Monday, 7 May 2012

A walk in the bank holiday drizzle

On a quintessentially English rainy and miserable May bank holiday what could be more appropriate than a stroll in the drizzle through Highgate cemetery ?

Only a couple of miles by car but about a million miles in social terms from the bit of North London where I live - Highgate village is a glimpse of how city living could be: It's all nice pubs, unspoilt historic buildings - and independent book shops. If only there was some sort of Neutron bomb device to ethnically cleanse the area of its LibDem-voting, smug  chattering class residents ...

The cemetery is rather wonderful though - and walking around it with rain dripping from the overgrown vegetation that is gradually swallowing up the Victorian Gothic monuments all adds to the atmosphere.

Of course I had to pay my respects at Marx's tomb. It's undeniably impressive, although I like to think the great man would have had  little time for its over-blown pomposity.

In fact the original tomb was  a much simpler affair - more in line with the modest funeral that only drew a dozen or so mourners.  Apparently the original monument is still somewhere in the cemetery - but I couldn't find its location advertised. The present globally-recognised monument only dates back to 1954 when it was installed by the Stalinist Communist Party of Great Britain. It's upkeep is now allegedly  paid for by the Chinese Embassy. 

I'm pretty sure that Karl - who had a healthy disrespect for authority and pomposity  in all its forms - would be spinning in his tomb at the thought of that ...


Brian M said...

You do understand that the reason for the existence of the independent bookstores and preserved historic buildings is the presence of the artistic bourgeoisie, I assume?

Why such vulgar calls for violence? Is what Highgate really needs a bit of Cultural Revolution, with pure Maoist (or Trotskyite) cadres putting the class enemies in their place (or the grave for the unredeemable)?

What a wonderful vision the unredemeemed Marxist left has for the world!

Journeyman said...

... and I thought it was usually the Left who are accused of having no sense of humour.

'Artistic bourgeoisie' ?
Really ?

Brian M said...

LOL. touchee. touchee.

I know...that was an intemperate reaction. seriously, though, I do love your blog (even though I've not commented before).