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Tuesday, February 28, 2006

2 CV Spotted In London!

The 2CV (or Deux Chevaux, Two Horsepower) is a French car, a Citroen. But I spotted one yesterday in London! As you can see, the horse power is a little more figurative. Before you accuse me of being mean, mean, mean, I have cropped this shot so as not to show all the gentlemen rushing to their aid. It just wan't me, that's all. And if you have a hankering to see a less sassy version,you should drop by Paris Daily Photo today.

posted by Ham at 00:24 -- Comments here: 8

Monday, February 27, 2006

Walk the Line

With an ashtonishing display of synchronicity, last night Mrs Ham & I went to see the Johnny Cash biopic, Walk the Line. Coming home and reading up on the man, as one does, I discover that today would have been his birthday.

So for today, I thought I would bring you one of London's Art Deco cinemas. Only, there aren't many left. I drove round London for you, though, and here is one of the most untouched since the 20's, in Muswell Hill. A more general view on My Other Staff.

Oh, by the way - the film is brilliant - thoroughly recommended!

posted by Ham at 00:02 -- Comments here: 5

Sunday, February 26, 2006

That they might have lived

Before moving away from St Barts, I'd like to draw your attention to what is below the figure of christ on the wall. Aged, 20, 19, 29. Ninety years ago, so they would be long gone now, whatever - but still remembered for what they could have been, but never were. It is hard to think of what these people must have thought before they went "over the top". Was it courage? Was it bravado? I don't know. I only know that for them death was not to be desired, but something that they might well get to know. I can't help feeling that the current wave of suicide murderers have missed the point completely, and changed our world forever.

posted by Ham at 00:38 -- Comments here: 5

Saturday, February 25, 2006

Another of London's hidden treasures

For todays picture, we are in the Smithfield area of London (the meat market will appear another day) and outside the alleyway to St Bartholomew the Great. Put simply, as far as I know this is the oldest place of worship in London. It is one of the best hidden churches in London, you can't see it at all from the outside, so I will walk you through to the courtyard in My Other Stuff.

Some people might be amused by the name of the street it is in, you should be able to read it in the large version..... Little Britain. Oh yes, and "Four Weddings and a Funeral" was filmed here, too.

posted by Ham at 00:14 -- Comments here: 5

Friday, February 24, 2006

Free art, was copyright

It is compulsory for an urban blog to post graffitti, isn't it? Here is my offering, part of a diptych, that you will find in Redchurch Street, Shoreditch (the other one is on My Other Stuff). I rather liked the humour.

posted by Ham at 00:02 -- Comments here: 7

Thursday, February 23, 2006

The Devil's in the detail...

Or in this case, Neptune.

As I said a few days ago, London repays you for looking at its detail, just in the same way as do most other great cities. Here, I am still on the Thames river side, looking at a part of the Victorian cast iron work that is a delightful feature of the walks. Here is a short description of a route. Even the more recent additions to the ironwork have all been done to similar patterns.

posted by Ham at 00:02 -- Comments here: 4

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Wetness in London

It's wet and cold in London. For some reason, all these benches facing the Thames in Greenwich were empty, I can't think why.

posted by Ham at 12:06 -- Comments here: 6

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

They sentenced me to twenty years of boredom...

First we take Manhattan
by Leonard Cohen

(Note: this is the best version of this song, by Jennifer Warnes)

They sentenced me to twenty years of boredom
For trying to change the system from within
I'm coming now, I'm coming to reward them
First we take Manhattan, then we take Berlin

I'm guided by a signal in the heavens
I'm guided by this birthmark on my skin
I'm guided by the beauty of our weapons
First we take Manhattan, then we take Berlin

I'd really like to live beside you, baby
I love your body and your spirit and your clothes
But you see that line there moving through the station?
I told you, I told you, told you, I was one of those

Ah you loved me as a loser, but now you're worried that I just might win
You know the way to stop me, but you don't have the discipline
How many nights I prayed for this, to let my work begin
First we take Manhattan, then we take Berlin

I don't like your fashion business mister
And I don't like these drugs that keep you thin
I don't like what happened to my sister
First we take Manhattan, then we take Berlin

And I thank you for those items that you sent me
The monkey and the plywood violin
I practiced every night, now I'm ready
First we take Manhattan, then we take Berlin

Ah remember me, I used to live for music
Remember me, I brought your groceries in
Well it's Father's Day and everybody's wounded
First we take Manhattan, then we take Berlin

The photo is of Liverpool Street Station.

posted by Ham at 00:02 -- Comments here: 10

Monday, February 20, 2006

Senate House Library

Todays picture is of the fine building of Senate House, which houses the University of London Library. Apart from being an astonishing research resource, there is a little bit of their background which is amusing enough to warrant repeating.

