Breaking and Exiting

Feb 25th, 2009 | Filed under LiveJournal Import

This evening, I accumulated a series of lessons on things that one ought not try in London. In order, these went:

  1. Don’t walk through parks at night when they’re closed to the public
  2. Don’t walk around in circles when you’re supposed to be going somewhere
  3. Seriously, don’t get yourself locked inside a park at night

I think that just about covers it.

So I thought I would get a bit of a walk after work – exercise is good, you know? I grabbed the tube up to Mornington Crescent so as to give myself a new starting point for my little excursion, since I’ve walked just about every route between work and the station. From there, the route takes me basically across Regent’s Park, and to the station that way.

As the crow flies, that journey is 1.4 miles. I managed to stretch it out to 3.5, by generally going a really long way, including walking around in a huge circle without realising it. The sudden understanding that I was facing south when I thought I was meant to be facing north was.. unsettling. Still, having walked about eight radians around this circular road (look it up), I finally managed to get out.

All this, of course, took place towards the end of the journey. The start of the journey saw me entering the park at its north end, through gates which did not make any mention of any sort of closing time. And having wandered through Hyde Park last night, which can’t be closed, honestly, the thought didn’t even cross my mind. So imagine my susprise when I got to the south end of the park that the gates were shut, chained and locked. I tried three different gates, and all of them were in this state.

Now obviously going back north would have been a stupid idea – not only would the gates there probably be closed by now, but they might be even higher than the ones at the south end, which would just make it a futile exercise. So I resolved to find a way out. Bear in mind that all of this was done in the dark – there are no lights in Regent’s Park. If I had fully appreciated that fact in advance, I might not have gone…

So I climbed up one of the gates and managed to swing myself over, while avoiding skewering either testicle on the spikes on top of the gate, while remaining perfectly balanced even though I was carrying my laptop in my backpack. I was kind of impressed with the grace and upper body strength I showed, though nobody was around to see it. I don’t think I shall be going back there after dark – there’s something kind of creepy about walking through a park with no lights and no public presence.

Still, [info]tma suggested earlier that I try taking a risk in order to stimulate the under-used right hand side of my brain. I expect that having to break out of a park that was doubtless full of muggers and buggerers probably qualifies. Consider my brain activated.

  1. AB7
    Feb 25th, 2009 at 01:08
    Reply | Quote | #1

    When does any suggestion from [info]tma ever count as valid??

  2. Mr Flagg
    Feb 25th, 2009 at 04:30
    Reply | Quote | #2

    i’m totally baffled at how one closes a park.

    also i watched 28weeks later last night
    it was fun watching your island get bbqd

    • James
      Feb 25th, 2009 at 09:23
      Reply | Quote | #3

      I’m not sure either – it’s quite a large park, they can’t possibly know that there isn’t anyone still inside when they go around locking all the gates, and there aren’t any signs that would indicate it.

      Still, I was better off than the couple of other people in there, who looked far less able to get over the gates than me…

      • Carrie
        Feb 25th, 2009 at 09:36
        Reply | Quote | #4

        I was going to say, how do they know it’s empty? It seems they just don’t care. No little man wandering round with a torch looking for lost souls to let out?

        • James
          Feb 25th, 2009 at 09:46
          Reply | Quote | #5

          Not that I saw. I didn’t stick around for too long though :o)

          But yeah, it makes very little sense – you can’t see much of the park from any of the gates, so how could they possibly know whether there are people in there or not?

          Oh well, it was kind of funny :o)

          • Alex
            Feb 25th, 2009 at 18:52
            Quote | #6

            It’d have been funnier if you’d been stabbed.