|Just another mutant pigeon.|
This is the day, I was nearly
assaulted by one of these beasts.
So what went wrong?
Well, whereas the British Museum is a lot of objects—jars, bowls, mummies, textiles, statues, etc.—the National Gallery is paintings. And Rob and I love paintings. We could have easily spent an entire day at the National Gallery and have a wonderful time. But that isn’t what we had planned.
Cecil and Cecil.
They also had a special exhibit of some of the Tudor portraits with detailed explanations of the purpose of the portrait, the changes that were made, and more. The way the paint faded and how they used silver to give the pearls a sheen but, over time, the silver has tarnished and cannot be polished without causing damage to the painting so the pearls have a black spot.
Honestly, I could blabber on about the portraits until you’d wish I would just move on to the next part of our day so I think I’ll do that now. We left the National Portrait Gallery and moved on to the National Gallery itself. I quickly realized that we could not possibly view everything. There simply wasn’t enough time and Rob and I could not just breeze through the various galleries. We tried. We truly did. We stopped for lunch at the café. I had a bowl of soup (a curry spiced one) with a quiche. We then decided not to torture ourselves with more paintings (maybe on our next trip, we’ll set aside a full day for the National Gallery) and, instead, explored the gift shop, still hoping to find things for too many people.
|Rob had already taken|
a picture of this building
which was part of our walking tour.
The walk was about 2 hours long and we were walking along streets we had traversed several times already so we felt like we were learning about familiar territory. When the tour was over, we were both ready to return to the hotel and relax a bit before going out to dinner.
We had planned on going to one nice restaurant while we were in London and chose to go to the Bistro which was very close to our hotel. I had a butternut squash soup with allspice pecans followed by chicken tikka masala. It was wonderful. For dessert, I had the deconstructed tiramisu and, yes, mostly because it was served with flowers. After our glorious feast, we ended the night in our hotel room watching Hugo which I think actually did justice to a marvelous book.
So, all in all, it was a long day with a lot of walking, ending with a sublime meal. The only problem was I still didn’t have any gifts for anyone. Well, I had a few token gifts for my kids and a book or two for Bibi. But over all, there were still so many people on our gift list that I knew we would have to do the most dreaded and horrible thing of all on Saturday, our final day in London. We would have to go shopping. Ugh.