Self has to admit, she finds Con/Artist: A Memoir fantastically entertaining. Even though the author is often quite vulgar, in London he does the same kinds of things self does. For instance:
In London I spent most of my time hanging out with Stunt’s friendly and gregarious Lithuanian bodyguards, drivers, and security men. I can rarely sleep past 7 a.m. anymore, but James would stay up all night and didn’t wake up until the late afternoon. To entertain me, the bodyguards would take me to the British Museum or to Trafalgar Square or to the pub, where we’d have fish and chips and a pint of beer. I liked them, and they went out of their way to take care of me in James’s absence.
My room in Stunt’s home was on the sixth floor. I’d climb all the way up there . . .— Con/Artist: A Memoir, p.
Right, there was no lift. These sixth floor rooms are a bear. About five years ago, self found she could no longer climb to the top floor of the Penn Club. After that, she always asked to be put on ground level, or at most one level up. And Tony Tetro was in his sixties! He must have been in great shape.
Now, hunting around for London (or any European) Airbnbs, when the listings say “nice view” or “nice balcony,” make sure you ask if there’s an elevator. Self’s most recent Airbnb stay in Dublin, last November, was on the SEVENTH floor. And it was in an old building, which meant: no elevator. She had to trundle her suitcase (full of books) up there in stages. She’d go two landings, rest a bit, then tackle another two landings, then rest a bit, etc. She couldn’t complain — there indeed was a balcony (with a nondescript view). Next time she Airbnbs in a European city, she’ll stay away from the ones that advertise balconies!
On the very last page of his memoir, Tony Tetro announces: “In a couple of months, I’m going back to London for the British Museum.” (Self finds this very endearing. Believe it or not, self has said the exact same thing, multiple times!)