Thursday, December 28, 2006


Leg one of the statue walk is done. I should be a little disappointed that I left home at 8.45am and returned at 4pm with just sixteen under my belt. But I did some walking I can tell you. My right knee is done for. When I say sixteen I actually mean fourteen. Two have gone.

You may be wondering why you suddenly have a picture of shrubbery but these are redundant Christmas trees. It's a council drop-off point at the top end of Brunswick Square. Just three days after Christmas these struck me as incredibly wasteful.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006


Early in November I was reading E.V. Lucas's Wanderer in London (1906) and eagerly scribbling down quotes, ideas and possible 'projects'.

I have I think named all of London's statues that ever receive any attention. The others are chiefly statesmen, soldiers and kings, and may be said hardly to exist...

This, though far from complete, may be called a good list; and I doubt if there are many Londoners who could have supplied from memory half of it.

I myself wondered if those mentioned - all 52 listed between the first quotation and the second - still exist one hundred years on and are still easily accessible to the public. It's quite feasible that some fell foul of the Second World War, some have been left to rot and some may be shut off from public view - I'm guessing that may be the case for "Richard Coeur-de-Lion, splendidly warlike, on his horse, by the House of Lords."

Tomorrow sees the start of my latest London walking adventure. I have rearranged the statues into a vaguely logical walking order starting at the Royal Exchange and finishing in Chelsea by way of Islington Green and Camden. Sir Hugh Myddleton and Cobden have annoyed me somewhat by taking me too far north and probably ending my hopes of achieving this in a day; a day and a half if not two now looks more likely.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

I fell into special needs teaching. I'm not really sure how. I've always thought you have to be creative with kids and as much as we want them simply to do what we want them to when we say it just ain't gonna happen all the time.

A boy with significant problems was moved into my tutor group (against my better judgement).

I want him to sit at the table like everyone else. He takes a chair to the back wall and does his best to curl up underneath it. I explain to everyone else what to do and go to join him with my own chair.

Miss, what are you doing?”

I'm not sure. The floor's cold, don't you think?”

But, what are you doing?”

Seeing the world from your angle?”

For God's sake. There's something wrong with you.” He says with disgust. He takes his chair to the table and sits down.

Mission accomplished.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006


Barking probably isn't what springs to mind when one mentions Broadway but it is in fact the name of the local theatre. (Although I have heard some refer to it as the Dudley Moore).

Having bought tickets to watch Jo Brand quite some time ago I am on their mailing list. I like the idea of supporting the local arts. And then I open the latest brochure.

I mean, what do I go for? An Audience with Jimmy Greaves in February or Chas and Dave in March?

Sunday, December 10, 2006

London Bridges

A modern day Margery Allingham. Allegedly. Enjoyable but too contrived to follow in the footsteps of the mistress of London crime fiction.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Break Time

Photo from BBC website

After having spent two hours invigilating trial SATs exams with behaviourally-challenged pupils on my own (and gettting the zip of my right boot caught on the left knee of my pink fishnets) I had the pleasure of break duty. Stopping pupils from entering the building.

Sky goes black in a blink. The heavens open. Hailstones plummet. The wind roars and the children stampede screaming into the building. I do not stop them. Phenomenal.

And we are in east London. We can only imagine what it was like in the north west. Scary.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006


Headscarves. Suicide. Love. Politics. Religion. And snow. Lots of snow.

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Things to do on a Sunday

Gobble up a salt beef and mustard beigel from Beigel Bake on Brick Lane.


Mary was betrothed to a carpenter named Joseph.

Pedestrian Delight

The newspapers are showing photos of the crowds thronging Oxford and Regent's Streets yesterday which were closed to traffic. Those of us who can get up in the morning took advantage of no traffic and no crowds either to get the Christmas shopping done.

C: Who are we buying for? Family and Pat?
E: Yes.
C: Don't you think he'd like a raunchy calender?
E: Yes, but he's certainly not getting one from me.
C: Hang on... Don't I get a say in this?
E: No.

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Countdown to Christmas

The countdown has officially begun. It should of course have started yesterday but I'd forgotten about the advent calendar sat on the kitchen table under a pile of papers. Fairtrade Divine chocolate from Oxfam.

1. It all started in the Holy Land about 2000 years ago.
2. A young woman named Mary lived Nazareth.