane flying from a very snowy Aarhus in Denmark (which gave an hour delay) to London.
The plane speeds up
And it ascends
Aarhus in snow
A chapter ends
The plane slows down
I feel the sun
I am here, at last. And it is good.
It has been ordered, the ticket. For the 28th of February, ?rhus – London at 10.20 am from ?rhus with Ryanair.
A one way ticket.
Which is a weird feeling.
As if there is no turning back.
Which is good, because I don’t want to turn back.
Which direction I have to go, I have no idea yet.
But as always, Steffen has the answer:
jeg ved udm?rket godt hvilken vej vi skal tage
det er fremad, babe, uden at se os tilbage
(I know exactly which way we have to take
It’s straight ahead babe, without looking back)
“Hello Ingrid, this job you applied for, when can you start ?”
“Uhm well I am in Denmark this week, but will be back in London next Tuesday. I can start on Wednesday”
“Oh, that’s a pity ! I need someone from this week. But call me when you are back in London.”
“I will !”
Bugger ! This was very close. It was just an admin job, but I take any job I can get for start. So the hunt continues …
I’ll show you, in 5 simple steps:
Take the wrong side of the stairs all the time, and be a ghostwalker, annoying as many people as possible.
(I’m sorry I really try to remember it, but there is so much to remember)
Accidently follow 2 (theatregroup)guys all the way into the mens room (!) while thinking we were going to have a drink in the pub.
(misunderstanding is my last name – and nothing happened, except a lot of laughing about me, but hey, there are worse things – and we did end in the pub and had the drink anyway)
Come late on at least 2 appointments because the tube is fast, but not as fast as you think, and even though the tubemap is small, in real the distances are long, and travelling takes time.
(London is a big city – remember that !)
Londoners don’t wait for green light, they just walk over whenever they can. I’ve tried to be a wannabe Londoner several times, resulting in cars beginning to drive while I am on the exact middle of the crossing, resulting in some angry car horns telling me that I am not ready for this yet.
(OK, I got that now) (And if there weren’t any “Look Left” – “Look Right” marks on most crossings, I don’t know what might have happened.)
When paying something in cash, annoy the cashier and the people behind you in the queue by having to look closely at every type of coin to see what they are worth.
(Need to do some serious coin study soon).
But I do love London, and I hope soon London will love me too.
Yesterday I went to join the theatre group for the first time. It was nice to meet some new people. And it is going to be exiting to see what will come out of it. There certainly are some talented people in the group, and it is a very creative and inspiring group to be in. I just hope we drop the improvisation sessions soon, because I can’t be creative on command, I am just too shy for that. But otherwise we had a lot of fun, and it is probably a good network to have. And I got my first kiss, on the cheek, and not from Bill the cat. Some Brits really are gentlemen. In London you only get 2 though, not 3 like we do in Holland. All those rules to remember.
I took the day off today from my fulltime jobhunting schedule, which was nice. I haven’t seen anything in the city yet, I haven’t had the time. But there will be time the rest of the year, and the years to come, hopefully. I am back in The Cafe when writing this, for some lunch. This time I am sitting at The Table. Maybe that will bring some luck on the job front. Being here is very inspiring, and if I could be sitting here for a week, I would probably have written a complete book. But I will enjoy my lunch and The Cafe now before I’m ready to go out in London weather again : sunshine one second and rain the next. Very similar to my state of mind at the moment.
But you know the sunlight always shines
Behind the clouds on London skies
Good one Jamie, and very appropriate in more than one way.
Well now, don’t think that there isn’t anything happening on the romantic front. There is.
There has been love flowering by the counter for people with under 5 items.
And I actually already found a very nice Londoner. And he loves me, unconditionally. I am a bit overwhelmed by his attention, I am not used to all this anymore. He looks at me all the time with his deep dark brown eyes while I try to concentrate on writing job applications. He doesn’t leave my side, and better he wants to sit on my lap all the time.
We haven’t talked much yet, but we understand each other completely. Sometimes words are not necessary, especially not when we are talking unconditional love.
I don’t even know his name yet, but until I do, I just call him Bill.
Oh there he is, he just entered the room. So if you’ll excuse me, I have some loving to do.
The Odeon West End cinema, Leicester square, London – fanatical about film (and so am I)
Exactly how romantic is it to eat at Burger King on Valentine’s Day. Well at least BK had the best Valentine’s Day slogan I have read today:
On the menu of life, you are the today’s special. And tomorrow. And the day after. And the day after. etc.
The New Piccadilly Cafe, London
I can’t believe I’m actually here. In THE Cafe. And I am amazed, because The Cafe is only a 50 meters walk from the hotel I have been staying serveral times, while in London. I had no idea.
(Michael Learns To Rock – The Actor)
When people here ask me why on earth I want to move to London, I say (apart from the whole new and fresh start thing) : film, theatre, museums. And in the look in their eyes I can see that they don’t get it. Why is the cinema in Århus no longer good enough. Well it is, really, but it wasn’t only the cinema I was thinking about when I say film. I also somehow, want to get a little bit closer to the whole filmmaking process, to find out if it is something I like. Well that sounded like mission-are-you-completely-out-of-your-mind-impossible some months ago, but not anymore. (and I warn you this is a very long post !)
