It doesn’t matter whether you love or hate twerking. Whether you are afraid of showing bare skin or always expose your breasts. The London Notting Hill Carnival is about revealing your true colours and going all in!
From Notting Hill Gate to Ladbroke Grove Canal, all was covered in feathers, glitters and sparkles. In this city, it is politically incorrect to say that people of colour descended upon the otherwise quiet streets of a posh London neighbourhood, but that is kind of what happened. The others, wearing ridiculously tiny underwear and vintage jackets, were just an awkward accessory to what was happening around the parade.
“Colour descended upon the otherwise quiet streets of London”
From what I gathered, the Carnival is a lot about sex. Half naked women showing off their boobs, bums and legs, smiling, waving and taking selfies with the thrilled and astonished crowd. Music was loud, alcohol running down people’s throats, local shops and homes boarded upto prevent damage. A place where one normally bumps into Gucci and Hermes suddenly turned into a street festival full of food stalls and whistles. Men experiencing erection right in front of the onlookers’ eyes, women shaking their arses right in front of small children’s faces. Nobody found this inappropriate. Well, I guess those who did, stayed at home. Wise and sensible.
Looking back, I am glad to have experienced the Carnival. Will I do this again? Never, thank you. I fear crowds and although during PrideI felt heart-warming emotions, I left the Carnival feeling shocked and scared, promising myself never to do this again.
It was great to see all those beautiful women who, regardless of their body shapes, felt strong and feminine. I did not enjoy seeing the men exploit women right in front of my eyes and the women submitting themselves to men. I appreciate that the Carnival is a celebration of London’s minorities. I congratulate those who found shelter in the British capital. But I realise that my culture is far too different from the one that was celebrated there this past Bank Holiday. My upbringing is what restricted me from enjoying the event and being a valuable addition to the cheering crowd. I apologise, but not my kinda tea. I prefer a cuppa to a can.
All in all, the music was great, the costumes were stunning. But the half-drunk half-naked participants was nothing to be enjoyed for more than a few minutes. Thank you, Carnival, you were breath-taking but ‘notting’ I’d need to experience ever again.