Archive for December, 2007
I quite like the Christmas lights on Regent Street. Tough to see on these daytime pictures, but the lights flash on and off; apparently triggered by the movement of people down the street.
Here’s a little something that I worked out by accident. Over the weekend, I’ve not had Internet access, so come this morning, I open up my RSS thing (NewFire) to find over 500 things waiting to be read. I’ve been wanting to prune the amount of feeds I subscribe to anyway, but this is the perfect opportunity: which of those feeds to I skim through without hardly a look at the content? Those get deleted.
Funny, really, how your computer can be just as cluttered with crap you don’t need as your apartment. Next stop is to prune those pesky bookmarks, including about 200 items with the words you and Tube in the URL.
It really is very pretty.
Even though that I stay in the Archway area of London every time I visit, I’ve not previously noticed that Highgate Cemetery is just around the corner, despite there being a big sign with directions in Archway tube station.
There’s a bunch of famous folk in the ground at Highgate Cemetery. Proper famous, too; not just telly presenters and models. There’s Karl Marx, Douglas Adams, Sir Ralph Richardson, Max Wall, Mary Ann Evans (George Eliot), and Herbert Spencer amongst others.
It’s a very beautiful place. Well worth the three quid entrance fee. Here’s some photographs.
How’s about this for a slightly odd health and safety notice on the wooden door entrance to a building site? Rather than a proper DANGER KEEP OUT sign, they just took a clipart-ish graphic of a sign and printed it on a nice piece of A4, and shoved it in a plastic sleeve.
Thought I’d show you this little leaving present that my friend Rosa gave me the day before I left Berlin. She knows that I collect snow globes, so she gave me this one of Billy and I. Lovely, isn’t it?
I was a tad drunk last night, and had 20 minutes to spend on a train platform waiting to return to north London and I ran my fingers over the braille on the emergency help intercom thing. I did it quite a few times. Again and again to try and feel the difference between the letters. Frankly, I dunno how blind people do it.
Crisps (potato chips) are ace in England. I’d forgotten about that.
People with backpacks on the Tube, though, aren’t ace. They are shit. How is it possible that they can be so unaware of the extra space they take up, and that any movement means their fellow passengers get a mouth full of Jack Wolfskin?
And, good Lord up above, the young folk of London town… I was walking down a narrow pavement, and I approached a part where there was a bin blocking half the path. A young dude was approaching the same part of the pavement. I stood aside as I saw he’d reach it marginally before me. As soon as he saw me do it, he slowed to snail’s pace and just glared at me. Cunt.
Finally, I bought some new headphones. Being quite susceptible to ear infections, I thought it would be a good idea to ditch the iPod earbuds in favour of those that cover the whole ear. And I totally fell for the sales pitch of the dude in one of those electronics shops on Tottenham Court Road. I ended up spending a small fortune on some with the noise reduction thingy. But, my oh my, what a difference good headphones make! It is amazing. I’m hearing so much stuff that I’ve never noticed before. The slight studio echoes of the drums on Frank Sinatra songs, and the huge amounts of lovely bass on “Nude” by Radiohead being particular favourites. Up until this week, I was always a bit snooty about those hifi nerds, but I really think it’s possible I could join their ranks.
Anyway, my coffee is nearly empty, so it’s time to get out of this cafe.
Well, that was a heart-breaking goodbye. There was a part of me that wanted to thrown myself on the metaphorical coffin when Billy walked off down the street with Hanni on his way to live with her parents in the countryside. I found myself sat at the bar at Tegel airport, spending my last euros on beer, trying hard to keep my quivering chin under control. This lasted all the way to London, in the taxi to my mate John’s flat. Thankfully, he had these slippers on which cheered me up a touch.
So, I’m in London. Capital of England, capital of the United Kingdom. Population: 70 zillion. All of them wandering aimlessly around Oxford Street looking at mobile phones, DVD boxsets, and underwear that would make themselves or their girlfriends look like a whore.
Any of you London dwellers got any tips on where to find cafes with free wifi? I just wandered around Soho for about an hour trying to find one. Eventually, on the verge of giving up, I found this fancy schmancy place on Great Marlborough Street called Le Pain Quotidien, which is where I am right now, sipping an organic beer and listening to the Germans on the table behind me chatting. It makes me slightly homesick.
Oh, and talking of Germans, here’s something really freaky. When I first moved to Berlin, I lived in the Kreuzberg district, and I’d very often see this guy who had long flowing hair, tight jeans and a vest. He looked like a slightly less macho Fabio. Then when I moved north to Prenzlauer Berg, I’d again see him on my street. It felt a bit odd that he must’ve moved to Prenzlauer Berg around the same time as I did. I saw him yesterday. In London. At Archway tube station.
Anyway, I’ve saved the big news ’til last: I just saw Jim Bowen walking down Dean Street.
Goodbye Berlin. It was fun.