Saturday, July 5, 2014

Farewell to Dino

We're having a rainy Saturday morning, which is kind of a relief after a week of relentless sunshine. Olga didn't want to get out of bed this morning. She must have sensed that it's not good walking weather, because normally at 5 a.m. she's raring to go. I got an extra hour of sleep!

As I sit here on the newly clean couch in our box-strewn living room, I hear the patter of the raindrops and the soft snore of the snoozing dog beside me. Occasionally I hear laughter or voices from Portobello Road, where the intrepid merchants are setting up the market, heedless of the weather. They're out there on Saturdays rain or shine.

I'm suddenly realizing this is our last market day as Portobello Road residents. We will not miss it. On sunny days when the windows are open we can hear the thrum of the street musician who plays a huge bass right outside our apartment complex gate, and then there's the CD merchant on the corner who constantly blasts "When the moon hits your eye like a big pizza pie, that's amore!" He's put me off that song forever. (Sorry, Dino.)

Yesterday morning I took Olga to the park for a long romp. As we move into July, the long meadow grasses are turning from lush, verdant green to midsummer brown; the cicadas and/or grasshoppers are whirring. It was such a warm day that after a while Olga had enough of walking and chasing her Kong. She was content to lie in the shade and roll in the grass, watching the world go by. So we did that for half an hour or so.

We passed a family that included a little girl who, upon seeing Olga, cheerfully exclaimed "cow!" and pointed. It's an honest mistake. Olga does look a little like a heifer.

In the afternoon I had to go scare up a parking permit for our moving truck on Tuesday. We have limited parking at our council estate and apparently the rules are rather strictly enforced. In fact, there's only one visitor spot, and as the folks at the housing office told me, it's first come, first served -- so if someone's in it we're SOL. (What, I ask, is the point of getting a permit if it cannot guarantee you parking? But I digress.) At any rate, we'll keep our fingers crossed and perhaps we'll make a back-up plan with our neighbors Chris and Linda to use their space, since they're normally not here on weekdays.

Last night as Dave and I watched "Prison Break" on Netflix, we heard fireworks going off intermittently around the neighborhood. Apparently our stray American neighbors were celebrating. I honestly didn't even think about July 4 until I saw the multitude of reminders on Facebook.

(Photos: Top -- During the World Cup, many London pubs were decked out in flags. The Bricklayer's Arms in Shoreditch was particularly aflutter. Bottom -- A five-spot burnet, which Olga and I spotted recently at Wormwood Scrubs.)


  1. What a beautiful post, the calm at the center of the chaos, like a nice day of rain after all that relentless sunshine.

  2. I love all the brilliant colors. They are absolutely gorgeous!
    Are you excited for the move? I am excited for you.

  3. Moving week for you. We should be closing on the sale of the city property this week as we continue to get one truckload at a time.

  4. Good luck with the move...What do you think of Ari Shavit's book?

  5. Reya: Thanks! I'm glad the calm of the morning came through. :)

    Ms. Moon: I am looking forward to it. It's finally seeming more real.

    Richard: Thanks, and thanks for stopping by!

    Ellen: Excellent! You DO have a lot of truckloads, don't you?!

    E: I like it a lot. It's a very interesting read and I'm learning a lot I didn't know. Definitely recommended for anyone interested in the Israeli/Palestinian situation.