Things I’ve always done


The Albert pub on Victoria.

It’s taken me ten years to map London in my mind’s eye. To know the alternative routes for walking when TFL does the inevitable. To be able to calculate the risk depending on time of day. Or, and this one might be the most important to me, to maximise the potential for seeing things.

These things were taken yesterday on a typical ‘I’ll get off and walk rather than change tubes’ moment on the way home.

I chose it subconsciously I think, after the death of MT and the cyclist. I knew already which would be more visible to the naked eye but was surprised to what extent it made me swing from ‘Things I like’ to ‘Things I don’t like’.

Westminster roads were empty of cyclists and the flags were all at half mast. Tourists carried copies of the Evening Standard and TV crews gathered for voxpops.

At Trafalgar Square, a small protest took form to celebrate the passing of a political figure who long ago ceased to be answerable for her former influence.

London doesn’t shy away from making you feel like you’re missing out. Or that you’re right in the thick of it. Yesterday felt like a marriage of both but with less understanding than you might expect.

Other things I’ve always done (that no amount of time in London will undo)

1. Saying thank you to bus drivers.
2. Offering to take tourist pictures.
3. (But) refusing to change direction or duck when they take their own.
4. Queuing. I just can’t.
5. Standing on the wrong side of escalators.


Westminster at half mast.


Small protest in Trafalgar Square.

Filed under: Things I did.


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