Le bar à chats in Perpignan

As already much mentioned this week, I was in the south of France exactly a year ago, and as also already mentioned, exactly a year ago yesterday, I and various members of GodDaughter2’s family, including GD2 herself, were in Perpignan.

While there we stopped off at a tea version of a coffee bar whose USP is that the place, in addition to whatever human customers it can attract, is the home also of lots of cats:

That’s GD2’s Mum photoing through the front window in the final photo there.

The cats didn’t seem that pleased to see us. I suspect that cats who live with lots of other cats are more, well, catlike, and less inclined to interest themselves in humans and their preoccupations, in particular the human desire, when meeting a cat, to stroke it. These cats were not interested in being stroked, and they paid attention to us only when we got too close. They had other things on their minds, things of their own. Or so it seemed to me. I took many photos, and only one is of a cat being stroked. It was not that happy about it.

That they were not paying us that much attention brought home to me the fact that what we humans crave from each other, and failing that from our pets, is that very thing: attention. Mixing with creatures that resembled pets, but who were behaving in this crucial way not at all like actual pets, brought this point home very strongly.

As we left, I remembered to take a photo-note of the place, …:

… which means I can now easily find and supply a link.

When photoing, always remember to take photo-notes.

Perpignan photos

A year ago yesterday I was in St Cyprien, and a year ago today I was in Perpignan. However, I was in Perpignan again on January 9th of this year, when the weather was much better and hence so were my photos. Here is a selection of the photos I took then, there:

Not only was the weather better last January than it had been in April of last year; there was also a temporary Wheel in place (photos 20, 21, 22, 26). And (see photo 9) there was an exhibition on of some photos by former President of France Jacques Chirac. How about that?

A feature of any visit to Perpignan is, or should be, a journey to the department store called Galeries Lafayette (the big white building in photo 18), the views from the top of which are excellent (photos 19-28). The views on the way down from the stairs are pretty good too (photos 28-30).

Other than that, it was the usual. Amusing signs in French, roof clutter, strange plants, pollarded trees, various sorts of sculpture ancient and modern, bridges, left over Christmas signs, a motorbike. All good stuff, and all looking much better in the much better light there was in Perpignan on January 9th. Click and enjoy.

A year ago today …

I was in St Cyprien, in the extreme south of France, staying with my extreme south of France friends (aka GodDaughter2’s family).

Roof clutter ancient and modern, wires, orange tiles, fishing equipment, tourist crap with no soldiers or royal family (just Art), amazing plants (including little wine trees with mountains behind them), boats galore, and very well behaved sea for the boats to drive on. Not that all of those things are to be seen in these photos, but they are all very much to be seen in the extreme south of France:

And light. Lots of lovely light.

But, no outstanding single eyecatching Things, like in London or Paris. Just atmosphere and lots of it.

Taxi adverts!

It’s almost the definition of History that you feel you can’t talk, in my case blog about, anything else.

But yes, Taxi adverts. I haven’t been going out of my way to photo taxi adverts recently, but when one comes along, I do my best, and as often as not my best is good enough. Here are twenty such taxi adverts, all of them photoed in the first few months of this year:

And here’s a final one, that I photoed this very afternoon, in Parliament Square. I was mainly photoing statues, but this one drove by, so …:

A lot of these adverts now seem very obsolete, although most of them were photoed either before all this History exploded, or while the explosion was only getting started. But now? Well, people are still vaping, and still working away at things like online banking. They’re probably still buying shoes and having them delivered to theirs homes. But not a lot of regular shopping is now happening, except for food, and not many people are now wandering about in London paying careful attention to all of these adverts and consequently buying this particular frock or that particular pair of shoes, or this other taxi app.

Those who are still wandering about in public spots are the anti-socials, like me, taking exercise, or in my case exercise and photos (and doing some food shopping), and all keeping ourselves to ourselves just like always. I mostly don’t have other photoers to photo now, but otherwise, for me, it’s pretty much pleasure as usual.

BMNBQotD

Emily Yoffe:

After 25 years of marriage, my husband and I are getting to know each other with a depth that is best avoided.

The comments vary, from the laughter of recognition to the usual Twitter denunciation of strangers on the basis of wildly insufficient evidence. Was she just joking? Very possibly. Lots of fine marriages seem to work all the better for them not spending all day together.

I’m okay. My new tabletop freezer just arrived this morning. Soon, I will start getting to know it in depth.

Bird photos

Sublime (although not for the unfortunate fish):

Ridiculous (although the ducks don’t seem to mind much):

I found the sublime one by first admiring this amazing photo of a mosquito’s foot at Mick Hartley’s blog. I followed the link there (and I recommend you do this also), and then wandered (ditto). If you like wild and wonderful creatures, that is. (Many of of them are of course not wild at all.)

Corona Time

Yes: “Corona Time”. I just heard this phrase, from the all-the-rage-just-now Icelandic classical pianist Víkingur Ólafsson. He was being interviewed on Radio 3’s Music Matters, and talking about how he’ll be juggling his work during the next few months, in the face of the tornado of cancellations that he and others like him now face. Far fewer public performances and lots more time spent studying and practising, and recording.

A lot of people are about to have a lot of Corona Time in the next few months.

Some people are going to be more deranged than others. Basically, the more sociable you are, and the less solitary and virtual in the way you live, the worse it will be. I especially like this Babylon Bee title:

Nation’s Nerds Wake Up In Utopia Where Everyone Stays Inside, Sports Are Canceled, Social Interaction Forbidden

Nerds have always had lots of Corona Time.

LATER: More Corona Time advice. I have in mind to write, like he says.

40 Strand

Alastair wondered, in a comment, what this building is, as had I. Today, the weather looked good again, and having nowhere in particular to go, I thought I’d do what I hadn’t done earlier, which was find out exactly what this building is.

Here are nine photos, the first of which I photoed last Tuesday, just before photoing the photo shown in that previous posting, and the other eight of which I took this afternoon:

The first, as I say, taken seconds before that previous night scene I showed earlier, shows the shape of the building, instead of just a pretty pattern. The second photo above is clearly of the same building. The third shows the same building, but with some context, in particular showing where it is in relation to the big arched edifice of offices over Charing Cross Station.

At which point I knew where to go looking, and I soon got right next to the Thing. Photo 4 makes it clear that this is that same building, while photo 5 clarifies that at the foot of it is to be found the Theodore Bullfrog. I took a note (photo 6) of exactly where I was.

But, there seemed to be no very welcoming entrance to the building I was trying to find out about. So I went around to the front of it, which seemed to be in the Strand. Photo 7 and photo 8, are close-ups of the entrance I found. And photo 9 shows the entire building from a bit of distance, from the other side to my earlier photos.

Photo 8 was of a sign saying … “40 Strand”, was it?

A little photo-enhancement …:

… confirmed that yes, this was 40 Strand. But was 40 Strand and the building we saw from the other side one and the same building?

Google Maps gave me the answer to that when I got home:

Yes. 40 Strand is the whole thing, including the bits at the back that I had been photoing so attentively. The presence of the little red balloon in the middle of the building, right next to the more distant of the windows I had been photoing proved that this was job done.

So now you know. More to the point, now Alastair knows. I don’t get many regular commenters here, so the ones I do have get the Rolls Royce treatment. (When I feel like it, I mean. I promise nothing.)