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May 26: The House Always Wins & London Weather

Having slept off in the middle of a conversation with a friend the night before, one would think sleep would have been a good one. Anything but.

It’s that thing called jet-lag again.

Or probably the harsh, early sun.

One way or the other, I am up early, which, while adds to the day’s hours, also means the afternoons end up being rather dozy.

I opt not to travel to either The Oval – where Australia are playing Sri Lanka in a warm-up game – or the Lord’s – where the Indian team is practicing.

Instead, I work from home. Um, that’s kind of sad because that’s exactly what I do back home as well.

Quite inexplicable but I refer back to that second line. Some times on a long trip like this where sleep hasn’t exactly been a friend so far, preservation is much-needed.

Instead, I opt to walk one of the streets of London with my friend. Edgware Road, it’s called.

It’s filled with bookmakers’ shops, which is fascinating.

It’s always interesting to have a look at the people inside casinos – or in this case, a bookmakers’ shop – and their reactions. Wins are obviously few and far between because the house always wins.

Some believe they can beat the house and try their luck over and over again. Like this gentleman we see at one of those bookmaker’s shop.

He loses some money and quickly leaves the shop.

We are impressed. Usually people believe that one extra bet can change their lives, can help them beat the odds & can assist them in winning back their lost money.

Not him.

We roam around a tad, look at the various sports that are being played on TV – racing’s a huge favourite I believe – and just as we are about to walk back on to the street, we spot our man.

That same guy who had rushed out earlier.

He’s rushing back inside the shop. Again.

With some extra money in his hand.

He had rushed out to withdraw some money from the ATM. He looks almost desperate. I have seen a few of those looks, that look pleading with – not sure who – to allow them to take home something.

But the house always wins. You rarely do.

Beer in the UKOnce on the street, I try out my hand at a local ale. It tastes okay.

The non-alcoholic beer than my friend tries is as good as water with sendiments of sand in it. Without the water.

The bottle remains unfinished.

Once back home, I need to re-pack my stuff as I look to give a second friend a visit. He stays a good 45 minutes away.

Thankfully the London tube system isn’t too hard to understand.

Unfortunately, both friends’ houses are a good kilometer or so away from the station. By the time I am at the second friend’s home, I am sweaty and ragged.

The London weather, having sapped me of my last bit of energy, decides to do a volte-face. It gets cold.

And colder. And then some more.

By the time we are done with dinner, I am shivering in what is my thinnest tee. I hadn’t expected such a dramatic turnaround from the weather.

But as someone reminds me the next morning on Twitter. The London weather is bipolar.

Unfortunately, I am without any overcoats, sweaters or windcheater and I am hopping like a chicken in front of approaching car-lights we are back from dinner.

Sleep isn’t too hard to come. This time though, I nod off with my laptop still on my chest, in the middle of typing an email.

I am outdoing myself. And it’s not even three days old.

About Suneer Chowdhary 102 Articles
Cricket Analyst | Freelance Cricket Writer | Cricket Radio | Cricket Videos | Football | Tennis

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