Yesterday I went to see the excellent Frida Kahlo exhibition at the Tate Modern. I've been to the Tate a few times before, but never from home, always after work, so I used the delightful Jubilee Line from Waterloo to go to Southwark. Having never been that way before I discovered that if I followed some orange lamp posts I would be guided through the back streets to the Tate Modern.
This was brill as I would have gone a completely different but longer route if I'd used an A-Z or streetmap. On the reverse of the lamp post were arrows pointing you back to Southwark - or "South Walk" as an American at the Tate pronounced it. I wish there were more lamp posts like this dotted round London giving you the fastest routes to tube stations. There are plenty of lamp posts around, so why aren't more of them used for guidance or advertising?
For once, I was early to meet my friend (who amazingly was late) so I had a bit of time to kill and wandered into one of the shops at the gallery. So imagine my surprise to see nestled amongst the London books - One Stop Short of Barking - Uncovering the London Underground - which I helped to research for my friend.
Even more surprising was to see someone pick it up and start flicking through it. "Buy it, buy it, buy it", I willed.
After five minutes of nosing through, he put it down and left - D'OH.
Anyway, to pay homage to Frida Kahlo, here's a picture from the show (The Bus 1929) that wouldn't look out of place on a commuting blog like this. I'm sure she wasn't a regular bus commuter (particularly as she was badly injured and almost died in a bus crash when she was young), but to me it's a nice mix of the variety of commuters in Mexico.
However, if you want the arty notes "she satirises the class divisions of Mexican society, portraying different types as they ride on the bus. The lower-middle class matron, the proletarian worker in blue overalls, the Indian mother with her infant, the capitalist gringo with a bulging money bag, all line up for our scrutiny. The modern young woman at the end of the bench could be taken for Kahlo herself."