Desktop Pilgrimage 2021 | Day 2

In which we start where we stopped on Day 1, at St Mary’s in Willesden.

Where we travel

  1. the nearby Neasden Temple, where I wonder what you’re supposed to do as a visitor (jump to 6 mins 30 secs in the video below); then shut my eyes and make up my best guess;
  2. Harlesden, so-called “no-go zone” (16 mins 40 secs);
  3. Wormwood Scrubs (20 mins);
  4. Grenfell Tower (22 mins); and finish at
  5. St Marks Place, where there was once, but is no longer, a church (28 mins 39 secs).

Topics, stories

  • where I was born, and what my mother could see through the hospital window;
  • what even is a “no-go zone”;
  • how I laid eyes on Grenfell every day of my early life but never gave it a thought;
  • the strangeness of “walking” on Google Streetview through landscape that changes abruptly from autumnal to springlike; and
  • that some of the locations were photographed long before anybody had even heard of Covid-19.

The video (highlights)

The video (in full)


Weather report

Because this is a virtual pilgrimage, I also pop outside to get some exercise. This afternoon, despite the bright sunshine, it was flippin’ cold, in fact my fingers went numb holding the dog lead.

Up next

From St Marks Place to Sloane Square via Notting Hill

Spectators: this is live on Facebook every weekday in April, 14.30 to 15.15 UK time.
Participants: get in touch if you’d like to join me “on camera” (via Zoom). This would be a lot more fun. Don’t be shy.