Monday, February 20, 2017

Week 2 in London

Monday, February 6th was the Queen's sapphire Jubilee - 65 years as queen, and was marked with cannon salutes and parades. There was a 65 gun artillery salute nearby at The Tower of London, but we traveled by the tube to Buckingham Palace to see the music and parades that accompanied their cannons. Pomp and Circumstance it was. And very, very, British I might add!

Riding on the London Tube:

New Cars

Selections of Shoes on the Tube

We stopped at Chinatown on our walk home.

On Tuesday, we walked about and later went to the Royal Ocean Racing Club to meet friend and crew, Steve McWatters. Steve treated us to a great evening at the RORC, and a fine dinner that we shared with Cheese (aka David Cheeseman - another blimey great sailor, of course).

On Wednesday we visited the Museum of London which displays a fantastic history of London from paleolithic times and beyond.  Roman, Anglo-Saxon, and medieval rule to the great fire in 1666, and through to modern times is all depicted. The breadth of history is remarkable and we need to go back to see more and the special exhibit on the 1666 Fire of London, a devastating event.

At the Museum of London
We ended our Wednesday with an evening at the theatre, and went to see Jersey Boys.

Pre-theatre Dinner
London at Night

There is construction everywhere in London, even at night
Thursday evening we went out with friends to the nearby Wilton Music Hall for dinner and a Cole Porter songbook performance. We were a group of yanks, including Gus and Helen, and David, all friends from the Dockyard. Gus, the London OCC host remains an absolute fountain of information.

Wilton’s Music Hall bills itself as the oldest grand music hall in the world. It recently completed a 4 year renovation project and apparently has won multiple awards including Building Of The Year 2016.The music was quite fine and styled a bit differently than the norm, as the London pianist and performer invited friends, an opera singer and a cabaret singer from France, to join him in London for the performance.

The Tate Modern was Friday - a fantastic modern art museum about 1/2 mile up the Thames. It was a nice riverside walk, and like many of the British museums in London, admission is free and you purchase tickets to special exhibitions as desired; we did a simple walk-about this first time. The entire history of modern art seems to be represented, and there were many groups of art students lurking and drawing, and an art group studying with Sotheby's, where we overheard erudite and informative discussions of the finer points and quantified analysis of grey blocks of paintings. Actually, it was really neat as I learned how each emerging artistic movement might represent a departure form the previous norms, would tend to happen every 20 or 40 years, and would generally make it's originators famous.

Jo at the Tate, seeing young ballerina,thinking of Emma

Finally this week we visited the Victoria and Albert Museum (for the first of many times) on Sunday the 12th. The V&A is a stunning museum, and possibly the most amazing collection of artifacts we have ever seen. It was also cool that we were watching the series Victoria, and just saw their romance evolve. Fun. We saw an exhibit on clothing and dress over centuries,  an exhibit on Lockwood Kipling (Rudyard's father), and an exhibit involving history with India...which segued of course exceptionally well with the Kipling exhibit.

V&A Lower Halls

Dining Room

That's it for now. I'm already behind by a week so hopefully more soon!

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