And so, we planned on attending this very special event.
We also did not tell Keith what this event was.
And so, on our way to it, he seemed a little bit nervous.
And rightfully so, to be fair. We’ve made him do some pretty stupid things on this trip so far...
All he knew was that it was at Hyde Park, just eurominutes away from where the Queen had just celebrated her birthday without us.
So we went and found the crowd.
And then they started taking their clothes off.
And the annual Nude Bicycle Ride was upon us.
And Keith was perhaps happier being burned alive at the Dungeon.
Just a warning: These photos are not safe for work. They may not even be safe for home. I did my best to try and cover the naughty bits...but some may have slipped through.
It actually reminded me of the annual West Hollywood Halloween parade...
...lots of people in outrageous costumes...
...but mostly, there were no costumes.
There were no anythings.
Just pure nudity...
In my head initially, I thought "Ooh! Nude Cyclists! That will surely be fun to look at."
But not everyone cycles for fitness, apparently.
I suspect that some of them were just looking for an excuse to be naked outside.
And although Bookie and I thought it'd be fun to make Keith a wee bit uncomfortable by surrounding him with naked people...one thing I didn't bank on was the fact that we, too, would then also be surrounded by naked people.
Our plan may have backfired.
And clearly, we weren't the only ones uncomfortable with what was happening. For example:
"I told you we should have gone to Canada!"
As we began to devise an escape route, a voice behind me said, "Was this not what you expected?"
It was a cyclist--nude, of course. Apparently we were being Loud Americans™ about our distaste. But he was polite and as Bookie and Keith tried to contain themselves, I somehow managed to hold an adult, respectable conversation with the man while avoiding eye contact with his penis. Mostly.
He explained that this began as an annual event to promote awareness for cyclists, but now it's much more than that--a way to protest whatever seems to be bothering you.
Seeing as how the nude factor was the thing that was bothering me most, I went back to my huddle with Keith and Bookie and we tried not to panic.
Till we saw this guy, who was a little too excited about the whole situation...
Then we hauled ass (pardon the pun) out of there just as the ride was beginning.
We decided to head over to Soho for a few pints to wash the sight out of our eyes.
Unfortunately, we took the exact wrong path. About three blocks into our journey, we heard a commotion behind us.
Apparently, the cyclists were also taking this route. Ofcoursetheywere.
And so again, we were assaulted by the sights of naked Brits.
This time at full speed...
Yes, that's the Queen and Obama approaching. Happy Birthday, Your Royal Highness!
This was all, of course, happening much to the horror of the proper cyclists that were unfortunate enough to be out for a lovely afternoon of riding.
"Good heavens! They're all mad! Pip, pip!"
It will take me a lot of years to forget what I saw that day.
"No, in fact, I will not be high-fiving you."
And if you want to see these people...
...and more in all their uncensored glory, I've set up a photo album just for you. You sicko.
Don't say I didn't warn you.