The Bride, Berwick Street, Soho, 13.30.
Outside Soho Silks are three women, come out of the shop to view a half-made dress in the sunlight. One, patient and serene, holds some fabric up to herself, obviously the bodice of her wedding dress. A second, from the shop and slightly bored, holds a mirror up for her. A third hangs back a little, but looks excited; she is the bridesmaid possibly, enjoying wedding preparations by proxy.
The Hen Night, Cambridge Circus, 15.00
Ahead of me is a group of women with hats. The hats are those “bits of nothing” you can buy to wear at summer weddings, looking most bizarre with jeans and stretchy t-shirts. Two of the women are wearing their hats, leading the pack, linking arms and laughing at the others who have refused to put theirs on. As we congregate, waiting to cross the road, I turn and say, without preamble, buoyed up by London, “tell me about your hats, then!” and realise as I do that the hats are home made from yoghurt pots and net curtains and feathers and pink-headed pins (for voodoo later?).
“We’re on a hen night!” they shout, unnecessarily loud with the excitement of the day. “The others won’t wear theirs!”
Their excitement is so infectious that I shout back, “I love your hats! Tell the others they’re wimps!” I add, “Have a great time!” and we part. I’m still at some inner party when I reach Regent Street.
The Groom, Hanover Street, Mayfair, 16.00
A small argument in the street. A man in an unfinished jacket has his arms peered at by a tailor, inspecting the material in natural light. Blue or black? Has it snagged? In the seconds it takes me to walk past the pair, I feel the irritation and urgency of the customer, the defensiveness of the tailor. I’ve had another tiny glimpse into another’s life.
There. Three scenes I saw in London this weekend. They all happened before my eyes. Were all three groups bound for the same wedding? Unlikely, but possible. I have faith in coincidences. I cling to the possibility.
Glimpses into the lives of others and a celebration of coincidence.
Somewhat “dashed off,” I’m afraid, but I wanted to record these brief seconds before I forgot them. It’s times like this that I wish I could take decent photographs….