The Week Gone By – Saturday

Youll probably have spotted the trend that very, very little happens on Sundays so Ill skip straight to Saturday.

Saturday morning was an early one, despite the late arrival the previous night, because Penny and I were off to see at in London. We were queuing from 9:30, the doors opened at 10:00 and we were finished by 11:00. It was really hard deciding what to take to get signed as wed been told we were allowed three books and it was unclear whether or not we had to buy a book when we get there.

I was really gutted when we got there and discovered that not only did we not have to buy a book, but we were actually allowed six! Id brought a spare and bought one book on site (couldnt resist). So the books I managed to get signed were Anansi Boys (his newest), Smoke & Mirrors (an excellent book of short stories), Good Omens, Coraline and the MirrorMask screenplay. If Id have known how it was going to work Id have brought Signal to Noise, Midnight Days, Sandman or American Gods (which I couldnt find on Saturday morning). Penny brought her much-loved copy of The Wolves in the Walls, which is illustrated by Dave McKean.

Neil himself was very friendly and affable and much amused by the fact that Lenny Henry had accused him of smoking giant reefers with Dave McKean when writing MirrorMask. He also revealed that a new anthology of short stories is due soon, assuming hes got enough material. I presume it will be published sometime after his next work, a childrens book.

All that done, we did some exploring (Hamleys and Libertys) before ending up in in the afternoon. Situated under London Bridge, around the corner from the London Dungeon, the Vinopolis is a wine museum and wine tasting experience. It was definitely worth visiting, though it would have been prohibitively expensive had it not been for the two for one deal we had. As it was, we decided to go for some whiskey tasting too. Some of the wines we tried were average at best, but we also discovered some absolute gems like a 2003 , a and the port. Among the whiskey tastings we particularly liked the smoky flavour of the .

After that, it was Pizza Express for dinner, a train home and a much-deserved 10 hour coma.

Quite a day!

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