This is the Shard building at London Bridge and as we passed the top
disappeared in the low cloud. We then went to Croydon to pick up some
shoes and after that on to Purley. The Station at Purley is dated
1899. I like the big modern stations but the old ones are more
On top of the row of shops in Purley Parade are these griffins and
dragons on the rooftop. They remind me of our new crows that sit on the
roofs at home and make a lot of noise. They are new young ones that are
staying together until they have learned a bit more about where the food
Today we went to St Pancras, on our way to north London. The inside is
modern while the Victorian main building has been kept. It is very
At the entrance end is a statue of the poet Sir John Betjeman who wrote
a lot about rail travel and loved the old buildings. He helped to save
this building. Here is where the Eurostar trains leave.
The outside of St Pancras is very ornate Victorian brick with lots of
arches and patterns. The wind vane has MR for Midland Railways.
Nearby is King's Cross Station, which has also kept the old building and
has been covered over in with this wonderful mesh pattern roof. We took
the underground to Highgate. I like this dinosaur in top hat in the art
shop window. Dino will be delighted with this picture for his
We went to Alexandra Park and had our snack. Brown Teddy is reading the
notice board about a very old tree that has a fence around it.
I really like the panoramic views from Alexandra Palace. This time we
brought some binoculars and we could see as far as Shooters Hill in
South London. We sat by the pond in the park round the back of the
Palace. The paddle boat swans and dragons look OK but a floating car
looks like someone is trying to get through a flood!
We found a small rose and flower garden with pond and fountain, which we
missed last time we came.
We walked on to Hornsey for another visit to Carter's Steam Fair. Blue
Parrot especially wanted some photos of the parrot paintings on the
This eagle is on the Chair-O-Planes. The tiger and crocodile painting on
the Gallopers is very lifelike.
We went to the Big O Festival in the park where all the vintage car
owners brought their vehicles for everyone to admire. Every car was
spotless and shining, including the engines. My favourite is the blue
camper and we could have lots of brilliant days out in one like that!
This scooter was Blue Parrot's favourite, but a bit big for him. Inside
the cars had leather seats and wooden dashboards, looking very
There were lots of stalls selling music and clothing from past decades,
especially the nineteen sixties and seventies.
I really liked these model cars as the doors and bonnets/hoods all open.
I think they were more expensive than normal toys! Lots of bikers came
with their wonderful customised and rare motorbikes.
This motorbike is definitely the very best of all, and this one comes a
At last we have got a parasol for inside the greenhouse, so we can have
some shade inside. While I am sitting still waiting for the birds to
arrive, the sparrows are sitting in the greenery opposite waiting for
bits of bread to arrive.
As long as I don't move, the wood pigeon and collared dove often come
down to see what's on offer or for a drink.
We are on our way to Sevenoaks. I like the country roads, especially
when it is sunny, it makes me feel I might see the seaside round the
corner! These notices on the theatre at Sevenoaks have seven acorns
drawn like floating balloons.
We went on to Tonbridge. The bridge has been repainted and the hanging
baskets were full of brilliant petunias. We walked down to Town Lock,
but could not go on it as there was engineering works in progress.
We walked further along. These smart houses have a lovely view from
their windows. We saw this grey wagtail flying after dragonflies. He can
twist and turn in the air as fast as the insects can.
Blue Parrot always likes to see what is round the next corner. Brown
Teddy is glad, just for once, about all these stinging nettles, as it
keeps people away from the edge and steep drop.
Back in the town centre, we went into the Castle grounds. I really like
all the little bridges over the streams. Blue Parrot said he never jumps
because he can just fly around to see everything!
Brown Teddy wishes he had a little boat or a dinghy. Next to the river
is the Tonbridge Model Engineering Society's enclosure and railway
track, which operates and gives train rides on summer weekend
The lady next door gave us some lovely cherries from her tree. Here is a
baby starling eating one that I had left over that had a brown middle.
Usually the starlings and wood pigeons strip the tree but she managed to
pick them before that happened.
We spent the afternoon washing some muddy stones that we used to have on
the soil and we laid them out on the tarpaulin to dry off. The fish kept
seeing us walking past so we had to keep some bread handy so that they
didn't get disappointed.
We went to Liverpool Street Station. It is very big, smart and
interesting, but I
think the best part was the colourful fresh flower stall!
This is the emblem of the Great Eastern Railway. Outside the station is
this sculpture called "Children of the Kindertransport" showing Jewish
children escaping from Germany during the war in 1938 and 1939. Ten
thousand children were rescued from certain death. The girl at the front
is holding her lovely Teddy!
Behind the station is this wonderful waterfall fountain, where the
water goes down marble steps and past the scattered rocks. We took the
tube train to Bethnal Green and the Museum of Childhood is just over the
Inside it is one big space, with a cafe and shop in the middle and all the exhibits in cases along both sides and on
two levels. Here is the first case we saw, full of teddies and real toys
that belonged to someone.
I like this bear, it is a "Libearty" bear looking like the Statue of
Liberty in America. There were lots of more modern exhibits, like these
Thunderbirds toys and outfit.
This is a wind-up tin turkey toy. Some of them were actually made from
recycled tins. We spent some time looking at this big glass case with a
whole railway layout and scenery.
I really enjoyed spinning this praxinoscope around, you can see the
figures moving in each of the mirror facets. The zoetrope is similar,
you spin the drum and look through one of the slits to see it like a
moving film. There were lots of exhibits that people can play with.
This is a game of picking up the fishes with tiny wire hooks, but we
remember it with magnets instead of hooks. Brown Teddy thought this pram would
make a good boat if there was a flood!
I really liked this large glass topped table, with iron filings
underneath and pictures of heads. You use the magnet wand to drag the
filings onto the heads, to make hair and beards.
