Thursday, 21 June 2012
at the top of the dial
London's preparations for the various upcoming events continue. Yesterday I was around Waterloo and noticed quite a few people in demonstrable finery (morning suits, top hats, ladies in fine frocks and big hats).
Of course, they were on their way to the races - I suspect that some will not return in quite such composed conditions.
That event neatly precedes the Wimbledon season and then the home stretch towards the Olympics, with the parallel Cultural Olympiad festivities also kicking off right now.
Yesterday's Metro and Stannit both had wrap-around adverts from British Airways saying "don't fly" - which did make me smile. The premise is to stay in London and support the teams during the games.
The trick with all of this will be to figure out how to do it without turning into a tourist. London is a great capital, but there's a need to be careful and not get sucked into the mainstream tourist vortex.
I'll confess this happened to me briefly a few weeks ago, when we'd selected to go to a particular show which turned out to be truly awful. I don't recollect blogging about it at the time. It was not one of my finest decisions and we decided to leave after about 20 minutes.
It's that dilemma about having booked to see a show and then not liking it. Do you stay because you've paid or leave to get the time back? We left and decided that the show in question was a crass money spinner designed to extract cash from the gullible (oops).
So I'm hoping that there are not too many of those type of events in the run up to what will be a peak number of visitors to the capital.
Like many tourist rich cities, there's a sort of two tier economy between those that work and live in the centre vs those that are on a short vacation. I'm equally aware of this when I'm in other countries and don't have time to tune into the right frequencies.
So I guess I'll be just slightly more alert as the city gets remodelled for the next few weeks.