I am no AA Gill (do love a morning Bloody Mary though) nor Giles Coran or any esteemed connoisseur but I like food and drink... And a dance. London dishes it out and sloshes it down your throat in a multitude of brilliant guises - all on the doorstep. That; I will miss.
Mien Tay - 40m from the sofa. Traditional Vietnamese; salt and pepper squid, goat curry, a heap of morning glory (!) washed down with a basic bottle of red plonk. Parenting advice and jestful banter with charismatic Fung (he once had to wake the man of the house up before he plunged head first into his hot and sour soup so I am especially fond and and grateful) change from £50 and bed by 9.30pm. Done.
Sushi Samba - sort of take up smoking for the evening just for the fabulous terrace (same goes for Shoreditch House). Incredible black cod. Dizzy views. Buzzing. Pricey but special. Ding.
Champers, Scott's, Pizza East, Hakkasan, The Cinnamon Club, Terroirs, Bunga Bunga, Bob Bob Ricard, Tiroler Hut, Babble, Gazette, J Sheeky, Piano Bar, Finos, The Dairy. It's endless. A few hazy but wonderful memories.
On these excursions through your meandering, electric, maze of pubs, clubs and grubs........... what subconsciously delights me is the simple anonymity you afford us all.
Not once have I seen one of the blurry faces from darkandstormygate in Sugar Cane of November 2015. Vague recollections of swinging from the balcony 'oozing' sex appeal and rhythm and jiving with a 60 year old pianist from Hong Kong then stumbling into a game of poker in the basement and offering unwelcome advice (because I once played cards in 1992) whilst tripping into their table of cigars and accidentally flashing my knickers. Not to mention the blurrier less mentionable episodes that pepper 2005 to date. When you can't remember it, it didn't happen and those who are there will invariably never see you again.
You see; once we have eaten in one of the 2 restaurants in the 10 mile radius for the 50th time and move on to the only half decent pub within stumbling distance - dominated the juke box and pool table ..... I don't think I will be able to slip into the shadows after a gin fest or one too many ciders. It scares me a little (lot). Everyone knows everyone and people talk and watch and talk. So many advantages to 'village life' I am sure and look forward to but my days of flippancy after a few too many martini espressos (shandies in the Barley Mow) are about to end.
Thank you London, the host with the most that makes my drunken (alter) ego a ghost.