Sunday was the Venezuelan elections and Natalia and Ricky were off to the city to vote and hang out waiting for a miracle to happen. I took myself off to Camden for a taste of their markets today. To tell you the truth I would just as soon have curled up with a good book but thought I shouldn’t waste time.
I’ve actually not seen markets with such an alternate feel about them, there were some traditional sort of stalls but totally dominated by the younger grungier types. Of course, I did wander around for a couple of hours, just couldn’t help myself. Found Natalia a small thank-you gift then headed back on the train to Stratford and some food shopping at the Westfield there. Imagine there being a Westfield Shopping Centre in London – they’re everywhere!!
Looked through Marks & Spencers, and marveled at their food hall. I remember seeing food halls in the basements of big shops years ago but you don’t see them often in Australia any more. Anyhow, caught the bus back to a stop just metres from the flat and ensconced myself on the couch to catch up on some blogging.
Soaking up the sun – 15 degrees!! Camden, London
Off-beat, different, grungy and very cool. Camden Markets, London
Horse Tunnel Markets, Camden, London
Security???? Camden Markets, London
Natalia and her friend, Carol, found me sitting in Starbucks at a window seat happily trying to sketch the building across the street. We headed off to some new bar that had amazing views according to Carol.
the inside out building central London
I hadn’t realised that London is becoming well known as housing quite a large number of unusual buildings. The “Gherkin” is famous I think but we also passed what they called the “inside out” building where all the pipes, lifts etc are on the outside of the building.
We waited outside the building for about half an hour for entry into this trendy new bar, caught the lift to the 39th floor, spent 10 minutes trying to find a space to stand or sit comfortably and then gave up and decided to leave. Before we left I made a trip to the loo and found the amazing views they were on about – took a couple of pics out the bathroom window – typical, hey!!
the Gherkin from a new 39th floor bar in London
Anyhow, we then zigzagged around the banking district where the girls pointed out a number of interesting places and bars. I know I haven’t frequented bars in capital cities for many years and things could have changed but I found it astounding the number of people standing outside the bars drinking and talking.
We ended up at a bar next to the Spitalfields markets for a few hours before heading home again on the tube. London keeps surprising me in so many ways, even late at night in the East end I felt totally safe.
Nat’s suburb of Leyton looks a little down at heel on first impression, is hugely diverse culturally but is so very quiet I had no trouble sleeping in every day – oh, that’s right, I have no trouble sleeping in any time….
Friday night crowds outside the pub in Leadenhall Markets, London
Frying Pan Lane (taking pic while walking = out of focus, sorry)
More interesting buildings in London
London by night
Some interesting feature in central London
Friday night drinks, puts a different slant on our saying “one for the road”