“… all the noise and the hurry seems to help I know”

Ska band, Brick Lane Market, London. Photo: Su Leslie, 2015. Edited with Snapseed.

Ska band, Brick Lane Market, London. Photo: Su Leslie, 2015.

I’ve been quite insular lately; not going out much nor engaging with the world beyond my front door. I was going to blame the weather; it has been raining constantly for days, and a southerly wind has blasted up from Antarctica, making even the shortest trip seem quite unappealing.

But of course that’s an excuse. Really I just haven’t felt like putting on my “hello world” face and stepping outside.

Thoughtful; woman at Covent Garden Market, London. Photo: Su Leslie, 2015.

Pensive; woman at Covent Garden Market, London. Photo: Su Leslie, 2015.

Dancers in the Carnaval des duex rives, Bordeaux. Despite at times torrential rain, thousands turned out to take part. Photo: Su Leslie

Dancers in the Carnaval des duex rives, Bordeaux. Despite at times torrential rain, thousands turned out to take part. Photo: Su Leslie

Earlier this year I went to Europe with the Big T and our boy-child (with a stop-over in San Francisco). It was the end of the Northern Hemisphere’s winter, and although San Francisco was positively balmy and London turned on a few days of gloriously early spring, both Munich and Bordeaux delivered very season-appropriate weather. Yet each day we donned hats, coats and gloves and we went out. From morning until late we explored, not knowing what we’d see around each corner and reveling in the sheer “otherness” of ancient European cities.

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Even on a wet Sunday the Neues Rathaus on Marienplatz, Munich had plenty of visitors. Photo: Su Leslie, 2015.

Visitors leaving Horseguards Parade, London. Photo: Su Leslie, 2015

Late afternoon sun streams on visitors leaving Horse Guards Parade, London. Photo: Su Leslie, 2015

Street musicians on Jubilee Walkway, London. Photo: Su Leslie, 2015.

Street musicians on Jubilee Walkway, London. Photo: Su Leslie, 2015.

Holidays are finite. We were only in each place for a short time and there was so much to see and do; the idea that we would stay in our apartment to avoid bad weather was unthinkable.

I love the way children can make fun, even on a wet day. Bordeux, 2015. Photo: Su Leslie.

I love the way children can make fun, even on a wet day. Doesn’t look like Dad is quite so happy though. Bordeux, 2015. Photo: Su Leslie.

But of course life is finite too — just (hopefully) on a different scale to holidays. Lately, I seem to have forgotten that and have dreaded, rather than looked forward to, the new day. Looking at some of the street photos from our trip has helped remind me of how much I miss by shutting myself away.

Petticoat Lane Market, London. Photo: Su Leslie, 2015

Petticoat Lane Market, London. Photo: Su Leslie, 2015

Just hanging with the guys, The Haight, San Francisco. Photo: Su Leslie, 2015.

Just hanging with the guys, The Haight, San Francisco. Photo: Su Leslie, 2015.

Climate change protest, Parliament Square, London. Photo: Su Leslie, 2015.

Climate change protest, Parliament Square, London. Photo: Su Leslie, 2015.

Sometimes even solitude is better in a crowd …

Alone in a crowd

Brick Lane, London. Photo: Su Leslie, 2015.

… which thought reminded me of the classic Petula Clark song, Downtown (although I prefer Emma Bunton’s 2006 cover)

The title of this post comes from that song, and cheesy as it is, there is a certain truth in the lyrics. A few nights ago the Big T and I had our first date night in a while. We went to see Fallout — a beautiful and powerful play by Bronwyn Elsmore about the sinking of the Greenpeace ship Rainbow Warrior in Auckland Harbour 30 years ago this July. Both of us lived in Auckland at the time of the Rainbow Warrior bombing, and judging by the way this play moved everyone in the audience — we weren’t the only ones who felt transported back to that time. Being part of that collective remembering was a powerful feeling.

