Saturday, August 21, 2010

London, take two



sigh. I can only assume this is Mr. ThirteenSocks' perspective looking down on the little people while he's flying high in the London Eye. (I was back at the flat with the sick little monster) The Eye is like a ferris wheel gone mad at 135m/443ft tall that sits on the South bank of the River Thames. The Space needle is 145m/605ft and the Eiffel Tower is 324m/1063 ft) to give some perspective. It was completed about 10 years ago and over 32 million people have ridden the thing. "You should go some time." says the love of my life. Oh, really?

There are 32 pod/capsule/thingies, each weighing 10,000 tonnes/metric tons. Each capsule, representing each of London's 32 boroughs, holds about 25 people (metric or otherwise). You can see 40k/25 miles...all the way to Windsor Castle on a clear day. Are there clear days in London? A revolution takes about 30 min - slow enough that the wheel doesn't need to stop to let people on and off. Some 800 people can be carried around in one revolution. Advanced algebra was used to calcuclate that figure.

"The Eye... exists in a category of its own.... It essentially has to fulfil only one function, and what a brilliantly inessential function it is: to lift people up from the ground, take them round a giant loop in the sky, then put them back down where they started. That is all it needs to do, and thankfully, that is all it does."

It took 7 years and skilled workers from design/architecture firms in 5 countries to make this contraption. Maybe it took a few Storm Troopers to help out also? Well, who ever's bright idea that was, the Storm Troopers are still in London and they can't get back to their ship. They are just hanging around, looking for work and trying to extort money from passing tourists by holding their puppies for ransom. dZina* held her own against the forces of evil.

*dZina, whose name means "name" in Nyanja, the Chewa tribal language commonly heard in Lusaka -- spoken by some 15 million Bantu people in Southern Africa, is our friends' new puppy.

And then there were these guys: the Fanti Acrobats International. This photo is from the Seattle Times "photos of the day." O described this to me but the photo..... apparently this is not the most impressive part of their performance. yikes:

Little Monster, taking serious notes at the Imperial War Museum before he started feeling like this:


We minded the gap, just not the clock. Here we are en route to the airport an hour late. made it, sprinting and sweating and without our duty-free Bombay Sapphire. Rats.

Bye Bye, London, tah tah.


1 comment:

anna said...

love your photos!