No way! Another England/London post?? I figured I'd better get my ass in gear otherwise I would never finish this and it would just be another casualty to add to the list of "Things I Never Finish" and dude, it's a long list. So anyway, this is going to be the penultimate post about this vacation which happened LAST YEAR (technically).
So, where we were? After the night of fantastic curry and boyfriends wearing muffin hats, the morning was spent writing out the birthday cards that we bought the day before for Elroy's dad's girlfriend. When we went downstairs she had put out all the cards that she had recieved and they were all really cute and nice.
We had a light breakfast and then proceeded to go our separate ways. Elroy's dad had asked the handyman to come around to help drill a hole into the back of his television stand in order to feed the cables of the new DVD player through the back to the powersource. You'd this this would be an easy task, but unfortunately the handyman took out all the plugs without noting the various media playing devices to which they were connected. So Elroy spent a good 2 hours helping his dad and the handyman out by matching the cords to the machine. Very fun, I'm sure.
Concomitant with the technology disaster, we girls were having a fun
session of cooking and chatting in the kitchen. And if you know me, you know that I loves me some kitchen time. Slicing, peeling, kneading, rinsing. I'm there, baby. Also, I am in LOVE with this kitchen with all it's wooden beams, huge island, and cool AGA stove. The AGA is kind of weird because it's "on" all the time. The entire thing is made of cast iron so it's always warm and always on. The drawback is that you just have no freaking clue how hot the ovens are or the top "burners" (which are just really hot huge round flat discs on which you can place up to 3 different pots). But I'm sure you get used to it and if you really wanted to find out, you would just shove a thermometer in there.
We got set to make some lunch. On the menu: avocado salad to start followed by fettucini with a sauce of creme fraiche, smoked salmon, dill and cucumber. Then for dessert we made an English apple pie, not to be confused with its carb-tastic American counterpart. An English apple pie does not have a bottom crust. And generally it is not necessarily loaded with nutmeg, ginger or cinnamon, etc (but I petitioned to put them in and was successful). In this specific pie we also put in some black currants to give it a little tartness. The pie came out really well even with the store-bought crust. My experience with store bought crusts is that they are pretty crap (too thin, not tasty, hard to work with) but this one was good.
After lunch we were off to the train station to go back to Oxford to do some more walking around and shopping (aka, finding Oxford emblazoned gear). Elroy took me on a quick illegal tour of his old college. I didn't take any pictures since we were weren't supposed to be in there. It just so happens that Elroy forgot to return his keys so I got an insider's look. While Elroy did have his keys, the college was smart enough to change the electronic pass cards so while we could go into any building and room on the inside of the college, if we left our stuff there (like we tried to) then would run the risk of being unable to get back to our belongings if they locked the gates. At one point all our things were in the common room and we were olding our respective passports and visas to get back into the USA, but then we chickened out and lugged all our stuff with us.
For dinner we met up with one of Elroy's friends that I had met on the first night at The Castle. We went to THE curry house of choice for Elroy and his gang of PhD aspiring, science loving fools. The Bombay is a BYOB so we stopped in the local off-license for some drinks. It was a place that was really well stocked with imports so I was able to snag myself a Cooper's Sparkling ale. Unfortunately, a swig at the restaurant proved that it was indeed totally skunked so I ended up drinking some of Elroy's Leffe Brun (rare find in The States). The curry was amazing. I ordered my standard fall back of Rogan Josh and MAN it was gooooood. So many pieces of not nasty and no gristle lamb! Juicy tomatoes! It was fantastic AND affordable. It was also fun to hang out with Elroy's friend. We were able to talk about US politics and how crazy it has been over here. Intelligent conversation! Good food! I'm like an adult or something.
On our way out, one of the waiters said to me, you come here all the time! Uh….no? They said that my name was Danielle. (I think it was Danielle. I can't remember.) Yeah. Not so much. I told them that it was only my second time in the country, nevermind the absolute first time stepping foot in the restaurant. They said that I looked JUST like a girl who goes there pretty frequently and I laughed just like her too. This disturbs me because I have a weird, distinct and noticable laugh. Strange. I have a laugh doppleganger living in Oxford, England.
Unfortunately, after we finished dinner it started to pour outside. It must be said that Elroy is a GOD at this curry house. I mean, when we walked in they still remembered him, called him by name, MR. Jetson (although it should be Doctor, really). So when it started raining the waiters there called a cab FOR us so that we wouldn't have to walk in the rain to the train station. The royal treatment! Exciting. But, wow, was that cab expensive! Highway robbery, honestly. But better than getting soaked and having to sit in wet clothes on the train for 2 hours. Most of the "expensive-ness" of London is due to the horrid exchange rate of dollars to pounds. I would assume that if you lived in London and made you salary in pounds, then you'd be okay instead of making your money in dollars, visiting England, and having your "salary" cut in half. So sad.
From the Oxford we made it back to Haslemere where Elroy's mom picked us up from the train station.
Only one more post to go! (Yay.)