Today I persevered through rain, public transport failure, overfull carparks to see Partner with the Enemy, an inspiring documentary about two women trying to build a business together against ridiculous odds.

Now it seems that the rain is likely to clear (at least for a few days) and I might even get a walk on the beach.

This post was written for Sally D’s Mobile Photography Challenge. You can see Sally’s gorgeous photos and find out more here.

 

 

 

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19 thoughts on ““… all the noise and the hurry seems to help I know”

  1. I hope this entertaining set of images brought back precious memories of your trip. Street Photography is a favorite of mine, and your captures are some of the reasons: the vibrance and variations of activities. Hope that the sun shines soon. Happy Photo Challenge.

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  2. Pingback: Sally D’s Mobile Photography Challenge: Challenger’s Choice (The Architecture of Shadows) | Lens and Pens by Sally

  3. Gosh, your photos are so good. Such interesting people you’ve captured.

    Some days it is too hard to put on your “hello world” face (really love that phrase). I’ve actually had months of not wanting to put on not so much my “hello world” face but my “hello friends” face. Things have improved so I’ve just offered my first “sorry I’ve been absent, let me buy you a drink” apology to a few friends.

    Hoping you get some sunshine but if not, then the ability to see some wonder in the rain as you did on your travels. πŸ™‚

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    • Thank you for the kind words and thoughts. I know what you mean about not wanting to see friends either. I heard once about some neighbouring tribes that regularly go to war for no apparent reason. The anthropologist who was talking about this said that it seemed that these skirmishes served the function of stopping the other tribe from becoming too close — in effect they were sabotaging intimacy. That was the term she used, and I had one of those “oh shit” moments where I realised that I do that. When people get what I feel is to close to me, I sabotage the relationship. And because I’ve traditionally not been particularly assertive, I do it by withdrawing. I have no idea if anyone else does this, but even recognising it doesn’t entirely stop me doing it. Anyway, thanks again. Hope you’re feeling a bit happier in your world.

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      • Ladies – this is the type of conversation I wish I could say – let’s grab a cup of coffee, or open a bottle of wine, to have a ‘me too’ chat for a while.
        If nothing else, it’s nice to know I’m not alone in the world for wanting to hide away. I too like the description “hello world face”. I’ve become very good at putting it on even when I don’t feel that way at all.

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      • Wouldn’t that be fabulous Joanne. I’d bring a really nice Babich chardonnay I discovered recently (I know, chardonnay drinker … rolls eyes), and some snacks and stuff and we could all sit down and share our thoughts. We might even feel that we didn’t have to try too hard with the hello world face. Hope you are well and enjoying spring/summer adventures. πŸ™‚

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  4. You have some great photos and memories to hold onto. I also lived in Auckland when the Rainbow Warrior was bombed. It was shocking. I left to go overseas a couple of years later. The fallout from the French Government involvement was huge. Us Kiwis had to have visas for France when no-one else did. Going into France was a nightmare. Thankfully that is over.
    I love this song. I can appreciate the sentiments in it. Take care. It is hard for me to get out in this very frosty weather. Or even get out of bed in the mornings.

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    • Hi Raewyn. Thanks; it’s nice to look back on them and remember how much fun we had. It always struck me as so ridiculously unjust that Kiwis were punished for the French government’s wrongdoing. It was such a loss of innocence for us as a nation. I know what you mean about not wanting to get out of bed. I’ve been sleeping later and struggling to get started in the morning. I’ve forced myself this week to make appointments that I have to keep to get out of the house. I had lunch with an old friend yesterday (he was one of my undergrad lecturers; I have to remind myself that I’ve known him for over 30 years) and today the boy-child is going to drive us up to Matakana for lunch. He needs the driving practice, and the weather is lovely (if cold) so we may as well take advantage of it. I hope things get better for you soon (a rise in air temperature might be a good start). All the best, Su.

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