This model was in the Holly Fulton show, which I loved. She told me her name and I thought I wrote it down, but we were on the Strand while I was trying to get to the Topshop Unique show in time. I had just found the bus with London Fashion Week splashed all over the side, but it was stationary, and empty. 'Hello sir, are you going to Waterloo for the Topshop show?' I asked the dour bus driver, who said 'Yes,' then he looked at my Photographer and Press passes, and said 'but this bus is only for the Buyers.' I looked around and it was clearly empty - and the show was starting in 15 minutes, and the walk alone would take at least that long, so I gave him my saddest puppy dog look, combined with a slight raising of the eyebrow to indicate, AW, come ON, have a heart, buddy, but he wasn't buying it.
'Okay, can you please tell me where the Press bus leaves from, then?' I asked, trying a new tact. 'Oh that's across the street,' he said, pointing, 'But it left five minutes ago.' (In other words, a few minutes after the start of our conversation.) Then I resorted to begging, but he held firm. Buyers, only. I was on the verge of offering him a twenty, but he looked like the type who would happily arrest me for attempted bribery. Sometimes you just gotta let it go.
So I started running. But first, that's when I saw this nice model, and we had a quick little chat and shoot, and I didn't even notice til now when I'm looking at the shot, what a great little nail detail she had going.
Then.. oh! I almost forgot the part where I tried again to find the bus - because the Buyer Driver said it might be circling round the block if the bridge is closed (huh?) and while I was, and thinking maybe, just maybe, the Gods would be on my side and there's be a taxi, but who did I see but my old friend Scott, the Sartorialist, ('I shot the Sartorialist', September 2009). He was standing in the street, watching me. 'Are you going to Topshop?' I asked frantically. 'Maybe', he said.
'Do you have an invitation?', the Sartorialist asked me.
'Yes,' I replied.
'Can you show it to me?', he asked. Meanwhile, the clock was ticking, and there were no buses or taxis in sight, and we weren't getting any younger. 'Of course,' said I, opening my handbag and handing him my ticket, because you don't say no to the Sartorialist. 'Good,' he said, 'because I want to send it to Garance.' (He pronounced it, btw, not GAR-ance, but in a Frenchy way, GarANCE). So here we are, in the street, no taxi, no bus, it's 2:55, and I'm quipping brightly to him about 'Well, I might not be shot by the Sartorialist, but at least my invitation is!'
Either he didn't find me funny, or he was concentrating on shooting it with his phone and sending it to Garance, but in any case, he was done with me, and off I sprinted across the bridge.
At which point I saw this girl, above, with two cute guys with big photographic equipment. They were trying to hail a cab, but there weren't any. I'm gonna just try hoofing it, I told them, but she pointed to her shoes - which were fabulous - but had mile high heels. We exchanged sympathetic glances, I wished them luck - they promised to pick me up if they found a taxi - and I ran to the old Eurostar station, which I'd been to last year. But I still got really lost. And ran in - leaving a line queuing outside - and wouldn't you know: it was starting late. They had really great beef stew (which I'm making now, btw: I've still got this cold/flu/bug) on mashed potatoes, which I inhaled gratefully, and then I saw the girl from the bridge. They'd ended up going on foot, after all, but they, too made it in time!
I didn't see the Sartorialist inside. Or, Garance. But I did see him after, outside. Alone. With his camera. Watching, with a serious face on. And then I walked back, across Waterloo bridge. Next to me on the bridge was the Buyer Bus, returning slowly in the traffic, to Somerset House. It was empty.
My last shot in the Serious Series is my new friend Carlota, aka Carrottline. I love her look. So serious. She's been leaving wonderful comments as long as I can remember, and she's got a lovely blog, but this was the first we actually met. She's in London now for school, and we're planning to meet for a coffee in a few weeks when she's settled in. She wasn't having a great time at fashion week - she didn't know anyone yet - but we've all been there, and know how it feels. Everyone has to start somewhere.
We've had to cancel a lovely dinner at our friends' tonight cause of this bug. But I've made some killer gingerbread and am drinking the best home remedy: fresh lemon, ginger, and honey tea. And if you want to laugh, click on 'I'm not talking', and follow instructions.
p.s. Big thank you to my friend Estelle, Serendipity 2307! The model is, and I quote: 'Sandra aka Suzie Bird very famous frenchie model!' And E should know: she's French, and she's a model, and she's modelled in Paris, so there you go.