Sushi Fixes Everything

Weddings put a lot of pressure on everyone, after all, you only get one* shot at it. 

There is so much pressure to organise everything in time, to make sure its beautiful, to make sure the food is good, the venue is big enough but not too big, that you don’t go over budget, that there is enough time to chat but people aren’t waiting around for no reason and everyone knows where they should be and when and what they are doing. 

Well after spending my night in the van nursing myself around the edges of a hangover, I was up, showered and making my way thru London to Annie and Sam’s wedding somewhere in Barnet < very important ]

I had made good time this morning and so I took the electric skateboard with me. Even tho I knew the police view personal electric mobility poorly, and have reportedly confiscated them to be crushed, I fancied skating thru the Royal parks in central London. I had several hours to fill and it was a nice enough day so I set off from Waterloo, over Westminster Bridge and immediately came across some sort of march being heavily policed. The road into the park was blocked by about 10-15 armed and hi-vis coated police. There was no way they hadn’t seen me coming towards them so I just came up slowly, banking on them being more concerned with the protest. 

And this turned out to be the case. The first thing said was “nice to see someone being sensible” as he gestured to my full face helmet. Then we had a pleasant respectful interaction about the road being blocked and how I could go around it. Only, just before I set off, they said “I’m not going to even talk to you about the board, you know it’s illegal, just be careful” to which I said, “Yes sir” and moved off slowly.

I made my way up Victoria street, which is all 20mph now *sigh* so it was way too easy to add speeding to my list of illegal activities. I carefully got back into the park and cruised up the wide smooth tarmac all the way to Marble Arch. (Why does London get good roads and not the rest of us – oh yeah thats right, this is where the money is…) My fun over, I jumped on the Northern Line tube to start my way to Barnet. I’d still be way too early, but at least I could find a cafe and just have a cup of tea and write this blog.

Well that didn’t quite happen…

Firstly, it’s been <many> years since I’ve travelled on the underground and so apparently I’ve lost the skills needed to traverse this concrete labyrinth. I managed to get on the train headed north, but I forgot to check where it was going to terminate. Only once we had passed Camden Town and gone down the wrong branch did I notice and have to jump off. At this point I thought, rather than take a boring and smelly ride back a couple stops and then jump onto the correct branch, I’d just use the electric board to hop between the lines. This was good fun and so I was back on track. 

Nextly, once I arrived at the terminus of the line, High Barnet, I emerged and looked around very confused. This station did not look like the one I was expecting. I still had time to solve the problem, but it was ticking away. I took a look at the wedding invite and low and behold, it was being hosted in Barnet, but at the terminus of the Piccadilly line at Cockfosters… I’d taken the wrong line all the way to the end! 

No problem. I wondered if I could perform the same electric skateboard trick and it looked like I could! Whereas last cock-up, it might have taken the same amount of time on the board as the couple of stops going back and forth. This time, it was a long way back down the line and back up again, and whilst I still may not have been late, it would have been close. Luckily the electric skateboard allowed me to travel the 45 min walk between High Barnet and Cockfosters in about 10 mins! This thing is awesome!

I rocked up at the tube station I had expected and then walked down the highstreet looking for a cafe to sit in and wait for Aimi to arrive. She was driving down separately having needed to work on friday, and was charged with bringing my suit. Passing a nice looking cafe, I spotted mum and dad opposite the window and so went and had a cup of tea with them till Aimi arrived and I could get dressed. 

This all went nicely to plan and so we all arrived and enjoyed Annie and Sam’s beautiful wedding ceremony with all the family. It was held in the same church where her sisters were wed which nicely tied them all together. 

Standing outside in the cool but nice summer air, we threw confetti, supped champagne and nibbled a few madeleines while chatting with family we hadn’t seen in a long time. It became apparent that we didn’t really know what was happening next. We had RSVP’d using the QR link on the invite but hadn’t been asked to choose food. Also, there was a bus that was supposed to take people from Barnet to Earls Court for the reception, but our invite hadn’t asked us to book it either. We didn’t know if we should turn up and give them an awkward situation of asking us to leave because they didn’t have a place for us, or we should stay away and arrive later but potentially leave them empty seats at the reception! We just didn’t know!

We had the reception information, and didn’t want our car to be stuck in Barnet, so we had booked a hotel and car parking nearby. We followed the satnav thru the slow London traffic until we found our way barred by a street market in full swing. When google tried to redirect us, it sent us up a dead end and so we had to give up and find somewhere else to park. Taking a short wander thru the market in full sunday best, we checked in to our Holiday Inn Express and could work out what to do.

Now being 5pm, much later than we expected, no doubt the reception had started. Also, we were starving, having only had breakfast and a few madeleines, so we chose to feed ourselves and arrive for the party later to avoid disrupting anything. We found a nice (advertised as Japanese) Korean restaurant called Kappa that did wonderful sushi and ramen. Honestly, it’s been a year since I’ve had sushi that tasted so good, and not just because I was hungry! We then had a couple nice cocktails at Twice Shy before making our way to the reception. Our little inter-date, broke up a day of full on family for Aimi, which really made a difference for her. I also enjoyed having her to myself all glammed up. She looked so beautiful, I felt so proud walking through London with her on my arm.

My shoes, clip clopping down the stone pavement, led us to the reception and into a full on party. We found my folks and bobbed around enjoying the band which Sam had been a part of. Not long after, Sam, Wilf, Uncle Mark and Howard took to the stage with their band to bang out some great music too! It wasn’t long before mum roped me into a bit of rusty Ceroc. I basically twirled her around a few different ways until it started coming back, but I’ve forgotten most of it now. Still, she seemed happy and even Rosie and Wilma took a turn which was fun. We finished the night with some hotdogs before a tube ride back to our hotel.