One Foot in the Grove

We have been really lucky and the weather here in London is still on the nice side. It feels like a real autumn season and not the instant winter that we have had the last few years. The temperatures during the day have been about 62-65 F and the sun has been shining brightly. I haven’t had to break out the winter coats yet and I am so thankful for that. So, in order to take advantage of the nice weather while it’s still here we spent our Saturday afternoon roaming the neighborhood and checking out the sights. We decided to walk up the crazy busy, tourist packed Portobello Road. About half way up we saw this interesting group of musicians. They made things really easy on themselves and didn’t even take their equipment out of the truck. They sounded really good and had quite a crowd around them. Very typical for Notting Hill on a weekend.

A little further up, underneath the motorway (freeway to us Yankees) was a really cool art exhibition called One Foot in the Grove. It cost £1 ($1.56 according to today’s exchange rate) and was filled with a totally fascinating collection of artwork. Sculptures, scree-prints, paintings, graffiti, street art, photographs, brica-brac and pottery. This giant kewpie doll head could be seen from a block away and I’m sure even the cars on the motorway could see it.

Doesn’t this thing look like it came straight from the Set of Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome? Every inch of the space was covered in art of one form or another. Look at the ceiling or rather, the underside of the motorway. It’s covered in graffiti.

This guy is about 6′ tall and made from found objects like spoons and wrenches and gears.

These screen prints are plaster directly on to the wall of one of the motorway supports. It was such a good way to spend an hour on a nice Saturday.

For lunch we met our friend Simon and ate at Harlem’s Soul Food. They have such good ribs and fried chicken. After a filling meal we went home for a little kip (nap) and then headed back out for drinks at the Westbourne House where we met a big group of friends. This place serves some really good, yet stupidly expensive cocktails so we only stuck around for one drink.

Just down the street we made our last stop of the day/evening at the Elbow Room, a swank pool hall.

This is where I typically park my butt on one of the leather benches and watch everyone one else play. While I totally understand the principle of pool and how to aim and shoot I can never seems to apply this knowledge when I am playing. I am horrible at this game, but for some reason I decided that I wasn’t going sit and watch all night so I played a few games. And you know what? I did pretty well. Winning the last game of pool for the night was the perfect way to end my Saturday.

Last two photos courtesy of the and

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