Tag Archives: Street Snaps

That’s Just So… North London!

I spent a decade of my life North London, and those who’ve read my previous few posts will know that I went back there last week for the first time in three years. Anyone who moves to London will suss out very quickly just how attached Londoners are to their neighbourhoods. Many will only socialise in two places: their part of town and the city centre.

There is a particularly curious divide between North and South – to convince a North Londoner to cross the river and set their Kate Kuba encased feet onto the southern Thames shore, you’ve got to come up with a pretty good reason. Taking their children hostage and threatening to force-feed them food additives should do it.

Anyway, here is a selection of pics that struck me as typically North London. Let’s start with a few shots of Hampstead front gardens and back streets…

Hampstead garden 1 Hampstead Garden 2Hampstead Garden 2

Hampstead Street

Hampstead pubHampstead street 2

Hampstead shop inside

Decor inside a Hampstead Shop

Hampstead street 3

I bet my bottom dollar that she’s got a quinoa burger on a bed of rocket and mango salsa in that paper bag…

The Bishop's Avenue

Take on Bishops Avenue, Hampstead Garden Suburb, dubbed “Billionaire’s Row”.

Highgate Tea Shop

One of my favourite Highgate Tea Shops. Oh, the cakes…!

Highgate message board

A message board in Highgate

Highgate house buyer

Now, a house in Highgate will cost you anything upwards of £3m… that’s a lot of cash propping up her pillow!

Highgate Pet Shop

What exactly happens at “Weekly Puppy Parties…?”

Highgate Car

Now, I just want to point out that I didn’t live in either Hampstead or Highgate, but in a more …erm… affordable patch wedged in between 🙂


Madrid Street Performers: Levitating Basketball Player

Taken on Plaza Mayor, Madrid.

"I must say, you do look a bit silly up there, splayed out in mid-air" "Speak for yourself, Pink Socks!"

“I must say, you do look a bit silly up there…”
“Speak for yourself, Pink Socks!”

"And you, giving me the silent treatment, huh?!"

“Giving me the silent treatment, huh?!”

Boisterous Bottle Banks

Imposing statues, refined art, historic buildings, splendid vistas… all very commendable, but a bit much on a Friday, if you ask me. So I give you Lisbon’s colourful bottle banks instead. Some of them are a bit indecent. You’ve been warned.

See what I mean?!

See what I mean?!

Birdy bottle bank

"Glass only", it says, and "do not leave rubbish by the bottle bank"

“Glass only”, it says, and “do not leave rubbish by the bottle bank”

But if you stick your umbrella half-way in, that doesn't count...

But if you stick your umbrella half-way in, that doesn’t count…

Bottle bank and houses

Lovely Lisbon… Enjoy The Men!

Several of you (no need to mention names, we all know who you are!) have been bugging me about Portuguese men since my trip to Lisbon.

I’ve not been giving the “homens” nearly as much attention as The Cakes, but one can’t be too selfish with a raucous audience to please. So, I’ve rifled through my photos and picked out those featuring male specimens. Though I can’t vouch for their representativeness…

Surely, this is what every girl dreams about:


… some hot, steamy squash soup at the end of the day!

…but maybe dreamy boys are more your thing…?

Working men

…waaay too exhausted to work…! I wonder from what?!

Now here’s one who’s made an effort! Ready for your date??

Maybe if he ditched the costume and swapped the balloons for some flowers...?

Maybe if he ditched the costume and swapped the balloons for some flowers chocolates…?

Now that’s more like it!

Now THAT'S more like it :)

Ben Affleck, The Kaiser and Legolas rolled into one!

Soz... the top half of this specimen wasn't nearly as interesting as the foot end with the puppy chewing the laces ;-)

Soz… got distracted from the top half of this specimen by the cute puppy chewing away at the foot end.

Street Snaps: The Penis Bride, Seeing Red, And A Caption Competition!

Brides-to-be… oh, how they agonise for months, years, even decades(!) over THE PERFECT DRESS! Then the big day finally arrives… and their ensemble may not be every inch the epitome of elegance in the way they had intended. At least not from every angle…

Does she not look like a giant penis?!

Does she or does she not look like a giant penis?!

There’s some serious hat envy going on here:

"Well, I bought mine first, so I'm keeping it on!"

