Tourist London: A Walk In History

My friend Antony sent me another of the You Tube videos of Joolz presenting one of his very informative walks.

This time, he is walking around some very famous Central London tourist areas, and giving a detailed history in his inimitable style.
(The film is just under 30 minutes long.)

If you have ever wandered around the same places, you may well be interested in the background to them.

Thinking Aloud On A Sunday

Clocks forward.

We had our summertime clock change at 02:00.

So when I woke up when it as still dark at 6am, it was actually 7am.

That still felt to early and dark to get up, so I managed to get back to sleep.

I must have needed that sleep, as I didn’t wake up again until 9:45am.

Which of course was now 10:45am. Confused? I was.

It all reminded me of this old song, from 1969.

Edward Hopper: A Tribute In Photographs

American artist Edward Hopper (1882-1967) created stark images on canvas that were powerful enough to tell the story in your head. You may not have heard of him, or like me, you might well be a fan. These are some examples of his work.

An American photographer, Richard Tuschman, has been experimenting with recreating some of Hopper’s images, using a digital camera. My friend Antony sent me a link to a short (six-minute) video presentation of his photos, which are quite simply stunning.

All you photographers out there are going to appreciate this video, I am sure. And also many of you who never take photographs, hopefully.

(The video link looks blank, but it does play when you click on it.)

Happy Lockdown Birthday To Me!

Today is my 69th birthday!

(No sixty-nine jokes, please. This is a family blog. 🙂 )


(Not my actual cake.)

Regular readers will know that I make a big deal of my birthdays. I usually string them out over a full week, and on the day I take a trip to the seaside, followed by a nice restaurant meal in the evening.

But in 2021, none of that can happen.

Instead it will be the usual walk with Ollie, opening cards and presents, then a nice takeaway meal this evening.

I would like to wish a happy birthday to any fellow Piscean who shares this day with me. I hope to be able to post something similar next year, when I will be 70.

That’s a nice round number.

Okay, all together now. Sing along with Clare!

Something Funny For A Sunday

We all need something to cheer us up, and this worked for me.

My friend Antony sent me this clip of a cat watching a horror film. The cat’s reactions are great, and prove beyond doubt that it knows something bad is going on.

This may be old news to some of you, but if you haven’t seen it, it’s only one minute long.

Of Interest To Photographers

My friend Antony sent me a link to a short (16 minute) film on You Tube.

Two photographers travel to London to experience the city when it is almost deserted during lockdown.

They video themselves, and explain the ideas and the process, also the camera settings and equipment used.

Some of the resulting stills are shown alongside the original video footage.

For me, it was fascinating to see this area of Central London almost empty of people. Soho, Seven Dials, and Covent Garden, places where I worked and walked every day for the last twelve years I spent in that city. Even if you have no interest in cameras or photography, you might enjoy seeing the impact of the Covid-19 lockdown on the capital city of England.

(There are some short advertisements dring the video, but they can be skipped.)

Birthday Boy!

On this day in 2012, Ollie was born in the house next door. Today is his ninth birthday, quite old for his breed.

But as you will have seen from his recent video appearances, he is still lively, and enjoying his walks.

2020 saw the loss of his mother, Molly. Then later in the year, his sister Milly died. He didn’t know of course, so was spared any sense of loss.

Today he received two new soft toys as birthday presents. A Crocodile, and a Sheep. With his dinner later, he will get an extra bonus of a large smoked sausage.

I hope my best friend and constant companion will be around for a long time to come.

Video: More Heavy Snow, and Hoe Rough

Overnight last night, we had another very heavy fall of snow. This despite the BBC weatherman saying that “The East has seen the last of the snow for now”. It was bad enough for us to cancel the dog groomer appointment and reschedule for next week. No point risking a five-mile drive involving untreated roads, just to get a dog shampooed.

The morning was very sunny and bright, so I took the phone on Ollie’s walk, and headed over to Hoe Rough. Unfortunately, it was still so bright at the start of the walk, that I couldn’t see a thing on the screen, other than my own face reflected in it. So the results are rather hit and miss, but I will post them all anyway.

Ollie in some quite deep snow. Not many people had been over there, and in parts it was as deep as my boots.

A shorter clip of Ollie. He had heard something, so stopped to listen carefully.

At the time, I couldn’t see what was in the frame here, but I managed to get Ollie’s head in at the end. 🙂

Ollie ‘marking’ some snow. The pool of water is left over from the recent floods, and I walked in to show how deep it is.

Where Hoe Rough opens out, you can see the extent of the virgin snow to the south.
At this point the sun went in, and didn’t appear again.

The river bend from the Hoe side, looking across to Beetley Meadows.
Walking there was heavy going, as nobody had been down there before us, and the path was covered over.

Next to the gate of the path that leads up to Holt Road. I am calling Ollie a ‘good boy’ to make him wag his tail for you. 🙂
The pools of water you can see are left over from the recent flooding.

This is ‘The Dell’, where I like to sit and rest on very hot days.
What looks like a pond is in fact a deep pool of rainwater that has been there for months.

Looking north from the southern end of Hoe Rough.
Behind the wire fence is a large private woodland, part of the huge garden of a relatively small house in Hoe.

I hope you have all enjoyed my two days of snow videos. Hopefully, that will be the last of the snow this year!

Video Clips: A Very Snowy Dog Walk

When I took Ollie out today, I also took my phone, attached to the grip/holder I bought to try to keep it steady.

Ollie in the snow, avoiding the camera. And the deserted playground on Beetley Meadows.

Boots in the snow, and more views of the Meadows.

Riverside area, and boots in slush.

The River Whitewater, back to normal levels.

No picnics on these benches today, and Ollie refusing to move in shot.

My next door neighbour, and her lively dog, Henry.
Ollie was refusing to play, as usual.
(You can hear me asking him to)

In the woodland area, Ollie liked the smells.
It did look quite pretty in there, with no wind to disturb the snow.
Just after putting my phone away, I had a heavy fall, tripping on a tree root covered by the snow. I managed to bend back two fingers on my right hand, and they still hurt!

If I get the chance tomorrow, and the snow is still around, I will show you what it looks like over on Hoe Rough.