'Guess how many people die of a ruptured aorta each year,' says Geoff cheerily as he sips his black coffee. It's usually me who supplies the random statistics to our friendship but occasionally Geoff likes to do his bit.
'983,' I say from my stool near the Coffee Plant café bin.
'Not even close.' Geoff takes a bite of his mint-flavoured Aero bar.
'Now you're being silly,' Geoff pauses. '6000.'
'Crikey,' I say, making a mental note to Google the symptoms of a ruptured aorta when I get home. It's always good to be prepared.
'Come on then,' Geoff nods to the list in my hands, which Anthony the life coach made me write during our round table interview last week and which, apparently, contains the seeds of my life purpose.
I clear my throat and begin.
"Activities which make me happy - in no particular order.
1. Long train journeys, preferably through the Scottish Highlands.
2. Eating and sleeping (I had wondered about including the other obvious one but since I'm not planning a career as a sex worker, I didn't see much point).
3. Rummaging around in other people's tat at flea markets.
4. Watching old films starring Alec Guinness, collecting random facts and statistics, YouTube videos (current comeback favourite is of humpback whale doing thank you 'dance of joy' for his rescuer, the aptly named Michael Fishbach, having been cut free from tangled nets off coast of Mexico)...
As I read, I'm fully aware that trying to divine a life purpose from this list is like trying to cobble together a gourmet meal from chicken breasts, Custard Creams, Gorgonzola and Castrol GTX.
'Let me guess,' says Geoff when I finish. 'Anthony said you're going to train Lippizaner horses for the Spanish Riding School.'
'Sadly, I will never know,' I say and explain about the panic attack triggered when Anthony asked me to read aloud my list in front of the other assembled journalists. Instead of learning about my true vocation, I spent the final crucial minutes of the interview with my head between my legs as Anthony guided me through some simple deep breathing exercises.
'Bummer,' says Geoff, and pops the final portion of Aero into his mouth.
Together we listen in silence to the two women on our right who are discussing their co-dependency issues while sharing a flapjack.
'How did the stalking go?' I say.
'It didn't,' says Geoff. 'My agent's still at the book fair in Frankfurt trying to flog his younger, sexier authors.' He stares out of the window at a stray dog which is staked hopefully beneath the Bavarian Bratwurst stall.
'Will there be snacks at Meg's?' he asks, eyes still on the mongrel.
I shake my head. Meg, whose art exhibition opens tonight, can barely afford to frame her work let alone fork out for finger food.
Geoff swivels back to me. 'I know what will be there though.' His mouth twitches into a grin. 'One word. Wilson.'
Tune in next Friday for more...and in the meantime, here's a little taster of Notting Hill life: