The weekend before last I went to Friends Fest in London with my kids. As a huge Friends fan, you can imagine how excited I was to go, and it was fun indeed. I was incredibly lucky to get tickets too. The event was on for five days, and it turns out the tickets sold out in something like 13 minutes – it was a fluke really that I got them, a friend on Facebook told me about the event an hour before the tickets went on sale, so I just went online and bought them with no real idea of the need for extreme urgency! What’s even better is that the tickets were only £5 each, AND it was on my birthday weekend. Hurrah!
Here are a few pics from the day…
The event was organised by Comedy Central who have the exclusive rights to show Friends in the UK, and even though it was a promotion event for them, I really expected them to be trying to get more money out of people on the day, but credit to them, they didn’t at all. Other than a small stand selling some Friends branded merchandise, everything else was free in there. That cup of coffee you see me holding on the Central Perk sofa pic above, (you know, the pic where I was being a real badass), was free – yes, free coffee, tea, and cookies from the Central Perk cafe.
My daughter having her hair blow-dried in a Rachel style, also free:
Dressing up in costumes themed from different episodes (me in wedding gown, daughter in cheerleader outfit, son in chicken head – yes he is under there), photo taken in booth and printouts to take home, completely free, no charge at all, whichsoever at all:
The friendly and plentiful staff from Comedy Central were also on hand to happily take all the photos everyone wanted on the many phones and cameras that were shoved in their direction. So we really did get a lot for the very reasonable £5 ticket price. And there were interesting bits of memorabilia from the show to browse too, oh, here I am again with my free coffee in front of some of the memorabilia!
The main point I was going to make in this post (which I thought I might get to quicker, but apparently not), is about enjoying the moment. The area with Monica and Rachel’s apartment was sectioned off and they let groups in, a few at a time, and only for five minutes. It made sense to do that because it was clearly going to be the most popular area, and would likely have got too crowded to see anything. After the event, my son told me that during our five minutes in the apartment, he would have liked to explore a bit more, but I spent the whole time orchestrating one photo after another, making them sit and stand in various places, so that we could get all the shots, and then the five minutes were up. I realised how right he was, I thought about how much more I would have enjoyed the experience too if I’d just soaked it up a bit and looked around rather than being so totally focused on getting pictures. Of course we would want to get pictures there, but there’s a balance. Two or three pictures in the apartment would have been fine, I didn’t need twenty.
My realisation was quite timely because last week you may have seen a Tweet doing the rounds about this very subject, about taking time to enjoy moments rather than focusing solely on capturing them with our devices – Carrie Rubin referred to that Tweet in her last post if you missed it. This is definitely something I’m guilty of. Also, I don’t mind admitting – I usually want to get the photos not only to preserve the memories for us, but to have something good to show on Facebook, or on here. Really, is that more important than being there in the moment and enjoying it, creating the memories in our minds and hearts rather than in digital form? Of course it’s not.
But that aside, are you all jealous that I got to go to Friends Fest and you didn’t? Are you? Huh? Are you?