Sunday, 10 August 2014

Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red - poppies in the moat

Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red by Paul Cummins © Caroline Fraser

Other Half (OH) and I made a rare weekend foray to town today.

We went on the DLR; which was entertaining. We had only been on the train for about 5 seconds when a very polite gentleman asked us if we would take part in a satisfaction questionnaire.

Having no reason to refuse, we answered his questions..........

How clean did we think the train was?

What about the information signs on the train? How comfortable?

And how valued did we feel?


How valued do you feel on a train?

£2.30 worth?

Well if it had been a free ride we might have felt very valued. Or if we had been offered free entertainment perhaps that would have helped. We were honest, and said it was difficult to answer after only 5 seconds on the train.

So why were we travelling?

And where from?

Phone number?

What were they trying to achieve?

We will never know.

Which questions did we decline to answer?

You can probably guess.

We visited the 'Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red' at the Tower of London; the ceramic installation by Paul Cummins.

Poppies © Caroline Fraser

888,246 ceramic poppies will be planted and then sold in memory of the British and Commonwealth dead of the first world war.

Quite a feat, and very moving.

The title was inspired by a line in the will of a Derbyshire man who joined up in the earliest days of the war and died in Flanders.

Ceramic poppies in the moat at the Tower of London © Caroline Fraser

Walking back past the 'gherkin' we came across some of the benches from 'Books about Town'

I was tempted to photograph the  Dr Zeuss bench featuring "The cat in the Hat ", one of my favourite books from childhood, but given the serious nature of our visit felt that the "War Horse"  by Michael Morpurgo one was probably more fitting for today.

War Horse bench © Caroline Fraser

If you would like it, you can bid for it .

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