ls_night_time.jpgHmmm… what to say about Leicester Square! 

The cinema and “theaterland” of London! The nightclub land! 

Or as it was to me…. a delightfull and busy square with the most delightful gigantic cuckoo clock!

Leicester Square will never be part of the romantic London that I hold so dear to my heart.  To me, it is the more robust, crowded and lively London.  A very small garden with a statue of Shakespear surrounded by Dolphins.

Of course me being me, I am not much impressed by 19th century statues or 15th century gardens.  What delighted me more were the small restaurants around Irving Street, leading to the square.  Eating in their small cramped tables arranged under striped awnings in the sunshine!  (It was warm and sunny one time, when I had visited!)

leicester-square.jpgI remember making my way through the crowded square with large movie sign boards and lots of theater ticket booths.  And finally I arrived at the other corner that houses the swiss center.  A souvenier shop at the bottom and a BIG cuckoo clock on the building facade.  And oh what fun it was, when the clock struck the hour!  A delightfull procession of clay figurines started a procession across the building facade, moving to the beat of the big bells!  Yes when the clock strikes an hour it is a complicated mix of bells strung along the building ringing in a concert.  So for 10 minutes you get treated to a medley of bell rings being played out like an beautiful, melodious orchestra.  And of course you get routed to the spot, just watching the clay dancers dance, and play violins and cows moo and oh I can go on and on!

And once you are done eating in the McDonalds around the corner from the cuckoo clock (What to do! I had my lil one with me, who appreciates fat chips more than delicately flavored pastas!), you can take your pick.  Either go down Coventry street towards Piccadilly (I actually walked to piccadilly and then had to take the bus on the way back, sighing , panting, choking!).  Or go in the opposite direction to end up in covent garden!  I wrote a piece on covent garden sometime back so will not go there this time :).  

Piccadilly is piccadilly.  My lil one got introduced in Piccadilly to itallian ice-cream from quaint ice cream trucks.  It is a very interesting juncture of many streets, with a mild feeling of New Yorks times square (because of the electric billboards).  Many bollywood movies are shot here and I wonder why!  There are much more beautiful places to shoot in london.  But I guess piccadilly is old London buildings combined with the modern billboard kinda London.

hamleys_london.jpgOf course if you take the Regent street from there (as I did!) you had better have your credit card handy!  Lots of wonderfull shopping to do!  And if you make the mistake of stepping into Hamleys (Londons biggest toy shop) along with a lil one (Yes I did make that mistake!) well you better have several credit cards handy!  🙂 

I swear if my lil one had been able to talk as much as he does now, he would have made us go through all 7 floors of the place. 

But since he was strapped to his collapsible pram, and unable to assert himself “too much”, we only visited 4 of the 7 floors!  And bought only a big bagfull of toys and not the whole store!  (As if my credit card would have survived that!)

But oh what fun!