I had such a good night last night, I thought I’d record it today because it would help to keep the memory bright and vivid in my memory.
I have been working part time for the last four months and so, because of a significantly reduced wage package, haven’t been out much in the last three months. I had one day out, with close friend of mine, a few weeks ago which was also absolutely lovely, but apart from that I have been spending weekends indoors, writing and trying to make my money stretch.
However this weekend it was a friends birthday and he’d arranged an afternoon/evening out in London with Ru and our group of mutual friends. I dared a peek at my Natwest statement page, winced, and then decided to go out anyway. I figured I needed a night off, and a night out; some phrase beginning all work and no play was rattling around my head, and I decided that I’d been sensible for long enough!
So yesterday afternoon I travelled up to London to meet Ru at the O2 centre, we went to see Antman 2, which was extremely funny and entertaining in the way I believe only Marvel can be. Then we travelled to Liverpool Street to meet everyone else- our friend whose birthday it was had arranged to go for a meal and then to do an escape room close to Brick Lane.
We went to a Korean BBQ restaurant, which I really liked but not everyone was sold on, and then walked through central to where the escape room was. Escape room’s are kinda our thing- they are immersive experiences where you and a team are locked in a room and have an hour to solve the clues and the ‘mystery’ of the room to find the key and escape.
I must have done 20 escape rooms with this group of friends, over the last three years or so, and some of them have been in places as far-away as Amsterdam, Munich and, a little closer, Cardiff and Manchester. We absolutely love them, and our slight collective obsession was taken to the extreme recently when we travelled to Manchester, and did five escape rooms in one weekend.
I was sceptical about this at first about this, because it seemed a tad excessive- but at the time loved it as much as ever. Escape room’s are the best, especially when we actually manage to escape, which considering how many rooms we have done is not as often as it perhaps should be.
Last night there was 7 of us, and so we split into two groups which added a nice element of competition to the whole experience. I was with Ru and our friend Mike, and we escaped in 64 minutes which whilst technically being a fail, still counted because each place you go to has slightly different ways of interpreting the ‘rules.’
We we so close to completing it at the end they let us stay in until we figured it out, and so we spent the last five minutes frantically screaming at one another until we eventually found the key we needed around the neck of a woman lying in a bath, who ended up being the person we were trying to save.
If you need more context, or are left scratching your head at this statement, go and do one of these rooms, they’re fricking awesome 🙂
Afterwards we walked back along Brick lane, past Shoreditch station, stopping off at a pastry shop to buy eclairs and rainbow bagels, before finally ending up back at Liverpool street. Ru and I then travelled home, and got back to my flat at about half twelve.
I enjoyed this walk along Brick lane and through Shoreditch as much as I did the meal and the escape room, because it was a Sat night, and the temperature was still mild which leant the whole scene a kind of European feel. It was packed out and buzzing, and everyone was relaxed and smiling. Moreover I go up to London for nights out so rarely now, that when I do it seems to leave me walking on air and soothed somehow.
My main spiritual home is Camden Market, because it always leaves me feeling better than I did before I got there, and last night the atmosphere on Brick Lane was as colourful and eclectic as the market always is.
Everything was shabby, and beautiful and chaotic- and I really didn’t want to leave it and come home. However, at midnight Ru and I left the others and made our way back to Victoria. We were both shattered and so shared a hot chocolate and a packet of hazelnut wafers.
It was a wonderful day/night out, and was exactly what I needed after so many weeks of frugality and sobriety, saving money and generally being sensible.