Wednesday, 28 May 2008

Londonium (again)

S and I went to London again today. We'd discussed various things we wanted to see and do and last night did some research to see what was going on. I've been reading a book by Nigel Slater called Eating for England, where he suggested a thoroughly English way to spend the afternoon is to have afternoon tea at a swank london hotel. Mmmm...scones at the Ritz, but apparently it is so popular there that afternoon tea is available throughout the day and even at night (which I think diminishes the specialness of the event) and it would cost nearly 50 quid each. I don't like cucumber that much.
Anyway we toyed with the idea of a matinee and I even found ones that we'd (I) would like to see but they started a bit too late in the day. So as I shut down the computer last night I had it sorted in my head. If we left early enough we'd go to the British Museum and do a tour (10.30, 1.00 or 3pm) then head to Soho for lunch and then onto the Churchill Museum and the war cabinet rooms which I'd heard were fascinating (if you like Churchill).
S however does not due to Churchill's rather callous way of squandering the lives of Australian soldiers for the sake of the empire. So that was out. We decided to get off the train at Blackfriars, cross the Thames, maybe have a look at the Tate modern or the good, old original Tate and stroll around. I think the weather has affected me, for while I didn't have the urge to don thongs or a sundress, I did say what a lovely day it was. S looked at me like I was mad. Well, it wasn't raining (not then anyway).
I think it (the weather) has affected my hair, that and the hard water here at the manor. I think I look like the mad cat lady from the Simpsons. You be the judge. And people ask why there aren't any photos of me on the blog It's like you look in the mirror and everything seems to be okay then you get somewhere and realise your hair has been styled by Kath Day-Knight and there's a yoghurt stain on your pants. (trinny and susannah where are you?)
So we got off the train and walked across the Millenium bridge to the Tate Modern which is actually very close to the Globe theatre and not far from the Oxo building. The Oxo building doesn't look like a giant stock cube, it's actually one of the more attractive buildings along this stretch of riverbank. According to Nigel Slater over 2 million oxo cubes are bought every DAY in Britain. Extraordinary don't you think? Do you think Britons love them so much they named a building after them or, the more likely explanation being that the CEO of Oxo owns the building. And all those around it.

I thought about seeing something at the Globe but they're doing King Lear and I can't say it's a favourite. When I was at university I got caught sneaking out of a STC production at interval by my old high school english teacher. oops. This is the Tate Modern. Kind of phallic isn't it? They were having a special exhibition of Duchamp (yes the urinal!) but tempting as it was we decided to keep strolling. Well it was just the weather for a promenade along the banks of the crystalline waters of the Thames.
Another annoying statistic. Every year they collect 800,000 discarded water bottles out of the Thames. ugh. No mention of what else they find.
We turned away from the river and walked to Waterloo Station. According to my schedule we had to find somewhere to eat in Soho ( I was secretly hoping and wishing and dreaming of yum cha) then get to the British Museum for a tour at 1pm. It was 12.28.

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