11 Dec 2007

Perspectives at Thames

A random stroll across the embankment, gust of chilly wind, freezing waters, steaming ferries, faces representing various races, a culmination of world cultures really. Thames really has a lot to provide in terms of ideas and inspirations. No wonder these people (ofcourse its only the British who claim such) claim that London is THE center-point, the place marking the start of world civilization. They have gone so much so that they have got this claim included in United Nations Charter and [Article 38] of the Statute of the International Court of Justice enunciates this claim of 'civilized nations'.

So much for the claim-blame part. What I really bring to you is Thames. Not a very clean river (even at times Ganga may be cleaner), nor a huge one. Flows steady and calm, never uprising or tidal. River-Waters-trade perhaps seem to have started from here. But gives you a good background material to work on, no matter which stream of art you represent. As a painter, you have countless opportunities to take your call of the subject-matter you want to cover; As a dramatist you have the world at your disposal, you thing of a country and you will find a representative sample of inhabitants from there (no wonder Shakespeare go so much success here).

And then comes the lesser-mortals like me, who just go for a walk along-side the Thames. Neither to draw any inspiration nor for any soul searching. Killing time probably (who so ever invented that phrase, really required appreciation for the good words), or may be even to see the fairer skin (someone will kill me for that), may be to qualify as an adventurer (not being much of a bungee jumper) or just for the hake of telling people back home that I am standing in the heart of London, the heart of British empire, if empire it is.

The river-cruises would hurt your pockets and so would London-eye. So a walk down the Westminster Bridge or the Waterloo would remind you which strata of income you belong to (ya with Porsche, Ferrari etc. passing by, not to mention the lower segment Mercedes, Audi, Renault passing by, though sometimes I really wonder are they really in lower segment???). They would also remind you of the old times and memories these bridges share. After standing for three hundred years is really an achievement by itself.

Then if you want to explore modern London but are still fascinated by Thames, try the Blackfriar, or the London Bridge. You will find the same water underneath but in between the modern-architecture-designed-steel-bridge will fill in some reflections of the changing times and cultures. A further trip down east leads you to Dock-land-yards, really an nice place for curious onlookers and those interested in examining geological changes.

Then you start getting tired and so head to a coffeehouse (and remember not a 'cafe') where a sip of hot chocolate or the stronger hot-shot refreshes you to carry on the adventure again, but this time returning back, looking back at the Tower bridge and remembering of Queen's jewels and the Kohinoor.

The sun has suddenly hidden himself amongst the passing clouds and you find another chilly gust whistling past your over-coat, which is suddenly insufficient to cover you all up against the pressing winter. But then your adventure spirit challenges you and you pace ever faster against the cold wind, hands freezing and teeth chattering, eyes watering and body shivering. ...

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