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måndag 14 augusti 2017

Walking the streets of London

This modest little mansion is found in the Old Marylebone area, we could imagine a flat here!
Goodmorning friends out there!

I get new visitors from time to time, and that is very nice!  I do wish you would comment more often, I like comments and I trust in my old friends who always brings me a thought or two, but there is space enough for more....
The author on Millenium Bridge
Lovely neighbourhood, Camden

So, what did we do in London?  We walked.....oh and we used the DLR AND Tube and bus!!!
But, sing Halleluya, every day, I'm walking with the King!! Yes, every day wherever I go!
Last time we had one tiresome and frustrating busexperience, this time we got on the wrong train, had a furious set of platform staff on our hands and now my husbands backpack is statuated in Brighton. Not all were furious though, we had some good help but Brighton was too far off , it's complicated...I hope they find good use for it....

So, the "No elevator hotel" was rather cozy , staff lovely, breakfast good, room steaming but we went out walking. Even taking the tube means walking walking and climbing endless stairs...but I love the system, it really is swift. 
Archades on our way to Picadilly, we saw some more along Bond Street. Nice, but expensive.........
So, yes, there was shopping....on our part as well, and enduring the girl's running from makeup disk to clothe rack to make up to clothes, to stuff and stuff....or soap.....
Remember the tv-series Soap? Here it is - Soap!!

Us?  We perchased dvd's.....HMV is our second home, almost.  I bought a new phone last week and wanted a cover for it, but oh, Iphone this and that and Samsung hi and ho, but mine?? No... It's still in oldest daughters too large old cover, stuck with sticky pads...

Found some nice films!!
Otherwise, you know buildings , architecture, is my cup of tea. The heart of a city, as long as it's there. In our parts, all over Sweden, the malls are spreading like funghi, slowly suffocating the central parts of every town.  Ok for small Malls and arcades, but these huge , hangar like temples of Mammon....no thank you!!
Splendour in it's best, even an odd pub can be beautiful!!!
New architecture by the Banks, we have similar in my hometown but these look better!!
We ventured a continued crossing of the Thames by several bridges, quite a nice way to spend a sunny evening, we thought!!

The Globe, the Globe!!!!!1
On our way to the Globe we pass this small alley
Walking down Regent Street on your way to Picadilly you will find that wonderful row of theatres, bringing you oldies and goldies and brand new performances. I do envy that possibility that you have, but I suppose there are theatres all over the country!!!

Last time we were here there was a large number of street musicians and this time we hardly noticed anyone.
I can wonder why.
We also noticed an increasing number of tourists from Asia, we see that a lot in Sweden too.
Asia, all parts but North Korea, is very interesting to young travellers today, they go to Vietnam, Japan, Kambodja , South Korea. 
Next time we go to GB if mrs May let us in, we will spend but a couple of days in London and then onward,  so many places to see....
This is the very important City, I expect this is the dwelling place of bankers, investors, managing directors and stockbrokers. I would firstly get lost and secondly create a minor turmoil if I even tried to enter one of these houses.....oh woe and agony!!
Bridge after bridge after bridge...lovely sight, isn't it?

Still, we rushed past all the stores in Bond Street and peeked in at F&M feeling very plain and awkvard, but enjoyed the streets, the houses, people, noices, a mere visit, we wouldn't want to live in the middle of it but found plenty of wonderful little towns when we got on the trains....Like Bromley on Bow... just the taste of the name!!!!!

And plenty to eat.....
Pie at Mabels, Spitfire gravy....

Roast duck from China In
Pizza at Zophias

Roast chicken with several sides

This is not the chicken, this is Buckbeak, the Hippogriff.

And, and this is very important, so many pleasant and helpful people....we ...know what it's like to endure tourists so the patience, the patience.....
Yes, we went back to Watford and Harry Potter, it is really an amazing place with several new things to discover. The museum is an old aircraft hangar from WW2, plenty of..... Spitfires perhaps, were manufactured here.   Watford is a very pleasant little town actually. 

