Monday, December 19, 2005

London images

Here is Eros from Picadilly circus - much manipulated in Photoshop -to get some detail since it was impossible to get more than a sillhouette against the frosty blue sky.

London's Chinatown - London was absolutely packed with people everywhere we went - there were even queues of people standing in the drizzle waiting to get into ice cream parlours.

When we went into Harrods, there were signs saying '3hour wait from here' to visit Santa in his grotto - similar to the waiting signs at theme parks. I was surprised that people were willing to wait so long with young and very bored looking children.

There were some people dressed as elves and children's entertainers and gingerbread and water being given to people waiting in the queue but it must have seemed like an eternity to the kids.

A tremendous number of people were dressed as Santa Claus, especially at night, which was somewhat surreal. It could have been some sort of B horror film with were-Santas hunting in packs.

This is the Peter Pan statue in Kensington Gardens - it marks the place where J M Barrie met the children who inspired the character Peter Pan.

The statue is by Sir George Frampton, R.A., P.R.B.S. (1860-1928) and shows Peter Pan blowing a horn with a base that is covered with fairies, rabbits and squirrels.

There are a lot of grey squirrels around in Kensington Gardens -they seem fairly tame as they have been fed by countless visitors. They aren't easy to photograph as they move so quickly in and out of the frame.

I saw a pair of green parrot-type birds but the picture didn't come out -presumably they are escapees from a zoo or someone's aviary. It seems that there are increasing numbers of these birds in England and that they are aclimatised and even breeding in urban areas.

Here is the lake in Kensington Gardens/Hyde Park -the two parks blend into each other. This part of the lake is called the Long Water. The grey streaks in the sky are the smoke from the explosion at the Buncefield Oil Depot.

The explosion was heard far and wide but we slept through it , although other people in central London were woken from sleep.

The smoke thickened as the day went on and produced a magnificent sunset - although I was on a coach travelling to Torquay at the time and it had really filthy windows so photos were out of the question. Its strange that such amazing beauty can come out of toxic smoke.

Swans are often seem zen-like creatures as they almost glide across the water ...

but here is an adult swan squabbling with a youngster - you can just see the 'dirty brown' feathers that are turning to adult white.

I think the adult was wanting first share of any food that was going. Quite a few people were feeding the swans and other birds while I was taking photos.

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isay said...

Merry christmas to you and your loveones alison!

The Whippy Curly Tails said...

I love all the pics, especially the swans!

Happy Holidays.