Good evening. Here marks the end of our third day in London. We started out the day with breakfast at the cafe next door to our hotel. They have the best blueberry muffin with a gooey blueberry center. I also got a flat white coffee — not sure what this really means, but it was good. Joe had a chocolate twist, which looks like a chocolate croissant.
London is currently hosting a James Bond exhibition, Bond in Motion, the largest showcase of James Bond cars in the world. Joe is a big James Bond fan, so we went to check it out. Movie clips showcasing the cars were all projected on the walls near the displays which really added to the experience. Some movie memorabilia and storyboards were mixed in amongst the cars as well. Movie making is certainly an interesting looking process.
Next up, we hit up the British Museum. This venue is thought to have the most encompassing synapsis of human civilization on record. It showcases artifacts like the Rosetta Stone, mummies, and the remains of many ancients civilizations including the Aztecs, Mesopotamians, and the American Indians. Some of the exhibits cataloged the development of a specific topic like timepieces and medicine. One of my favorite displays showed the health of two humans, one male and one female, as demonstrated by every pill that they ever took. The display held thousands of pills from birth to death, along with photos from the individuals’ lives — vacations, injuries they sustained, weddings, graduations, babies being born, and finally, their funerals The whole thing reminded me of what people say about the moment before death — being able to see your life flash before your eyes. The milestones mixed in with the inconsequential — the pills you swallow. Fascinating and unexpected from this particular museum.
We ate lunch late — around 2:30 in St. James’ square, a park with a small Italian restaurant. The food was fresh and delicious.
Next, we hopped back on the Tube to head over the British Library. The library is a regular operating library where people go to study and borrow materials. However, they also have a special collection that is displayed in a museum on the first floor. There were several amazing pieces — pages of Beethoven, Mozart, and Handel’s composition, parts of Leonardo and Michangelo’s notebooks, the Gutenberg Bible, handwritten samples from Charles Dickens and Sylvia Plath, letters from Galileo and Winston Churchill. My favorite piece was a scrap of Beatle’s memorabilia — the lyrics to “A Hard Day’s Night” written on the back of a one-year-old child’s birthday card.
After the library tour, we headed back over to Covent Garden where we had a picnic and observed a few so-so street performers. We shopped a little and then started walking back to the hotel. On the walk home, we stopped on the River Thame ‘beach’ (sand hauled in by the city every summer) and enjoyed a snack from a Mexican food truck.
We’re headed out early tomorrow morning so we packed up our stuff as best we could and phoned our hotel in France to confirm our reservation. I was pleased that the person who answered spoke some English at my request. Apparently, we have to pick up our room key at a cafe since the hotel desk does not open until 1 pm and we’ll be arriving around 11 am. We’ll see how this goes.