|We did the usual tourist things in London, saw the usual sights and sites.
Being art addicts, we had to visit the Tate and the British Museum (which
was just a short walk from our hotel) and the National Gallery. There is
a framed poster from the British Museum hanging on the wall of my den near
my desk, showing the queen from a twelfth century chess set. (Right now
it is one of three pictures left on the wall as I am taking everything
down and emptying the room in preparation for repainting the walls, one
of those home projects that I have wanted to get done during this week
of vacation I've been taking.)
St. Paul's Cathedral is magnificent. We hiked up the staircase to the balcony
that runs around the rotunda, where the amazing acoustics will carry a
whisper from the opposite side of the dome. Then we went out onto the balcony
that runs around the outside of the base of the dome (that's Nancy looking
at London through a telescope) but declined the further climb up extremely
narrow stairs inside the wall of the dome to the very top of the dome.
|We walked by 10 Downing Street. There was a constable on patrol on that
block, but no other observable security (although even then there must
have been security that was hidden because of dangers such as the IRA).
Today I would imagine there is a considerably greater amount of security,
both visible and hidden.
Below, Nancy pretending to give a speech outside Parliament beneath the
statue of a famous English suffragette (whose identity has slipped my mind
in a mere quarter century).
||And we visited Parliament and Westminster Abbey (breath-taking!) and so
many other sites of great historic interest -- including, of course, The
Tower of London. (Below, Big Ben.)
|We ate in various restaurants and pubs. We had several meals at a cafeteria-style
place called Oodles. On subsequent trips to London I have searched but
have been unable to find it. As I recall it was a few blocks from Trafalger
Square... but after all those years my memory of the location could
have been faulty or they could have closed (as seems to have happened to
most of the Wimpy chain, replaced by Burger King and McDonalds, etc.) In
1979 I had no idea about how wonderful the many Indian and Chinese restaurants
in London could be.
If I can finish emptying the den, painting it, and getting everything put
back together, I hope to add a third installment to this series, scanning
a couple of pictures from Stonehenge and from Wimbledon.
Those garden pictures and the river pictures in my June 26th entry are no longer as muddy as they had been when I first posted them thanks to the efforts of Liz McCabe who Photoshopped them (and also provided me with advice on how to do it myself, so today's pictures are color-corrected). Thanks, Liz!