November fifth is Guy Fawkes Night, a night of celebration in England. Actually I have heard firecrackers every night in November though tonight they seem more intense.
Fawkes was a Catholic involved in the failed Gunpowder Plot of 1605. He was caught guarding the explosives intended to blow up the House of Lords. Guy Fawkes Night has been celebrated since 5 November 1605, when his effigy is traditionally burned on a bonfire to the accompaniment of fireworks.
Today I'd three items on my agenda: Leadenhall Market, the south bank of the Thames, and Tate Britain.
In the morning, a beautiful blue-sky day, I took the tube to the City of London financial district. Jubilee to Bond Street, then Central to Bank.
My goal was a 14th century covered marketplace that is lost amid the glass and steel skyscrapers, especially the Blade Runner-ish Lloyds building next door. Lloyds is stainless and shiny; it brings to mind Pompidou Centre in Paris because its innards are exposed. The Lloyds building is known to draw building climbers as well as photographers.
We've a little history with Lloyds. There was a time in California, after a big earthquake, when insurers began to refuse coverage of non-retrofitted homes. So while our house was being bolted down, shear walled, and strapped, we obtained coverage from the insurance company of last resort, Lloyds.
Next I took the District line from Monument to Embankment, then crossed the Thames via the Golden Jubilee bridge to walk along the south side of the river.
For my final agenda item I crossed the Lambeth bridge to Tate Britain. I've been to the Tate twice now and it will get its own post.
After the Tate, and as the sun was drawing down, I walked along the Thames to Westminster, then I got on the Jubilee to West Hampstead. It was dark and raining when I emerged from the tube for the walk back to the apartment.