Saturday, 22 October 2011
London - October 2011
Tuesday evening, 19th October, and the golden sun streams down Knightsbridge to illuminate the world-famous frontage of Harrods. I ventured inside for a wander around its ground floor Food Halls, always a place to view instead of to buy, especially at their prices, though my next-day’s foray into Fortnum & Mason showed them to be even more expensive!
Wednesday morning, 20th October, and a walk through Kensington Gardens in the chilly air. Grey squirrels scampered about foraging under the fallen leaves, ignoring the nearby walkers, cyclists and runners.
And so to the bridge across the Serpentine, and leaning over I noticed this line-up of seagulls. This is clearly a regular spot for them, for as I passed by again the following evening, the posts were once again occupied, some of the gulls observing a duck that was diving around them dredging-up tasty little snacks.
Wednesday afternoon I called in at the V&A and spent 10 minutes or so just sitting in the main sculpture hall surrounded by architectural grandness.
Thursday morning, 21st October, and as I walked through Kensington and up to marble Arch I encountered this line of Guardsmen passing Apsley House, en-route to the Changing of the Guard ceremony at Buckingham Palace.
By lunchtime I was at the Tate Britain and viewing the exhibition of apocalyptic paintings by the Victorian artist, John Martin. A wealth of canvas and monochrome prints, and a good audio-visual show of his last three great paintings of the End of Days.
Later in the day I walked down through St. James’s Park and got this view from the Blue Bridge – surely quintessential London.
As the sun dipped into the west I ended up at the Albert Memorial and caught the last gleam of light as it shone on the gold decoration. It also shone on something else in front of the Albert Hall, something that shouldn’t, for reasons of good taste and style, be riding a bicycle. I thought I could hear the “Boris bike” squealing …….
In all, an excellent break in the capital, but it was good to get back to the quiet of the country.