DUNCAN 80 years, 1 World Tour Site

London

(February 3, 2009)

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London... interestingly, out of all the places I've been in the world, I've never been to London. For our foreign readers I'll say that this is funny because usually when Americans leave the US they go to London. But alas, my first time (Takeshi's too). We were supposed to get there in time to hang out at the London Toy Fair, but we stayed too long in Brazil and only got to the Toy Fair on the last day.

That was the booth of our guys, Wicked Visions, nice and early before things got rolling. But before that I had to get some kind of breakfast. I got an orange juice.

I'm a complete orange juice snob. I grew up in Florida and now live in Southern California. The OJ in London was actually so bad it hurt my feelings.

After the show, Takeshi, Luke Roberts and I met up with Aaron Sparks for a proper English pub dinner and then stopped by Chris Kayatz's (of H-Spin) flat. We met his very new daughter Julianna and talked yo-yos and days of old. Unfortunately by that point the three of us were pretty destroyed so we made it an early night.

The next day we met up with the London gang. London does not have a huge yo-yo scene. They've got some great guys there just aren't a lot of them. We hung out at Chinese New Year, went by a pub and then on to the only non-crowded place for pizza and tied to yoyo as it got colder and colder.

That night it snowed. I had gone out to see a show with my friend Daniela who lives in London. We got out and headed through Chinatown and it was coming down. It was kind of postcard-esque walking through London's West-End with snow flakes and a few grown-ups having a snowball fight.

The winter wonderland was nice until I woke up the next day to Daniela informing me that the subway was closed down. As in the entire London tube system (with the exception of one line) was not closed. And most of Heathrow, the airport we were supposed to be flying out of in a matter of hours was canceling flights left and right. In fact I think pretty much all flights before 4 pm were canceled. Our flight was at 3:30pm. It was canceled. I called the airline and got us rescheduled, then went to the airport. When we tried to check-in the woman said that they didn't even know if our flight was leaving. We again found ourselves on a bench at a major metropolitan airport. This one didn't last overnight though. Luckily a couple hours later we were cleared for launch. Takeshi laughed that the amount of snow that fell would not have closed a lingerie shop in Indy, but yet that amount of snow shut down the entire city of London.

Honestly though we should've taken a hint from the Universe and stayed. London was great and the gang there was awesome but we saw at best a fraction of the city and talked for only minutes to the people that are there. If you're thinking about going to London, double whatever amount of time you expect to be there.
©Duncan Yo-yos