Friday, June 06, 2008

London: day one

London is still the city I lived in for seventeen years, even though I have lived away from it now for nearly as long, but I am seeing it with different eyes. I notice now most strongly the dirt and the noise, the decay and disrepair and decrepitude. It feels like a city on the verge of giving up, dancing all the faster because it hears that the musicians are getting tired.

I had over two hours' layover in Zurich airport this time, so walked about and had a good look. It's very well done as airports go, quite pleasant to be in. It feels quite small and cosy, like a friendly small-town place, so it comes as a surprise to realize that it is in fact quite large and busy: there are three runway, all in constant use.

London City Airport in the Docklands is not such a success, it suffers the typical, traditional English failing: that basically nobody gives a damn. I took the Docklands Light Railway (an automated, driverless tram — which nonetheless has a human conductor to blow a whistle and close the doors) to Bank subway station, and there got a taxi to our hotel, between the head of Waterloo Bridge and Covent Garden.

Had a very fine meal indeed in an ancient fish restaurant called J.Sheekey off St. Martin's Lane; I probably first went there thirty years ago with AH.

Hotel internet is fairly expensive and on an oddly-structured price plan, so I will probably only get online every second day or so. About to try Second Life, to see how the connection speed is.

So far, so good.

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4 Comments:

Blogger Zhoen said...

A link to a map of London's Lost Rivers

http://strangemaps.wordpress.com/2008/06/05/284-londons-lost-rivers/

June 7, 2008 at 12:37:00 AM GMT+2  
Blogger Lioness said...

Happy birthday, dahling! May it all go splendidly and sunnyly. Muitos beijos.

June 7, 2008 at 7:51:00 PM GMT+2  
Blogger Corvi, Corey, Crow, Maggie and Raven said...

Zhoen,

Thank you for the lost rivers link...I love this. It is in my mind, a picture of hidden energy flowing, doing, being no matter how hard we try to hide and bury it.

June 8, 2008 at 4:08:00 PM GMT+2  
Blogger Pacian said...

That's not grime, that's history.

June 11, 2008 at 10:02:00 AM GMT+2  

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