Friday, 2 April 2010

Friday Flaneur (6) - The Immortal Game


Under the massive Port Jackson fig, the giant chequer-board hosts a quiet, pondering throng. Individual tables are scattered in the vicinity, enabling others to feel part of the community. Older European gentlemen, and younger Asian geeks pace, or smile wisely as the adversaries step forward and move the massive pieces. Sagely, a Mexican-wave of nods acknowledges a strategy cleverly executed.

The muffled squeal of young children frolicking in the nearby Archibald Fountain, anchors the combatants and their seconds to the here, to the now – Hyde Park in the centre of Sydney, in the shadow of Centrepoint Tower, at the rear of the St James station Elizabeth Street entrance.

The dull background noise of the coffee aficionado under the bleached market umbrellas of Buonissimo Italiano wafts gently overhead, together with the aroma of freshly roasted Arabica beans and pain au chocolat. Vaucluse and Double Bay matrons, already scrabbling for their gold tipped cigarette holders, chequer-board David Jones’ shopping bags over their uncluttered arm, jostle for the next available table.

Sydney, at the beginning of autumn, is a state of bliss.


Flaneur (n). A person who strolls the city in order to appreciate it.

10 comments:

Frank de Jol said...

Cool pictures, time well spent

Marka said...

Chess is a game of decisions, decisions, decisions.

jennyfreckles said...

Lovely how you've captured their concentration, in these tight focussed shots.

BlossomFlowerGirl said...

Great photos, you can feel the emotion of the players. I love your descriptions too.
Cheers.
Melbourne Daily Photo

Piyush said...

Nice candid shot Julie!

jabblog said...

There's something very calming about seeing so many people sitting playing chess. It's a great idea to have public chess boards.

diane said...

Relaxing the body and exercising the mind. great captures. I often wonder why they are not at work or who provides the playing pieces.

Clytie said...

Very well written, and very well photographed! You definitely caught a special moment.

Joan Elizabeth said...

Happy Easter Julie. And I do so agree "Sydney, at the beginning of autumn, is a state of bliss." having spent most of last week down there.

I have never seen chess players in Sydney. I love the concentration and shooting angle of the bottom shot.

PJ Taylor said...

Ah, outdoor chess - absolute heaven.