Around London in 80 days
In these uncertain times, I need a lifeline and a horizon so I have — somewhat arbitrarily I’ll admit — set a date. April 1st will be my horizon ; my lifeline will be the 80 days separating me from it.
And as I cannot go around the world right now, I give you A Mad Belgian’s “Around London in 80 Days” : eighty impressions of London, eighty stories, places, thoughts from my experience of this wonderfully mad and maddening city.
Day 50: Tally-Ho!
“I’m glad you joined us, otherwise it’s just whiskey and moustaches”
I just joined the team of Tally-Ho! Cycle Tours, without a doubt the most fun cycle tours in town. With a fleet of beautifully tweedy guides and bikes made in Shakespeare’s home town, Tally-Ho! offers “quintessentially British experiences”. Yet they were open-minded enough to give this mad Belgian a chance.
One of the first companies I worked for when starting off as a guide in London, which brought all sorts of new joys to my London life: Guinness and whiskey in good company as well as more healthy activities such as learning how to ride a penny farthing.
I’ve had so much fun guiding with Tally-Ho!, cycling through lovely back routes to London’s best sights. One day on a Landmarks Tour with just the one customer, I was reminded about one of the fundamental principles of guiding. That is that you can never presume that people know the things you’re talking about, however obvious they seem to you. On this particular tour, I kid you not, I was faced with a tourist who had never heard of Shakespeare, had never heard of Churchill and had not even ever heard of the name James Bond.