Despite having plenty to blog about the one thing I haven’t had is time. I’m 2/3 through my commission in private residential old people’s homes in North London and it’s absorbed nearly all my time, but here’s a quick update.
As expected, it’s been a fascinating couple of days. The staff at the two homes I’ve visited have been inspiring. The level of care and attention they give to residents (who all have different needs and levels of support) is bloody hard work. It’s not a job for the casual or the faint-hearted. I’ve also met some lovely residents and heard their stories. The whole experience has been uplifting – if sometimes sad when you see the ravages of dementia on people who obviously shone before the onset of such a cruel disease.
I’ve also reacquainted myself with commuting across London by public transport. It’s not something have had to do for a long time. When I lived in North London but worked in the East my daily commute was by bicycle. It was the same when I did relief shifts on newspapers based at Canary Wharf. Once I turned to photography my commute was never normally to the same place more than two days in a row.
Since those days London’s population’s grown – as has the number of people commuting in. Today I was using Thameslink services from Herne Hill to Kentish Town & expecting that the new 8-car Siemens Class 700s might have provided a bit of breathing space compared to the Class 319s they’d replaced. Not a bit of it. The trains were rammed – despite all the extra space they provide. It was like being on the tube! It was the same with 12 car trains I saw passing through. Now, these trains are people movers. The 8 cars can carry 1146 and the 12’s take 1754 souls. If they’re already full it’s clear the full 24tph timetable through the Thameslink core can’t come soon enough…