In the 60s London was termed swinging. While there may have been a little wife-swapping going on back then I don’t think that’s what they meant. Rock’n’Roll, followed by the Beetles, The Stones and Jimi Hendrix were the reason for the moniker.
However London was swinging on Saturday and Sunday at Passion. We emerged from the show with my camera bag and Suze’s rucksack full of toys from nice people on various stands. The reviews for those products will be appearing on Sex Toys Buzz over the next few weeks.
That’s all fine while you’re within the confines of the exhibition with half-naked models and stands filled with sex toys and provocative underwear, nobody bats an eyelid. Outside is a little different. There’s a kind of event horizon at the doors of Earls Court. Like a black hole, those within can see outside, but those outside shouldn’t be able to see in when an adult show takes place.
But like a couple of lucky photons taking advantage of the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle and the fundamental laws of quantum mechanics we emerged from the compelling innards of the exhibition.
Our first emergence was for an early evening bite to eat at a restaurant in Kensington. Very nice, Italian, Suze loves Italian. She’s partial to Italians too. Then back to the exhibition for a final push before travelling back via the Tube to our hotel at Kings Cross.
If three years ago you’d have asked me what my reaction would be if I were to be spotted on public transport with a huge carrier bag from Fun Factory, stuffed with toys, and a camera bag, similarly full, with a riding crop sticking out of one end (because it was simply too long to conceal inside) … I’d have said utter embarrassment.
I am no longer that person.
Well, quite frankly I wouldn’t have been so brazen as to attempt to carry a pile of sex toys like that, but not now. I ended up sitting opposite Suze. To my right were a couple of girls. The one nearest to me spotted the crop and froze, not knowing what to do, then she leant to her friend and whispered in her ear. They both giggled a little and then composed themselves. I barely concealed a silly smile.
Next the guy sat to Suze’s left took an interest in my large Fun Factory carrier. In a moment of pure comedy, he focused on the “Love Yourself” strap line, then tried to peer in the open top of the bag and work out what the boxes were. He cocked his head on one side to read them, such was his curiosity.
Now, I was suppressing a fit of the giggles. I managed it, distracting myself by trying to motion to Suze with my eyes that the guy had noticed the contents of the carrier and the obvious leather end of the riding crop protruding from my camera bag.
Suze will tell you I love the Tube. It’s a wonderful transport system, apart from the heat, the grime, the crush and the occasional drunk. It keeps London moving.
Well now I love it more and I think the next time we’re down in London I might just try something even more bizarre … without getting arrested of course.