The library was looking for a home after the war, so they were given an older building to use, which they fitted out as required. Unfortunately, when they put books on the shelves, they found that it was all too heavy and the shelves were pulled off the walls, and floors collapsed. So they got this built.

posted by Ham at 00:02 -- Comments here: 4

Sunday, February 19, 2006

I'm Back!

Hi folks! This apparation can be seen rising above Farringdon Station, from Turnmill Street. It can't be seen from the trains (I don't think) and I have no idea what it is doing there. It appears to be over what might be a private house, but I don't know. Does anyone know anything?

Thanks to Manuel for pressing the buttons last week!

posted by Ham at 07:04 -- Comments here: 7

Saturday, February 18, 2006

Beigels for breakfast

In Brick Lane there is a Beigel Shop that has been 24 hour for longer than just about any other shop in the UK. And why is there always one - and only one - down-and-out outside? Is there an agreement? Doesn't matte what country, what time of day - Beigel shop = hobo.

Note: Ham is on holiday this week, and the posts are happening with the assistance of San Francisco Daily Photo ;-)

posted by Ham at 00:02 -- Comments here: 7

Friday, February 17, 2006

Fish on Friday

One of the best places to buy fish in London is in Borough Market in Southwark, on a Friday or Saturday. Farmers come from all over the country to sel direct and make their livelyhoods possible.

Note: Ham is on holiday this week, and the posts are happening with the assistance of San Francisco Daily Photo ;-)

posted by Ham at 00:02 -- Comments here: 6

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Cleared for takeoff

Here is the Channel 4 Television building, looking like it is just about to take off into space. It was while I was working her that I discovered that the way they keep the glass clean is by flying a hawk there regularly. It is quite bizzare to see the coutry and town come together in that way. It works!

Note: Ham is on holiday this week, and the posts are happening with the assistance of San Francisco Daily Photo ;-)

posted by Ham at 00:02 -- Comments here: 0

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Blessed are the peacemakers

This Statue of the peaceful revolutionary, Ghandi, is in Tavistock Square. It is poignant that it is just where one of the July bombs exploded. Go to Rachel's Blog to learn from an eloquent survivor.

Note: Ham is on holiday this week, and the posts are happening with the assistance of San Francisco Daily Photo ;-)

posted by Ham at 00:02 -- Comments here: 7

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Look at the detail

I love the detial in some of London's old buildings. These are the doors to the English National Opera in St Martins Lane.

Note: Ham is on holiday this week, and the posts are happening with the assistance of San Francisco Daily Photo ;-)

posted by Ham at 00:02 -- Comments here: 1

Monday, February 13, 2006

The ghosts of shops

The ghosts of old shops still haunt London. This old pipe shop entrance is just opposite the High Courts of Justice, although the shop is long gone.

Note: Ham is on holiday this week, and the posts are happening with the assistance of San Francisco Daily Photo ;-)

posted by Ham at 00:02 -- Comments here: 0

Sunday, February 12, 2006

The Gasometer... as art?

The Gasometer appears to be a peculiarly British phenomena ( any views?), but I alway wonder what archeologists will make of it in aeons to come.... "Those mounds are the ssites of primitive man's devotion to the god of energy"

Note: Ham is on holiday this week, and the posts are happening with the assistance of San Francisco Daily Photo ;-)

posted by Ham at 00:02 -- Comments here: 5

Saturday, February 11, 2006

A small gallery

The Waterloo Galery is one of those little, often overlooked (free!) places to visit if you are around the South Bank area. Small and friendly, it has an exhibition of photos from around Britain as part of Visit Britian. The Photos are good - not sure about the use of the canvas effect print.

Note: Ham is on holiday this week, and the posts are happening with the assistance of San Francisco Daily Photo ;-)

posted by Ham at 00:02 -- Comments here: 1

Friday, February 10, 2006

London's Elephants - No 2 in the Series

You'll find this cheekie chappie in a alleyway behind the Aldwych. Doesn't he look as if he's been caught short? I've no idea at all why he is there.


As part of the information service that is the London Daily Photo, I'd like to tell you about The Blue Badge Guide Walking Weekend. On the 18th & 19th of February, you can turn up to any one of eight locations, every hour during the day, and be taken around by a Blue Badge Guide who are without doubt the best in the business - ALL FOR FREE!. If you choose walk no. 8 - "Quality Street" - you may be lucky and get my mate Stan who I am certain will entertain you.

posted by Ham at 00:02 -- Comments here: 7

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Scoot in for a coffee

You know, Paris may be known for its coffee, and we've also heard that the scooters have invaded, but only in London can you combine the two. Tucked away behind Waterloo Station is Lower Marsh, a short but interesting market where you will find Scooterworks, a unique business with a flavour of the fifties and sixties milk bars. Here you will find intersting scooters and excellent coffee in equal measure.

