#456 theoldmortuary ponders

Haberdashery Shop

Last weekend I collected some lovely textures from Marylebone High Street. Possibly my favourite High Street in England. I know it like the back of my hand and after a three year absence it felt as familiar as ever. It is decidedly upmarket and glam but holds all the shops you should expect from a normal English High Street. Supermarkets, charity shops, butchers, bakers, cafes and chemists.

Hardware Store

I’ve walked Marylebone High Street with so many friends,family and colleagues. Attended summer fetes and Christmas Markets, all with a little more twinkle and pizzazz than normal. I have left a little part of my heart in Marylebone.

Charity Shop

It is always good to step back into a place that has so many happy memories. A place to give thanks, to absent friends and fabulous moments.

Greengrocer

Pandemic Pondering #472

Debs Bobber

Hard on the heels of the Friday blog is the Saturday blog. The waters between Drakes Island and the tidal pool is a very busy stretch of water. Some of the most regular users are the Dockyard Tugs. This one is Faithful and is a Twin Tractor Unit Tug, built in 1985.

All the Bobbers love it when a Tug chugs past on a swimming session, there is a delicious thrum that goes through the water and resonates in our bones.

The name Faithful also gives me the chance to share a rare Celebrity anecdote. Sharing is the rarity. Having worked in Harley Street and in proper London Hospitals we’ve many an amusing tale filed away but confidentiality is a hurdle to witty celebrity nattering.

We were at a festival a few years ago when we saw some kitten heeled feet sticking out of a bush, closer inspection found them to be attached to a woman, still holding a glass, we grabbed her arms and pulled her out and she carried on walking without comment. Coincidentally a similar thing had happened to us at a different event about a year before. The women’s surnames were Faithful and Pallenburg. It’s not everyday you find someone in an awkward situation but finding two Rolling Stones muses in separate bushes is quite a story. Of course both the women in question were substantial people in their own right, but it can be argued that their fame and friendship began when they were associated with the Rolling Stones which is why I’ve allowed myself to use the word ‘ muse’.

Pandemic Pondering #251

This is a little bit of a one trick pony of a pondering. One of my favourite Facebook History Pages, asked the question. ” What is your favourite street name?”

No other name comes close to Grotto Passage in Marylebone. It was on one of my regular work walks. As an aside but slightly work related, some of my work colleagues were big fans of post work hook-ups using the dating App Grindr. If it were me there could only ever be one address for a liaison post work. ” Meet me in Grotto Passage’ would be my first choice everytime.

As it happens history got there before me. In the 18th Century Grotto Passage led to a Grotto. A pleasure garden, greatly embellished with sea shells by the owner John Castle, an acknowleged expert builder of such things. The fashion was brief and after John died the grotto fell into disrepair and was eventually built over. Most notably in 1846 by a children’s home and school entitled ‘ The Grotto Ragged and Industrial School’ and later ‘ The Grotto Passage Refuge’ It was around this time the area became known for the sort of sexual liaisons I jokingly referred to at the beginning.

But not necessarily in a good way, in TripAdvisor of the time the sort of sexual entertainment that could be had in Grotto Passage was considered to be inferior to the services available in Haymarket and was described as ” Depraved in every sense”

That seems as good a place as any to finish this ponder.

Vivid

Vivid is my word of choice on a dull, wet January day. Vivid brightens the world. Vivid people enrich the world. Vivid is never dull. I searched my files for a picture or two to illustrate vivid. My vivid file is rather full and I’m unable to just pick one so join me on a vivid journey for January. The route will be erratic.

Vivid Hugo in January 7 years ago. An 8 week old puppy. As I write this he still loves a vivid backdrop. Today he is sleeping on a Chartreuse coloured pillow.

One last Hugo centric image comes from Brighton Pavillion Winter Ice skating rink possibly 6 years ago. I love the accidental or serendipitous heart shape of the illuminated portion of the image.

Taking my next link as architecture Brighton Pavillion we to Neal’s Yard just North of Covent Garden Tube Station.

I’m completely lost as to where these beach huts are. Pink and orange takes us to the seaside, either Suffolk or Sussex.

This wall is in Marrakech, dropping the orange we go pink. A pink wall in Majorelle Gardens famed for their blue. There is a tiny triangle of the eponymous blue if you look hard enough.

Pink Marrakech walls guide me gently towards the next new direction, which will be sartorial with a nod to a traditionally dressed market porter. What is intangible from this picture is the vivid smell eminating from the tannery area. A rare example of vivid not being a good thing.

Sartorially vivid takes us to South Korea. A chance photograph of a proper dapper chap.

Another chance photograph. Not so dapper but definately a chap taken at Whitstable Carnival.

Body habitas gives me the next cue for a change of direction. Statues by Mauro Perruchetti. Jelly Baby Family at Marble Arch.

Jelly baby sculptures neatly swerve me to foodstuffs. Next up Dolly Mixtures at a baptismal party.

The glitter and twinkly confetti party table takes us effortlessly to a live Christmas Karaoke party in Peckham.

Then on to yet more twinkle. This time for Chinese New Year in Hong Kong.

Peckham to Hong Kong, quite a journey but as we’ve arrived there is more Hong Kong to reveal.

Close up of a lantern , quickly followed by a photographic error but vivid and thus valuable to this blog.

As luck would have it I have a Chinese New Year textile link.

My packing for Chinese New Year.

That was a lucky turn as textiles are awkward to weave into a story. The craft tent at The Royal Cornwall Show tempted Psychedelic crochet out of the closet.

Port Eliot Festival, also in Cornwall ties up trees as gifts.

Which brings me gratefully to Vivid Nature.

February tulips in Saltash

Artichokes in June.

Which briefly return us to Hong Kong for spiky plants.

Rambutans at Tuen Mun market in the New Territories. Fruit directs me to some of my paintings. Starting with Fig, Blackberry and Cob but.

Then on to an invented abstract fruit.

Which bears a little resemblance to a real flower,

at the Chelsea Flower Show, which of course returns us to London.

This is a very expensive monitor in a hospital in Marylebone. This intriguing pattern was caused by an unexpectedly vigorous movement of an x-ray machine, known as a C-arm it orbits around the patient. Swinging us neatly to the actual Orbit at The Olympic Park. Sculpture by Anish Kapoor.

Red neon effect and East London track me back to The City.

A favourite bar and coffee shop opposite Smithfield Market and close to St Bartholomew’s Hospital . Ask For Janice is a refuge from the realities of work. It is also the location for celebrations and socializing with work friends. Often before more physical challenges , which bowls us along nicely.

Posh bowling in Bloomsbury with the boys.

Buoys on the Norfolk coast.

And finally some vivid music and more spheres.

Congratulations on completing a vivid journey. Have a chocolate.