There is an amazing vibe in London today. The streets are deathly quiet as people stay at home to watch tv, go to parks to watch big screens, or for the lucky few, attend the Olympic venues to witness incredible performances from the British team. As we live in the East End of London, we decided to take our summer holidays over the two Olympic weeks. We spent a small fortune on tickets and crammed the family together in our little flat. I’m so glad we did. It’s been amazing so far and we have a week still to go.
As I head into another intense period of travel and work I took the opportunity to enjoy London in the spring. This was an amazing weekend of friends, family and lots of events. Here's just a small flavour.
A lone voice with an alternative point of view in Trafalgar Square at the TUC's anti cuts protest march.
There were over two hundred and fifty thousand marchers on the demonstration. It was good humoured and it felt like people were re-engaging with politics again in a really positive way.
Jenny gets a bargain bunch of roses for just 'A Fiver' at Columbia Road flower market.
A busking cellist frames a girl recovering in the Brick Lane spring sun.
I've been flat out at work finishing the next season of 'Locked Up Abroad' or flat out in the park enjoying the summer sun. Here are a few images taken over the last two weekends from my neighbourhood of London. The bottom shot is of 'The Bonfire Band'. They are a brilliant DIY Country Blues band that I listen to a lot on my iPod.
I love cycling in london. I hate dog shit.
I swear there's some SUV driving Pit Bull owner in Grays Inn Road taking revenge on us red-light-running-tin-heads by getting their studded rex to drop his meaty load right in the middle of Ken's (sorry Boris') green lanes.
And so it was, on a mad dash from one side of London to the other - there it was. A steaming pile of dog poo or a busted shoulder at best. Splat was the only option, but what a stinking one. Shit everywhere. The bike and my trousers were so splattered that even at top speed I couldn't out-cycle the stench.
Arriving at the office, I abandoned the bike at the door, rushed two floors, emptied a litter bin and refilled it with warm soapy water. Took four stairs at a time, whipped the bike back onto the street and was cleaning the evidence off my frame in no time.
Two window cleaners from the office below sussed it and laughed. That was bearable. But when a dispatch cyclist pulled up and asked me if I could clean his bike next, that's when I lost it.
So here's the deal. If you own that meaty Pit Bull. Do the squishy warm plastic bag thing and I promise, I'll sit patiently at every red light between Baker Street and Hackney.
I couldn't resist a folksy blog on the snow in London. We went to bed last night and it was snowing. We woke to soft silence and a child's distant laugh. London was transformed. Schools off. No buses. Tubes non-existent. 'I'll have to work from home', said Jen with deep concern slash delight. Today the great advantage of being a twenty minute walk from work became a temporary disadvantage. There was no way I could call off work, but most of my staff had to. Still, on the way in I managed to snap some cliched snowy London pics. And after a surprisingly productive day, I headed home early to take my Ozzy Jen to Victoria Park to make her first ever snowman, actually a Snow-woman.
We decided to walk from Liverpool street via the South Bank to Haymarket to see the excellent Frost Nixon film. It was bloody cold and there was the odd flurry of snow during the afternoon. But when we emerged from the cinema at eight o'clock it was to be confronted by near whiteout on Piccadilly Circus. Grown people all around us were behaving like children. A lone Chinese woman held her face to the sky and laughed like a child as big flakes landed on her face. And Jen, brought up in Adelaide (currently facing a shocking heatwave), was having a ball too.
I love to cycle. I call it urban surfing. Each day I cycle into work, which isn't far. But I also pedal back and forward from my office in Raw Television to the edit suites at Envy. It's about twenty minutes of hardcore urban cycling through the centre of London and it's joyous weaving. We are making another 13 part series of 'Banged Up Abroad' or 'Locked Up Abroad' as it's called in the US. It's a great series to produce. My crews get to work all over the world but I get to go urban surfing each day in London. I took this picture on my phone in the Lee Valley where the London Olympics are going to be held in 2012.