Day 73 of 80 — Elephants

Around London in 80 days

In these uncertain times, I need a lifeline and a horizon so I  have — somewhat arbitrarily I’ll admit — set a date. April 1st will be  my horizon ; my lifeline will be the 80 days separating me from it.
And as I cannot go around the world right now, I give you A Mad Belgian’s “Around London in 80 Days” : eighty impressions of London, eighty stories, places, thoughts from my experience of this wonderfully mad and maddening city.

Day 73: Elephants

In Spitafields, there is a “Herd of Hope”, a family of life-size bronze elephants scattered around the market. They used to stand together on Marble Arch roundabout but here they have more space to roam around.

They hide away in unlikely places so be ready to stumble on a playful baby elephant wherever you go in this part of town.Each of them has a name : they represent 20 real orphaned elephants who have beaten the odds to survive.

Then you turn a corner and here she is, facing you, massive and formidable : the adoptive mother. A beautiful, very large (life-size!) elephant statue that seems to welcome you to the market.

I like the way unusual bronze statues bring another life to our city. Bronze is discreet. It’s simple and sober. If you’re not looking you might miss most bronze figures around. But when you pay attention, the silent poetry of those still companions comes into view.

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