by George Pringle
I know all the smells of the city, like Prada Candy on a damp afternoon or Chanel Mademoiselle as it vaporously drifts at a pelican crossing. People all wear the same perfumes and all the shops are the same, in the centre of the city. They repeat in algorithms along the boulevards. I like this word better than street. It’s continental. Romantic. But there is no romance here. There is a certain language, though of steel and brick and somewhere about it comes a hard kind of elegance but it is pragmatic. It never loves you back.
Sometimes when I’m taking photographs, I divert through St.James’s park where the earth and rotting vegetation suffuse me with a strange, romantic notion of what Britain represents. Pre-Raphaelite. Waxen ivy, our native vine, loyally clings to railings. The silted lake comes alive in the thick air which the birds disturb with their cries and many flinching feathers.
And whilst I immerse in this British feeling, I have never terribly liked it. It brings me a peculiar chill.