71. Day Seven in England: A Walk Along The Thames, Trafalgar Square, Lunch in a Crypt, and The Tate Modern

We just happened to land in London on the first days of a heat wave that would build over 10 days to well over 100 degrees F. As you can see, the sky is brilliant blue, there were some fluffy clouds, and it wasn’t unbearable.

Our London time was pretty unstructured, with ideas of things we wanted to do and no hard-and-fast plans, for the most part. Christine was to come for a 3-day stay, so we did make some plans for that time, but mostly, we just did whatever we fancied. And today, our first day, was to walkabout and get our bearings a bit.

This lovely balcony! We spent a lot of time out here.
A SUPER nice kitchen!
We took the bus over the river at Waterloo Bridge, then set out to wherever!
Lots of these magical porpoises!
Cleopatra’s Needle
and its nearby protector
What a day to be out with my honey!
Westminster and Big Ben (and Westminster Bridge)
We had hoped Big Ben would strike this day, but it was not to be. We hung around for 15 minutes, just in case. It’s been under renovations for some time.
Moody Ben.
Fiddly bits and gutter gargoyles
A complexity of shapes and sunlight
The tower of Westminster Abbey
Westminster Abbey
The Jewel Tower *only* 650 years old!
Auguste Rodin’s “The Burghers of Calais.” This is one of several castings. It commemorates an event during the Hundred Years’ War, when Calais, a French port on the English Channel, surrendered to the English after an eleven-month siege. 

Just some views of Westminster Palace and the gardens. It was heavily secured for obvious reasons: the fate of Boris Johnson was in the very midst of events.

That scallawag, Oliver Cromwell.
Buckingham Palace and many, many people hoping for a glimpse of royalty.
Lord Admiral Nelson’s phallic memorial, on Trafalgar Square.
Cognitive dissonance. In a good way.
We were surveilled.

The question of where to eat lunch was by this time pressing. It was very hot, and I was a little cranky, so David sat me down and he went off to find a solution. It could not have been better!!!! The crypt at St. Martin in the Field!

The dining dead.
Taxi!’ by Seward Johnson Jr (1983)
The Shard is the tall building on the right.
Millenium Bridge and St. Paul’s Cathedral from the cafe at The Tate Modern. We very much enjoyed a cold beverage.

Some of my favorites from a quick run-through of the museum. We would return!

The pairing of Nevelson and Drew was perfect! Drew has one of my very very favorite installations at Crystal Bridges Museum in Bentonville, AR.

Mark Dion did an amazing installation at Crystal. Bridges for their 10 year anniversary, a series of themed rooms using the collection from the natural history departments at the University of Arkansas Fayetteville (my alma mater). I did not know about this installation until we stumbled onto it here. I could have spent an hour or more perusing these treasures. What a project! I encourage embiggening of these photos, for the detail.

Beautifully knolled objects.
Always one of my favorites, it gives me a big thrill to come across Sze’s work in the wide world.

Hot and exhausted, we made our way home. Day one in London a success!

8 July 2022


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