Friday, 30 August 2013

It's London Baby!

Well this week I went off to London and not just 'because' as some curious acquaintances of mine have suggested.

No I actually went to visit the Life And Death In Pompeii And Herculaneum exhibition at The British Museum.

It's hard to believe that not only are the objects in the exhibition nearly 2,000 years old but they have also survived a massive volcanic eruption and subsequent pyroclastic surges (get me with my big words!).

The exhibition was very interesting however as it was a special exhibition that you had to pay to see I wasn't allowed to take photos (not that that stopped some people).

And there was a teenage girl wandering round complaining that everything was confusing... I was confused myself... what did she find confusing exactly? I think the word she was looking for was boring, but given that I found it interesting I'm only guessing that that is what she meant.

So we visited that and spent well over an hour in the exhibit - which surprised me, it hadn't seemed that long.

We had a little something something to eat at one of the cafes in the museum and then I decided we should go and visit a particular room I had glimpsed on our way in before it was kicking out time.

Now this room, it turned out, was called the Enlightenment Gallery. And at first glance it is like something out of a steampunk novel - it was like a proper Victorian library. And given that it was built in the early 19th century it might very well have been filled up in the Victorian period.

I want a library like this (or like the library in Beauty & The Beast - whatever)... in a house by the sea.

The cabinets are filled with all kinds of things - fossils, Hindu Gods, Egyptian artefacts, books, sculpture, a copy of The Rosetta Stone that you are allowed to touch (the real one is in a display case).

I could probably have spent all day in there... but then the museum was closing and we wanted to go and find food before we caught the train home.

Other things we saw in London (which might not seem unusual to some of you but they were to me) included the Barclays Cycle Hire docking stations we kept coming across (which fast became a game of spot the Barclays Bike when we were stood waiting to cross the road - which then became spot the native Londoners i.e. those people who just step out in to the road while we tourists cower on the pavement). And I saw my first ever electric car being charged in a parking space - I've probably seen electric cars before and not realised it but I've never seen one charging before.

And whilst we were eating I found the subtitles on the muted TV very entertaining - trying to decipher what it meant by 'raw raw' was fun. I think it was meant to be rural.

Now a couple of days later I'm still recovering... but it was fun all the same.


Jo said...

Where do you actually live that you had to go by train? Having lived in Canada so long, I forget about trains, never ridden on one in Canada.

The exhibition sounds fascinating, Pompeii was really something.

Chippy said...

I live in Yorkshire on the main rail route between Edinburgh and London - it's about one and a half to two hours to London by train (depending on how many stops there are on the way).

I think by car it would have taken closer to three hours.

Jo said...

I lived in Lincolnshire for a year or two and we spent Christmas in Hull, but that's the only time I visited Yorkshire although I was born in Cheshire.

A lot of people commute to Toronto from this part of Ontario. No idea what the trains are like. I know the freight trains go on for miles and god help anyone who gets held up by them at a crossing.

SparklingMinx said...

Now I admit we went to London once, just because but only living an hour on the train away, we can get away with that =) The other times were for specific things, Wicked, MCM you know. You should have called in for a cuppa on your way past =)