Upstairs were lots of huge dolls houses and it would have taken a long
time to look at all the detail and contents in every room. Most of them
were of big mansions full of wonderful antique furniture.
These boxes are filled by different artists as Dream House Fantasy
Rooms. This underwater scene was my favourite called "I Always Dreamed
of an Underwater Aquarium Bathroom". The label on the wall
said, "In miniature impossible dreams can come true."
In the vestibule on the way out is a display called Wilfred's Party,
made by children from two local schools. It is a long table full of
party stuff, with balloons, streamers and loads of food made
of coloured paper and card. I thought these iced doughnuts were very
convincing, until I got up really close! They reminded me of my
favourite wholemeal bagels. Dino would have loved to see it
all and I think he would probably not believe the food was pretend.
Today we went to Sutton in south west London. This sundial sculpture was
very interesting and when the sun came out, it told the correct time. I
like these giant plant pots with huge palm plants in. The seat were
interesting, made of logs but I think they might be uncomfortable after
Back at Sutton Station we had our snack by these interesting seats made
of slabs of wood and flower beds on where the arm rests would be. I also noticed a very
small door under the stairs which looks like a magic entrance to a
wonderful teddy world hidden away, or maybe it is just for station
brooms and buckets! As we had to wait a while for our train, I watched the
other trains and tried to guess which set of
tracks it would move onto.
We took the train to Wimbledon. At this time of year, everything is
tennis themed, with tennis balls draped over the front of the Prince of
Wales pub, and also on the Tesco sign.
This is the New Wimbledon Theatre. This angel on the top is holding out a
laurel wreath, but to me it looks like a big magnet. Maybe she is there
to magnetically attract shoppers so they spend all their money in
Wimbledon! I can see a lightning conductor on top of both wings
Here we are again at London Bridge with a very sunny view of The Shard.
On the train I keep seeing this advert to to help save the bees, and I
am thinking of making up a bee hotel to help them out. I already have
lots of plants in my garden that bees like.
We took the train to Upminster in north east London. Brown Teddy likes to
see all the differnt buildings and tries to guess what they are used
for. He is always glad that we live in a more green
area with lots of trees. Blue Parrot admired the smart green seats
because he said it showed up his bright colours even more.
At Limehouse Station we saw this unusual old marble drinking fountain on the
platform. I am guessing it does not work any more! Further on we saw one
of the Limehouse canals, which we visited a few months ago.
When we got to Upminster, we took a bus along the country roads to
Lakeside Shopping Centre. It was a very pleasant journey through the
countryside with lots of fields of ripe wheat, and interesting farms and
villages. We found the lake and
walked around part of it, but we didn't find any seats where we could
have our sandwiches.
After looking around the shops in the Centre, we sat down outside on a low wall to
have our sandwiches, and wonder about theses mysterious sculptures in
the big circle. Only the creator of the display knows what it is all
supposed to be! We took the bus back to Upminster and as we left
Lakeside I got this photo of the roundabout because I like all the
topiary and bushes cut into neat blobs and squares. I wish the bus had
slowed down a bit!
Today we went on a trip to Hastings. I knew we had arrived when I saw this big
seagull on the phone box in the town.
We went into the Blue Dolphin and had a wonderful dinner of fish and
chips. It was very soft and delicious, and my plate was completely
empty at the end, apart from a tiny piece of backbone. Most people had
cod and chips, but I had huss and chips, which is a type of small shark.
We walked along and watched the swan paddle boats on the big pond. I really
like seeing the sweets stalls, although I don't eat any of it, I just
like all the colours and shapes. We all met up by the ice cream stalls and
everyone had an ice cream cone with chocolate stick in, or a chocolate
covered ice cream lolly. The sun was
hot but the mild sea breeze kept us all from melting too much!
We watched the cliff railway go up and down, and we watched the
miniature railway coming and going.
I walked along this walkway and got closer to the sea. There wasn't time
to go down to the edge of the sea, as it would have meant a long slow journey over
the big pebbles.
All the seagulls were resting on the fish hut roofs, because they know
that is where they will get dinners when the fishermen come in and start
gutting their fish. These stones along the edge of the flowerbed have
been laid in waves likes the sea. We had a lovely day and all the
fell asleep on the way back.
We had a quick visit to Hall Place. The water jets are coming via a long
yellow hose from the river and there was a notice up saying the water is
not safe to play in. This is a marrow flower, a big yellow trumpet
hiding under the big leaves on the ground.
Their fruit garden is very tidy and organised, with long rows of lovely
redcurrants and another row of whitecurrants. I can image a lot of
lovely currant pies coming from this, and currant jellies and currant
everything. I think the garden tea shop must get first pickings of this
These are crab apples near the entrance, they will be a lovely yellowy
orange when ripe, looking like little light bulbs. Back home, we had put
some grass seed in a bucket with some damp soil to get it started, but
it has all sprouted much more quickly than we expected. It was a solid
ball of roots! I had to soak it all in a big tub to get it loose and
scatter it over the thin patches of my grass. I then covered it with
some soil from the compost heap. I think it will survive OK though.
Lots of heavy rain, and Mr Frog went on a jumping journey from bush to
bush. He got over the lawn really fast, as it is quite dangerous for him
to be out in the open. He made it to the bushes near the pond. I haven't
seen any frogs for ages because of the very hot dry weather, so I was
very glad to see him still about.
This is the River Cray where it comes out of the tunnel after leaving
Priory Pond. It looks very peaceful but behind us is a busy main road.
These giant leaves are just over the tunnel outlet, and are obviously
home to some very happy and well fed snails. There is lot of leaf
missing and I hope they are not giant snails!
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