The girls really longed for this months on end- Summer in the city 2017, a Youtube event out at Excel London. We took the tube out to Plaistow and then the bus to the exhibition centre, Plaistow looked very nice, a bit torn perhaps. The actual event swirmed with young people, quite a lot of them walking around with a camera or mobil in front of their faces, talking to themselves..weird world!! Open stage was most fun, all kinds of acts. Apart from that, we really didn't fit in....it was for safety and the care of our youngest that we tagged along.

At home? Jazzfestival began thursday , the parade on friday and ended yesterday with the traditional Jazz service in the chapel with minister Yours truelly holding sermon and singing  Swing Low and In the sweet by and by....The Lord be blessed for these moments of joy and gospel to be shared with busy jazzlovers. 

In our village life is slowly quieting down, boats are drawn up, caravans are moving away, school starts tomorrow, end of most markets and fairs. 
I like this - the pace goes down and things are back to normal. Did I write this last year too?? Probably.

God bless you!

tisdag 8 augusti 2017

Come back home!

So we are back home!

We had a busy week in London, leaving space for recovery, since our youngest can't keep up otherwise. We stayed at a typical english hotel, located in a row of exactly similar houses with "Upstairs Downstairs" feeling, the tv-series from the 1970's. It was a new experience, even if we are used to hostels and camper cabins. Our room was on third floor, no elevator, very good for your legs and physical condition, and no aircondition, pew.  It was immensely hot even with windows open. Our view was a park with tennis courts and a newbuilt block on the other side. This is Camden, we like it here, Euston road is close but our site is quiet. Well, apart from the constant sound of sirens. Poor londoners, things happend all the time! 

The tenniscourts , some players interested our girls more than some....


The quiet, lovely neighbourhood in Camden
We have noticed that London is not one large city, it's several smaller ones put together!!
That is why it feels smaller and less overwhelming than expected.  What strikes you is the constant smell of garbage and exhaust from the non stop moving vehicles.  How on earth can anyone dare to ride a bike in the middle of this chaos??? But they do....sometimes with facemask. 
Along the pavements and outside tubestations and malls you find the beggers, some are probably illegal immigrants, we saw young boys in a state of heartbreaking decay, we spoke to older woman from Eastern Europe, we passed young, dirty men sleeping on cardboard with a sleepingbag and some plastic bags around them. Some had notes and signs speaking of truth, care and a place to sleep.  What kind of social welfare system can allow people to live like this?
We are fighting this in Sweden, churches and social organisations together. But politically.....
Still, we also saw people stopping, taking their time to give a coin, ask some questions. 

All of these people are not immigrants or illegal aliens, some are locals that had bad luck, can happend to anyone. But all of them are people, humans, sisters and brothers, someones child, someones parent, our neighbours. Our youngest had us leave every spare coin and the remains of our supper. We bought bread, cheese, juice , fruit and yoghurt with us to the room every night.  
Well, this particular post will show you some of the sanctuaries we noticed this time, in a city like this people need the Even Song and the daily Mass.  Next post will focus on activities.

Well, St Pancras was a boy in the 5th century, giving his life for Jesus. This is the parish church in St Pancras...they rebuilt it in greek style, the old church was medieval, I believe. Not so inviting but they had a proper bellringer!!
Around the church of St James's there was a market going on and we visited both the market and the church. The sign speaks for itself, here is a heart for the homeless. Many of the other smaller churches had similar projects going.
You never see these in Sweden, the street sanctuaries. In the middle of everything, for a second of prayer and peace.

And next door you'll find the amazing dome of St Pauls.  We were told that the swedish congregation in London have been invited to sing Lucia here this year. 

Normally, this is a rather tall man....

As it should be in a swedish church there is a statue of Luther, this one is....blue! 
Church of Sweden, Harcourt Street. Been here for more than 100 years now, some 100.000 swedes live in the UK,  many of them, in London.
The final picture is from St Marks at Old Marylebone road.
We visited more churches but didn't take pictures of them all. Most of them were open, not always the case in Sweden actually, especially not in the countryside.

What am I doing up this late? No idea, not easy to settle down again when you have been away. This evening we spent with our oldest daughter, watching a Japanese film:
"Howls moving castle."  It's about love against the odds, wartime,  good and evil, sacrifices and lot's of that very special japanese anime drawings and sense of humour.

Good night now, and God bless you!