24 November 2014

People watching: the great London game of life.

I love people watching. Just while waiting for the train, drinking coffee, staring out the window (only very occasionally) or eating lunch in a park square; and London is the best place in the world to do it (except maybe the Wellington water front, now there are some entertaining characters).

People watching: the great London game of life - Adventures of a London Kiwi 
I realise the great irony in this, as a blogger whose photos are generally always empty of the general public - they are there I swear, often in droves - but don't nessecarily add to the story of many images. Or do they?

People watching: the great London game of life - Adventures of a London Kiwi

As London life is lived, I see harried housemothers, monks, businessmen in loudly pinstriped suits, look-at-me girls with legs up to their armpits and not very much clothing, mischievous kids, loved up couples hands interlinked like nothing will ever change, blokes dressed head-to-toe in fluoro pink, rampages (the collective noun I've made up) of power rangers, tourists with expensive cameras dangling from their hands, whilst their fanny-packs are padlocked out of sight. I've seen a tribe of smurfs, nuns, snakes (a boa constrictor), and don't even mention the Waitangi Day Circle Line tube crawl.

People watching: the great London game of life - Adventures of a London Kiwi

As a longtime London resident I have learned not to make eye contact; several years ago a bloke tried to sell me a kitten from his cardboard box full of kittens. Oh, how I wanted one, but I was working in an office where they had a rather elderly, rather blind collie and as I was worried she might think the kitten was a chew toy...

People watching: the great London game of life - Adventures of a London Kiwi

A secret quilty pleasure of mine are the handbag dogs. Immaculately dressed women, walking innocuously around with their incredibly oversize bags, then 'pop', out comes a cute little head at their elbow. (As an aside, I wonder if biscuit would be my handbag cat? I did see a camping cat a few months ago...) I do sometimes wonder what the pups think of their situation, but they don't ever look unhappy - is this the head-out-of-the-car-window moment for modern dogs?

People watching: the great London game of life - Adventures of a London Kiwi

Christmas brings out a whole new level to this microcosm of human behaviour; busy, harried shoppers at the end of their day barging in and out of shops, discussing presents for every member of their extended menagerie, tales of office Christmas parties, drunken exchanges, the calculated avoidance of busy train doors, an exultant snatching of a last minute bargain.

I've also seen incredible small moments of kindness: retrieving a dropped teddy bear, buying a drink for the stressed person in the line behind, giving hot food to the needy, a bowl of water outside pubs for canine companions.

People watching: the great London game of life - Adventures of a London Kiwi

And there are always ten bonus points if you manage to spot people sleeping on the train...

22 November 2014

Fjord Cruising, Norway style

Hopping out of our hotel, we walked approximately 15 feet and boarded the boat that had been cheekily winking to us from the window corner of our hotel for 3 days. We then glided around the breadth and length of Tromso's main island, mentally checking that it really was 

a) actually Monday morning 
b) we weren't dreaming & 
c) we were gliding around arctic seas 350km into the arctic circle

Fjord Cruising, Norway style - Tromso


Fjord Cruising, Norway style - Tromso

Fjord Cruising, Norway style - Tromso

Fjord Cruising, Norway style - Tromso

After spotting the ability to catch a more sea-based view of the stunning Tromso on Van's blog, we had hunted around until we found one that suited our non-committal hearts - we didn't fancy being stuck onboard a massive ship rammed with people, though on reflection it probably would have been nothing like this - so we booked a 3 hour leisurely punt.

Fjord Cruising, Norway style - Tromso

Fjord Cruising, Norway style - Tromso

Fjord Cruising, Norway style - Tromso

Our only regret was not being brave enough to hire a car (I'm such a wuss when it comes to driving) and drive right up to the Fjords, so beautiful in the distance; or step onto a longer cruise to explore more places indepth. There are 50 minute busses to the Fjords from Tromso, but we hadn't quite left ourselves the breathing time to do it the next day before flying home, dragging our sad suitcases behind us...

21 November 2014

Friday figments and photos - the Tromso Edition

 Tromso, the arctic city so cold even the statues wear woolies...

Friday figments and photos - the Tromso Edition

Just a few snaps that made us smile...

Friday figments and photos - the Tromso Edition

Leave your pugs at home, in Tromso it's wolves and sled-dogs...

Friday figments and photos - the Tromso Edition

Art imitating life...

Friday figments and photos - the Tromso Edition

Friday figments and photos - the Tromso Edition
 
Assuming the blogger position...

Friday figments and photos - the Tromso Edition

Friday figments and photos - the Tromso Edition

So the British Consulate is/was in the world's most northern brewery? Fancy that...

Friday figments and photos - the Tromso Edition