Palm House at Kew Gardens

Palm House at Kew Gardens

Under the palm trees in the tropics of West London: the Palm House at Kew Gardens has been an inspirational favourite since I arrived back from a holiday in the Seychelles in the Eighties. I delighted then in seeing again specimens of the rare Coco de Mer palms I’d seen in the reserve on Praslin Island. But I couldn’t find one of those today amongst the mist and tropical fronds; I spoke with a gardener who confirmed this. Anyhow, my visit was worthwhile to smell again the jungle and dream of Paradise!

More photos: Dreaming of Paradise - the Palm House at Kew Gardens

Wimbledon Windmill

The windmill on Wimbledon Common was constructed in 1817: originally a corn mill, it is now a museum and much-loved landmark for the many Londoners who walk, run and play sport on the common.
Note the visual comparison of Nature vs Nurture: geometry and bold colours vs texture and fractal branching.

Balcombe Viaduct, Sussex

Balcombe Viaduct and the valley of the River Ouse in Sussex, seen from the train to Brighton. Lots of green as there has been a lot of rain.

Scillas in Hammersmith Cemetery

Spring carpet of Crocus flowers in Hammersmith Cemetery today. A fine sight nearly at the end of my run back along the Thames Path with the bread fresh from the bakery in Barnes.
I’ve seen daffodils and of course snowdrops in flower elsewhere in the borough this weekend.

Tags and graffitos in Marseille 5th and 6th arondissments

Tags and graffitos in Marseille 5th and 6th arondissments

Marseille’s many tags and graffitos give some indication of the mood of the neighbourhood: tags are everywhere and they’re lively and full-on. Many tags don’t last long, being either overwritten or erased by the city’s cleansing efforts. But those which survive tell a story of the political and social undercurrents. This photo walk around my neighbourhood on the border between the 5th and 6th arondissments was exploring a question which came up at the bike club “Galette des Rois” meeting last weekend: why does Marseille, as France’s second city, have so little obvious LGBTQ+ activity. No particular answers to the question from this essay: it seems Marseille is still in the world of “Don’t ask, don’t tell”.

More photos: Tag talk