A brash neon sculpture of Jesus was the closest I personally came to anything of spiritual significance in the city streets of London, apart from the gilded bronze angel on top of the Victoria Memorial. It just goes to show... never say never.
Maybe Bertold Brecht was in here in the 1920s, discussing his plays with someone in the very room I slept in that night, or maybe the bands Depeche Mode or The Human League used it as a dressing room in the 1980s.
The Tiergarten park in Berlin is breathtaking and also has amazing energy. I was very tempted to buy a sleeping bag and simply move into the park on a permanent basis! The entire park is apparently larger in size than the principality of Monaco and makes Berlin one of the greenest cities in the world. I even tried to find a four leaf clover there, but had to settle for cheating, the same way Liza Minnelli did in this same park in a scene in the movie Cabaret, by putting two sets of leaves together to form one!
Maybe my distress was due to the lingering effect of the recent energizing experience I had at Bath Spa, as well as the once in a lifetime visit to Stonehenge. This could very well be what set me up for the subsequent shock to my system. The sheer contrast of it all! Or maybe I was suffering from a lack of peaceful sleep, after being woken up several times in Athens, Berlin and Wiltshire by an unidentified phantom who was compulsively sweeping and mopping the floors outside my door every night? I still do not know who she was, but for some reason she followed me around in Europe… until I arrived in London. Then she disappeared without a trace. At least London exorcised the ghostly cleaning lady... whom shall forever remain unknown.
But all was not lost. I did find something somewhat spiritual in London after all! One day, while making my way through the brutal streets of Soho, I spotted a psychedelic looking piece of post-modern art on display in the window of an art gallery appropriately called Scream. This bold and brash sculpture was the closest I personally came to any real sense of spiritual significance in the London inner city. But still, it just goes to show: never say never. I have no idea who the artist of this bizarre piece is; I was in too much of a restless hurry to stop and ask. That is what one does in London Town. You rush. And you stay alive.
London works hard, plays hard, and lives fast. During the day the city is highly stressed, materialistic and fast-paced. It has a sense of urgency, and survival of the fittest. And at night the city becomes loud, angry and intoxicated. I saw youths beat each other up on street corners, and inebriated businessmen, with loosened neck ties and wrinkled Italian suits, noisily singing along to show tunes in a pub. No wonder the Jesus statue in that window looked so disappointed. I cannot imagine myself ever living here.
© 2013 Anthon St Maarten