So, here I am , wandering the streets of central London perfectly at home in my favourite city. I have been working here full time for 6 months but over the years have lived and worked here, regularly conducted business here, and enjoyed weekends away here.
London is a vibrant City with a great mix of people and a cosmopolitan feel. On a balmy hot summers evening like tonight, people spill out of bars soaking up the sun and enjoying a cool beer while engaging in conversation. It’s on evenings like this that you realise how full of people London is.
Wandering the familiar streets of Soho where I first walked in 1978 when I was 18, I notice much has changed, yet much has remained the same. Seedy signs in doorways and phone booths, the smell of Chinese food and red coloured chickens hanging in the windows of the many Chinese restaurants in Chinatown. Much more commercial than it was in the 70’s I remember wandering down to Chinatown on a Sunday afternoon trying to buy some beer or lager for a variety of rock and pop stars who were recording, now famous albums, at Trident Studios where I worked just off Wardour Street. Now stripped of its notoriety Trident Studios hosted such luminaries as David Bowie, Elton John, Marc Bolan, the house band Queen, Genesis, Phil Collins and Rod Stewart among others.
Living now as I do during the week, in South Kensington, I find Soho an amazing starting point for a quick drink, before embarking on the long but feature rich walk back to South Ken. A quick visit to Sister Ray record shop on Berwick Street then passing Liberties store with it’s Tudor black and white façade and across Regent Street. Stopping in Heddon Street to see the Plaque where Bowie once stood at a phone box for the cover of Ziggy Stardust & the Spiders from Mars, and then a short hop to the Apple store on Regent Street. A quick play with the iPads, iPhones and various accessories I move on down to Piccadilly Circus and past the brightly lit advertising hoards and on past the Statue of Eros where I remember many an old 60’s movie with opening credits and a shot of old british cars, red double decker busses and black London cabs going round and round the statue.
From here I wander down to Trafalgar Square looking up at the statue of Nelson proudly surveying the surrounding scene high above on Nelsons column now guarded by not four, but three lions and a green chicken.
This is an amazing place and I have only touched the very surface of the centre of this wonderful City. Watch this space as I continue my travels to Covent Garden, The Famous Strand, The Houses of Parliament, St Pauls and so much more.
My favourite city? Not arf!