As You Were, London. The Party’s Over.

Great conceptual shot by Sabine Thoele from the Flickr pool.

The party is over

The Queen’s Jubilee festivities have come to an end. What did you think, all said and done?

Enjoy the bank holidays?

I had to work yesterday. So today, I give you a story.

It was some time around 8:30am. The streets were empty, Union Jack bunting tangled in tree branches, only me and one other person standing on the platform, waiting for the tube. I stepped into an empty carriage, headphones in my ears. Sat peacefully. One stop. No one got on.

Another stop. A group of 10 or 15 guys clamber into the tube, drinking beer, hollering. I pretend not to notice until one of them drunkenly leans against my shoulder and offers me a sip of his Coors Light. No thank you. Just on my way to the office, I say politely. He spills a bit. I smell of beer.

He loses interested and turns his attention back to his mates. They are covered in Union Jacks. He starts mooing loudly, waving his flag. Jumping. They are hanging on the hand rails hooting like monkeys.

A few stops down the line, one of them gets on all fours, walks down the aisle making animal sounds. Stops near me.

Licks my foot.

Yes, I smelled of beer and had my foot licked by a stranger on the tube all before 9am.

Usual bank holiday in London then….

How did you spend yours?


Photographs of Londoners at the Queen’s Jubilee

By most accounts of the press, the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee boat pageant was a near flawless success, apart from the bit of rain (that may or may not have added to the “British-ness” of the festivities). About a million of us Londoners gathered on the wet pavements along the Thames to watch 1,000 impressive, decorated boats, including the Spirit of Chartwell that carried the Queen down the river just past Tower Bridge which opened ceremoniously as her vessel passed.

We arrived early (or what we thought was early, quite a few hours before the boats were meant to begin their journey down the Thames) but didn’t manage to get a viewing spot, so we settled on people watching whilst we waited and stood near a screen playing back scenes from the Queen’s history on the throne. Eventually, it got too crowded to see the screen and there was definitely no chance of glimpsing the boats, so we walked our wet feet back to the flat and watched the full live BBC coverage with a warm blanket and  a cup of tea. Definitely a wise decision.

Of course, that means no boat pictures but plenty of people (and by the looks of some of their faces, they’d probably have been happier watching it at home on the BBC as well, though I’m sure they cheered up once the excitement kicked off.) By the way people are dressed, you would never guess is it actually June…great fun watching everyone make an effort and get out there despite the weather. Here’s a handful:

Little Britain

Cheer Up!

Wrapped Up in Patriotism

Going to See the Queen

Union Jack Rabbit

Union Jacks for Sale

Lady in Red

Here Comes the Queen

Did you get to see the boats then? If you got any good shots, add them to the Flickr pool, and I will share. Enjoy your second bank holiday if you’re off today! (and enjoy it extra for me because I’m not…)

A Walk in Battersea Park

Ah, a late post today, in true bank holiday spirit. Anyone off to Buckingham Palace tonight? Make it down to the Thames yesterday for the boat parade? Enjoying the extra days off? Some festive Jubilee photos for you tomorrow. I’m looking through them in bank holiday mode, slowly slowly.

On Saturday, we took a wander through Battersea Park before the festivities kicked off. So, in the meantime, here’s a few photos from there:

Some random books piled up around the park

Bit of wildlife…

A dog frantically chasing the wildlife:

A pretty flower.

Battersea Power Station –

And, of course, a taste of the Queen’s Jubilee. Chocolate-flavoured.

Yum yum yum!

Photo of me by Jorge.

Spirit of the Queen’s Jubilee

Jorge and I took a five minute stroll to Tesco on King’s Road in Chelsea a few days ago. The man at the till was wearing a baseball cap with a giant union jack and just about every shop window we walked by had a patriotic display. Remember that entry I wrote the other day with a few union jack jubilee photos? Here’s a bunch more – iPhone shots that Jorge took (all within a five minute walk, which shows the sheer density of union jack displays right now!) and so kindly shared for LLO. Ready?

And a few extras from today:

PS – Since Jorge was nice enough to share all of his festive union jack photos, why not show some love with a like on his Facebook page? Check out his LLO artist interview as well. He’s a garden designer.


And so… any special Queen’s Jubilee plans for you Londoners this weekend? Be sure to take lots of photos for the Flickr pool whatever you do. I will be watching the floats on Sunday. I unfortunately left my awesome Union Jack heels in New York… but here they are in spirit:

British Pride

Walk down any high street these days and the windows are crammed with Union Jacks – bunting, pillows, clothing, furniture. I’ve seen a  motorbike painted with the flag. Oxford Street is lined with 147 of them. There’s one hanging on Carnaby Street. People are wearing them. Even Banksy’s pumping them out.  The city has gone mad with its material displays of patriotism before all the Jubilee celebrations kick off.

And here’s a couple from GediUK:

Proud British
Flying high

If you’re not interested in the teapots, I found this on Portobello Road:
Union Jack

Add your snapshots of the Union Jack frenzy to the Flickr pool?