Junkyards, bathrooms and curry hustlers: The Brick Lane story.

So we’ve reached the twilight of my London escape. I guess this is the part where I’m irrevocably torn between a goffik vampire boy and a wolf dude with a shirt allergy. Or instead immerse myself in local flavour.

Last night we did Brick Lane at its most natural. Playing Junkyard Golf then going out for curry. Junkyard Golf was a shit ton of fun for the whole family. Like a barrel of monkeys with more balls. Divided into different courses, we had the choice between environmental disaster, blacklight Berlin disco and reclaimed junk. I say choice, but the place was so fucking rammed that we were lucky to even get a spot when booking a day or two out. It was nifty, neat, spiffy and grand. Or rather, we got boozed and did our best to keep up with par. We lined up at the scrap course, surrounded by business bros. To be honest, the course wasn’t too hard, despite beginning with a punishing par five that could kick you right back to the start with one bad putt. We putted down a slide, over a set tea table, through exercise equipment and up into a space invaders pinball-esque set up. After 9 holes, I emerged victorious by a commanding five stroke lead. Guess I’ve had experience with a stroke or two.

Messy and famished, we set off to explore the famed Indian cuisine of Brick Lane. There we discovered The Hustle. The restaurants were innumerable, each boosting five star reviews from trip advisor and any number of likely fictional websites and culinary competitions. Each place had a transmutation of the same dude. He’d call you in, offering temptations beyond your heart’s desire. You wouldn’t believe the tastes you’d discover, the value. Deals flowed one after another. “Just for you, 20% off your meal and a bottle of wine.” We’d walk away to check out the next place, as the guy would throw out a meal deal in desperation. The next restaurant would have virtually the same menu. We got a kick out of seeing just how low they’d go, then pitting them against each other. We mentioned the £10 offer we got from the place across the road. “Oh”, the guy said “but you don’t understand how small their portions are. In here you’ll get a starter, poppadoms, a main, naan, rice and two drinks. Huge portions. Large drinks. So large. For you, £14.” Amused as we were, we were tired of searching. We agreed.

The meal was gratuitous. Mine was delicious, while the others’ were either too sweet or spicy. Oh well, no tears did I shed. The most remarkable thing, however, were the toilets. Creeping down a staircase with a curved cave-like roof. The music was pumping at the bottom of the stairs and the bathroom door was wide open. The urinal was a suspended steel trough, but the most peculiar part was the line of mirrors just above the trough. Placed perfectly to see your dick as you peed. The basin taps were on weird angles and the hand dryer was absurdly hot, but with such little air pressure as to be inefficient. There was no part of my bathroom experience that wasn’t strange in some way. In all my memories of London, looking at my junk while pissing will remain one of the topmost.

The dream is almost over and I’ll soon be plunged back to reality. Will my arms be mom’s spaghetti?


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