Friday, March 09, 2007

jewels on dirt floors

These posts are mismatched and out of order. I haven't been writing chronologically as to where I am write now. Maybe. But things leap around a lot.

Waking up to Reim bubbling with excitement about the market adventure. We initially were going to take the train, then bus. Then realized sitting on a stoop near the Julian House Hotel that we could walk to Camden and did so. Passing old brick buildings covered in ivy and wild brush. We passed under an enormous construction of cement like a Vegas casino to finally walk up a street that reminded Reim of Brooklyn to end up facing the Camden Markets.

Markets are anthills. And going inside is a maze. We entered different stalls. I remember vividly the section where they were cooking food. Chinese and Indian’s yelling out the menus and days food. I had eaten at a small cafĂ© run by a woman from Croatia; she advised me on some sort of thick mozzarella and avocado sandwich. I ate a croissant after, drinking a coke and watching people move about while Reim took pictures. Eating such delicious things is always satisfying.

The bubbling pots of curry stick with me the most. Simmering and thrashing about in their steel prison cells. Dished out to ravenous packs of animals. As they tear into the meat and dip bread in leftover sauce. Their faces animated in delight and mine in horror as they continue to eat and eat.

We walked through ceilings of crystal and glass, with light shining through and creating small jewels on our faces. Passed bags, clothes, vintage clothes, racks of coats and pants, and military fashion. Punk rockers roving about with bullet belts and Mohawks. I felt lost and enamored and struggled to keep my eyes open.

At one point I was trying on a Navy officer’s hat to go with my jacket. But a rather angry man with a Mohawk and tank top rushed over to me, ‘No, NO NO!’ And he grabbed it off my head and left shaking his head. Probably muttering that I’m a damn Yank. I vividly recall Tori calling me a Yank. I don’t think it’s an endearing term coming from the mouth of a U.K. citizen.

After walking back and forth. Passing the shining river and drug dealers on street corners selling their own wares, Reim suggested we take a bus to Parliament Hill.

A large park, with a high hill called Kite Hill. From here one can survey the entirety of London. The great Ferris Wheel and pockets of modern skyscraper skyline. Reim took photos while I sat with my face in the breeze half asleep. Gripping my coat. Looking down at the river and the willow trees gently dipping their hair into the water. People brought their dogs without leashes to run and bound about.

I watched a young man talk to a traveling woman, very attractive, blonde, and with a smile that he was obviously enjoying. He was creating a relationship. Inquiring further and further into what she was doing, where she was going. Receiving her phone number and telling her about all the great clubs he would show her. She seemed mildly enthralled, excited more to be interacting than interacting with him. I think maybe that’s a big thing with traveling. The pick and choose attitude of interaction at home dissolves and an openness ensues where all people—people—are better in every light and ready to be talked to, to be listened to, to go home to.

She left with her phone number in his phone. He called his dog Sasha—a pit-bull—to him and they walked about the hill. Him mostly likely musing about future interactions with the pretty girl. He tucked his head into his red hoodie and smoked a cigarette walking down the hill opposite of where we had walked up and into a great forest of criss-cross trees.

Reim joined me after her jaunt of photos. Snapping them up as the sun broke through the clouds.

We walked and ate dinner at a pub in Kentish Town. A place seemingly filled with blue-collar working class. The pub was a pub. Filled with men and women, all average. Drinking pints of beer and then 6 rolled around and the kitchen opened. We ordered food and enjoyed a meal in the loud noise, raucous excitement of people gathering. Leaving, falling asleep early to leave the next day to Scotland.


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