Packing boxes is not the hardest part of moving to another country. It is the administrative hassle around it.
I wanted to order a UK mobilephone number, as one of the first things. And easymobile got recommened by the Danes-in-London group on yahoo. So I decided to sign up there. And I knew they needed a UK address to send the simcard to, but no problem I had that. The problem was that they only accepted UK credit cards for payment. And that I don’t have. Getting a UK bankaccount is supposed to be the most difficult step of the whole project.
But I wasn’t going to give up that easily, and I didn’t feel like phoning around at expensive danish rates while in London the week of 13th of February. So I tried the Easymobile live support chat. And through this genious system I could chat with Elliot. And Elliot was a nice guy, probably a Londoner, but I could not really hear his accent, as we were only writing to each other. And I explained him that I really would love to be a customer but, the credit card was a problem.
But Elliot said – no problem – fax me a copy of your passport and your Danish creditcard and I will let you get your UK phonenumber. You can pick your own telephone number (to a certain extent) and I already had a number I would really like to have. I am a number freak.
When the real estate people come with people to have a look at my flat they normally contact me a day or two in advance, so I can clean up a bit. Normally that goes like waiting until the evening before, very late, and then just stack all the stuff laying on my table into one of my drawers.
What does that have to do with the mobile phone number you are wondering. Well – where the hack is my passport !?!
Fantastisch, mijn kaart lag er nog toen S. vorige week in London het Theatre Museum bezocht. Netjes onder de stapel boeken in het winkeltje. En bedenk hoeveel honderden, duizenden (?) mensen daar intussen langs gelopen waren, nietsvermoedend en zonder hem te hebben gevonden.
Na de trip Århus-London is de kaart met het vliegtuig inmiddels overgebracht van London naar Massachusetts, USA. Gisteren sprak ik S. op messenger, en ze vond het fantastisch dat de kaart er nog lag. Kicks voor niks.
Mission Accomplished en closed. Wat zal ik nu weer eens bedenken.
Voor de nieuwsgierigen onder u – de kaart (S. is zoals gezegd ook een B. fan)- het was een van de 4 van mijn in een verloren uurtje gefotosjopte mini Pop Art Bill Warhol Tribute.
Wat ik me overigens nog het meest herinner van die dag van de kaart, is dat ik op Covent Garden market stond, geleund tegen een van de grote pilaren, gezellig druk met mensen, vlak bij de opera, en de zon in mijn gezicht. En precies daar op dat moment wist ik dat het wel goed zat.
Afgezien van de ontzettend korte transport- en wachttijden, viel me iets anders op in de tube. De rust. En de grote hoeveelheden mensen die een boek lazen. Opvallend. Toen ik later bovengronds in een dubbeldekker terecht kwam, kwam ik erachter waar de rust in de tube vandaan kwam. Mobieltelefoons werken niet ondergronds !
Voor je het weet is het zondag en ben je zo langzamerhand op weg naar het vliegveld. Het regent.
Ik bezocht het Science Museum, een gigantisch museum wat je niet in 2 uur kunt zien, en dus moet ik een keer terug. Maar wel de moeite waard, vooral voor nerds en wetenschap geinteresseerden. Ik moet echt verder gaan lezen in Bill Brysons a History About Nearly Everything. Als bonus was er uitverkoop in Hitchhikers Guide rotzooi, dus het t-shirt met ” WannaSeeMySpaceship” gaat mee terug naar Denemarken. (Een handdoek had ik natuurlijk bij me Yak!) Erg jammer dat de Hitchhikers Exhibition al gesloten was.
Ik tubede door naar Tate Modern voor een trip naar het Restaurant ( at the end of the Universe), maar op de 1. etage sloeg de vermoeidheid toe. Ik haalde het niet, liep in plaats daarvan de mooie Millenium Bridge over, terug naar het metrostation en Picadilly Circus. Hier gebruikte ik mijn laatste ponden aan een Empire blad en wat kaarten. En een boek : How to Write A Filmscript in 21 Days. Niet dat ik ooit een script ga schrijven, of misschien wel, maar dat script blijft achter gesloten deuren. Maar het boek is erg inspirerend.
Ik had nog zoveel andere boeken kunnen kopen, maar hield me in. Eerst maar eens opruimen in mijn huidige boekenkast. Ik kocht geen enkele film. DVD’s online kopen is goedkoper, en de wat mindere mainstream Bill films waren niet te vinden.
En dus ben ik zo langzamerhand op weg naar het vliegveld. Weg van de stad die mij wel aanstaat. De queue cultuur, de metro, de beleefdheid, de tientallen bioscopen, de tientallen theaters en de duizenden andere mogelijkheden. Ik moet binnenkort eens met mijn bank gaan praten.
CU London. Nee, CU soon London.