January 27th, 2012
|02:21 pm - More Joy: Steps|
This year has begun with an avalanche of Things to Be Done, and it's taken me a week to dig out from under the last rocks. But here to start the weekend -- More Joy.
janus_74 asked me to talk about favorite places (plural!) in London. At first I didn't think I could choose: Cheyne Walk, any of the footbridges over the Thames, Somerset house, Hyde Park or Green Park or.... No, it is too much. But then I remembered one place, one small, seemingly hidden place, that is always part of my Embankment-and-nearby love.
I'm talking about a spot not far from Temple Place -- the Milford Lane steps.
Here's a straight-on view (thanks, anonymous flickr person!). Here's a better, medium-shot view, courtesy of another flickr person -- note the darkness of the staircase, the rise of the streetlamp above, the light beyond that.
If you want to see from inside the steps, if you want to see your way to the sky, scroll down to this image of Secret London.
Why do I love this fairly unremarkable set of steps? I don't know. Perhaps it is because they do feel secret. You can't find them on Google Maps or in the London A to Z. Cartographically there's nothing between Milford Lane and Essex Street, no way of connection. But if on foot you wind around in that maze of brick and stone, always with the river behind you, there they are. (I've always come upon them from Thames-side -- it would be a different experience, perhaps, from the Strand-side.)
Who knows what might happen if you walk up those stone stairs, aged by footsteps and water and time? Who knows if at some point you might slip from now to then, from sun to fog, day to night? Who knows what lies at the top, who knows when the river might rise again?
Cheers to all, and may your weekend be full of secret possibilities.
How delicious! That description makes me want to go straight to London to see them.
I do love a secret staircase, and hidden doors, etc etc. :-)
Cheers and a wonderful weekend!
Have you been to Sir John Soane's delightful little house? Not quite as evocative, but very charming. Near Lincoln's Inn Fields.
I love Sir John Soane's museum! It's an amazing place, absolutely. :-)
Very interesting :) And now I'm going to spend the rest of the afternoon reading through the Secret London webpage...
Enjoy, T! Secrets are always fun to explore. ;-)
Hugs and a good weekend!
You make the steps sound so good. We need more magic and mystery and possibilities in our lives these days.
I do like staircases, and doorways, and... ;-)
Hugs and a good weekend!
:drive by hugs: We will not in in your fair city this evening--D is flat out exhausted. But I send you hugs and as much joy as you can contain, and maybe just a bit more.
Happy weekend to you and D! Rest, recovery, and beachtime, I hope. :-)
oh! Those are wonderful, and I love how you write about them.
Thank you, S -- and I hope you find joy rather than strained-muscle aches this weekend.
|Date:||January 27th, 2012 10:26 pm (UTC)|| |
I've lived near or in London my whole life and I had no idea those steps were there! Now I want to go and find them :)
Heee! Best way to find them is to go to the east end of Temple Place and then take the small path north beside the Middle Temple Gardens. The path takes you to the steps. :-)
Happy weekend, K, with cool discoveries!
|Date:||January 27th, 2012 10:40 pm (UTC)|| |
The stairs sound so magical, I wish I could walk them!
It's probably best if you bring the magic with you. Or a vivid imagination. ;-)
Cheers, A! Have a lovely weekend!
|Date:||January 27th, 2012 11:32 pm (UTC)|| |
Considering that it'd take magic of a high order to get me out of So Cal, let alone out of the country...
|Date:||January 27th, 2012 10:44 pm (UTC)|| |
Its very liminal:)
It IS! [beams]
Hugs and a great weekend, L!
Those are marvelous! :-)
Thanks, Gwynne! :-)
Cheers, hugs, and a fabulous weekend.
Thank YOU, L!
Cheers, hugs, and a great Saturday for you. :-)
I should investigate those steps when I'm in London tomorrow.
Pretend they're magic stairs, if you find them.... (They're really sort of unremarkable, if you're not me. [grin])
Cheers and a good day to you!
I *love* features like this in old cities and towns. Things usually privately enclosed opened up to the public. You're absolutely right about it being a potential magical gateway - not to mention a more practical escape route for nefarious activity.
Thank you for sharing :-)
Yes -- there's just something about secret staircases, hidden paths....
Thanks, JH, and a happy Saturday to you!
Thanks, C! No secret possibilities here, but opening up the spaces I have... ;-)
Hugs and strength for your week ahead.
"Who knows what might happen if you walk up those stone stairs, aged by footsteps and water and time? Who knows if at some point you might slip from now to then, from sun to fog, day to night? Who knows what lies at the top, who knows when the river might rise again? "
Hmm...the Shadow? Or really, perhaps you could use this locale as your next prompt for a ficlet? It seems perfect. Thanks for sharing!
I'm reserving this location in case I do something substantial with the Lucifer Matches story. ;-)
And hee, the Shadow!
Aha! I suspected there was already a fic connection brewing!