Posts Tagged ‘run’

Photo Walk: Regent Park

Today, Evan’s working all day, so I had time to explore on my own. I decided to go to Regent Park and had a lovely walk over there — I especially enjoyed Marleybone High Street with its cute shops, nice grocery stores (I finally found tofu!) and old churches nearby. The park itself was very pretty, with a winding lake, large and bustling sports fields and the zoo, which I just looked in on. I only had my cell phone to take photos, but they should give you a good idea of what the park is like, especially by the water. There are also row boats and pedal boats, which I believe are called pedalos here, that you can rent out. Oh, and I saw another ferret on a leash — this time with a sweater!

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Run in St. James Park: Wildlife Edition

birdsOn Wednesday, I went running in St. James Park and Green Park again. To switch things up from Monday’s run, I tried running around the lake in a counterclockwise direction. Clockwise definitely has better views, though this proved to be a much more interesting people-watching and wildlife-viewing run. What did I run across?

  • I ran by a man who had two ferrets on leashes, which is always pretty funny and not something I’d really seen other than in Along Came Polly. One was albino. He was letting people pet them.
  • I saw a woman holding food out on her hand and letting pigeons perch on her while having a bite to eat. A little gross, in my opinion.
  • There was a man with a pigeon on his shoulder — on his shoulder! right next to his face! — and he was keeping it content with treats. A lot gross, in my opinion.
  • Another man was feeding squirrels, but not by tossing food at them. Not even by bending down and letting them eat out of his hand. No, he was letting them jump up his leg and eat while hanging on there. I saw one leap up. The guy didn’t even flinch.
  • St. James lake also seems to have quite a few one-legged birds, which were a bit sad. Though I think they have a pretty cushy life with lots of food being thrown their way.
  • And there were pelicans, which I’ve of course seen before, but are neat and big, and I didn’t see any when I went running on Monday, though there were signs saying not to feed them.

Do these sound like sketch ideas? Probably! Or maybe next time I’ll take a camera or at least my cell phone on my run, though I do like keeping things light. Time for a cell phone mp3 player? They’re selling iPhones here now…

A Run in St. James Park and Green Park

Horse Guards Parade and St. James LakeToday, I went for another run — this time in the other nearby parks, St. James Park and Green Park, which are adjacent to Buckingham Palace. I thought Hyde Park was great on my Saturday run, but St. James Park turned out to be a real treat.I entered Green Park off Piccadilly Street and jogged pretty close to straight through until I saw something interesting. There were fancy gates, a giant statue with the top figure in gold and lo and behold, Buckingham Palace itself, a rather unassuming and monochrome building, though it has a commanding presence. I almost forgot it was so close! I took a moment to gape, but jogged on, entering St. James Park at the top of its lake.

I jogged down the lake, watching the ducks, swans, geese and pigeons play on the grass and in the water that was flanked by delicate weeping willows blowing in the breeze. And I started to realize I could see just about every major London monument right from the center of the park.

I saw some of Parliament and Westminster Abbey off in the distance. I could see the London Eye as well, and there was a gorgeous view of the Horse Guards Parade, which is a much more fanciful building than the palace. I stopped for a moment to read a plaque about the Horse Guards Parade at the end of the lake, and continued back up its other side amid people feeding pigeons and squirrels out of their hands (I’m pretty sure they’re not allowed to do that, though).

Running in St. James ParkI stopped to check out the view from of the palace from the bridge over the lake, though once again I felt that the Horse Guards view was nicer, and jogged up to the palace and took a weaving way back through Green Park’s small, rolling hills, which make the park feel very private and quiet, despite its proximity to busy Piccadilly.

After I was done, I treated myself to some juice from Crussh on Curzon Street and relaxed in the juice bar/cafe while drawing a few memories from my run, including the view of the Horse Guards Parade from the bridge and my hat blowing off — that actually happened twice on the run, though it didn’t get too far away from me. I’ll post the sketches soon — probably tomorrow.

Update (1/18/08): Sorry for the delay in posting the images. Also, I’d like to note that the Horse Guards drawing was from memory and bears little resemblance to the actual building. Still thought you might enjoy, though.

A Run in Hyde Park

Yesterday, I decided to explore nearby Hyde Park by taking a run. I was already feeling pumped up by my workout the day before at Fitness First (I’m looking to maybe join a gym here, so any tips on that would be appreciated), and I laced up my running shoes once again to check out the famous green space.

I started at Hyde Park Corner and checked out the monuments and the arch in the open area there. Then I crossed into the actual park and ran by one of the smaller gardens and a few statues then ran up the bank of the Serpentine, the lake in the park. There were plenty of pigeons, geese and even some swans, and there were lots of other people about taking Saturday walks and runs. Nobody had their dog on a leash, yet they were all surprisingly well behaved, even if I couldn’t always tell who their owners were.

As I got toward the bridge that crosses the Serpentine, I didn’t feel like heading back over just yet, so first I turned to my left and explored the Princess Diana Memorial Fountain, which was quite a nice, interactive kind of memorial. It’s a large concrete ring built on a slight hill, so the water spills down both sides and meets at the bottom. The water goes through various stages, obstacles and textures. In some points, it’s deep and still. In others, it moves quickly over bumps, splashing about. In yet others, it’s quick and smooth or bubbly, or the stream gets quite narrow or wide. The memorial was full of families dipping their hands in, children running along the edges and people like me observing as they were walking or jogging by. This was my favorite feature in the park.

I went on to jog around the entirety of the lake — the far end was much quieter and had a series of fountains, which were nice but pretty standard. And I jogged away from the Serpentine and on more open grassy land on my way back. There also seemed to be a number of private cottaged built in the park, which were very charming and inviting looking, and made me curious as to what’s inside.

I finished my run very close to where I started, by a large statue of the Duke of Wellington, and crossed Park Lane underground to head home.