Sunday 21 February 2021

A Tourist in London

Mrs L and I went for a bike ride yesterday. Not just any bike ride mind you. From our humble estate on the east side of London we pedaled all the way to the middle. All the way down the Mile End Road to the City and St Paul's, onwards to Covent Garden, Trafalgar Square, Oxford Street and China Town. A detour to Marylebone to buy some cheese to recover any lost calories, and then along to Hyde Park, Buckingham Palace, St James' Park for some exotic ducks and a Pelican, and then down to Parliament and along the Embankment to Temple. A long slog back down the Mile End Road, and then through the Olympic Park and home. 24 miles all told, I feel extremely virtuous. The Langres should see to that.

Leaving early we didn't see many people on the way, just a few deliveroo guys on electric bikes, however there was much lycra on the way back as the middle-aged converts were out in force, steaming along the cycle superhighway in gangs. Earlier on though places like Covent Garden were empty apart from a ballet dancer making a TikTok, Trafalgar Square had a man with a
Harris Hawk, Leicester Square I don't think had anybody at all and how often can you say that? It was eerily quiet, I guess the novelty of London has worn off even for the residents, and so we had much of it to ourselves. As the morning wore on a few hardy tourists appeared, Buckingham Palace still pulls in the selfie takers even during a pandemic.

Surprisingly I felt quite sprightly this morning. I have been plagued with back ache for several weeks now and had been worried that a bike ride might finish me off. It appears to have had the opposite effect, and I was up and into Wanstead Park pretty early. For little success it must be said, in six miles the only new bird for the year was a solitary Chiffchaff. One by one they fall, and slowly I am increasing my lead over all previous iterations of Febraury. Two
 more species and I will be ahead of March...