Day 5. Excited by the buzz from fb, I was keen to get back on the trail the next morning. 10 more boxes on my list, chosen because they fell on a route I needed to travel that day. Along the Euston Road.
First stop, St Pancras International around 10am. I already knew what this box would to look like from Flickr. A glamorous black and gold lacquer affair. Surely it would be where the Eurostar passengers were. But it wasn’t there.
It was here, down below, buried under travellers and their luggage for UK destinations.
I decided that the dot on the map for the next box meant it was outside the British Library. But it wasn’t there. Called Taxiphoney, maybe it was at the Euston Station taxi rank? But it wasn’t there. Grumpily I stomped up the road and found a yellow leopardskin one in a modern office block wasteland. It was deserted because it was a Saturday. I had hardly got my camera out when tourists magically appeared and swooped ahead of me to pose and be snapped by their families.
Spotting the BT Tower nearby, I nipped across the dual carriage way to find design no. 31, Box Lounger which the map indicated was very near it. This was a glamorous red buttoned sofa design. But there was no box there either. Exasperated, having found only 2 out of 4 boxes, I went back onto the Euston Road, heading towards Baker Street.
I knew this box well before I saw it. Photographs of it had already appeared in blogs and phologs promoting the exhibition. So why didn’t I feel excited when I saw it? And then I realised that I wanted the thrill of discovering what they looked like for myself. That is what captured my interest on the first 3 days of this hunt. But without the careful documentation of the flickrs I might never had found some of them because this map was so useless! So I snapped this one fast and moved on.
By 12pm I’d run out of time before my lunch date. As I leapt on a bus, I mentally noted that I’d missed another 3, making that a total of 5 five missing boxes. This was not going well.
It was still light on my return home that evening, so I stopped off at Wyndham Place (nr the Gloucester Road) to find 2 that I’d missed in the morning. It was not the boxes which took my breath away. I’d seen them already. Why had no one photographed the beautiful Georgian church behind them? A young family were playing there too, enjoying the last rays of the day. And I was transported back to a gentler age.
Passing Euston Station again, I had to stop and double check for Taxiphoney. Nope. Definitely not there. Then, on another bus passing the St Pancras Hotel, I glimpsed something. It was lit up like a taxi-for-hire-sign on the car ramp which is hidden from street level. Was this my box?
It was! And what a perfect time of day to shoot it. I’m so glad I couldn’t find it this morning. The young Commissionaire thought it was dull dressed all in black. He’d wanted a brightly coloured one. But I thought it was perfect in that setting. I went home triumphant.