Loverly weather we've been having here lately! Apparently we're experiencing the darkest winter in 30 years, with an average of THREE whole hours of sunlight a day. Plus, there's some cloud over the UK or Europe or something that's just staying there - warm air from the ground meets cold air coming down, forming this huge stagnant mass that isn't moving at all!
Couldn't help but muse upon it all as I trudged back from teaching the other day down one of the long residential streets common in this part of London. The endless rows of terraces either side, literally walls of houses, seemed to rise as far as to meet the flat, grey, sunless sky...makes you feel so hemmed in....might as well be back down on the Tube!
Got some respite from the gloom last night on the way to the gig. I decided to walk from Chancery Lane down Fleet St to cross the river at Blackfriars Bridge.
It's always arresting in a way, getting to the river...sure, the water is a shade of brown that makes the Yarra look clean, and I dread to think what could be under that grim, uninviting surface, but when you get down there on a bridge or along Southbank, it's one of the few places in town that your eyes get to focus on objects far away. That and the obvious space between the banks, and you find yourself pausing, slowing down for a second, starting to look around and things and people and buildings.
I have to say, I'm not entirely impressed with the architecture down there. Some of those buildings, with their pallid greys and creams and dark metallics, are a strange visual echo of the faces and suits of the financiers and businessmen that inhabit them.
And then ones eyes are always drawn to St Pauls, which has never failed to impress me, whenever I've seen it. From the eighth floor of the Oxo Tower, on any given evening, it's quite a sight.
This place, the living, the working, the travelling, it absorbs you so much, if you're from somewhere else it can't help but start to alter those memories. I think back to Australia and it feels like some strange, bright, hot dream....did I ever live there?! In a past life maybe?!
But then perhaps not such a dream....walking down Chancery Lane to work this morning, it feels a little too warm on the skin...and then....no, it can't be! I look down the gently sloping narrow street lined with dour legal buildings and suddenly....a blinding shaft of.....a whole wall is blazing in front of my eyes! and I feel my feet skip below me down the pavement, my astonished body too weak to resist. Can't anyone else see it? It's that big glowy red thing in the sky, it's back!
It hits my face and strings and choirs are heard across the land (or maybe just in my head)! and for a minute, this place seems not so bad after all...