Nottingham to Notting Hill. A Quick trip to the East Midlands by funky hairdryer and another to West London by bike. Again, I play, I dance, shoot, collect a few simple images that somehow symbolise the state of our nation. In Nottingham we see the classic pedestrianised shopping street, emptied of people when the retail day ends; empty of real human spirit, life and energy all the time; scary with groups of boys, drunk beyond reason, because they think thatâ€™s what boys do, shouting at fat girls with pink plastic phones and pink plastic nails and peroxide straw hair and tiny trotters, wondering why they canâ€™t get a shag. In London, for two days only, the street becomes the party. One million people, 50 sound systems, all that bass and so much love as the Carnival celebrates 64 years of demonstration, music and roots and culture. As we celebrate the wonderful eccentricity and creativity and diversity of humanity in the city. As we think of the future, the possibilities and the probabilities.
Take this: The church of alcohol, the local spiritual centre becomes the local spirit seller as Pitcher & Piano, the bar chain, take over an old church. Who needs religion when youâ€™ve got booze?
Take this: The English flag, the proud cross of Saint George, the red and white, in all itâ€™s glory, 2010 style.
Take this: Music in the streets, love is the message, street corner classics on the decks, sunshine in our hearts, the biggest free street party in Europe, sometimes, maybe, music is the answer.
Take this: New moves on the tarmac dancefloor. In this yearâ€™s sound clash in our preferred area – Good Times vs Aba Shanti vs Sancho Panza, itâ€™s Aba Shanti that comes out on top. More bass power, more sunshine energy. Wave your flag, wave your flag.