As ever, over to My Other Stuff for the overflow pics.

posted by Ham at 00:10 -- Comments here: 6

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Bomber Harris

Before we leave St Clements, I'd like to show you the statue of "Bomber Harris", just outside. He headed up bomber command in WWII. In today's revisionist world he is vilified alomst as if it were he that was responsible for the flattening of Dresden. But for me, that search to sully reputations of people long dead just serves to take our minds away from the people who were truly responsible for all the horrors of the world - people like you and me.

We cannot understand the actions of the past with the feelings of the present. People lived and died with different priorities. We think ours are better, but I hope that our children will condemn us in the same way as we censure those that went before, because our children will be better.

I would much rather that the incendary bombing that was used to obliterate cities had not happened - I would much rather that many things done duuring war had not happened. But they did, and we blame others and forget at our peril.

[[kicks soapboax out the way to make room for some fine stuff tomorrow]]

posted by Ham at 00:02 -- Comments here: 6

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

RAF Air Cadets Church Parade

While I was at St Clements, I discovered that the RAF Air Cadets were having their annual church parade. I went around the corner to where they were preparing, and I was really moved by the dedication and concentration these kids were putting into their parade, and the satisfaction they got back of a job well done. You could see that they were all striving to be the best on parade, and not let their side down. My favorite shot of the day wasn't of the cadets and is on My Other Stuff.

posted by Ham at 00:06 -- Comments here: 5

Monday, February 06, 2006

Oranges and Lemons say the bells of St Clements

This old nursery rhyme harks back to real places. Most people probably suspect that, after all you can recognise places like Shoreditch, Bow & Stepney, but are unsure where they are. Today, I take you inside the first place, St Clement Danes, which is a church just outside the High Court at the top end of Fleet Street.

With a history of over 1000 years it was razed to the ground by incendaries during the war, and has since been rennovated and adopted as the church of the Royal Air Force.

I'll be getting around each of the places mentioned in time, but if you are impatient, there can be few better informed or written pieces than the Diamond Geezer's piece written in 2001.

If you are there at 9 am, 12, 3 or 6pm you can hear the bells play, Oranges & Lemons.

posted by Ham at 00:23 -- Comments here: 8

Sunday, February 05, 2006

I love maps.....

...and I don't care who knows it. which makes it lucky that we have Stanfords in Long Acre, Covent Garden. This is the place where dreams and journeys start. They have more maps than you can imagine, from all countries. Travel books, guide books - they are all here. Maps of your back yard, or the universe, they will all fit, in the right scale.

posted by Ham at 00:12 -- Comments here: 9

Saturday, February 04, 2006

Let's Paint the town Red!

The great British Pork Pie is most associated with Melton Mowbray,in Leicestershire. Over a hundred years ago - one can only suppose after a few too many pork pies - some aristocrats that were visiting town for a hunt ran amok in the town centre with some cans of red paint. And that's where the expression comes from. These pies come from Southwark Market, just south of London Bridge, and they are as good as they look.

posted by Ham at 00:20 -- Comments here: 5

Friday, February 03, 2006

The London Eye and Houses of Parliament

A tourist shot today, at least, my version of one. I love the way that we Londoners have taken the London Eye to our own, so that now it is as much part of the skyline as Big Ben. It is worth a trip, if you get the chance, just hope for fine weather!

As ever, some overflow pics on My Other Stuff

posted by Ham at 01:01 -- Comments here: 10

Thursday, February 02, 2006

One of London's small pleasures

Is finding a Banksy - a piece of ... Street Art? Graffiti? you decide. Do go and have a look at his work on his website, and keep your eyes peeled as you walk around London. On this small stretch of the South Bank, I bagged three -the other two are on My Other Stuff. I love the thought that so much of his work must stir the subsversive in so many otherwise straitlaced people.

posted by Ham at 00:17 -- Comments here: 5

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

London's Elephants, No.1 in the series

There are a surprising number of elephants in London, in the oddest corners. I thought it would be nice to have an series of them from time to time - here is the first. There is a Dali exhibition in the South Bank and there are constructions of some of Dali's painted creations in a lot of public places. For example, the "drawer lady" in Waterloo Station (look for it as you get off Eurostar), the melted watch and this elephant on the South Bank, near the London Eye.

posted by Ham at 00:02 -- Comments here: 6

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Name: Ham Location: London, United Kingdom View my complete profile


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