Sunday, April 1, 2007

C'est notre partie, aucun Australien permis.

Start spreading the news, I'm leaving in 6 days. I've got a part of it. New York, New York! That's right, I'm off to New York next week for my birthday. So excited I'm breaking out into song (or at least in my head). Never been to the US before and, to be honest, what a place to start!

Davina had a house party on Friday night at her "crib" - 62MG. I got lost on the way there, but in my defensive, I was not paying attention the last time I went to her house as Simon was in charge of directions. And it turns out, we entered her street from the opposite end last time so I can not be responsible for turning up at the wrong house this time. Stupid London streets. They all have the same name, but with different endings e.g. Minford Gardens, Minford Street, Minford Avenue, Minford Mews...
Photo - Matt, Adriaan, Barry and Nick.

As we walked into the right house we were met with a cacophony of French. It felt like a tidal wave washing over you. I couldn't hear one word of English. Deevs lives with 4 French people and 1 Aussie guy. As a result, the majority of people at the party were speaking very quick and fluent French. My French is slow, limited and dodgy at best so I was way out of my league. Quickly found Barry (Deevs' flatmate) and ended up chatting to him and her friends Matt, Matt and Matt. :P We were an island of English in a sea of French. And I can hear what you are thinking, I should have made an effort to extend myself and speak French and meet new people yadda, yadda, yadda. But, and I have Adriaan and Davina and Barry to back me up here, the people at the party were not very welcoming to unknown people and made no effort to speak any English at all. So even though I tried to speak to French with some people I met on the stairs, I am sure that the laughs that came from them were solely for me when I turned and walked to the kitchen. And it wasn't just me. Davina is really upset about the whole thing because her flatmates and their friends were extremely rude to her and chastised her in French when they argued at 3am over the noise. Barry, being a typical Aussie male, was pissed off but didn't really care in the long run and went to bed.
Photo - Stu, Me and Mark

Regardless of the French invasion of 62MG I had a great time meeting up with Nick, Mark and Stu, who I met at Cat Empire about a month ago and Jeff and the other guy whose name I can't remember from St Patrick's Day. Also met Barry and Matt and Matt which was great. So I didn't just sit in a corner and hide! Oh, and you should know that it was an alcohol free night for me. Just thought I should mention that...

About a month ago Karen and I went for a walk one Sunday night and discovered that our house is a street away from the river Thames. Never realised that as I always walk the opposite way in order to catch the tube. Anyways, one of the things on my "Must Do" list is to see the Oxford vs. Cambridge University Rowing Race. Unfortunately I will be in New York next weekend when that is run but there are also 2 other races called the Head of the River Race. One is for females and the other for males. The race is a huge deal for the rowing community and is open to all rowing houses. This year they had to cap the entries at 65 teams because the river just isn't big enough. It also turns out that the course is actually the part of the river that runs behind our house. So I decided to head down to the river and watch the boats row past and then sit in one of the river side pubs for lunch. Adriaan, Vic, Rebecca and Davina all thought it sounded good and came along for the day as well.
Photo - Rowing boats lining up for heats.

There weren't as many spectators as I thought there would be so we managed to get a great position on top of Chiswick Bridge. It wasn't very exciting, but it was interesting to watch 65 row boats try and fight the current as it pushed and shoved them into the banks of the river as they waited for their heats. You couldn't have asked for more sunshine (although the photos don't show it) however, the wind was ripping across the water and eventually they had to can the race. Would really annoy those international teams who had travelled all the way here. Glad all I had to do was walk down the street and over the train line.
Photo - Vic and Adriaan trying to make Rebecca feel better about being the shortest one in the photo.

We stopped and had lunch at the City Barge pub which sits right on the river. I hadn't been to that one before and it was beautiful. The food was great and I got talking to the lady behind me who was walking her brother's dog and had stopped for a drink. She lives in Kew and Rosie (the dog) likes to chase the geese. I was very surprised at how much the Thames drops in tide. It almost empties at low tide and at high tide the walkway disappears under water. Very strange.
Photo - Davina and Adriaan kicking back at the City Barge.

It's my last three days of supply teaching this week. Luckily I am heading back to the stabbing school (never thought I would say that when I left Sydney) for all three days. I am looking forward to starting at my new school on 19/4. It is going to be lovely going to the same place and seeing the same faces. I went down there last Wednesday to meet the kids and parents and they seem really lovely.

Oh and before I go, the heading for today's entry is "It's our party, no Australians allowed" in French. Or at least that's what I hope it says. My French is very dodgy.


deev said...

love it!!!

and my dad is enjoying reading your blog too!!!

Alex said...

Excellent! Hello Davina's Dad!