Level 2 Chi Kung.
Guitar in the morning, followed by a lovely afternoon with Barbara Edmonds. We met at the Barbican and, discovering almost all the local restaurants closed, we repaired to Cote. Having described it to Barbara as ‘reliable’, I was very relieved that it did not disappoint: boudin noir, duck breast with dauphinoise potatoes, pan perdu. All a bit ‘coals to Newcastle’ for Barbara but good nonetheless and hearty for a cold and grey day, in a rather grey part of town. And best of all, the waitress who greeted us when we arrived was completely unfazed when I asked for ‘a quiet table for a long gossip’ and gave us just that. Our choice of neighbourhood was dictated by our plans to attend a members’ work in progress sharing of Macbeth at the Barbican at 4pm. It was interesting, and I was impressed with the evocation (through dance) of the battle that starts the 1st act. On the other hand, they made poor old Lady M way too mad, way too soon – there’s little sense of developing tragedy if she is a shrieking psycho from word one. I was intrigued, peering at the poor demented creature from near the back of the theatre, to recognise the unmistakable cheekbones of Tara Fitzgerald!
Making my way home, rather laden with wonderful birthday presents from Barbara, including a very beautiful (and very heavy!) copy of Larousse Gastronomique, I came up against a quirk of TFL. Having been directed to the Barbican via a very circuitous route, I was keen to find a simpler way home. In the course of my exploration, I discovered that TFL simply believes that Waterloo East resides somewhere completely other than it’s real location. If you force TFL to search for buses from Barbican to Waterloo Road, it will grudgingly admit that there is, in fact, a direct bus route with a frequent service, which pretty much takes you door to door. Go figure.