London 2016 diary: Day 2

Tuesday, 27 September, 2016. Evening

I had a good, solid sleep for much of the night, and woke up around 06:00, although it was still dark outside so I thought it was still the middle of the night. But after trying to sleep for a bit I checked the time and it was 06:20, so I’d had a pretty good sleep.

I got up and had a shower and dressed, then waited until 07:00 when M. got home so we could talk a little bit on Facetime. And then after that I went down to the restaurant for breakfast.

I started with a plate of sausage, grilled tomatoes, sauteed mushrooms, tiny roasted potatoes, baked beans, and scrambled eggs. As I finished that, Dietmar arrived and joined me. While he got a plate of hot food, I went back and grabbed some muesli, sprinkling on sunflower seeds and adding some chopped fruit to have with one of the jars of yoghurt. Over breakfast Dietmar said he was planning to drive up to Glasgow on Thursday evening straight after the meeting closed, for some vacation time in Scotland.

On returning to my room, I discovered that I’d left my key card in the light switch slot inside the room, so I had to go down to reception and get a new one. Then I did some stretching exercises in my room, before leaving about 08:20 to walk over to the British Standards Institute building for the ISO meeting. The weather was chilly, but I was only walking a couple of hundred metres and my jacket was enough for that.

At the office, a lady at ground floor reception gave me a visitor swipe card and told me to go up to BSI reception on the first floor. Doing so, another lady there took the card and gave me another visitor card, and told me to go back down to the ground floor, where the meeting room was! The security here at BSI is a bit convoluted.

After settling into the meeting room and greeting other committee members for the first time since the New York meeting, we got stuck into business. Margaret is not here this time, but Ken Parulski is, who I haven’t seen since the meeting in Sapporo last year. I also got to meet the British representative, Hani, who I’ve heard about but haven’t met before. Also new here is Nicolas Touchard of DxO in France, Norman Koren from Imatest in Boulder, Colorado, and Robin Jenkin from a sensor manufacturer in San Jose, although he’s originally from Cornwall.

The Pilot
The Pilot pub, Chiswick

We broke for lunch a little early, at about 11:45. Rather than go up to the cafeteria in the BSI building, a group of eight of us walked over to the pub The Pilot, which Hani recommended. He tried to lead us there via a shortcut through the BSI car park, but when we got to the street at the back of the block, the gate was locked and none of us fancied the look of the spikes on top if we were considering climbing over. So we backtracked and walked around the block along the street instead.

Fish & chips, The Pilot
Fish & chips at The Pilot

The Pilot was a cozy looking pub, fairly empty as we arrived, but a few other tables of people came in later for lunch as well. We got a table by a back wall and ordered, with almost everyone getting a pint of London Pride ale, and the cod and chips, though Scott Geffert and Nicolas tried a sandwich. The ale had an earthy, slightly burnt sort of flavour, with some ashy bitterness. The piece of cod I got was huge, with a moderate serving of chips and some peas. Overall it was pretty good, and very filling.

We took some time over lunch and got back a bit after 13:00, to start the next technical session slightly late. The afternoon session ran quickly through a series of ad hoc sessions, each taking less time than scheduled, so we were running well ahead of time. This augurs well for an early ending to the meeting on Thursday.

At the end of the meeting, around 17:15, I asked around to see what people were doing for dinner, only to discover most of them had plans already, and also nobody other than Dietmar was staying in the immediate area anyway, so getting together for dinner would be tricky. While they all went off to catch trains or buses back to their hotels, I walked back to mine, dropped off the laptop, and then went walking down the Chiswick High Street to find a place to eat.

The Old Pack Horse
The Old Pack Horse pub, Chiswick

I walked a fair way down the street to the east, passing a lot of shops and restaurants, but came partway back to stop in at The Old Pack Horse, an 18th century pub now apparently run by a Thai family. The food being served was all Thai food, which sounded good to me after the very British meals I’ve had so far.

I sat and got a pint of Montana Red Rye Ale while typing up some of this diary. After a while to let the still full sensation from lunch die down a bit, I ordered a massaman curry with chicken and some steamed rice. The curry wasn’t as thick as the massaman I’m used to back home, and it had chunks of red onion in it which was unusual, but it tasted good.

Monkey and massaman chicken
Massaman curry chicken at The Old Pack Horse

After eating, I walked back to the hotel to turn in a bit early again for hopefully another solid night’s sleep.

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