It had been a little while since Noodle and I had ventured out into London together after some Shakespeare-esque love triangle drama that I won’t delve into here… but the girl was now out the picture and with a new fella’ so it felt an appropriate time for us to attempt to rekindle our friendship. Bro’s before Hoe’s and all that.
We met in Paddington and wondered around until we found a decent looking pub, pretty quickly things fell back to how they were before… it’s great being a bloke. Eventually the time came when the pub was closing but we we’re both off the next day so decide to not end the night just yet. I messaged a couple mates and one of them wasn’t too far away so came to join us. We meet up with the Gasman around Hyde Park Corner and decide to take a venture into the park to find a chillcation* and this is where the night got a little weird.
It was a Friday night, the streets still hustling and the lights still buzzing; we wonder into the Rose Garden – a small hedged off area in the South East of the park. There is only natural light coming in here so it’s pretty damn dark.
In the centre of the Rose Garden sits a marble statue of a boy and a dolphin, to me it looks like the boy is trying to snap the dolphin in half but I guess some people must like that kind of thing. We walk right up to this statue to take a closer look whilst I pull out a pre-rolled smoke, just as I’m about to light it up when Noodle grabs my shoulder and points out a police car parked just outside the exit of the Rose Garden. Immediately I slide the smoke up my sleeve and we begin to carry on walking through the garden, and as we do we begin to notice pairs of legs shuffling around the hedge sideways towards the exit. Now it was really dark but you could just about make out the shape of a couple guys standing up with their backs right to the hedge, shuffling towards us, so it seemed.
A quick pan around the garden reveals there are more and more of these pairs of legs standing around, some together, some alone, I saw a pair of bright blue jeans behind a tree, the branches rustling. What the hell is going on? we very quickly scuttle out of the Rose Garden and onto the path, approaching the tail end of the police car. As we get closer the engine starts up. This police car begins to crawl very slowly further up the path, the same way we are walking.
As we begin to catch up to the car we decide to take a different path but as we peel off from behind the car it stops, a copper jumps out and then almost as if the floor is made of lava he hops over a railing and then waddles over the flowerbed standing on almost every flower in his range. As he gets close to us he begins to speak – “Don’t worry boys, we know why you’re here don’t worry.” each of us looking more confused than the last, do they know we’re here to smoke?. He continues “We’ve just seen you leave the garden, don’t worry you’re not in trouble.”
“What are we here to do?” I ask, he stares at the three of us for a moment and then begins to explain to us that he and his colleague in the car are the LGBT community officers in the park and are here to keep everyone safe during gay cruising nights.
Now we were all probably being extremely naive but that was a brand new string of words we had never experienced before. Once we realised we really weren’t in any trouble the questions came flooding in and the fact we were already pretty drunk meant we found the situation more and more hilarious each question. After having to explain to the cop that we really weren’t there to Gay cruise with each other… whatever that means – he told us we shouldn’t really be hanging around and asked us to leave.
We walk away in disbelief of the whole event and proceed to the lake to find a chillcation* that isn’t in a Gay cruising area… we spent the next hour re-enacting what had happened and what we saw, increasingly believing this cop was having us on… I mean it was just all so random… essentially this cop had ran over to us to tell us if we want to blow each other we have to stay in the Rose Garden.
On the walk back to the tube we decide to poke our heads back into the garden… he wasn’t lying.
*chillcation – a location used to chill.