“Well, I bought mine first, so I’m keeping it on!”

What is it with garishly coloured hair, I wonder? I had a school friend once who dyed her long mane blue. She was 16, very beautiful, and it looked great. But why is it that middle-aged women are going for red? And I don’t mean the natural redhead look in an effort to hide the grey, oh no, it’s an all-out ****LOOK AT ME I’M HERE!!!**** tabasco sauce red.

Yes, I see you. They probably can all the way from Alpha Centauri, if there's any life. And their guns are trained on YOU!

IF there’s any life on Alpha Centauri, their WMDs will be trained on YOU!

...and YOU!

…and YOU!

Yes, lady, that dress would so totally complete your look!

Leopard Print – The Sordid Sequel

Do you remember this lady from my leopard print rant a couple of weeks ago?

Leopard print

Well, this week, I spotted her doppelgänger:

Leopard dog

I ruminated over this last one for ages, only to draw a complete and utter blank. So, I thought, I’d leave it to my very witty and inventive readers to think of a catchy caption. The guy sitting behind the bench, in case you can’t quite make it out, is actually dressed as a monk. I’ve no idea what he’s planning to do there.

Any suggestions???

Any suggestions???

That’s it for this week, peeps. If you’re a new reader and you want to catch up on the rest of the Street Snaps series, just click here.

Street Snaps: The Hideous Tops Special

Saturday afternoon, when I was out on my weekly Street Snaps mission, was beautifully warm and sunny. People got into position…

...for a spot of sunbathing...

…for a spot of sunbathing…

...and to take pics

…and to take pics from all humanly possible angles

Anyway, let’s get to the meat of it. Ahem. Over there past few months of stalking about the streets of Toledo, one “fashion” phenomenon was particularly hard to miss: The prevalence of ghastly patterned tops, primarily (but not exclusively) worn by middle aged and older women.

I’m neither an advocate of dull clothes nor of sombre solid colours, but surely, there is a line between cheerful and garish…? Evidently not.

Some of the pics are a bit blurry, but you’ll get the idea…


Did anyone call Spiderwoman…?
Those fridge magnets will make a splendid addition to your (no doubt very tastefully decorated) home.

Top 3

OK… although you have almost the same dimensions as a church window, the stained glass effect isn’t nearly as flattering on you.

Top 5

If you look at it for long enough, this thing actually stares back at you… scary!


Madam, if I may give you some spiritual advice…less looking at saints, more looking at yourself… IN THE MIRROR!

tops 2

Yeah, I can see how hard you’re working it, ladies, but it’s just NOT WORKING!

Top 6

Perfect outfit! …for target practice.

Top 7

I remember we had bed sheets like that… IN THE SEVENTIES!

You’ve probably had enough of this by now. And I don’t blame you!

As usual, I’m finishing off with cute dogs. Of course, they are also decked out in tops for the occasion 😉

Dogs in tops

…and even pants!

Oh no, his ear's been chewed off :(

Poor poppet, someone’s chewed off his ear 😦

[To view the Street Snaps series, click here.]

Street Snaps: Mummies At Large & A Leopard Print Rantathon

Another week, another round of frightfully frumpy tourists. I don’t even have words for this:


We're clearly in Halloween week now, we've got mummies on the loose!

We’re clearly in Halloween week now, there’s mummies on the loose!

And now, let’s turn to a favourite topic of mine: The merits (or NOT!) of animal print. There’s no escaping it this season, it’s absolutely everywhere. I guess I am a tad biased here, because I grew up with the firmly engrained dogma that leopard print garments were the sole domain of desperate women ‘of a certain age’ who were hell-bent on fighting the unbearable phenomenon of middle-aged invisibility with a sledge hammer.

BetLynchFor the Brits among you, the best known personification of sa(i)d strategy is probably publican Bet Lynch. (Bet Lynch, see left, was a much-beloved character on the long-running British soap Coronation Street).

OK, I will concede that an animal print accessory or item of clothing can, on occasions, look quite stylish, and pretty young women would get away with wearing a crown of dead squirrels on their head. On a mature lady, a nice zebra-striped scarf or snake skin bag can complete an outfit. But there are limits. And we’ll be looking at some pics now where those limits have been transgressed.

I mean, honestly: Is this in any way flattering???? NOOOOOOO!

