So did you have a nice time over the bank holiday? Did you catch up on all those household chores (like the annual lawn mow) as you promised you would? Did you visit your Nan and her frail, old dog Shep? Did you get your boot in at the IKEA queue mosh pit?
Or did you kit yourself out with wellies, illegal substances and enough booze to pickle a goat and spend the entire weekend giving those brain cells a bloody good hiding at Clapham’s SW4/Get Loaded In The Park (Common, actually) festival?
Is it safe to say that although your bank might’ve been on holiday over the weekend, you were certainly making the most of their services? And now you’re looking down the barrel of the all-too-familiar Skint September? Post-bank holiday blues, hey? They are a bitch. Maybe you’re in that indecisive turquoise blue mood, erring on the side of, “I’m not really sure how I feel right now”. Or even the slightly optimistic sky blue? Or perhaps you’re deep inside the dark, melancholy of navy blue? The Old English Dulux Sheepdoggie should be able to help you decide with his freshly prepared chart of colours. Either way, you need to turn that frown upside down (did I actually just write that?!).
Keep it together, keep it real, London is here to look after you. And your bank balance. Once again 020.com offers you the London we all love, especially at this empty-pocketed time of year – Free London.
The cash-keeping events to look forward to this week happen right in the centre of the capital and will all be over by Monday. After that, you’re on you own. You’ll have to fend for yourself and hope 020.com comes up with something good for NEXT weekend.
Friday (1st) kicks off with an afternoon event that will really get you talking. The Festival Season Language School will be celebrating this city’s diversity of languages by putting on free classes for 3 hours (from 11am) in a speed dating style of teaching. The languages showcased will be Spanish, Bengali, Cockney, Sign and, possible the most fun, Teen. So’s why not cotch down in Trafalgar Square cuz you iz well flat roofin’. It’s bait, it’s mint, gunna be off the hook. It’ll be proper beast, book and well nang, innit?
The Latin theme continues (tenuous link) in the square on Friday evening (6-10pm) with London Caracas: Caracas Londres, a free concert performed by accordian-wielding ranchera Mexicans, rock-ska fusion Venezuelans and various South American representatives (with not a football trick in sight).
Sunday (3rd) also plays host to the Spanish theme (there’s that tenuous link again) with this year’s Regent Street Festival: A Walk Through Spain. Between the Circus’ of Piccadilly and Oxford you’ll encounter giant paelles, human pyramids and Paulo Nutini, with a great many horse/food/drink/dance/beach-related entertainment to be amazed by along the way.
If you’re a sporting fan, Sunday (3rd) yields the chance to watch 150 cyclists sweat through the final stage of the Tour of Britain. The fear of being bike-jacked should get them off to a fast start at Greenwich, before the riders undertake a speedy 20 laps of the Regent’s Park-Hyde Park-Green Park-St James’s Park quadrangle, ending safely in front of Buckingham Palace. The Mall will be lined with various bike-related stalls and demonstrations so you can feel part of the whole carnival.
If you enjoy a more relaxed sport spectating event, then why not watch Australia lose grip on their Guinness Book of Records ‘biggest international win’ (of 31-0 against American Samoa in 2001) when the Sven-less England play host to the footballing dwarfs of Andorra. The Euro 2008 qualifier should be a little one-sided as the Andorrans will weighed down by the skis on their feet, the cash in their tax-free pockets and the overbearing feeling of agoraphobia from playing on such a large open field.