Wednesday, April 01, 2009

A Great Way to Spend a Weekend

I had an absolutely fantastic weekend but only now have I the time to tell you about it. Due to varies diary conflicts T and I have not had a whole weekend together in an absolute age so merely to have time with my little buddy would have been plenty but there was much extra to enjoy. We got up a little late on Saturday and had a leisurely breakfast in a little local café. After that we went for a stroll, I bought a cheap vintage Cuban shirt and T got some pretty summer shoes. Once we got home we the weather took a turn fr the worse and became incredibly cold with occasional downpours of rain. Unfortunately we had to go out again though there was an excellent reason: we had tickets to see Metallica in the evening. T had never seen the band and the last time I saw them was 17 years ago, a fact that makes me feel very old. So we bundled ourselves up in our warmest coats and headed out into the late afternoon rain. Thanks to the usual foresight and planning that makes London Underground legendary, the Jubilee Line, the one with the gig venue's station on it, was closed and so we had a half hour walk followed by a 20 minute train ride to get us to the right area of town. Once we'd got to Greenwich we had to cross the semi-industrial wasteland that is the Greenwich peninsula to get the the O2 Arena. It's a strange place. Following the Millennium festivities there was a concerted effort to try and keep the area thriving and many new blocks of houses were built. As we walked through only a few seemed occupied and all of the local shops that had also been recently built were deserted. T commented it was a bit like walking through a disused Soviet holiday camp and I think that sums the place up.

Eventually, cold and soaked we got to the gig venue and once inside found our way to our seats. There were two support acts, The Sword, whom I adore, and Machine Head of whom I am not so fond. The Sword were on first and I thought played a great set to a scarcely quarter full hall. It's a 20 000 seat arena and yet, because the stage was in the centre and the bands played in the round, it felt really quite intimate: no need for giant TV screens here. After a short gap Machine Head came on stage and made a horrid racket for about 40 minutes. Thankfully they eventually finished up and off they went.

And then came Metallica. The lights dimmed and the strains of Ennio Morricone's "The Ecstasy of Gold" came over the P.A. Everyone went nuts and then the gig started the stage criss-crossed with beams of laser light from the ceiling. Metallica were just awesome, I cannot think of a better live band. They played for two hours and had every member of the audience in the palms of their mighty metallic hands. They played "Master of Puppets", my favourite song by them and entertained the crowd royally. T thinks it was the best gig she's ever seen. I don't know about that but I struggle to think of better.

We left the venue, grinning from ear to ear but determined not to return in the way we'd arrived. Fortunately we were able to get tickets for one of the Thames Clippers, a river-boat ferry service that runs from Greenwich to Westminster. It was a lovely end to an amazing evening to be whisked along the Thames seeing the city by night as we glided past.

On Sunday we got up late, ate a small breakfast and then took ourselves off to Andrew Edmunds, my favourite restaurant, for lunch. We managed to eat and drink for two hours and finally made it home in the middle of the afternoon. After a nap and some pottering around the flat we walked over to Shoreditch for a friend's birthday drinks. A great end to a perfect weekend.



Blogger Churlita said...

It sounds like a wonderful weekend.

I'm glad to hear that Metallica was so good live. I've lost a lot of respect for them. Not just because of the whole Napster thing, but I just haven't been all that impressed with their last efforts.

8:47 pm  
Blogger Mr Atrocity said...

Maybe give "Death Magnetic" a try. I wasn't overly fond of "Load" or "Reload" and "St. Anger" was rotten. The new one is a real return to form though I think.

11:09 pm  
Blogger booda baby said...

It's a great thing to see a good show. As a non-Metallica fan - wait. as a NON fan of Metallica's, I'm just going to believe you.

We just saw a GREAT show - Eric Clapton playing with the Allman Brothers. Ay. It was live, only we weren't there. They started this screaming streaming deal and all in attendance (most were gigging musicians) agreed that it not only rivaled being there, it MIGHT have surpassed.

I really REALLY think catching the ferry home sounds like the best thing. Accidental romance. Yum.

11:10 pm  

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