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Thursday, August 09, 2012

Europe CNY 2012 - Day 3, Part 1 - Hampstead Heath

Europe CNY 2012
Day 3 - 21st January - Hampstead Heath
(Part 1)

I started the day by heading to Hampstead Heath, though I was told only Americans went there.

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Bacon Books, with a book that's the Winner of the Gourmand Prize 2008

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Men's salon with a price for "long hair". I went in to ask if i'd qualify, and they looked suspicious. They might've Lebanese.

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King's Cross, under renovation

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"Free Samples. Stop Smoking Instantly. LiQuit."
Presumably they could've put a sign: "no willpower required"

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""Being able to talk English fluently and being able to speak all languages, communicate with everyone in the universe"
1 of 800 daydreams reported by Jubilee line customers in a recent survey
Image: Detail of Signmund Freud's desk. Courtesy Freud Museum London"
So this means the person wants to have sex with everyone.

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"This stairway has over 320 steps
Do not use except in an emergency"
Differently situated, I might've climbed this. However among other things I had a large backpack on my shoulders.

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Heath Street Baptist Church Hampstead

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"Thames Water"
I assume it's treated

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"Woodlands Indian Vegetarian Cuisine
India - Singapore"

From the website, they are "affiliated with the famous Woodlands Restaurants in India which have been established since 1938 with over 40 branches". I have written to them to ask where their Singapore branch is; as you can imagine, it is not easy to find which "Woodlands" Indian restaurant in Singapore is affiliated to them.

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"Trust"
"I trusted you not to show the nude sketch of me to anyone"

Then I got to the heath itself.

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Vegetation

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The Heath was nice enough but inside signage was non-existent. There was supposed to be a house with a Vermeer and writings from Marx but I gave up looking for it (and anyway had something more exciting to do later).

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I was expecting the leaves of fall to have decomposed by now (it was January)


Hampstead Heath Panorama

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Exercising chaps

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Mom, girl, dog

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Dangerous lake

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"No dogs (not even yours)"

Next door was Golders Hill Park.

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Golders Hill Park

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Playing with dog

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"Fallow Deer. Conservation status: Least concern
These European mammals were believed to have been introduced from mainland Europe to Britain by the Normans. They are now the UK's most common deer"

Notice that even the UK's most common deer is of "least concern" conservation-wise. In other words, it still merits some concern. "Least concern" is ICUN's most optimistic classification, which belies the moral panic of conservation rhetoric. Perhaps by engendering a crisis mentality conservationists are trying to draw attention to their cause, but really this is like the boy who cried wolf and can only serve to discredit valid conservation concerns.

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Deer we should worry about, and the Greater Rhea
Notice that they are behind 2 fences - maybe because people feed them

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Sacred Ibis, Cattle Egret (last photo)
The Cattle Egret, of "Least Concern", "has undergone one of the most widespread and rapid natural expansions of any bird species"

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Little Egret

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Little Egret, Cattle Egret

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More deer


Girl and deer
The father came by later. I was considering asking him to teach his daughter that the plural of deer is deer.

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Map of Hampstead Heath
You'd expect they'd give out these things, but this was behind glass. A fat lot of good it did - but at least I now knew how to get out.

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One entrance to the Heath. This was the first sign for the Heath I'd seen - and I saw it when I left

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"S5MRT" license plate for a SMART car

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PRC Cultural Office
I'd have imagined it'd look grander
This is probably their spy headquarters

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Heath

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House

I was very excited about lunch:

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Chicken Legend with Bacon meal, from McDonald's
"Juicy chicken breast fillet in a golden crispy coating, Batavia lettuce, a choice of cool creamy mayo or spicy tomato salsa, a warm toasted bakehouse roll - and for a short time only, delicious streaky bacon. It's legendary"

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Chicken Legend with Bacon

The medium fries were like large in Singapore.

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BACON

There weren't many food places at Hampstead or, I imagined, the place I was going later.

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I don't know why I took this

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This is damn cheap for unlimited data. £15 for unlimited data, 300 mins and 3000 texts - for 30 days.

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"Take care not to activate alarm button
This is an alarm button. PLEASE DO NOT PRESS to operate the lift"

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War Horse poster: "This is vintage Spielberg: powerful, courageous and honest"
Presumably modern Spielberg is none of those things.

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French was the most common language I heard after English, by a huge margin. I'd expected Mandarin. This was, I suppose, proof of the large French expatriate community escaping high taxes.

The Rough Guide had no Tube map. How dumb. This in itself wasn't that bad, but they didn't say where to get off. So for example it wasn't clear to go to Hampstead Heath going to the "Hampstead" station would work (if you went to the station with the same name, it'd be a huge detour - confusingly)

Le Nozze di Figaro was also showing as part of the Mozart-Da Ponte cycle.

One reason European churches might be more liberal (at least outside of Southern Europe): if not nobody would go, so you need to cast a huge net.
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