I mean, honestly: Is this in any way flattering???? The teenager behind (wearing a tiger sweater, amusingly enough) can’t seem to believe it either!

What does this say to you? "I have a sexy wild side, come get me!? Or... "I'm camouflaging a skin disease!"

What does this say to you?
“I have a sexy wild side, come get me!” Or…
“I’m camouflaging a troublesome skin condition!”

No, no, noooooo!


To counteract the awfulness of all of the above, how about a teensy dog in human clothes:Doggy

You are cute, too, but I'm not quite sure you could pull it off...

You are cute, too, but I’m not quite sure you could pull off this outfit…

To view the rest of the Street Snaps series, click here.

Street Snaps: Sightings Of Martians And Grace Jones

Today’s $64 million dollar question: How many fully armed police officers does it take to fix a bollard in Toledo?

At least one of them seems interested. The other one's got his eye on lunch.

And without further a do, let’s launch into the What Were They Thinking When They Got Dressed That Morning section:

Have you run away from the circus...?

Have you run away from the circus…? The fact that your top and your shoes match the garishness in between does NOT make it OK.

Do you wrestle professionally...?

Do you wrestle professionally…? Or did it take you weeks of scouring the thrift shops to find THE most unflattering garment imaginable? In that case, mission achieved!

My photo, blurry?! Nope, this is EXACTLY what I saw

Moving on to MEN. It occurred to me that I’d been neglecting the other 50% of the population in previous posts. I shall rectify this at once.

Hello...? Is this NASA? I'm ringing to report that the Martians have landed in Toledo...

Hello…? Is this NASA? I’m ringing to report that the Martians have landed in Toledo!

The next couple of shots are rather blurry, but I can’t possibly deprive you of this… it’s incredible what some men will do to add a few inches!

Some of us remember the 80's. And in particular, Grace Jones....

It’s the Latino Grace Jones!

Just look how it lines up with the brickwork!!! Yes, Madam, I do know exactly what you're chuckling at...

Just look how his crowning glory lines up with the brickwork!!! Now that’s what I call a hairline…
Yes, Madam, I do know exactly what you’re chuckling at.

Man and pram

Aw, I like how it all matches – his outfit, the rucksack and the pram! Quite an achievement 🙂 Also, I can relate to the longing stare into the sweet shop…

And just to finish off on an even cutesier note…

I love beagles, I love them!

I love beagles, I love them!

[To view the rest of the Street Snaps series, click here]

Street Snaps: Pink, Pink Everywhere.

Another week, another rash of snaps from tourist trodden Toledo. We seem to be on a pink theme. Brace yourselves.

"I told you not to wolf whistle at the tourists bro! Now look what you've gotten us into. We're toast!!"

“I told you not to wolf whistle at the damn tourists, bro! Now look what you’ve gotten us into. We’re toast!!”

No caption could possibly add anything to this...

No caption in the world could possibly add anything to this…

And now, we come to our popular Couples’ Corner. Let’s start with these middle-aged Italian folks.

Couple pink wife

I like pink. I really do. But there is a limit. I hold the firm belief that if you stifle an 8-year-old girl’s pink phase, it’ll break out, with a vengeance, at some later point. Like any childhood disease, it’s much worse when it hits you as an adult. She’s probably got a sparkly tiara tucked into her handbag.
His outfit violently clashing with hers is not even worth a mention.

Right, let’s rest our weary eyes on this couple, where everything works:


Aw, just look at those two in perfect harmony. Her lovely dress with the paisley pattern featuring some pink, with his (albeit a tad more casual) outfit complementing hers. OK, I do have a slight weakness for guys in pink shirts…

Those of you who’ve been following Street Snaps since the beginning may remember that I’ve featured the Japanese lady below once before, but in a different context, on a different photo. But this is just such a great example of the disastrous consequences when SHE copies HIS wardrobe.

OK. Lady. This outfit works great on him... BUT NOT ON YOU!!!!

OK. Lady. The khaki pants and check shirt work great on him… BUT NOT ON YOU!!!!

AAAAAAAAAAAAAH! WTF are you?! One of Alice in Wonderland's magic mushrooms???

NAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHRGH! WTF are you?! An Alice in Wonderland magic mushroom???

[To view the rest of the Street Snaps series, click here]