Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Londres

El fin de semana comenzaba con fuerza, mi profesor de Urban Poverty, un ex-exitoso funcionario de DFID (la agencia de ayuda internacional británica) tirado al alcoholismo, organizaba otro cocktelito para embriagarnos en la escuela con el pretexto de una exposición sobre los planes de urbanización en dos ciudades, Beirut (Líbano) y Accra (Ghana). Al siguiente día, junto con Juan, partimos crudos, desvelados y hambrientos a Londres.

La primera impresión de la ciudad se recibe en los precios, sabía que es uno de los lugares más caros del mundo, pero nunca sospeché que el boleto del Tube (Metro) costara 4 libras por un viaje sencillo. Sí, 80 pesos aztecas… Llegamos con el amigo Iván y debido a un error logístico que me hizo olvidar la pila de mi cámara no podré presentar las imágenes. Tres hombres y una mudanza. Afortunadamente nuestras habilidades fueron suficientes para descargar vasos, platos, prensa para las tortillas, saleros, recuerditos de la secundaria y muchas, muchas cajas de CD’s vacías que Iván atesora como colección personal. ¿Cuántos ingenieros se necesitan para armar un escritorio sin manualito ni dibujos? Más de tres, es un hecho. A las 6 de la tarde nos dimos por vencidos y regresamos a la ciudad. Exactamente a la estación Oxford Street, en el corazón londinense. He conocido ciudades hermosas, pequeñas, pueblitos encantadores; sin embargo nada mueve más mis fibras mexicas que una metrópoli donde la gente tiene algo que denominaré identidad urbana. Nueva York lo tiene, París lo tiene, Londres, por supuesto. Caminamos hacia Picadilly Circus, atravesamos el China Town, algo así como una gay zone y comenzamos la celebración de St Patrick’s, santo de Irlanda y de la cerveza Guinness, en los múltiples pubs abarrotados por los borrachos que celebraban desde temprano. Fue un recorrido que implicó un restaurante chino, una recarga de energía con Kebab en un negocio árabe, 4 pubs y un final inesperado en un miniclub latino-ultra-kisch oculto en una estación de metro cuyo nombre he olvidado. Al siguiente día, las energías no me dieron para alcanzar el autobús, tuve que esperar tres horas a la siguiente corrida. Absolutamente agotado miré el cambio de guardia en el Buckingham Palace y regresé a Birmingham, donde una nevada inesperada y borrascosa me dio la bienvenida.

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