Thursday, 13 February 2014
Above is Seven Dials, which I have walked past the last two lunch times on my way to catch up with West End-working friends - a bonus of being based in central London for a couple of weeks. It's a wonderfully curious intersection of seven streets, all meeting at this point in London's Covent Garden. The 'dial' is a sun dial, one on each side of the top of the monument and though this place was for a long time the epitome of slummy urban London, at least until the first half of the 20th century, it is now surrounded by upmarket, single-designer shops; expensive restaurants; a theatre showing Matilda the Musical and prettily cobbled to make it pedestrian friendly. Gentrification: good thing? Bad thing? Discuss.
Meanwhile, the UK continues to become a vast lake district under the weight of tremendous rainfall and lashings from practically non-stop storms. The eastern half of the USA, I hear, is braced for another monster snowstorm and California is as dry as an overcooked chestnut. The West is becoming more and more like a natural-disaster movie.