Tuesday, October 15, 2013

A few more pics from London

A cute area around South Kensington.  We almost booked into a hotel about a block from here.  As much as I loved the apartment...this would have been a great area to hang around.
On just about every street crossing they had painted..."Look Left" and "Look Right"...which was very helpful since they drive on the other side of the road than we do.  As a pedestrian from the US you look the wrong direction for on-coming traffic in London.  I wonder how many tourists lives have been saved due to these signs.
 I cracked up at this one.  The widow was full length and there was a cosmetic counter on the others side.  Based on the sign...I imagine that a lot of people banged into the window.
I always take pictures of all types of cats in museums.  This one was huge.  Big enough to ride. 
Lou at Trafalgar Square

We wondered into St. Katherine's Docks over by The Tower.  I can't begin to imagine how much it costs to have slip in London.

The Dickens Inn.  A reconstructed warehouse from the 18th century.  

Magnificent Aztec tablet at the British Museum.  I was amazed at the pristine condition of many of their artifacts.

Beads...of course!!!

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Portobello Road

I'm coming to an end of my reminiscing about London.  On our last day we went up to Notting Hill and walked Portobello Road.  I wished I had spent more time here....just like Saint-Ouen in Paris....I found so many things that I loved.  The dilemma is first.... affording them and second...how do you get bigger items back home.

You take the tube everywhere. Something that is really foreign to me since I grew up on a farm and live in a city without a subway system.  At one point the farm girl in me came out... and I remember thinking..."How cool is this....I'm riding the tube in London!!!"  I felt so worldly...LOL.

Pretty house.

Pretty street

Alice's.  They had the most amazing things inside their shop but they didn't allow photography. I did buy a small box...not new...but cute.  It's the one in the lower left hand corner of the picture.  It says "Alice's Portobello Road" on the front and on the side "Art and Other Junk"
The Queen was everywhere.

And food!!  This was a sugar addicts dream!!

Lots of people from different countries.  All week long we heard so many different languages.

Vintage clothes.

This store sold clothes.  The had vintage sewing machines all over the place.

Street performers were all over London too.
London.....I think I love you.  Now that I know how to navigate around the city.....I need to go back!!!

Monday, October 7, 2013

You give me gum gum....dum dum

Going to the British Museum is something I've always wanted to do.  They have an amazing collection of Egyptian and Middle Eastern artifacts.  Probably the biggest attraction is the Rosetta Stone.  And I don't have any good pictures of it because it was behind glass.  But I did get a tea towel with the image on it...LOL.

I could have spent days here looking at all the artifacts. The Great Court below has a glass and steel roof covering 2 acres.  There are more than 3,000 panes of glass and no two are the same.

A quartet of Sekmet.  Sekmet's name means "she who has power".  Another translation is "she who mauls"...I kinda like that one.

Hieroglyphs.  In amazing condition.  There were quite a few tablets, doors, walls that had glyphs on them.

Assyrian winged bull...one of my favorites.  They had six of these.

Hieroglyphs on the side of a sarcophagus.

Assyrian stone tablets.  They had so many of these and they were in beautiful condition.

One side of a Anatolian stone mold.  Loved this. You can see the pour channels on the side.

Mummified cow.  This one made me laugh.  It looks like a bad Halloween costume.

Easter Island Statue.  I took one look at this and all I heard is ...."Hey, Dum-Dum...You give me gum-gum".

And who said museums aren't fun!!

Sunday, October 6, 2013


We wore ourselves out after the first few days in London.  We laid back one day and hung around the apartment to rest up.  We had a really great garden apartment with french doors in the living room and the bedroom.

The flat was actual down a small flight of stairs from street level.
The living room
The view out the bedroom doors to the garden
In the evening we went down to Soho to see the Jersey Boys.  Lou really wanted to see this.  I had no idea what to expect.  It was fantastic.  It is about the life of Frankie Valli and the music is everything that we grew up with.

Before the show we ran into some locals....

After the show we wondered around Soho.  Its a mix of bars, restaurants, gays, straights, sex shops, ice cream shops, coffee houses....
I took this for my brother, Ed. 
Such a happy boy!!

This was an ice cream store.  Loved the lighting.
Sorry Mr. President.

Tower of London

When we were leaving London, our greeter asked if I did a lot of shopping.  I laughed....there was no time.  We spent the week going to museums and historical sites and still didn't see it all.  Maybe next time I'll shop.

The Tower of London...something I've read about and heard about and seen in movies.  Hard to grasp that this dates back to 1066. 

One of the outside walls.  The moat was drained and replaced with grass.

Sculpture by Kendra Haste.  Surprisingly, The Tower housed some exotic animals that were given as gifts to various kings.  Lions, tigers, bears, and such.
The Byward Tower
Traitor's Gate...people sent to the Tower were rowed up the Thames and entered through this gate.  It was chilling to stand here and realize that Anne Boleyn was brought through this gate to be imprisoned before her beheading.

The White Tower

There is a large collection of armor in the White Tower

I couldn't help thinking about all the forging that it took to make all this armor.
Waterloo Block where the crown jewels are kept. 
The amount of gold and jewels and crowns was mind-numbing.  I just kept saying...Oh My God.

 What cracked me up was there were donation boxes where you could drop in spare change and bills to help fund the exhibit.  I understand that the Tower of London gets no financial support from the government or the crown...but really....probably best not to put a donation box just outside the room that has millions and millions of dollars worth of gold and gemstones.

Guard outside the crown jewels

Tower Bridge.  Such a sight!!