Tuesday, April 20, 2010

The Adventurists Tea Party

I made a relatively last minute decision to go the Adventurists Tea Party in Notting Hill London on Saturday. The adventurists are a travel company that arrange off the wall travel, as the name suggests. A lot of people there were heading out on the Mongol rally, where you have to drive an old banger from London to Mongolia. I would love to do that one day. The afternoon included unlimited free afternoon tea, cakes and gin and tonic. Also being handed out like sweets was a new to the UK beer from Namibia which was being promoted called Windhoek.
The main point of the show was a talk by the renowned travel writer Nick Danziger. Unfortunately like many others he was stranded in Israel due to the volcanic ash crisis so Peter Moore stepped in for his Long Way Home talk which went down very well, I’ve heard it several times before but it’s always enjoyable to hear. I’d love to do a talk like that one day but I don’t think I’ve done a trip on such a grand enough scale to warrant it. Would love to try though, even though the initial thought of standing up in front of a hundred people scares the life out of me!
In order to limit the amount of free Windhoek beer the owners hit on an idea of putting raffle tickets of all of the seats with the intended idea of one ticket per beer. It failed miserably of course as the theatre wasn’t full and people were helping themselves, including me to all unclaimed tickets. Think I grabbed about six. The beer wasn’t spectacular, not good enough to catch on here in a commercial sense but it was cold free and plentiful and I took full advantage.
After a fair few beers I noticed a charity stall were giving away freebies, or at least what I thought were freebies. With my better judgement slightly impaired I walked over and noticed a bright orange t shirt. My thinking at the time was Agnes is Dutch, Dutch national colour is orange, she’ll love it! I also grabbed a yellow one for me too. They were from the Children’s and young People’s Protection and Development, and for some reason had a Mongolian flag on the back. I then found out they weren’t free and a donation was expected. I couldn’t exactly give coins and being committed I handed over a fiver. When I got back to my seat and inspected my unintended purchase I discovered the orange t-shirt was XXXL size. Think I could safely say my life would be over if I gave that a present! SO it’s nestled in a cupboard and will probably never see the light of day again.
The rest of the evening was spent in the lovely Earl of Lonsdale pub next to the theatre, with me the only Brit, surrounded by a very friendly bunch of Ozzies and Kiwis. Most of the jokes and in talking went over my head but I enjoyed every minute of the evening. It was one of the nicest pubs I’ve been to and one of the oddest. It had doorways so low I had to stoop right over to get through them and not one brand of beer I had ever heard of. Alpine Lager, Sovereign Bitter, Cider Reserve, Samuel Old Reserve and Samuel Smith Old Stout. They were all really nice beers and unbelievably cheap, especially for West London. You don’t get three pints for under a tenner around my way anymore!