With a couple of free hours before my concert this evening I took a stroll down to the Ipswich waterfront. On my way there and back I passed the intriguing Willis Building. This modern structure is clad entirely in dark glass, which reflects the surrounding buildings. As I looked closer I noticed odd things happening, with passing vehicles disappearing into the joints between panes of glass and distortion in what were really straight lines.
Beside the waterfront I found a Thames barge, a sleeping dog guarding its owner’s boat and even a dragon on a gatepost.
After a bite to eat I strolled back through the town, following a different route. I had no idea Cardinal Thomas Wolsey had a connection with Ipswich, but a sign near this statue informed me that he was born and raised in the town. I was intrigued by the inclusion of a cat, peering out from behind his robes. A little research led me to discover that Wolsey was a cat lover and often had one at his side when holding meetings or working with King Henry VIII. This was no doubt a bold move for a man of the cloth in the sixteenth century, when cats were almost universally associated with witchcraft.
Just before I reached the church, where I was to be performing this evening, I came across another statue on a street corner, of a young girl deep in contemplation. Just behind her, a young man was sitting on a nearby bench, head in hands, mirroring her posture. This may look a very sombre image but it doesn’t tell the whole story. It looks like he’s in the depths of despair but he was actually in the middle of a very animated conversation on his mobile phone, which sounded anything but downbeat!
16 June 2018