(The Bat Tattoo)
***UPDATE 2012! SAVE GABY'S DELI FROM CLOSURE! MORE INFO - LIKE THE FACEBOOK PAGE - SIGN THE PETITION - FOLLOW ON TWITTER***
I hobbled around the corner, up Charing Cross Road towards Leicester Square and found Gaby’s Deli on the other side of the road in a row of shops and cafés between two theatres. I had actually been there once before, and even before there was a declared Hoban connection, for a terrific falafel-and-beer dinner with another Krakenite, Sam, who used to work nearby; sadly he hasn’t been around the group for quite a while. When I last spoke to him he was working on his own children’s book; I hoped he’d found some success. Gaby’s looked steamy and warm in the post-sleet street and it was tempting to go and sit inside, but I couldn’t justify it at that moment; it’d have to wait for another time.
Just by me was a black telephone box, where I deposited the quote and gave some serious thought to my schedule. The London Zoo (from Turtle Diary and The Raven) and Islington (Amaryllis Night and Day) locations would take anything up to two hours, meaning the chances were I’d probably get to the British Museum too late to go inside, and I was really looking forward to seeing the lion bas-reliefs, and in any case my feet would be a disaster area from tramping over a part of London I didn’t know very well. That might be an unscientific measurement but it’s psychologically a lot easier to walk a mile you know well than a mile you don’t. I made an executive decision at that point to save London Zoo and Islington for SA4QE 2004 and instead proceed directly to Tiranti’s.