Friday, 27 February 2009

The most famous zebra crossing.

Every single day of the year hundreds of tourists  flock to  a  pedestrian crossing  in North-West London to pay homage to four of the most  famous musicians of the recent past----John, Paul, George and Ringo..
   Abbey  Road  Studios  was  where  they  made  most  of  their  records,  under  the  stewardship  of  George  Martin.
     The  walls  outside  the  studios  are  the  only  spot  in  London  where  nobody  gets  arrested  for  scribbling  or  spraying  graffiti  . Indeed,  there  is  so  much  of  the  stuff  that  the  record  company  managers  send  someone  out  once  every  few  weeks  to  whitewash  the  walls....They  are  soon  covered  up  by  new  messages.
     The  zebra  crossing  outside  the  studios  was  immotalised  on  the  front  cover  of  the  eponymous  "Abbey  Road"  album,  which  was  released  shortly  before  the  four  members  of  the  Beatles  split  up  and  went  their  separate  ways.
       It  has  been  about  three  decades  since  then,  but  the   flow  of  pilgrims  keep  flocking  to  this  corner  of  St. John's  Wood.   Thanks  to  them,  the  legend  will  never  die...

Abbey  Road

Sunday, 22 February 2009

Two Scenes from London's West End.

Here are two scenes from the West End, taken early in the morning.
   The  first  picture  is  a  mechanical  representation  of  a  cooper---above  a  pub.
 Below  it  is  a  picture  of  Eros,  in  Piccadilly  Circus.

Friday, 13 February 2009

Suicide Bridge

I  took  a  journey  into  the  past  early  this  evening,  up  the  hill  past  Archway  Station,  up  the    busy  Archway  Road.  Halfway  up  the  hill  you  will  see  a  century-old  bridge   which  is  notorious  throughout  London.
Suicide  Bridge.
Ever  since  I  came  to  live  in  this  part  of  town,  I  have  never  known  it  to  be  called  by  any  other  name.  Tucked  away  in  the  inner  pages  of  the  local  newspapers  , there  used  to  be  frequent  reports  of  people  who  had  jumped  to  their  death    by  scaling  the  railings...

Suicide  is  always  a  dreadful  way  to  die,  but  jumping  from  this  height  only  to  land  on  top  of ( or  in  front  of ) some  unsuspecting  motorist  on  this  busy  road  seems  such  a  public  way  of  declaring  despair  and  helplessness...
  I  lived  for  several  years  at  the  end  of  the  road  which  crosses  the  top  of  the  bridge---Hornsey  Lane.  On  a  couple of  occasions,  I  would  see  a  huddle  of  people  at  the  end  of  the    bridge,  placards  in  hand.  At  other  times,  there  would  be  a  clutch  of  bouquets---they  would  lie  there,  undisturbed  for  a  couple  of  weeks,  only  to  be  cleared  away  before  the  next  victim  decided  to  choose  the  darkness  over  the  half-light  of    life's  incessant  struggles.  Indeed,  my  elderly (late)  ex-landlady's  husband  lost  his  life  here.  It    is  rumoured  that  he  came  back  from  the  Second  World  War  a  broken  man .  He  went  out  one  night,  and  never  came  back.
    The  fence  around  the  bridge  has  been  thickened  ,  and  made  a  little  higher,  but  I  doubt  that  we  will  hear  the  last  of   Suicide  Bridge...

Monday, 2 February 2009

London's Gone Soft.

London's gone all  soft...Last  night  we  experienced    a  bit  of  wintery  weather,  the  first  snowfall  for  quite  some  time.  The  result?  Almost  all  normal  life  has  been  suspended  until  further  notice---schools  are  closed,  all  buses  are  off  the  road,  and  people  have  been  told  to  stay  at  home  unless  they  have  to    go  out.
   This  means  a  massive  loss  to  London's  economy,  since  the  snow  is  forecast  to  fall  until  Wednesday...

 I  ventured  out  after  taking  this  photo  from  my  window(picture  above )--very  picture-postcardish,  very  pretty,  but  is  this  totally  alien  to  London?  Should  this  be  enough  to  put  a  major  Northern  European  capital  out  of  business  completely?..
   It  is  not  as  if  London  has  not  had  snow  before--when  I  was  a  child  of  ten,  we  used  to  walk  to  school  alongside  Clapham  Common  in  snow  three  times  as  high  as  what  I  saw  when  I  went  out  of  the  house  this  morning.  Back  then,  we  coped,  and  the  country  coped,  and  got  on  with  things.
  London's  gone  soft---too  soft,  in  my  view.