Please hail my cab, get me to take you somewhere in that there London, I’ll go north, south, east or west, I’m not fussy. Tell me you what Harrods, Le Gavroche, Paddington Station, even, god forbid, Victoria Coach Station. But do make sure you actually tell me where you want to go. Be specific. “Hampstead please, driver” (grrr), “Fulham, geezer” (double grrr) or “That Chinese restaurant on Finchley Road, mate” (head about to explode grrr) just isn’t helpful. Waiting for your mate to txt you the exact location as we head in a general westerly direction isn’t hugely helpful either. So before you stick that hand out I’m asking you to have one, fairly important in my opinion, piece of information to hand; where you want to get to. The actual place, not the pub it’s near, or junction your friend thinks it’s just after, the actual name of the place. And the absolute icing on this annoying piece of cake, is people’s insistence on giving me the number of the place they are trying to get to. Sorry to all the lovely Americans out there but London doesn’t work like NYC or LA. “Four Forty Grosvenor” just doesn’t work as an address here. Do they mean Grosvenor Place, Road or Crescent for a start? And what’s wrong with saying four hundred & forty? It’s like they want to boil down their language to what may in the future become a series of grunts. And I haven’t even mentioned the “Corner of Gloucester & Cromwell” type instruction. Gloucester the place? Cromwell the person? It doesn’t hurt to say the full road name surely?
Perfect example came last night, a very nice couple wanted to go to New Kings Rd from Kensington. “Do you know which end of New Kings Rd you need?” I ask, “Er, its 110” they reply. OK…..I can never remember which end of roads numbers start and tell them that. “Well, we’re actually going to Tendindo Cuatro Restaurant” they finally cough up, after I apply a Chinese burn to the blokes arm. For pity’s sake, why on god’s earth didn’t you just say that in the first place? I know where that place is – I DO NOT KNOW EXACTLY WHERE 110 NEW KINGS ROAD IS. I DON’T DO NUMBERS.