Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Secrets of the Wimbledon Queue - 2005 Part Two

Some photos of the Wimbledon Queue. Click on any image to get a full-screen view. Next post, photos from the corraled queue, and inside the holy grail of tennis.

St Mary's Church.

Irene and Henry, some of our neighbours for the night, break camp.

what Irene and I really need.... big hint to Charlie and CF!!

the strange building with a deer sculpture on top

and on....

and on....

The people on the right, morning arrivals, seeking the end of the queue, bless...

and on.....

A Triage of Tents?

Young and enthusiastic.

A landmark on Arthur Road.

This was as far as I walked and the queue still stretches on into Home Park Road towards Wimbledon Park Tube station.

Friday, July 01, 2005

Secrets of the Wimbledon Queue - 2005 - Part One

This year we set out early for
Wimbledon. We did intend to leave by 2pm, but there was a small hitch. So by 3 pm on Sunday 29th, we left North London. Unfortunately we hit a traffic jam just after Hanger Lane, and for almost an hour we chugged toward the Chiswick roundabout. After two hours in traffic we reached our destination and home for just over the next 12 hours. Arthur Road, SW19. On the pavement outside St Mary's Church.

Irene and I reckoned that we were in with a chance of tickets on the show courts so we settled down for the fun part, camping. Ah, but never speak too soon. For when we decided to erect our tent, we discovered that the essential part, the layer that held the framework was missing. Aaargh!!! We decided that we should be ok, no rain was expected and sleeping under the stars should be fun.

However, when I informed Charlie about the missing bit, he said no, I'll bring it! Despite my assurances that we would not be ravaged by brigands, and were in the middle of an affluent south London suburb, surrounded by fellow queuers who by now were offering help, and offers to sleep in their cars should rain happen; he set out with Irene's husband C F. Myself I think that they really wanted to have a look at what their mad wives had been doing every year for at least six years now.

So while we waited, and now assured of our place in the queue, we set off for Wimbledon Village for decent mug of latte.

Somewhere around 10pm, Charlie and CF arrived and we set about erecting the tent. After which our two men, now convinced that we are not as mad as they thought because there are lots of others like us, (comforting thought that I suppose) departed for some Chinese Makkan. So eventually we settled in for the night.

I woke about 5.30pm and decided to use the toilets set up in the little park in front of the church to have a bit of a wash. This is the part I don't relish. I am not properly human without a shower each morning, but you do the best you can.

By now the exodus was beginning. The queue stewards were coming around telling us they would like us to be up and packed and on the move to the golf course park in front of Wimbledon where they corral the queue and issue wrist bands for to us according to which court we want tickets for. In the meantime I decided to take some photos of the queue so I went for a walk with camera.

As far back as I walked Arthur Road was a bustle of activity, people sleepily emerging from tents and eating some breakfast on the pavement. I am amazed how some seem to emerge dressed to kill for the day and looking like they are on a fashion shoot. Don't know how they do it.

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

My Tennis Hero's Over The Years

My first tennis hero Billie Jean Moffitt, later to be Billie Jean King. First time I watched Wimbledon on black and white television, BJ played her first year at Wimbledon.

Bad tempered Irish-American brat.

Genius on a tennis court. Seriously genius

The Wimbledon Queue

Every year now since 1999, my friend Irene and I have queued for Wimbledon tickets. If you get within the first 300 you have a good chance of Center or Court One tickets. Most years we have succeeded in getting onto the show courts. Here are some of the photos taken over the years. The Roger Federer one however is on loan from Google.