Wednesday, June 18, 2014
Scenes from a Mall
Yesterday Dave and I had to go down to Croydon, in far south London, to get our UK visas renewed. This is the official government permit that allows us to live and work here, so it's a big deal. We had an 8:25 a.m. appointment and we left home at 6 a.m. to give ourselves plenty of time to make the rail and tube connections, walk to the visa center and go through security.
The process went smoothly, and after we submitted all our paperwork we had about an hour to wait until we got everything back and learned whether or not we'd been approved. So, to kill some time, we went to the mall.
Yes, there is a mall in Croydon, and it comes with all the blandness of malls everywhere. Especially in the early morning when not much is open.
First, we went to Starbucks, from whence the top photo comes. What you probably can't really appreciate is just how filthy that furniture was.
Not far away was a dry fountain featuring several misshapen, green-patinaed lions.
Dave waited at Starbucks while I wandered around with my iPhone camera. (No, that is not Dave. That's an old guy who was sitting to our right. That is Dave's briefcase on the bench nearby, though.)
It makes sense that the children's play area would feature a pint-sized London tour bus.
And here's one of my stranger finds -- a rack of sweatshirts at Topman reading "St. Petersburg, Florida, 1989." I suppose this has retro appeal (for someone) but since I lived and worked near St. Petersburg in the late 1980s, I was a bit weirded out. It felt like a personal message!
Anyway, the good news is, our visas were approved so we remain in England with the Queen's permission.