Colin's Journal: A place for thoughts about politics, software, and daily life.
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Given that the route of this year’s London Marathon included a stretch down Narrow Street, I could hardly avoid watching for a while. All I had to do was get out of bed in time, which I managed with about fifteen minutes to spare before Paula Radcliffe went hurtling past. The weather couldn’t have been much better for the event, blue skies and a warm sun but still chilly in the shade. Our neighbourhood attracted a fair number of visitors, far more people were taking advantage of the building’s square than I’ve seen before.
I took a few photos, but with the crowds of spectators and closely packed runners it was hard to get good shots. The real challenge, however, was my ailing camera batteries. They used to last for long periods of time, at least a full afternoon, and between two of them I could easily spend the whole day taking pictures. For some reason the last few charges haven’t lasted long at all, often failing within an hour of use. I’ve started the process of reconditioning them to see whether I can get more out of them, but if they don’t improve I’ll be forced to buy some replacements.
Two weeks back I visited the Borough Market with Shana and aquitaineq. I should point out that we visited the weekly fine food market, rather than the daily wholesale market that runs throughout the early hours of the morning and finishes around 9am. Getting up early enough to photograph the wholesale market could be rewarding however, so I may try at some point.
The location of the market creates a peculiar space. The market nestles partly under London Bridge, partly in it’s own buildings, and partly in the open air next to Southwark Cathedral. The result is a scene of many layers, allowing a photographer to combine the grey industrial surroundings, the cheerful market colours and the warmth of the cathedral in many different ways. My attempts to capture a scene with the rail bridge, the market and the cathedral didn’t work out as well as I hoped they would, meriting another trip soon. I did have more luck with some of my other shots, although more attempts could undoubtedly produce better results.
Today brought the formal announcement of the general election on the 5th of May. While the date of the election has been predicted for many months now, the official announcement does usher in two major changes. Firstly TV news now has to cover every obscure political party you’d almost forgotten existed (Greens, that welsh party with the funny name, SNP, UKIP) and more importantly Peter Snow’s swingometer is back on the telly. While I’d like to do my bit to save Britain from ID cards and nasty anti-terrorism legislation, I now live in a constituency so safe for Labour they couldn’t loose it if they actively tried. Instead the best I can hope for from my vote is a pleasant walk to wherever the nearest polling station is.
Copyright 2009 Colin Stewart