“Sir, when a man is tired of
London, he is tired of life; for there is in London all that life can afford.”
For a simple farm girl from Mt. Sterling, my fascination with London
doesn’t, on the surface, make much sense. It teems with people; the air isn’t exactly
sweet and pure; the traffic, both pedestrian and vehicular, provokes rage and despair
and the price of everything is inflated beyond belief. Yet, still: London is my
favorite city in the world. Even when cursing the tourists (and not lumping
myself in with that lot at all) that have caused the Oxford Circus station to
overflow with masses of humanity, and the subsequent humidity and rain that
colluded to make a towering mass out of my hair – I love it so much that I walk
around with a foolish grin on my face.
My trip to London consisted of three separate missions: meet up with Richard
and Pam Jett, visit the Tate Modern, and secure a new UV filter for my camera.
Part one commenced with a walk from Oxford Circus to St. Paul’s Cathedral, a journey of only two miles (see map) but it felt like four, due to the thronging masses.
|St. Paul's by Canaletto (circa 1754)|
Sir Christopher Wren’s masterpiece is not exactly an ocean amidst the
frenzy of the city, but somehow the super Jetts and I made contact. (And
somehow all of my photos of this architectural treasure are crooked)
And when you are having lunch in the heart of London,
what do you consume? A giant fish and chips and delicious beer...
Eating such a copious amount of fried food is OK when you are in London, because then you walk across the Milllennium Bridge, gawk at the Thames and then peruse the meaning of art at the Tate Modern.
|Pam and Richard Jett|
After I bid farewell to the super Jetts, I wandered back west, along the Thames, to Charing Cross and then on to Trafalgar Square, and my favorite church, St. Martins-in-the Fields.
And back to Oxford Street, where commuters and feverish consumers packed the street, rendering my dream of getting on the tube for the first leg of my return trip to Oxford moot. So I started walking toward
Regent’s Park and the Baker Street Station (visions of Centre-in-London fresh in my head), and I didn't even need to look at a
map to chart my course. John Nash’s
design is a thing of beauty – if only I had the money to own a flat
overlooking the park...