But quickly, in honor of the night that I had because of my sweet company, I uploaded a few pictures of the office. I took them when I had a couple of minutes to myself :-)
Okay, and now we'll deal with last night. We went to a place called The Texas Embassy for dinner; a seemingly American place to fulfill some feelings of homesickness and lack of decent Mexican food. I wasn’t particularly feeling either of those things, but I didn’t want to miss out on any group bonding time. The food was a bit overpriced and just alright, but the BEST part was that they served ranch dressing. You cannot get that here, anywhere.
So after dinner we walked to Leicester Square to get some gelato – as we were doing this, we walked by this little park thing where the premiere for Hancock is going on tonight. There were a ton of dancers practicing and performing and stuff, so we stayed and watched while eating our gelato. (I had pistachio which was pretty good, but this place definitely warrants additional visits to try the toffee, cheesecake, chocolate hazelnut, coffee, mint chocolate chip…I could go on.) Anyway we found out that the premiere shenanigans started at 7 tonight, and I think a few of my roommates were going to go. I totally would have gone to catch a glimpse of the Fresh Prince myself if it were not for the fact that I…
was at 10 Downing Street tonight!! Yes, THAT 10 Downing Street. Okay, you guys. YOU GUYS. I had a ONCE IN A LIFETIME NIGHT. I was super intimidated when we first got inside the gate, there were guards with HUGE scary looking guns, just standing there. I was afraid to sneeze. I mean, that kind of security is obviously expected, but I was a little nervous at that point. And then we just walked up to the door, with a big number 10 on it! It looks exactly the same as the one from the Churchill Museum, really.
Okay, the rest will be in bullet point-ish form. Let me just run down the things that I experienced:
*Walked around in some of the rooms, went into one of the big dining rooms where Bush and PM Gordon Brown had dinner, and went into the meeting room that Bush and GB chatted in when he was here the other day.
*At the end of the night, got to go and stand in the Cabinet Room while Helen Mirren and Gordon Brown were just talking away. Yes, I typed that right. I was in THE Cabinet Room in 10 Downing Street listening to Helen Mirren and Gordon Brown have a conversation.
*TALKED TO HELEN MIRREN. She was unbelievably nice, gracious, beautiful and FIERCE. At the end of the night, she was heading out and we were in charge of getting all the name badges back, so I asked for hers (which was placed in the middle of her suit jacked in front of her cleavage because she’s fucking awesome) and then chatted with her about her having a nice time, the speeches, etc, I gave her one of our packets and wished her well, and then she turned around and smiled at me when she was leaving. I LOVE HER. I LOVE HER SO MUCH.
*TALKED TO SIR IAN MCKELLAN. I was busy bringing other people in, and standing by the table and all of a sudden I turned to my right and he was literally standing shoulder to shoulder with me. He said his name to me like I didn’t know who he was, and so I gave his namebadge to him and said “Enjoy the reception!” and he said thanks or something like that. Then at the end of the night I got his name badge from him, did the same rig-a-ma-roll about the “how did you like it” yada yada, and then we exchanged pleasantries, and he was off as well. He was nice too, but not like overly warm or anything (like my bff Helen was).
*I talked to Joanna Lundley from AbFab. She came down early and talked to us about how there were tons of good looking chaps up there – she was really nice and really funny. I didn’t recognize her at first until the other interns told me after she left and then I was like “Ohhh, what’s up Comedy Central?!”
*Eileen Atkins was also there, I chatted with her for a few minutes about the reception. I haven’t actually seen anything she’s in, and I feel bad.
*I briefly exchanged words with Imelda Staunton, who played Professor Umbridge in the most recent Harry Potter. She is SO TINY. Like, really really tiny. She can’t be more than like 5’1. She was pleasant. I didn’t really talk to her that much at all though. I didn’t want to geek out too much in front of her. She looks really different in person.
*Jude Law was also there, but I didn’t talk to him. Just happened to be standing within like 7 feet of him. I must say, he is much better looking in person. I previously didn’t buy into all his hype (but don’t think I wasn’t excited when I saw his name on the guest list) but when I saw him, I was like…WELL HELLO. But I didn’t say anything, I was too scared. I was in close proximity to GB a few times, but didn’t talk to him. I was also too scared. He looks much better in person, and he just seems like a regular dude. At one point, he just walked across the room we were in talking on a cell phone. No big deal. I’m pretty sure my eyes bugged out at that point.
There were a ton of other people that gave me their names like I should already know them, so there may have been other English actors but I wouldn’t know them from a hole in the ground. There was one other guy whose last name was Chapman or something like that…and he looks SO familiar but I can’t figure out what he’s been in. I'm going to have to check the guest list tomorrow and do a little IMDB-ing. But I didn’t really talk to him anyway. He was one of those people that looked at me like I should know who he is. The one person that had accepted the invite but didn’t come and I was REALLY sad about it, was Alan Rickman. DUDE. PROFESSOR SNAPE. But he didn’t end up coming.
My other favorite part, honestly, was the staff. They were a lot of fun and not rigid at all. This one maid snuck us down food from the reception (we were allowed to go up and mingle, which we did, but at the beginning and end of the night she snuck us food) – she brought us asparagus with some kind of mayo dipping sauce, these smoked salmon caviar things, prawns in some kind of cream sauce (served with silver spoons. literally.), and a few different kinds of sushi, Everything was so delicate and perfect and deliberately placed, and nothing was bigger than the circumference of a quarter. I have never had caviar before, how hilarious is it that I experience it for the first time in effing 10 Downing Street!?!?! Wow. WOW WOW WOW. I’m still in freak out mode, as I just got home maybe an hour ago. Anyway, the staff was so nice, one of the event staff brought me wine, and another one (a really cute guy, actually) was talking to me and keeping me company when I was standing in the front area. Somebody’s kids (toddlers, barely could talk) were running around in their pajamas and the staff were around dancing with them and singing with them. It was so great. Everyone was so friendly and warm.
So yeah, that was my night. My evening inside 10 Downing Street.