Our accommodations in Highbury come with a provided dinner, which is left for us in a refrigerator outside our room. It typically appears there before we get home by some form of witchcraft we have yet to discover. On Tuesday, however, we opened the fridge after returning from IHQ to discover there wasn’t any food in it. We waited for a while until we decided to ask the front desk if we had been forgotten or ignored… in a polite manner. Unfortunately, there wasn’t anyone attending the front desk. We waited another 45 minutes or so and tried again to no avail. At this point we were very hungry and decided there wasn’t going to be any Highbury-provided dinner so we went out to find a Thai restaurant. There is one closer than our tube station, less than a 10 minute walk. To our surprise it was also delicious! We finished our food after asking for our bill (which, heads up, you have to do here) and headed back home. Much to our dismay, we opened the closet containing our refrigerator only to find that there was a meal there waiting for us. It was probably because we were home and the witchcraft doesn’t work when we are nearby. That’s my theory, anyway. As tasty as it looked and smelled (Yorkshire pudding!) we simply weren’t hungry. We rarely see anyone around that we could have offered the food to so we begrudgingly decided to throw it away. Neither of us are really the type to tell the concierge that we went out for Thai food and needed to find a place to throw their dinner away… We’re supposed to let them know if we won’t be home for dinner by 10 am. Lesson learned: good things come to those who wait. Hopefully none of the Highbury staff read our blog…
Jodi’s birthday was on Thursday so we went out with the other Volunteers on Wednesday to celebrate with dinner. Jodi didn’t know it was happening. I called Highbury from IHQ because we have to let them know if we will miss dinner… I didn’t want a repeat of the night before. When we got home Jodi was keen to do laundry but I kept “procrastinating” with other excuses, trying to buy time. Fortunately, someone was already using the laundry facilities (or facility; there’s one washer and one dryer) so we had to wait anyway. Dinner still hadn’t shown up, which wasn’t a surprise to Jodi after the previous night, so I convinced Jodi we should go for a walk. While we were out, I told her we should go to a bakery (which I made up) down at King’s Cross, which is only one tube stop away from us. Birthday people are supposed to bring their own pastries at work so she agreed. When we got to King’s Cross, however, I lead her to another tube instead of to the way out. She started getting suspicious at this point. She figured our scheme out on the second tube ride but she was still happy to have dinner with the team in China Town. Also, Leicester Square is ridiculous at rush hour. I was almost taken out by a woman on a bike to whom traffic laws don’t apply, apparently.
On Thursday, Jodi’s actual birthday, we went to Simon and Rachel Gash’s house for a properly cooked roast dinner. We remembered to let Highbury know in advance, too. It was nice to spend some time in a home because all of our time so far has been spent in the office, at our hotel-esque studio, or on a train. We had a fun night getting to know them and their two kids who are basically the cutest kids ever, British accent and all. We had only planned to meet up “Thursday” without thinking about the fact it was Jodi’s birthday but it turned out to be a very nice birthday dinner anyway.
Some new fun facts:
There are foxes here. Like, real foxes in our driveway that stroll around the neighborhood like it’s nothing. Weird. Last night we were able to see our breath for the first time and it’s only August. Scarves will come in handy. If you need to do laundry here, set 3 hours aside. Their washers here are tiny. If you’re going to an event in the middle of nowhere, don’t show up 3 hours early. Not all of London is interesting and safe. Listerine is expensive here. If anyone is compiling care package lists, you can add a giant green Listerine bottle to it.
Jodi’s birthday dinner in Chinatown.
Post-dinner exploration in the city.
Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace.
Watch the video blog!