Saturday, 6 August 2011

Around London

In between the Rockabilly Riot and the other shows I went to, I managed to fit in a few other bits and pieces while I was in London. Here are a few notes and impressions from around and about...

The British Library had two new exhibitions. 'Out Of This World' analysed the rise of science fiction in literature.

There was also a small exhibition based on the Worlds of Mervyn Peake. I enjoyed both.

Obligatory photo of Big Ben.

Cruising down the Thames towards Greenwich.

I wanted to see the Cutty Sark but it's undergoing extensive work. I was there just in time to take a quick snap while the work access doors were open.

I was impressed by Greenwich. There was plenty to see, including the National Maritime Museum.

Nelson memorabilia. We just don't see our warlords in the same light these days.

The uniform Nelson wore when we was fatally wounded.

Lest we forget.

Around lunch time (or should that be launch time in Greenwich...?) I went for a stroll and found that the local cinema - the Picture House - was showing 'Bobby Fischer Against the World' so I popped in to see it.

It's an impressive cinema. Friendly staff, very comfortable seats and a couple of apologies from the manager when the film was slightly delayed.

The film (a documentary - you really couldn't make up Fischer's story) was excellent and well worth seeing, whether one has a considerable amount of chess knowledge or not. There was a significant amount of footage I'd never seen before. Highly recommended.

Then it was on to the Royal Observatory.

Magnificent views were available from the top of the hill.

There was just time for a look around the visitor centre before heading back along on the Thames.

Another day saw a trip around Buckingham Palace (just the outside) and various parks.

The top of the Victoria Memorial, which is located just outside the Palace.

Authentic Guardsman!

His colleague didn't feel the need to stretch his legs.

St. James's Park has an impressive amount of birds.

A good view from a bridge in the park. And in the middle - a nest...

I didn't expect to see pelicans.

The Guards Museum is close to the park.

The recent cutbacks in defence spending are really starting to tell.

I always like to pay a visit to Trafalgar Square to see what is going on. It never fails to entertain and amuse. There's usually a spot of live music going on... a plethora of living statues.

It can feel as if one has stumbled into 'Avengerland'.

Authentic Olympic countdown!

A curious living wall.

Last but not least, there was a remarkable lady in red who ran through a whole range of acts. These included escapology and whipping balloons into submission.

The finale featured a daring attempt to balance on the top rung of an unsupported ladder.

It started off in promising fashion.

'Don't look up!' she said, to her assistant below.

Unfortunately, gravity will have its say and everything ended in disaster with a tumble to the ground.

Even Nelson couldn't bear to look.

A short time later, I glanced back again and the lady was not only on top of the ladder but she was also juggling clubs. A veritable triumph over adversity!

That's all from London this time. I am, however, already thinking about a return trip...

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