Friday Flashback #038 …

The Millennium Bridge leads from the Tate Modern Museum to St. Paul’s Cathedral, across the Thames. It’s solely a pedestrian bridge and when they first opened it, the swaying of it (which was intentional) freaked people out, so they had to fix it. It opened in 2000, but was closed after opening day for two years to get rid of the irksome “wobbly-ness.” It’s a beautiful structure and it links my favorite part of London, Bankside, with the actual city. I stay right near here in Southwark each time I visit this amazing city.

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Friday Flashback #037 …

This is Boadicea and Her Daughters, juxtaposed with the London Eye. It’s on the city side of the Westminster Bridge, and pretty much opposite it is Big Ben (which we Americans tend to call it … it’s really Elizabethan Tower. Big Ben is actually the name for the great bell of the clock.). It’s my understanding that the entire tower is now swathed in scaffolding, so there won’t be any great photo ops of that London-centric landmark this trip, I guess. The statue itself wasn’t erected in its present location until 1902, but it was worked on by Thomas Thornycroft from 1856 until his death in 1895, assisted by his son, William. I love the old/new parts of this image, one serious and historical, the other totally frivolous and capitalistic. Two Londons, side-by-side. (For those wondering, Boadicea was Queen of the Celtic Iceni tribe who lead an uprising against Roman Britain … kind of a real-life Wonder Woman!).

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Friday Flashback #036 …

Hidden away near the Elephant and Castle Underground stop in southern London is The Cinema Museum. This rambling collection is geared towards actual cinemas, that is movie theaters, and all the amazing paraphernalia that accompanies them: Signage, posters, projectors, displays, even usher uniforms. It’s worth seeing, and it’s located in what was–over a century ago–one of the workhouses that a young Charlie Chaplin spent time in, before he became famous. It’s definitely worth seeking out (even though every time I go to it, I get lost), but you have to make an appointment for a tour. For more info, please click here.

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Friday Flashback #035 …

The Tower Bridge from the Tower of London. This shot (taken in late 2016) is at the exit point for the Tower of London tour and I thought it made a particularly compelling photo. I’ve been to London enough times now that while I’ll probably do a walk-by of some attractions (like the Tower of London, London Eye, and Sky Garden), I won’t pay the money to go into them. The museums, however, are a different story, and there are a few I’m looking forward to seeing again, including Victoria and Albert. True confession: I love museum stores almost as much–if not more–as I love the museums themselves. A good museum store is like a good bookstore for me … heaven.

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Friday Flashback #034 …

Leadenhall Market, London, 2016. If you look closely, you can see the Christmas decorations. I love these old shopping arcades that pepper English towns. London has numerous ones (not all as ornate as Leadenhall), and Leeds had a few, too. I’m anxious to see if both York and Brighton have them, since I’ll be visiting both those locations when I go over in a few weeks. I’m going to be seeing a lot of the middle and southern part of England by train, which I’m excited about. Train travel over there is so much more … civilized and–more importantly–embraced. The United States loss of trains as a viable way of travel is disgraceful in my eyes. But don’t get me started.

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Friday Flashback #033 …

When lions walked the earth … this sunny scene from the Tower of London was captured in November of 2016, my last trip to one of my favorite cities in the world. Okay, let’s qualify that: I haven’t traveled that much. I travel a lot, but I tend to go back to the cities I love: London, New York, Seattle, Portland, etc. I’m basically a one-trick travel pony. This particular time in London, I did do the Tower tour, and I enjoyed it, but I went off on my own, rather than listening to the canned Beefeater guide. Still, it was a wonderful photo opportunity, and that’s what my trips are: photos, books, and entertainment (plays, movies, museums, etc.). And while this upcoming trip to England in a few weeks will take me around the country, all those things will be a part of it.

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Friday Flashback #032 …

I have England on my mind. In a few short weeks, I’ll be traveling to the country of my ancestors for a LONNNNNNNG visit, the longest time I’ve ever been away from home. I can’t hardly wait. The photo above is from the prosaically-named Sky Garden, which looks out over the south end of London, directly across from the giant, sky-rending building known as the Shard (you can see it peeking out there on the left). London has a thing for naming their buildings, and the Sky Garden is in what is fondly known as the “Walkie-Talkie” building. For the next few weeks, I’ll be showcasing photos from my last visit to London in 2016.

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