Saturday, 16 November 2013

Traversing Worlds: An Alternative Guide to London

So the plan was to bum around and do nothing for a couple of months before heading to Australia... to bum around and do nothing for a few months. But well see, I have this problem... I can't do nothing! It's not in my ability. And so I thought up this cool idea for a new project I can work on and maybe even complete before I leave England! I'm going to write a new book; an alternative (and very trippy) guide to London. It will give me an excuse to revisit some of the places that I love, it will give me the chance to re-discover, to re-explore, to re-write, to research, to share and most importantly to inspire. I love London, I love my London and I'd love to take you on a journey through my London... I can assure you, it will be a journey like no other....! 

This guide is going to be full of really weird and interesting things! It will include a list of alternative places to visit like Chislehurst Caves and Nunhead Cemetery. It will feature a myriad of strange walks you can embark on, through the marshes towards the bus graveyards in Tottenham, or alongside the river backing onto the remote scrap metal fields in the outskirts of Erith. The guide will be chock full of ideas of things you can do to pass the time in London, from serenading sad animals at Battersea Dogs and Cats Home to urban exploring in Springfield Lunatic Asylum.

I'll share with you some of London's most beautiful and serene nature reserves, from Saltbox Hill to Leg O' Mutton and Ham Lands. I'll take you on a journey through London's most trippy markets, from East Street Market and Woolwich market to the more quaint and historic Waltham Abbey and Abbey Mills. I'll share with you some of London's most alluring cultural delights, including festivals like the Russian Winter Festival to the Thai Summer Fest.  I'll also include a section dedicated to food! Yeah that's right, I'll list some of the most awesome food joints, greasy spoons and underground fusion restaurants the capital has to offer- Nepalese, Korean, South Indian to Turkish, Pakistani to Afro-Carribean!  

I'll also share with you my favourite places to view street art, the best small cinema's, the weirdest gallery's, the oddest museums, the quaintest teashops, the best suburban hideouts, the most interesting looking temples, the most beautiful mosques and the most grand churches. I'll suggest the best places you can spend alone, the worst places you can spend with others. I'll also offer a range of suggestions for day trips outside of London, remote and interesting places like Dungeness, Canvey Island, Romney Marshes to Mayfield Lavender.

The guide will also reveal the best and most immersive ways to meet the most real and interesting people in a single day; through volunteering some place; a homeless shelter, a day center, a charity shop. It will offer a number of ideas on things you can do on an off day- hitch a ride in a LWT land-rover and help cut down trees at chapel bank, or do a good deed; collect the newspapers on the central line or befriend an elderly person, stargaze in the park at night, take up a class in something random like soap-making or wood carving or mime, meet new people while learning something new! Or become an activitist for a day, make your own banner and take to the streets, or write out messages in envelopes and stick them on traffic lights across town, messages on whatever you want, war and peace, fracking, badger culling....

It will be full of advice other guidebooks won't offer such as don't talk to strangers, break into places, walk EVERYWHERE, pay for NOTHING (or very little)! It will contain hand written area maps, and drawings, kind of -Kelman inspired. What's more all the places in the guidebook will be brought to life through poetry, and fiction, real stories of real people combined with myth and folklore--- oh and the one thing I can guarantee is authenticity, for I'll have visited all the places and have done all the things mentioned in my book. I gotta say, I'm really blessed, I've met so many interesting people in my life, some of my closest friends have been old English guru-types who have imparted much magic, wisdom and history--- they've taken me on so many weird and wonderful journeys, that I feel like I'm not only a Londoner, but someone who has traversed through many many worlds, in London...

So first up I'd like to get to know: <Bexley/ Newham and Bromley> I recently visited the allegedly haunted SCADBURY PARK, MOATED MANOR HOUSE..... next on the list is Shooter's Hill.

If anyone wants to help, or accompany me on any of my trips email me at! p.s. I'm still 80% phone-less (which may explain the amount of photography/ writing I'd done in the last few weeks)