I was back to my problem of having nothing to write about and I decided to take the suggestion of Lollie which was then seconded by Kellie. The river. All my information came from a mixture of Wikipedia, things I’ve heard and things I make up in my own head so …it’s pretty accurate.
The River Thames. I have said before but let me reiterate: it is pronounced like Tims not like James with a T. Why?
“The Thames, from Middle English Temese, is derived from the Celtic name for the river, Tamesas (from *tamēssa), recorded in Latin as Tamesis and underlying modern Welsh Tafwys “Thames”. The name probably meant “dark” and can be compared to other cognates such as Irish teimheal and Welsh tywyll “darkness” (PC *temeslos) and Middle Irish teimen “dark grey”, though Richard Coates mentions other theories: Kenneth Jackson’s that it is non Indo-European (and of unknown meaning), and Peter Kitson’s that it is IE but pre-Celtic, and has a name indicating muddiness from a root *tã-, ‘melt’.” (Wikipedia) Clear as mud?
The river flows and is affected by tides from the North Sea. Personally as rivers go it is not an especially lovely one (at least the parts I have seen that go through London) The water is brown and it is surrounded by concrete. However, its presence in the middle of the city is beyond lovely. I love seeing it in pictures of the city because I think it enhances the city so much. There are many bridges crossing it in London both pedestrian and car. When you think of bridges you probably think of Tower Bridge because that is what is in all of the pictures. Or you think of London Bridge which is quite an unremarkable bridge and not even the one that the song is about- the original London Bridge is in Arizona. My favorite is the Millennium Bridge. It is just a foot bridge and walking on it from the south bank to the north will aim you directly to St. Paul’s Cathedral.
You can go on Wikipedia or many other sites and read pages and pages about the river if you want more but what fascinates me is the people’s attachment to the river. Growing up in Texas, I take being outside for granted. In Texas, there is rarely a day that isn’t fit for being outside in some way or another and we are far more likely to complain about the heat than anything else. People are outside all the time. Here it isn’t like that. The weather is so finicky that between the rain, the wind and the cold, finding a day pretty enough to spend outside is a treasure. These summer months are the best chances at catching some quality outside time and the river is the best place to witness Londoners’ exuberance at being outside. Go anywhere on the river and you will see people packed at every restaurant and pub standing outside in huge groups after work drinking, eating, laughing and talking. It is so invigorating! Mike works right on the river and we went up last week and met friends at a pub on the river and then ate dinner at a restaurant overlooking it and it was a great evening with wonderful weather and we all enjoyed the fresh air! But I think it is something best witnessed in person so when you come over we will go for a walk on the south bank (the best side of the river for walks) and stop and get a pint at a pub and watch the river.