For a place teeming with the ghosts of empire, hard labour, hard liquor, sailors and prostitutes, it’s almost unbearably tranquil. This Britain isn’t broken: it’s just quiet to the point of being unsettling.
Rachel Lichtenstein on that place where London’s brackish water merges with the salt of the sea
On the night of the summer solstice I made my way to Hermitage Moorings just east of London’s Tower Bridge. There were about a dozen other vessels in the harbour when I arrived, tugs and Thames Barges mainly, which had all been lovingly restored by a community of passionate enthusiasts.
'So you hop on a teapot and listen to this chick called Moon or June or Spoon who wants to tell you you’ve a beautiful aura, but doesn’t want to discuss her RL non-existence as a dental technician in Las Cruces.'
'Riding past a crowded pavement on a hot day, swallowing consecutive gusts of perfume, sunscreen, cigarette smoke, and sometimes even halitosis, you realize just how helplessly intimate we all are in this city.'
'In post-classical Greek the word for ‘beauty’ originally meant ‘timely’. The prevailing aesthetic was that appearance should match one’s age. Thus both a young girl and a dignified matron could qualify as having horaios, but never an older woman trying to recapture her youth.'
'Without passports or any kind of identification documents, they were effectively stateless, and since they could not be repatriated, they were herded into open-air camps, given a little food and water and then abandoned.'