Finally showing my “international” side, I recently spent 12 days in London, seeing the usual tourist sights and having tea. But I also tried a few less-known activities, and met a couple of celebrities. In this resurrection of my comatose blog, I’ll share my experiences, possibly in more detail than you’d prefer.
Sunday, 12 May 2013
My flight landed at 10 am, and my roommate and I were to be at the Southbank Centre Royal Festival Hall by about 4:30 pm for the BAFTAs. In the meantime, I needed to get through passport control and customs, get my baggage, and navigate from Heathrow to my hotel. Then I needed to get all gussied up in a formal gown and finally, find a way to the event. I was nervous about having enough time for all this, but in the end I had nothing to fear. We even had time to go out for coffee, which I needed since I’d had maybe 5 hours’ worth of broken sleep on the plane.
Despite being warned by a local that taking a taxi to the event was a poor idea due to Sunday traffic, the thought of going on the tube dressed in formal gowns made us decide to risk it anyway. Again, our fears were unfounded, and we arrived a bit early. This was good, since no one seemed to be able to direct us to the box office to pick up our tickets at first. Eventually we found it – but then no one in the ticket office knew exactly where we needed to go to enter the event. Since I was wearing 5-1/2″ heels and a formal, full-length gown, walking about in the rain looking for the entrance didn’t really appeal. Luckily we bumped into some people we ‘knew’ – aka talk to on Twitter – and they knew where the entrance was, even though they weren’t going to the event.
So the time came to stroll the red carpet. It wasn’t empty. No, it was infested. Infested with Daleks!
After being whisked inside and up to the 5th floor bar terrace, my celebrity-sighting was confined to the screen set up for our convenience, since the wall around the terrace was about 4-1/2 feet high. I did see a few of the Twitter- and Tumblr-famous, however, including the recently-kissed-by-Chris-Pine Cumberbuddy.
Technically I was in the same room as a lot of celebrities during the show, but as Graham Norton said in his opening monologue, it could be called the “Royal Festival Barn.” Here was my view from the second-to-last row:
After the show, my roommate and I went back to another friend’s hotel for drinks. I managed to dump a gin and tonic in my lap. Luckily, this was probably the worst thing that happened to me the entire trip. And smelling like gin isn’t the worst thing in the world, now, is it?