Monday, February 02, 2009

[The Life of Shaun #323] *** BREAKING NEWS ***

The weather in London has deviated slightly off mildly cold and moist!
All tubes must be closed or delayed by several hours and buses cannot run!
Employees must be sent home at 1:00 pm and no one should go outdoors unless absolutely necessary!

So went the headlines today. Well, basically to that effect...

Today London had its worst snowfall in 18 years - 8" of snow fell overnight and into the morning. I freely admit it is a real snowfall, sticking to the ground and everything, but it's an amount that in New York would only get a word of caution, almost in passing. Here, in London, the city has quite literally shut down.

Every tube line was at least part suspended and delays were endemic; even the Waterloo & City line, which is entirely underground and has only two stations (Waterloo and Bank [formerly called, you guessed it, City]) was suspended. Most overland train routes were closed and don't even think about flying in or out of here today. From 03.00 this morning, long before any real accumulation, every bus route in London was halted - this despite London's unforgivable nightly closure of the tube. Late shift worker needing to get home? Too bad.

London sauntered along heroically as Hitler rained bombs over London, but eight inches of fluffy, chilly, white stuff proved too much to bear.

But it turned out well for me - I couldn't go in until 10.30 (and didn't have to go in at all, but now's not a good time for uncommitted impressions) and we were sent home a bit after 13.00 due to the "severe and worsening" weather conditions. Only three of us made it in today and only my manager and I, being the closest to Canary Wharf, are even trying tomorrow.

Attaching some photos from my journey into work on this apocalyptic day - and hope you are all warm and safe wherever you are.


1) DSC00019 - Looking out from my balcony

2) DSC00020 - The City

3) DSC00021 - The DLR lines and, somewhere out there, Canary Wharf

4) DSC00027 - Shadwell station tormenting commuters: "C'mon give it a try. BWAHAHAHAHA!"

5) DSC00031 - Watney Market and my building behind. The Polish workers from the bakery felt right at home!

6) DSC00032 - Taxis ply Commercial Road, absent of its normal bevy of red buses

7) DSC00033 - The brave few who made it to Canary Wharf, keeping what's left of Britain's financial sector ticking

8) DSC00038 - And when I got home, the City had fallen behind the grey

And two pictures from my friend, Alexi, featuring a snowy taxi and deserted park.

Shaun H. Coley
Shadwell, Tower Hamlets
London, UK

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