Vampari Diary 4: London VS Belgium

4 February 2018: London VS Belgium

The British weather is finally living up to its reputation. The grey sky pisses barely-rain over me all day and it never relents. It’s not enough rain to actually get an umbrella out for, but it’s enough rain to soak me. Just fabulous.

Oh well. At least I’m getting the hang of the public transportation system. I’m on my way to Camden Market where I’m told is a… Market. I hop from underground to underground, get blasted by the incredibly hot air that seems to hang in the tunnels and find my way to Camden. Scanning my little card at the gates is becoming much more natural and I no longer hold up the lines. But I have new questions about the underground.

1. How many gap accidents have there been to have a all around “mind the gap” policy?

2. What if you erased all the directions in the underground and played a massive game of hide and seek? Who can direct such a thing and why aren’t we playing it?

3. I’m sure there’s a good reason for the little breaks on the escalator, but wouldn’t it make a wicked slide? Surely, someone must’ve tried it. How was it? Was it as awesome as I’m thinking it could be?

So many questions, no answers… I think the heat is getting to me.

I arrive at Camden and I’m amused. They didn’t lie. There really is a market there. So. Many. Stalls. And so many food samples. If there’s one thing they like to hand out, it’s apparently breaded chicken. They literally wave it in my face. Don’t mind if I do, I love samples. And they’re certainly not as generous with that in Belgium.

London: 1. Belgium: 0.

I skip all the souvenir and clothing shops and go straight for the food. Pretty much every Asian stall promises a mix and match and I never realised this is what I was missing in life. One box that has pretty much everything in it. Hell to the yes.

London: 2. Belgium: 0.

I stuff my face until I can barely walk, let alone run. But no time to linger, I’m off to meet Laura Greenwood and Kelly Stock/Bea Paige. I wonder which personality I’ll be meeting *grins

We decide on Nandos and I find myself confused by the system again. Bottomless drinks? Love them. Sauce station? I went back with a plate with puddles of sauce.

Laura and Kelly tell me I’m allowed to bring the bottles of sauce, but that just seems inconsiderate. Funny UK. Oh well.

I empty my pockets with clutter because I’m having a hard time spending the English coins. They’re all shaped weirdly and I’m finding it very stressful trying to figure out the value. Kelly squeals and lets me know I’ve found myself in the possession of a rare coin of Tiggly Winkle, the hedgehog from Beatrix Potter. Apparently, it’s worth quite a lot and we can’t but note the irony that a Belgian accidentally found herself in the possession of such a British coin.

Should I sell it? Keep it as a souvenir? Is there a black market for rare coins? I’d love to know.

After more chicken, we go to a bar and I find myself, once again, ID’d. What’s up with the Brits and their IDing? But that’s not even the weirdest thing. Inside is a very flashy bar with loud dance music and… Nobody is dancing. Everyone is just sitting at a table, shouting at each other.

Why? It makes no sense at all. In Belgium you go to a bar and you dance. Which is why the music is so loud. Because that makes sense.

London: 2. Belgium: 1

Saddened, I say goodbye to the amazing company and we all agree that we should do this again. And convince Skye MacKinnon to join us next time.

I’m over halfway through my holiday and I wonder what other mysteries the UK will reveal to me. I’m still not sure why they all love tea so much.

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