Alice Dryden (huskyteer) wrote,
Alice Dryden

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Travels by scooter, train and TARDIS

On Saturday I met some of the X9 Forum folk again, and some more for the first time, for the legendary Ace Cafe's first ever X9 Day (I was allowed along as my machine shares an engine with its less sporty cousin).

A ride from Crayford through central London brought us to the cafe, where more than twenty maxi-scooters lined proudly up for photos. Go us!

Piaggio UK had sent a representative along: Paulo, a gentle-eyed Italian dressed head to toe in branded Vespa gear, who gave us keyrings and baseball caps and rode along the A1 with a lit cigarette in his mouth. After coffee and greasy breakfasts all round, most of us made our way to forum member John Thompson's scooter shop in St Alban's. I had no idea how to get home from here; fortunately a Chatham-based member was willing to shepherd me back over the Dartford Crossing.

On Sunday I had a jolly jaunt to Brighton with two accomplices from DocSoc days for the Doctor Who Exhibition on the pier.

Nice to see lots of props and costumes from the new series rather than the tired and dusty survivors of Longleat. There could have been more in the way of interactivity, though; 'press a button to make the Slitheen fart' didn't really do it for me.

At the end of the exhibition was the eagerly-awaited shop. A bit of a let-down, this, as most of the exclusive goodies were pretty shoddy-looking. In the end I forewent star-shaped keyrings and coffee mugs that reveal the words 'Bad Wolf' when you pour hot liquid into them in favour of a souvenir three-button mouse, so now I can play No One Lives Forever to my heart's content.

There was a bloke outside the Pleasure Dome minding a Dalek and greeting the punters through a voice modulator, clearly enjoying every moment of his child-scaring activities. When he saw me, he said "DIG - THE - K9 - T-SHIRT!", then beckoned me over, stopped being a Dalek, and whispered that they had a K9 in a cupboard round the back of the exhibition, and if I waited there two minutes he'd bring him out for me.

He wasn't a bona fide prop K9 but a fan-built wooden one. This didn't stop me going "Aww, hello K9!" and having my photo taken patting him, though.

We spent the rest of the day in healthful non-geeky seaside pursuits: eating fish n' chips, drinking pints, losing 2ps in the amusement arcade and paddling. But I'm sure everyone still knew.
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