I went to London yesterday, not to work but to Oxford Circus… I’ve literally never seen so many people on the stairs out of the station… you can imagine how busy it was outside of the station. A woman was standing outside of Gap and shouting her head off about some religious curse that was about to descend on us all. Looking around I couldn’t help but kind of agree with her. My mission, surprisingly not to make last minute purchases but to meet my husband (still getting used to that) who had made plans for dinner.
Perfect. Now not knowing the small details is something that doesn’t sit right with me. Call me a control freak… many have, but I work better in situations where either I am the one organising things, or I know enough of the details to be comfortable.
I’ve somehow become a member of a Facebook group that seems to debate the virtues of different styles of Karate ad nauseum. Joseph K sends a group message…”Is roundhorse (sic) kick the same as a hook kick?”. I seem to be going completely against the crowd as I make my way down Oxford Street and Joseph K is not a message from my husband with instructions as to where we were to meet.
I’m early and decide to have a look at a shop that has a million SALE signs in the window. If nothing else it gets me away from the ridiculous crowd. Inside… and a special brand of shopper is visible. A young store assistant is trying to restore the order of the displays while hundreds of people are intent on pulling it apart. Cary R shares with the group ‘Brand new shodan here!’ and Rajesh B asks “Do you mean round house kick?”. I’m none the wiser as to where we’re meeting but I do see a nice jumper although I am pretty much body checked by a woman who shuffles through the pile and then starts holding it in front of her friend gushing… “it’s sick”. Bob A asks “a donkey kick?” and James H says “What kind of question is that?” 10 people congratulate Cary R and Sheldon M starts a huge debate by saying “Congratulations, now it’s time to solidify the foundation of the house you built”.
A screaming child is shouted at by her mother as I try and move towards the area of the shop that has the most SALE signs dangling from the ceiling. This seems to do nothing other than elevate the sound the child is making and for her sins the child is dealt a swift smack across the legs. Utter meltdown ensues and now intent shoppers start to watch with many muttering under their breaths. John B congratulates Cary R “shodan is the real white belt as you will realise only now do you really start learning”. John B is a bit of a dick if you ask me. Phil D says “No, as a 2nd Dan kickboxing instructor I can safely say that no, totally different kicks”. I’ve lost the will to live. The wee child is now screaming at the top of her voice and her mother has walked off. I have two choices… stay here or head back to the street. Len R says “not many people understand the full meaning of ‘giri’.
Street it is. An orange supercar is making its way down Oxford Street sandwiched between buses, I thought cars weren’t allowed down there anymore but hey I guess he can afford the ticket. As I come back into the light, literally all the shoppers are now standing in front of the car taking pictures. To be fair there is so much traffic they are going nowhere anyway, but to impress the crowd the driver starts to rev his engine. Dan H “PMSL, how many 10th Dans?” he has shared a poster from some guy claiming to be some sort of uber karate lord. Paddy M says “where are you babes?”.