Saturday, June 28, 2014

45 Days in London: Day 5

Camden Market

Camden Market is right there as you step out of the tube station...a big, noisy, crowded outdoor marketplace. A lot of it is very flea-marketish with loads of vendors hawking cheap British souvenirs and designer knock-offs. But if you walk a little farther down the street, toward the bridge and the locks, you can take a little cobblestone path down to hundreds of food vendors offering delectable samples. I especially loved the Italian flatbread sandwiches and fresh-squeezed juices. There are booksellers, toy shops, and so many other artisans selling clothing, jewelry and wares.

We were grateful for this overhead covering when the rain started pouring down on us.

Even farther down the road is another, slightly less crowded outdoor market called The Stables. This one seems to be where more of the locals shop. We were a little bit shopped out at this point, but couldn't resist taking a peek inside.


On our way back to the tube, Jeremiah posed for a photo op with John Lennon (sporting a fresh new haircut). Beatlemania is alive and well. Which reminds me, on the flight over I saw an interesting documentary on the woman who was the secretary to the Beatles for 10-plus years. She was the one who kept their schedules, gave them their paychecks, and answered their fan mail. Check it out, if you get a chance: Good Ol' Freda.

King Lear

This afternoon we saw a fantastic production of King Lear at the National Theater. It made full use of the Olivier's circular, rotating stage. The colors were sparse, but rich. The production design was gorgeous. The performances were powerful. There was some pretty graphic violence, and the setting was more contemporary--a World War II backdrop. But what stands out most is the sweeping themes of greed and power, and betrayal and infidelity, and the rolling out of consequences connected to them. It was fascinating to see this play right after seeing Les Mis the night before, and compare the effects of two very different courses of life.

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