Thursday, 9 September 2010

Culture or Bubbles

Yesterday after work me and good friend R stomped through the pouring rain to see the magnificent maps on display at the British Library. At least, we would have if it wasn’t shut.

A map we didn't see.

Ah, we thought. Oops, we thought. Shall we go and have a glass of champagne instead at St Pancras station?

Well, it was either expand our mind with culture, or with bubbles. We chose bubbles.

Ten minutes later saw us installed at the longest champagne bar ever to be found in a train station, indeed, apparently in Europe.

Not us.

Did I say before I am rather fond of large train stations? I like that expectant excitement, the energy of all the people passing by with smart clothes and suitcases on wheels, the hurried footsteps, the tap of busy fingers on laptops. I occasionally like to go there with a notebook and sit with a coffee, watching all the to-ing and fro-ing. It gives me ideas.


I especially like St Pancras now it has been redesigned, as I love the beautiful amazing ceiling, and the Dent clock with the statue of the two lovers meeting underneath.



Maybe we did find some culture after all. Hic.


Magnificent Map image from the British Library
St Pancras images from St Pancras website

29 comments:

Matthew Rush said...

Oh to live somewhere cooler than America, with culture! I'm jealous.

Jan Morrison said...

lovely! reminds me of when I went to England with my pal, Linder, who is from Stockton on Tees. We kept being too late, too early, wrong day to every single castle except one in Scotland which was THE BEST! We never missed a pub meal though. weird.Jan Morrison

Kittie Howard said...

Oh, Jayne, I love this post. You make me want to reach into the closet for my traveling shoes. How you described a train station is perfect, just perfect. Yes, it has a certain energy. And the lovers beneath the Dent clock, perfect. We have several renovated train stations along the East Coast with a magic that appeals (Union Station in D.C., the station in Philadelphia, and Grand Central in NYC.) But I've never been to a champagne bar! Sounds like fun, hic!

Mystica said...

You mean to say that a train station has a champagne bar? You are not pulling a fast one on me are you???? I dont believe this.

Old Kitty said...

I LOVE the new St Pancras Station I absolutely adore it. I think it's the best thing that transport people have done - it really brings back the romance of travelling in the 21st century - I can't stop gushing about this station - cos I truly, truly love it!!!

I'm sorry the BL exhibit was shut? Why were they closed? How weird!! Anyway at least your day ended in a fabulous place - thanks for the pics!Wondeful!

Take care
x

Helen Ginger said...

Wow, what a fabulous train station! I couldn't tell by the picture, but do the trains come right in next to the long bar? Never been to a champagne bar, but I would definitely want to go to this one.

Helen

Joanna St. James said...

Nice! this is how I feel when am on the escalators in Waterloo, i feel like am Magneto drawing energy from their essence (except i still cannot move the San Fran bridge or levitate)

KarenG said...

Well when I want culture I turn on PBS. And drink Fresca for bubbles. #mylifeispathetic

Boonie S said...

I love the photos of the map you didn’t see and the people who weren’t you.
This is a lovely witty post.

Have a nice day, Boonie

Carol Kilgore said...

Fantastic post. Just looking at the photos gives me ideas, so I can imagine everything that sparks for you live and in person. Love the statue. I'd say you did all right.

C.E. said...

Oh I love those pictures! Wish we had beautiful train stations here. What a neat place to sit and write and people watch

Laura Marcella said...

Awesome pictures! I can imagine that a big, bustling train station would be an excellent place for inspiration! Anywhere with lots of people absorbed in their own worlds is terrific fodder for writers and storytellers. :)

Natascha Nichole said...

So pretty...I can imagine you would get lots of ideas in such a busy place with so many people to inspire you as they bustle and hustle. Love the post.

Nezzy said...

WoW, This Ozark farm chick is quite smitten with train stations also. When I was a small chicklett daddy would drive us to Kansas City to catch the big red nose Santa Fe train to see my grandmother in Alburque,NM. I have fond memories of ridin' the trains.

I just wanted to pop over and thank you for your sweet comment and hoppin' on my blog. I sure hope ya'll enjoy the ride!

God bless ya from the happy hills and hollers of the Missouri Ponderosa!!! :o)

Aubrie said...

What a neat place! Champagne tastes too sour for me. I'm a fruity wine kind of girl!

Elana Johnson said...

Wow, it looks like you had a great time! I don't think I've even been to a train station.

Hart Johnson said...

I love St. Pancras! It's gorgeous, and I'd love it even if it HADN'T been featured in the Harry Potter movies (such that most Americans think it is King's Cross). And that IS culture!

Too bad the museum doesn't offer a chamgagne/map night where you could enjoy both. That would be really heavenly, but then you couldn't make up stories about people at the train station (train stations have FABULOUS story material)

MT said...

I'm sort of like KarenG, but I like my pathetic PBS watching, concert in the park going, Tabernacle Choir listening life. ;)
Thanks for stopping by my blog, and for the follow.

penandpaints said...

Love the statue, how romantic. It all looks very swish there, doesn't it? I do like train stations, especially platform nine and three quarter-esque olde worlde ones :)
Glad you made a day of it anyway with a bit of bubbly.

JW said...

Wow. I always retreat to nature for inspiration but now you got my gears spinning - head to the city once. I could sit outside on a nice fall day, sipping coffee with my notebook open and just observe the hecticness of life around me. Love it. Brilliant. Why didn't I think of that on my own?? ;) Thanks for inspiring! Have a beautiful day! Janelle

Sarah said...

I love the map!!! There's just something about having the world spread out before you- and I'm on my way to the map link you provided.

Carolyn V. said...

Wow, the train station is magnificent. I wish we lived near something so cool. =)

kobico said...

There is definitely something special about train stations that airports just can't match. But at this point, air travel wins out in terms of price. Someday when money is not an issue, I'd love to ride the Eurostar between St Pancras and Gare du Nord.

Many thanks for your visit and comment. And best of luck on your first fourth novel!

Christine said...

Shame that you didn't see the maps. I love old maps too and have recently seen the Mappa Mundi in Hereford.

Thanks for sharing those photos of St Pancras Station. Years since I passed through. It looks wonderful.

catdownunder said...

Am jealous at the thought of actually being able to get into the museum at any time...and I love old maps, indeed maps...one of these days...one of these days!

luminous muse said...

As an American, I happen to love your city. I didn't go in St. Pancras, but I think the outside is one of the finest over-the-top-of-the-top Victorian Buildings in the world! Next time I'm in town I'll buy you a champagne there and you can show me the inside of the station.

Jenny Beattie said...

I love railway stations and champagne. I shall make a date next time I'm in London to indulge in both. Thanks for the tip.

Amanda said...

that is the height of sophistication - to have a glass of champagne in the middle of a train station. i love that energy too, of transient place like that......and i bet it would be a great place to write.....

now off to read the other posts i've missed!

xoxo

Katie Anderson said...

The champagne bar at St Pancras is rather fabulous. I will admit to once pinching one of their (very stylish) glasses so that I could finish my champagne on my train. Shh, don't tell them it was me!