Umbra Sumus – ‘We are shadows.’ These are the words on the sundial here in Fournier St.
Over the coming days, weeks, months and years, I am going to write every single day and tell you about life here in Spitalfields at the heart of London. How can I ever describe the exuberant richness and multiplicity of culture in this place to you? This is both my task and my delight.
Let me disclose to you the hare-brained ambition I am pursuing, which is to write at least ten thousand stories about Spitalfields life. At the rate of one a day, this will take approximately twenty-seven years and four months. Who knows what kind of life we shall be living in 2037 when I write my ten thousandth post?
I do not think there will be any shortage of material, though it may be difficult to choose what to write of because the possibilities are infinite. Truly all of human life is here in Spitalfields.
If you wish to direct me to write about someone in particular, please let me know, because the days go by quickly and I am always eager to discover more stories. And it is through meeting people and learning more that my understanding will grow, and this project can evolve. I am open to all approaches.
It is my custom to walk everywhere in London and I discover things on my walks, so you will also find stories here from places that are within walking distance of Spitalfields.
Like Good Deeds and Everyman in the old play, let us travel together. I promise to keep writing to you every day and it will be an eventful journey we shall have together.
Your loyal servant
The Gentle Author
26th August 2009
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