Kingston Idyll

Welcome to Kingston upon Thames., a 4G town.  We are ten miles from the the throbbing metropolis that is the hub transport point of Charing Cross . Saxon Kings were anointed here in this Royal Borough of Kingston.
 We are 10 metres above sea level in this town of 43,000 cheerful souls.

 And now;  here we are walking the busy streets, watching the proletariat  busy driving their new 'Beemers ' and ' Mercs', as they scurry from appointment to appointment. They are happy living in their central postcode KT1; whilst those unfortunates, who live beyond the pale, north of the railway station in KT2 run two year,  or even  older motor vehicles. Their faces are deeply lined with worry.

 Modern Kingstonians  have no real memory of history. They have heard from their grandparents about the horrors of the three day working week and only dimly remember the time when there were no credit cards. How could you survive when you had to wait while you saved enough, to buy your trinkets? They shrug their shoulders in dismay and look lovingly at their mobile devices.

The people on the streets are losing now time . They interrogate their mobiles, text or ring numbers, endlessly plotting future times ahead; which of course will always be far preferable than the present.

They have a new mantra, which breeds contentment; " we now have contactless payments. "
Imagine all the time they will save at the till.

Kingstonians know that ' Sweat is fat crying '  and therefore it is permissible to; with the appropriate sports gear and helmet, to cycle the streets showing their bronzed calves and lycra shorts. They are, of course  in 'Boris's Army. '

But wait, we have arrived at St. John Lewis's flagship store. The ladies are scarcely over the threshold when, although weary with shopping they can sit down and ensure that nails and make-up are in pukka order. How splendid.

Now gliding up the silver escalator, I have managed to enter the store's inner sanctum. the baby and new-born department.

There is an air of expectancy ( whoops sorry ) in the air. The large room is very quiet , except for the humming of the air conditioning.  Even the tiny ones make no noise, in deference to the reverence of the place.
Motherhood is clearly a serious business here.

I notice the prams and their symbolism. The ladies have prams called iCandy, with the message further endorsed with pram names Candy Apple 2. This must make their phones chirp with pleasure.

Meanwhile the men ( presumably ) have models called 'Mclaren '. Their F1 pedigree seems a little doubtful though.

With all this excitement, it is time for refreshment and we head to; as the store delicately announces; " This Is The Place To Eat ! ."

Soon, we are munching tuna baguettes  and sipping  lattes, as we gaze through the window at the Thames below us.

What a peaceful and engaging view that is.

But look the light is slowly fading. Soon it will be time for the corks to start popping on the moored cabin cruisers, and Kingston will start its light show. Red; Red Amber; Green,Red and Amber again.

So tired, weary, but bolstered up with our purchases, we take our leave of Kingston Upon Thames. We will certainly revisit in future times.


Note: the above piece loosely based on the peerless Peter Seller's record " Balham- Gateway to the South. "


The above photo shows the leaflet for this year's Ledbury Poetry Festival. I invite you to read the  synonyms for all the different ways you can read poems aloud.

What a topping idea for a poster.


School holidays beckon and the long trek to the beaches begins.
Enjoy your week ahead. Here's hoping that Chris Froome wins Le Tour and we go 2- nil up against the Aussies!

Cheerio for now,


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