London thusfar

The job hunt bore fruit with contacting a recruitment agency, and getting placed in a temp role the day after the interview. I have work for the next 4 weeks. Yay! Now I just need to focus on finding a room (I’m using Spareroom.co.uk and Gumtree) and the full-time job (or paid film work).

I was a Production Runner on a promo for a web series called PAs last weekend. It was a good crew, and I found I was useful on set. I helped the Gaffer with the Lighting and the Art Director setting up. I’m shooting a trailer on Sunday with MI6 Productions.

Here are my thoughts on London thusfar:

  • There are quite a few streets that don’t have street signs. When you’re lost and are looking for a specific street, it can be really confusing. I’m looking all over the buildings and footpaths at an intersection, and I can see one street sign, but not the other.
  • While I’m at it, quite a few stores won’t have their street number. So if you’re walking along, say, Oxford Street, and are looking for a specific number, it’s difficult. I suggest looking on Google Maps first, getting a street view, and working out the shops on either side of where you’re going.
  • Keep to the right or keep to the left? It changes. In some tube stations, there are signs saying keep right, in others keep left. Follow the signs, but seriously, some consistency please!
  • I’ve decided that I like the West End, near Covent Garden. I’ve been to a few seminars at the London Film School there, and have discovered nice areas like Neal’s Place. Today I saw Rupert Everitt in Fopps, a CD/DVD store – incidentally where I saw Mike Leigh when I was visiting London last year. It’s a nice area. I’m still working out the area from Oxford and Regent Street to Charing Cross and Covent Garden, and have done a fair bit of walking round there (see below for the story).

When I moved over, I only had limited baggage. So most of my office attire is still in New Zealand. I’ve managed to buy some clothes, but have had to search for a black blazer, black boots, and heels. I only bought one pair of heels with me, and they’re not the most comfortable. I wouldn’t want to walk for an extended period, for example. But they’re all I had (I found more shoes today. Yay), so they were the shoes I was wearing all week. I also had a sturdy bag that I had bought from New Zealand. It can carry quite a bit, so gets quite heavy; and it’s one strap, so weighs on one side. Again, I wouldn’t want to walk for extended periods with it.

On Thursday, I had a 1pm appointment, then had a meeting at the other office for the company I’m working at. The other office is in King Street. So I mapped out getting from Oxford Street to Regent Square, then to King Street, then back to Oxford Street.

I was running a couple of minutes late, so rushed out of the office, and realised I had left my Oyster card behind. So the buses and tube options I had planned were out of the question. I missioned – in my aforementioned heels and carrying the aforementioned bag – to the first appointment.

I headed to the second appointment. I got to King Street (near Covent Garden) 10 minutes early. But the office wasn’t there. Fortunately one of the guys who lived there saw me, and asked what the postcode was for the King Street I wanted (I had no idea. Point of note, you need to know the first 3 letters/numbers of where you’re going, in case this happens). He pointed out that there was another King Street, near Pall Mall, and showed it to my on my A-Z.

I set off. In pain from rushing for about 30 mins walking in heels and with a bag killing my shoulders. There I was, running late to a meeting, not sure where I was going, having no idea how to contact anyone to say I was running late. I was getting frustrated and upset (so my muscles were tensing up). I got a bit lost in Pall Mall East, and asked a woman where St James Square was. She helpfully pointed and said, ‘yes, that’s St James Square’. It wasn’t, it was Trafalgar Square. I turned around, and eventually found it, and turned up 30 mins late to my meeting.

Fortunately the person I was meeting was lovely and understanding and wrote me directions to get back to Oxford Street, and my Manager was understanding. But still, stressful.

But, as a result of my about-an-hour of running around, I killed my feet and my back (figuratively). At work today, my shoulder muscles were really painful. I found a Drop-In Back Massage place in Neal’s Place, and got a 10 minute massage. But it’s really painful. So here I am, up at 3am, unable to sleep and in need of a deep tissue massage and pain killers (and running low on Tiger Balm). I’m about to try to sleep again. First thing in the morning = buying a hot water bottle, pain killers, and more muscle cream.

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