Tuesday 2 September 2014

London - 30 Days #2

To find out more about the 30 Day Writing Challenge, click here.

Foreword: This prompt was sent to me by Jessica Crisp via email.

The prompt was:

 'It's my birthday on 15th September and it'll be almost a year since I left the UK. It's my first birthday away from home, family and friends and I do kinda miss the UK believe it or not! So, I'd love it if you could write something about England. Just take me home for a little while.'



An explosive aroma of tropical flora swirls in the air in wispy plumes of a colour I can almost see. A dazzling spectrum of refracted light rains down upon me in iridescence, illuminating every solitary dew drop upon the giant sprawling lily pads big enough to sit on. The air hums with life and humidity, the very essence of the season is rich and intoxicating, hypnotically beautiful like the shimmering panes of glass that make up the great greenhouse of Kew. I've paused here for a moment, but there is so much more to see.

The season races around the capital as I do, pouring and tumbling through the streets and parks, a golden beacon which brings forth the fruit to the trees and the humans to the sunshine. Thumping music rises from great striped big top tents, and I watch as the people put their hands in the air and close their eyes as I pass, each lost in themselves singularly, but all together a part of something more remarkable. 

The great buildings soar and clamber skyward, and atop each I see life, simply elevated. The rooftops are delicately coated in greenery and trees and little lights with laughing, singing people drinking wine and conversing animatedly. I muse at these wonderful sky gardens, the charm of nature not lost to the imposing urban hostility of these towering silver structures.

As I rise higher and higher the season reaches it's peak, I hear steel drums and street performers, I smell coconut and pineapple and watch the symphony of colour of the carnival, relish in the sound of breathless squealing laughter as the children of the capital dance through the jumping fountains and gaze in awe upon knowledge and discovery from afar, dragging their exhausted parents around the zoos, aquariums and the countless cavernous museums, aching with history and life. 

As I begin my descent I feel a change in the atmosphere, a drop in temperature which descends as I do, and I find my attention caught by lovers. The season changes, the leaves turn to ochre and fall like confetti as they sit hand in hand at the open air theatre in Regents Park. She rests her head on his shoulder and both entirely oblivious to one another, a simultaneous flurry of excitement blossoms within them both.

I weave at speed in and out of the buildings of the East, where the artists, the creatives and the empassioned brainstorm furiously with fervor and thrilling urgency, projecting to one another a dazzling stream of inspiration and innovation, collaborating to bring forth my presence into the physical world. Each space I pass is inhabited by a different sphere of creation, but all so harmoniously in tune with their own purpose.

The brassy windswept days lend themselves to libraries and learning, adventure and discovery, visiting the old ancient sights of a traditionally tourist route, things you've seen every day but always overlooked, before the evening brings roaring fires, hearty meals, jazz music and dancing til dawn.

The air turns crisp and cool and white, and the mornings bring a haze of icy fog upon the great river. The days of breathless summer seem only now an echo, but you don't have to look to hard to find the fundamental essence reignited.

The streets become bursting with wooden stalls and sensory delights, the smells of cinnamon and roast chestnuts. The Bavarian Christmas markets are in full swing by December, and twinkling little lights line near every street and illuminate the great river like some great heavenly artery.

Lovers fall gracelessly in fits of laughter as they dance across the ice at Somerset House, before surrendering their chances with a career in such and venturing back into the warmth for a steaming mug of hot chocolate or spiced mulled wine. 

As the Eve draws closer I find myself with more freedom of presence, until the great day comes itself. The only day in which not a person can be found outside.

On that day, I take form, and my feet touch the pavement first at Piccadilly. My soundless footsteps trace the paths so many before me have walked over so many hundreds of years, and I feel all of the history of this glorious city weighing upon me like thick layers of wool.

But not with any discomfort - on the contrary, the apparent burden of this history is a blessing, to feel the emotion, the story and the life of every soul who has dwelled within the walls of this beautiful, archaic city since its inception. To know that each and every person wandered, suffered, experienced, rejoiced and loved in their own little way, paving the way so that all those who inhabit the city today, can do so.

That day, the day of days where I felt no fear of being noticed, I walked from Richmond to Stratford, Camden to Waterloo, from Greenwich to Wembley and I realised I loved no place on this little planet, quite like this stoic, resilient heart, whose veins sung the story of it's people for all those who were only so willing to listen.


-  T h e   -   E n d   -

To find out more about what the 30 Day Writing Challenge is click here. Got an idea for something you want me to write about? Get your entries in now by emailing me with your prompt, your name and your twitter handle!