Sunday, 28 January 2007

LONDON LIFE

“Sir,” Samuel Johnson famously remarked to James Boswell, “when a man is tired of London, he is tired of life; for there is in London all that life can afford."

That may have been the case back in 1777, and even thirty years ago, the younger version of me would have agreed since I regularly spent as much time as I could exploring London life…

Then I began to lose my affection for the old place and in recent years have settled down into a determined frame of mind that either Dr Johnson was amazingly wrong or else London (or, more likely, me) had changed beyond all recognition…

So, we’ve tended to go our separate ways, London and I, and then the other evening - plodding along the Embankment on my way to meet my friend Irascible Ian for the World Cinema Award 2007 at the BFI (my regular Saturday night venue in the days of my youth) - I was stopped dead in my tracks by the most glorious sunset of thundery, purple-grey clouds rent by shafts of golden light...

I stood for twenty freezing minutes admiring a glorious vista of the ancient (the Palace of Westminster) and the modern (the London Eye) and realized that suddenly - and, who knows, maybe only briefly - Dr Johnson and I were in harmony once more.





[Images © Brian Sibley 2006]

2 comments:

Suzanne said...

Sensational photos Brian. But I can definitely do without London life! I can get my own beautiful sunsets looking out of my dining room or my bedroom window every evening!

Scrooge said...

Agree with the above post ! When you live outside London you realise how much of the news and newspapers relate to activities IN London anyway.My newspaper has pages of adverts relating to shows in London, reviews only theatre productions that take place in London and thinks a journey to Nottingham qualifies as going 'up north'
Curiously enough, when the Hitch Hikers Guide to the Galaxy paraphrased Dr Johnson "When you are tired of Ursa Minor, you are tired of life" the suicide rate in the galaxy quadrupled overnight.Ursa Minor was apparently a planet full of 'more interesting people than a pomegranate is full of pips' Let us hope this doesn't happen to the those within the news-rich area of the M25 !