When driving through any part of London it’s easy to be overwhelmed by the sights and sounds of the city. The sounds of the train, the crowds, the big red double decker buses zooming by captivate your senses. The Victorian style buildings and random statues make the place look and feel like the world’s largest outdoor museum.
When you are here long enough you really start to take for granted the beauty of it all, but once in a while you have that one thing, that one picturesque, jaw dropping, “I have got to get a photo of this” kind of moment. That’s exactly what happened on our way back from Cambridge just getting back into the city. I was half asleep and “P” was driving. He told me that he had to show me something, a beautiful building. I was thinking to myself, “O.k., another old building…whoopty whoop”. To be honest, how spectacular could it be? We are just off a main thoroughfare in Neasden (once nicknamed The Loneliest Village in London). I see people walking, homes, and cars bustling by (nothing out of the norm), until all of a sudden I see a black gate with gold trim. He pulls over and tells me to jump out and take a look, so I do. Peering through the gate I can see a tall white building with flags flying from the rooftop. What…Is…This???
I know at that very moment I am looking at what has to be considered one of the Wonders of London, perhaps the world. Absolutely no exaggeration. I’ve seen beauty and perfection in the form of architecture but this is more than that. Just being close to the gate I feel something, a gravitational pull of sorts drawing me in. I want to see more. It’s BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Hindu Mandir commonly known as Neasden Temple. It was closed for the evening but I HAVE to get back for a proper visit. This is indeed a hidden treasure that I want to explore.
Part 2 soon to follow…..