Rain, Christmas Lights and Tenerife

Monmouth Street

It’s amazing how beautiful London can be in the rain. I walked through the seven dials in Covent Garden a few days ago and Christmas lights glistened in the puddles.

Bill Bryson once wrote:

“I can never understand why Londoners fail to see that they live in the most wonderful city in the world. It is, if you ask me, far more beautiful and interesting than Paris and more lively than anywhere but New York – and even New York can’t touch it in lots of important ways. It has more history, finer parks, a livelier and more varied press, better theaters, more numerous orchestras and museums, leafier squares, safer streets, and more courteous inhabitants than any other large city in the world.”

And probably more rainy days, at least this month. But if you can see past your wet shoes and wind-blown umbrella, there’s plenty of beauty there.

Anyway, I just wanted to stop in to say Merry Christmas to all of you who celebrate. What’s everyone doing? Going home? Travelling? Having an orphan Christmas like I did one year? I’m leaving tomorrow and will be in Tenerife until early January, spending a warm Christmas with Jorge’s family and my 30th birthday on La Gomera, another island. In the meantime, there’s a couple of scheduled posts this week on my other blog, Little Observationist if you want to swing by. Enjoy the holidays!

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Chinatown at Night

When I was on my way back to Earl’s Court from Camden on Sunday, I couldn’t resist a stop off at Sacred Cafe on Ganton Street for a savoury muffin and a pot of relax tea. Figured I couldn’t waste a nice night, so I wandered through Chinatown and Soho a bit. Here’s three little Chinatown shots for today.

Chinatown Gate

Daily News

Chinatown at Night

Londoners: Love in a Cold Climate

If you missed this lovely shot from Ian Brumpton on Londonist the other day, he also posted it in the Flickr pool for us.

Love in a cold climate

What has been your favourite Winter moment in London?

Brew me a cup for a winter’s night.
For the wind howls loud and the furies fight;
Spice it with love and stir it with care,
And I’ll toast our bright eyes,
my sweetheart fair.
~Minna Thomas Antrim

Quiet London Nights

Walking along the Thames at night is where I really fell in love with this city. It was 2004 and I was here on a study abroad programme. It was an Autumn night, quiet except for the distant sounds of boat parties and someone playing guitar. It was magical and peaceful and I was hooked.

These photos were added to the Flickr pool by jamiefraser1. Thanks Jamie!

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Do you remember where you were when you fell in love with London? Or your own city for that matter?

London Lights at Night

River Lights

Late at night, the city looks different.

Silent Night

Lights flick in and out of focus on the horizon.

Squiggly Lights

Street lamps cast an eerie glow around the silhouette of another person walking in front of you.

Thames at Night

There is stillness everywhere, except along the roads where the city moves on.

Prince Albert Bridge

Reflections, colourful long streaks, plunge into the Thames along the shore.

Coffee

Faded pale backgrounds blur into spots hanging in the sky like fairy lights.

Dancing Night Lights

It is silent but for the distant music, shouts and laughter from a party boat floating by, sinking slowly under the bridge and into the night.

Christmas Lights at Night

There are no stars in this part of London, but you can at least see the bright moon.

Spider Crawling on the Moon