Sunday, February 10, 2008

London is Wonderful in the Sun

The weather has been gorgeous here for the last few days. On Friday it was so gorgeous and it had been such a long week that my flatmate Meredith and I decided we had to get out of the City and we went to Camden. It was shutting down as we got there, which was fine because that meant that all of the food was half price. Not a bad time to go really...

On Saturday I went out to Greenwich to meet a friend of my friend Emma Shubin's. Her name is Jenn Raven and she is a flautist at Trinity College there. We met up at 9:30 in the morning because she had to teach lessons later in the day. She has been taking a course in community music there so we talked about what that was like and also how the Guildhall program is set up. We were both getting very animated about it and disturbing other people in the cafe. Emma, who is our friend in common, went to Longy and was very active in the Dalcroze Eurhythmics department there. Jenn and I each have a small background in dalcroze as well and we discussing how we thought that the creative workshops and dalcroze would work remarkably well together and how we thought that should work. It was a lovely breakfast and very nice to meet her.

I then hung out in Greenwich a while longer because Caroline, the flautist from the first years lives there and we were going to have lunch together. Since it was such a gorgeous day I went to the Greenwich market. I love that market. One man had a stand for handmade felt hats that he then proceeded to put on my head. As he put each had on my head (and jostle it around for a proper fit in his estimation) he would talk about whether or not the colors really worked on me and if that sort of hat style worked. He was very opinionated. I didn't have enough money to buy one of the hats, but even if I had I think there was only one that would have met with his a approval and that he would have allowed me to purchase. I rather enjoyed his pushiness.

Speaking of felt, I also spent quite a lot of time at a yarn stand near the back of the market where the young German woman who was running the stand gave me a basic needle felting lesson and then let me stay there for over half an hour amusing myself with it and not buying anything. Eventually I ended up buy a 5GBP kit with four different colors of wool, a sponge, and a needle felting needle. When I met up with Caroline and showed her the little blue heart I had been working on I promptly broke the felting needle, but the nice German lady gave me a new one and made me promise to be more gentle.

Caroline lives on the top floor of a house owned by a retired art dealer. The flat is quite cluttered with the art dealer's stuff, but the walls are exciting to look at. Caroline took me to the park where time starts (is it called the meridian? Like the equator, but a lot more arbitrary?) When we entered the park I literally gasped. It is lovely living near school and not having any travel time to speak of, but living in the middle of the City it is easy to forget that trees exist. Sometimes I have to go wander around Bunhill fields which is the closest greenspace to school. It is also a graveyard. The park in Greenwich is filled with winding paths and large green fields and old gnarled trees. I was so happy. There was also, for some reason, a large gathering of people in costumes. Really random costumes. We got no satisfactory answer as to why this was even though we politely asked the pie and the pile of mashed potatoes standing next to the fork and Cruella DeVille.

I hope it stays nice and springtime-like here, but I suspect that we will have a few more cold fronts before that happens.


Andy said...

It's nice you got to Camden Market one last time before the fire. Nancy & I loved Camden Market and were sad to hear about such extensive damage -- but happy no one was hurt (we think no one was hurt). We hope when it is rebuilt it does not lose its character.

Mom said...

any good pictures of the costumes?