And a good evening to you from across the Pond after another GREAT DAY in the Mother Country. I gotta tell you - the sun is out, I FINALLY have (a very, very little) color on my face, the skies are blue, the beer is cold, the weather is PERFECT, and all is right with the world.
I realize that I am delinquent in catching you up on weekend festivities, and so I propose breaking it up over the course of two nights. This evening's installment will feature the Friday night escapades of that legendary team whom Norse Angels still mention in their warrior's lullabies - the GSTS Transition Team.
So back story - in 2008 I ran a project over here as part of the Bank of America acquisition of LaSalle. There was an international wing called ABN Amro, with a small group of associates in the UK, Ireland, and Spain. Knowing that we didn't have much time to complete the implementation, we assembled a team of "assassins" to complete the work. Among those fearsome resources:
1. Ray "Old School Cool" Tavares - who, due to an Ash Cloud, was with us only in Spirit
2. Debbie "Q" Martin - yes, she's the one with the cutest kid in the British Isles
3. Cyrus "The Puma" David - this guy and I have seen the WARS together, with tours of duty in London, Madrid, and Chester
4. Shivani "The Goddess" Ruparelia - fresh off her year abroad traveling the world and visiting Cuba just to SPITE ME!
5. Perfect Puffin - who is always part of the family
We all met up on Friday to remember our exploits, have a few laughs, and get caught up on what everyone was doing now - talk about good times.
We hit up the Smithfield Market area (the old Butcher Market), where we found a pub called the Smithfield grill. There were some cats rockin' out with some good acoustic tunes (they were REALLY good - LOVED their Jack Johnson cover), and we had a drink there for a bit before rolling over to Paternoster Square, where we dined at the Paternoster Chop House (selection made possible by Urban Spoon and Shiv's i-Phone).
I am happy to report that Perfect Pumpkin and I tried Tartare for the first time ever! It was actually better than I thought it would be, but I think I'll only ever order it one more time - in France (as apparently, they rock it OUT). That being said, I am DEFINITELY glad I gave it a go.
For the main course, we had some VERY tasty lamb, which we washed down with a tankard of Forty-Niner (a Scottish beer which is, oddly enough, 4.9% -clever, huh) and a nice Kiwi Pino Noir. However, next time, we will not be letting the "Wife of the Destroyer" pick out the bottle, since we later discovered it was 36 QUID A POP (luckily we only had 2). All the same, NO complaints, as it was a GREAT dinner.
After the meal, Debbie (being the responsible parent that she is) headed off, whilst the rest of us thugs went for a nightcap at the Paternoster. Staropramen was the drink of choice, which I guess in retrospect was a slap in the face to Englishmen everywhere since it was St. George's Day. However, I did capture a great "thug life" picture beside the flag to commemorate the day.
Today (flipping forward in time past Sat & Sun - we'll cover those tomorrow) was a GREAT day in the office. I ran 6km on the treadmill, and there was NO pain. Granted, I now have a TOTALLY BIZARRE pain in my right armpit, but I'm gonna assume that's from throwing up all the iron last week (can someone say GUN SHOW? Cause I got 2 tickets right here...). It's funny, I start running again, and my feet and legs are the ONLY things that seem to be holding up.
The good news (I think) is that my metabolism is officially back to raging. I was an eating MACHINE today, taking down a lunch at 11:30 and then another one at 1:45. Yeah - this could become an expensive proposition.
And now here I am, passing on an AFD so I can enjoy a beer and watch the evening sun set, and all is good and right with the world. Muffin Puffin is currently at water aerobics, but when she comes back, it's DINNER TIME!
Okay, that's all the news that's fit to print. Chat tomorrow!
Sam and Jenny