I went to a Victorian cane-fighting class today, taught by a friend who's also done 12 years of aikido, and some other martial arts. I'm not entirely sure of the provenance, but it's certainly related to la canne, the French-ish cane-fighting that accompanies savate, which is...French kickboxing. Go figure.
Then it was off to a bar with a nice outdoor patio, for a friend's birthday. At some point, the ever-increasing group thought that one customer had left, so we absorbed his table; but then he came back; being a sociable bunch, in particular my ex-girlfriend who's known for hijacking friendly strangers, folks introduced themselves and he joined the group. He turned out to be a very chatty, interesting Londoner...and Pavarotti's Grammy-winning sound engineer. He was pretty funny, joined us for Mexican food afterward, and apparently, after I left (I wasn't feeling so great), paid for everyone's meal.
I like it here.