I puttered in my room thinking it would clear, but eventually decided to head out anyway. Shock-of-shocks – I didn’t eat breakfast! The weather makes it a good day fto see a museum. Did I mention that London has 300 museums? I try to visit one or two each time I visit. (I have repeated the British Museum 4 times – it is that good!)
Today I headed to South Kensington to go to the Natural History Museum. South Kensington is a nice part of London – it runs along the south edge of Hyde Park, has several museums, and old Georgian mansions – many converted to hotels.
In 1999, My Girl Scout co-leader and I brought our troop to Europe for 3 weeks. While in London, we stayed at the Baden-Powell house which is located literally next door to the Natural History Museum. The girls were 14 at the time and more interested in the history of boys than Europe, but we had a wonderful time.
In 2002 (I think – age you know…) I spoke at a conference at Imperial College . On that visit, I stayed in Nottinghill, but came back in 2004 and stayed in campus housing at Imperial College. The housing was not a swanky as this picture. Trust me.
The Museum of Natural History buildings alone are incredible. This picture doesn’t begin to do it justice. Admission is free and today there were groups of school children and lots of families. There is a lot to see. I focused on the sections for human biology, mammals, and the Darwin Center. It is very well done. What I especially liked was how interactive it was for children. There is an extensive section on human reproduction that provides information on every level of human development right down to neurons and the function of glands. I got tickled watching pre-pubescent boys taking pictures of the female parts with their cell phone cameras.
Next door is the Science Museum, but it was too near closing time for me to visit, so I have to defer that to another trip. This is the Royal Albert Hall which holds concerts and theater-in-the round. Another thing on my to-do list for the future.
I walked back through St. James Park, which is the park that runs up Pall Mall towards Buckingham Palace. Everything is flowering and is gorgeous – even on this gray day.
I passed this store on my walk back. My father was an avid gun collector and this made me think of him. The “posh” clothes and gentleman trappings also sold in here would have cracked him up.
I went back to La Gaffe for perhaps my final dinner there – at least for this visit. My appetizer was a delicious plate of several different smoked fish (it was really enough for a meal), then I had steak with tomatoes, olives, & onions with a side of creamy potatoes. It was tuttu bene as Danilo says. Did I mention the two glasses of wine?
Tomorrow is my last day. I have a list of things to do. We shall see how successful I am.