Tim set out mid morning to go to see Sam; their plan, apparently, was to go quizzing tonight, amongst other things.
Despite originally having some plans of a fairly early start, I ended up not getting out of the house until pretty late in the day. It was about 2:00pm before I finally left for Halford's, where I picked up the FM Transmitter thingy. One of the advantages of having reserved it by internet was that I didn't have the faff of joining the rather lengthy queue to be served. Which was good.
Back in the car, I set the Transmitter up with my iPod, and the results, whilst not wonderful, were fairly satisfactory. Not wonderful, though - every so often the channel it was transmitting on would become subject to a bit of interference, and I'd have to change the transmit channel, then change the receive channel on the car. Trying to do that whilst I was moving was, in hindsight, probably not a Terribly Good Idea (indeed, it seemed like a pretty stupid idea at the time), but I survived the journey in one piece. Two bits of wisdom I've gleaned from my experiences so far - keep the volume on the transmitter itself fairly low, and put transmitter and iPod in the little recess above the CD/radio unit in the car.
What I'd really like is a list of channels that are good to use in the UK without running the risk of lots of interference. Particularly with relevance to long distance drives (e.g. next weekend's trip to Sheffield).
Speaking of Sheffield, one of the other things I did today was to sort out a B&B for next weekend - the Alara, on Penistone Road. Looks okay, and the price is fairly good too (£50 for the two of us, compared to £85 for the hotel Becky had suggested). I also ordered the Back to the Future full orchestral soundtrack CD set, which I'm looking forward to.
Anyhew, made it to Newbury Park okay. Only to find that the car park was closed today, as there were some rail replacement buses using it. Fortunately, I found a place to park in a nearby side street, and the rail replacement only applied to the mainline services - the Central Line itself was fine, so I bought a travel card and popped onto the next incoming train, stopping briefly to give Sarah a call to tell her about this, which sounds a pleasant way to spend some time. Hopefully, in amongst the house move business, we'll be able to go there.
I needed to get off the train at Liverpool Street to use the toilets. Rather annoyingly, I found that I seemed to have lost my travel card! So once I'd finished, I had to get another one. Which was a bit of an irritation.
Anyway, I got the bus from Liverpool Street, stopping at Holborn where I popped into CLC, picking up...let me see, a Bible for Eleni's Christening present (it was quite a feat finding one that was just right, but I managed one eventually that's a New Living Translation; there was an NIV, but although it was nominally to give to a child as a christening present, it was very small, with correspondingly small text, and okay it's going to be a while before she's able to make the most of it anyway, but that'd be ridiculous. There was also the possibility of getting a picture Bible or something else along those lines, but that would have involved re-tellings of select Bible stories rather than a decent modern translation. Mind you, as it is, the one I got was just Psalms and New Testament. But anyway), as well as one of those little credit-card-sized bits of plastic with a picture and text on it ("let the little children come to me") and a Christening card. Also picked up, as I always do in CLC, the current issues of Christianity and Third Way, and on the pretext that I've just got paid, treated myself to a couple of Vicky Beeching albums - her latest, Eternity Invades, and Extravagant Worship, a best-of-compilation.
Then got the bus on towards Forbidden Planet, where I, um, spent a lot of money, specifically on The Creature from the Pit on DVD; the books Time, Unincorporated 2 and Chicks Dig Time Lords; and the Doctor Who roleplaying game, which I've been prevaricating about since seeing it (and the price tag) at EasterCon, and finally decided, "to hell with it."
By this time, I'd established some form of contact with Becky and the gang by text, and they'd arranged to make their way to to Tottenham Court Road on the grounds that now the MCM had closed for the day there was nothing to do over at Docklands. I sat in a little eaterie sipping a lemon Fanta and nibbling a slice of pizza and reading through some of my latest acquisitions before blazingskies, greyfore, novawulfen and tehexile arrived. I met them under the statue of Freddie Mercury, which a.) seemed like a reasonable place to meet them and b.) was pretty much a coincidence as it was just the exit they left the station by. Although I'd been going to suggest it. Honestly.
We went to Nando's for food (I was actually pretty starved by this point; also Becky seemed a bit the worse for wear - not sure whether she'd not eaten enough or she was just exhausted from the Expo, but anyway, she seemed to feel a lot better after she'd got some food down her) and a good geeky chat. That was very pleasant, but it came to an end after 8:00pm, when Becky & the folks went down to Elephant & Castle to meet up with Misha, and I headed for home. It wasn't a particularly bad journey, but by the time I'd headed over to Newbury Park, got back to the car, and then gone down the A12 for a little while into London until I could find a roundabout so I could turn round so I was facing away from London (this was deliberate, albeit an unwanted side-effect of the place I parked - one could only turn left onto the A12, thus heading into London), and then drove home, it was nearly 10:00pm. I waited until 10:15pm, when HIGMoreNFY ended, and then watched that evening's recording of Doctor Who, which was good but slightly depressing (because OMFG Rory???!), before heading to bed. To be honest, I wonder if maybe I should have gone to bed earlier, as I was yawning a bit through Doctor Who.
Y'know what? Considering part of the reason I decided not to go to Expo was to save money, I've not done terribly well, have I??!