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Wednesday, October 01, 2003

London for Lunch

Writing now from the Stansted Express, a surface train direct from Liverpool St. in central London to the outlying Stansted Airport.

I arrived London this morning at about 7am, or a little before my usual bed-time in yesterday's time-zone. The flight left late but ran short--only 6.5 hours. No point in trying to sleep between interruptions, so I made use of their video-on-demand system which was well stocked with a complimentary list of fifty some movies--and apparently powered by Linux (as I discovered do to extenuating circumstances probably related to the extra power cycling during our ground delay):

I watched Secretary and Bulletproof Monk, and images from both saunter through my mindset as I coast on the expired dregs of my last sleep.

Wow, brain started to fail there so I gave it a rest and am now writing from Stansted.

Alas, no wireless net here either. I've picked up a few nets here and there but none I've been able to use. Any tips for tapping into random wireless networks while traveling with a linux laptop would be most appreciated. :)

I've made it through the day entirely on plastic--yay! No British notes and coins to lug around. From here, Ryan Air takes me to Sweden, where I'll be getting off the bus at 2am and finally not feeling silly for having all this heavy clothing.

I could have taken an inter-airport bus, but taking the trains let me spend the day in London, and it ended up cheaper to boot.

I hadn't really planned this day ahead very well--just never got around to doing the research--but it worked out pretty much as I'd hoped--it was easy enough to peg Liverpool St. as my transfer station...

...and as luck would have it a little wandering and one question to the right person led me to Brick Lane--an entire street that smells of Indian food.

Brick Lane, London

The only stumbler was that while their noon to midnight schedules would suit my normal schedule fine, I was there and hungry before eleven. :) So I wandered around some more, and eventually took to watching the passer's by until lunch was served.

It was hard to pick a place since there were probably a dozen Indian restaurants within two or three blocks, but the one I chose somewhat at random proved delicious (I think it was called Monsoon). Tons of stuff on the menu I've never seen in the states (or New Zealand). The dried chicken in a spinach sauce appetizer was quite interesting (and quite unlike palak).

Anyway, battery is finally running low -- much sooner than I'd hoped (maybe 5 hours of use since the last charge?). So that's it for now.

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Simon Funk / simonfunk@gmail.com