Narrowboats rock!

3 12 2009

With this year’s flakey economy, and a growing alternative lifestyle movement, the appeal of boat-living seems to be on the increase.

I moved aboard over 3 years ago, at a time when i wanted more independence but within the realms of affordability. The romantic notion of heading off into the sunset, a beer in hand and a Jack Russell at the helm were also mixed up in my vision of a boating future.

This year i’ve been along the Thames, up the River Lee, down the Grand Union and across the Regent’s Canal. I’ve learnt about oil filters, engine mounts and fuel pumps. I’ve got stuck in the mud, driven over my barge pole and waded the canal in ill-fitting Wellingtons.

And with every experience and story – i’ve grown to love it even more (although there are some things i’ll just never learn to love)…

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Sneaky snapshots

11 09 2009

I finally got up close and personal with Patrick Blanc’s creations – firstly the vertical garden at The Driver and then the Mur-Vegetal at The Athenaeum!
I’ve taken some great close-up pics of the plants and structure and hope it helps all you aspiring vertical gardeners…

cab and men square Athenaeum side athenaeum square

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Make your own Vertical Garden

13 08 2009

roblisameehan - Flickr CC

One of the most popular pages on my blog is about Vertical Gardening.  It talks about the origins of the concept and where various examples can be found – but it doesn’t tell you how to make one.  Now, having done further research on the Westfield Wall and the famous French botanist who leads the way in Vertical Gardening design – i’ve written this post – Do-It-Yourself Vertical Gardening…
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Vertical Gardening

10 05 2009

sir_mervs - Flickr
Living in London it’s considered quite a luxury to have a garden.  I’m actually one of the lucky ones (despite living on a boat) as i do have a patch of green to call my own.  Friends of mine have to make do with 2 pot plants on the loosely titled ‘roof terrace’ – accessed by climbing out of the hallway window.

It’s because of this lack of private vegetation that i believe Londoners relish trips to the park.  We appreciate a well-tended railway station garden or a pub-front covered in hanging baskets.  And it’s why i love the new Westfield Shopping Mall in Shepherd’s Bush.  Not for anything inside – but for it’s valiant attempt outside at bio-diversity – with a humongous wall of foliage!
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Choose What You Read

8 05 2009

Earlier this week, outside Liverpool Street, 2 girls and 1 guy were proffering free reading material for the passing commuters.

Granted – nothing new in that – not exactly a HotSpot when you consider how many “free paper” calls you deflect each afternoon on the way to the tube.  But these guys weren’t giving out the London Lite – they were offering books!

Choose What You Read - Liverpool Street

Choose What You Read - Liverpool Street

Proper books – with pages and everything!  Free!  A little present to read on your way home – and when you’re finished – to return to them to be read by someone else on their journey homeward! 

CWYR is the – “reaction to the tonnes of free newspapers dished out and thrown away every day.”

With their books stacked high in wheelie bags, these culture monkeys rock up to a London station, lay out the goods and wait for passers-by to pick one up.  

It’s a traveling library with no late fees, losable membership cards or dusty librarians!  
Admittedly there’s a smaller selection of books – but with a drop-off box at the Curzon Soho and more planned for the future – i can see CWYR really taking off – especially as there’s a growing band of Londoners beginning to rally against the freepapers thrust upon them each day.

If you don’t wish to partake in the freepaper celeb-fest and shoulder the burden of recycling their waste – Choose What You Read.

They’ve currently set-up libraries at Liverpool Street, Westminster, Waterloo, Euston and Paddington.



We ♡ books!♡ people who♡ books!