Marx, laugh and Brighton


Recovering from the tail end of a light cold reminded by an intermittent tickling cough, and listening to the rain as it patters down on my bedroom window, here I reflect on a wonderful few days a week ago.

On Tuesday 21st I got the train down to London, bicycle in tow.  From St. Pancras I cycled to Clappy J’s (Hees) and met up with my friend, Tom.  After a tea and a chat we got the tube, Northern Line to Archway.  We walked up and down some massive hills and eventually arrived at Highgate Cemetery.

Since embarking on my sociology degree, listening attentively as I did to all my lecturers (honest), I forever increasingly foresaw my visit to Karl Marx’s grave.  Its references in popular culture, and its photos plastered in books and on slides are one thing but seeing it in person was supposed to be something else – and it was.  Standing in front of such a grave and reading over it – touching it and reflecting on its words is something I can recommend to all who will study, are studying or have studied Marx.  It makes a man whose work, at times, can feel so distant, in fact feel tangible.

Me, Tom and the grave of Karl Marx.

Power to the people!

From the cemetery, we walked in hope of finding a Wetherspoons, but in the end passed some lovely houses on a private estate and went to a cafe.  Then on to the Pleasance Theatre, firstly to a bar next door, then getting a gin and tonic before the performance started.  A break mid-way and another.  Out just after 10pm.  What a wonderful time!  Sitting in the small audience of about thirty, made the performances more intimate than I imagined but this intensified the humour.  The two comedians were Adam Hess and Matt Forde.  To Holborn’s Wetherspoons, and a walk through Leicester Square, and past Trafalgar, we headed on the tube back to Tom’s.


The next day we arose early (about 8am) and left by 9.30am ish to cycle from London to Brighton.

Here is the cycle information:


On the trip down we stopped a few times and delighted our taste buds with some Sainsbury’s Taste the Difference cookies.  But they tasted better than usual.  Why?  Well, I found them.  In a bin.  Yes, you heard, in a bin.  My first ever ‘skipping’ (dumpster diving) experience.  Outside a Sainsbury’s Local, was a bin slightly ajar owing to the heaps of food piled up.  The Best Before date on these cookies were the day before.  It was a crying shame I couldn’t carry more.  This brief experience has given me a taste (pun intended) for skipping.  So much good food is thrown away yet so many people go hungry.  This needs to change.

Taste the Difference cookies I found. I certainly tasted the difference. Free difference!

As soon as we arrived in Brighton, we locked up our bicycles and sat on the beach.  Within minutes, we were in the sea and oh my, what a sea it was.  I nearly drowned – not a massive exaggeration as I swallowed a lot of water.

Tom and me on Brighton beach


I’ve cycled further than this before and felt fine, but perhaps because of what I got up to the day before, and cycling through polluted London and swallowing too much salty water, meant that by that evening, already my voice sounded course and I felt under the weather.


View from the pier

All in all a splendid couple of days.  Thank you Tom.



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