I’m home now. I got here on the evening of Tuesday November 8. Except for a few flight delays that tried my patience in a minor fashion, the trip home was uneventful. I slept some during the long-haul portion, so that was good. To be truthful, I asked for red wine one that one, and it was tasty and effective.
Since Tues, though, I’ve barely slept. And not like, barely slept all night and slept all day in a normal jet-lag way. I just sleep like 3 hours a night and that’s it, no matter how much I try to nap. I was fine with this until this morning, but now I’m getting annoyed. (I lie: that last good sleep I had was Wed. afternoon, all afternoon. I forgot, but this is the way of sleep deprivation.)
One symptom of not sleeping is depletion of depth perception? I almost fell down the stairs at the parade last night. That was weird.
I’m not due back at work until next week, so I’ve confined myself to my bed, watching TV and listening to podcasts, ready should the fleeting urge to sleep overcome me. Alas, I now have a good excuse to use the word “alas”.
Also, OMG. Who arranged for the weather here? It was spring when I left, and was also basically spring in Paris. London was pretty mild. And I get home and it’s zero? What? I exited the airport in a hoodie and Toms. I only put my summer clothes away just before I left, and I have no idea where my parka is. How do I even scarf?
I still have a few photos and thoughts to share from London. Thus:
After eating the meal that I described previously, I had time to visit the Gift Shop and bought way too many things, including a wee, yellow pointe shoe. I will likely hang this on my Xmas tree, or pin to my coat or something.
The show itself was amazing in a way that I couldn’t stop thinking about how it was a amazing and how lucky I was to be there, so that was distracting. It was “Light of Passage” by Crystal Pite and there is nothing more gorgeous than 30 ballerinas in a pack on the stage doing Crystal Pite’s body waves. Mmm. Seriouly though it took me too long to turn off my brain and just watch.
Friday I didn’t know what to do. I ended up taking a bus to Camden and explored the crazy market there. I don’t know how large it is but it’s sprawling and I got lost in it. I bought a purse- not at the market itself but at a craft art shop just outside that caught my eye. At first it looked like it only sold covers for throw cushions with trendy graphics, but downstairs there were vintage clothes and locally designed purses.
Is that the day that turned out to be Shopping Day? Yes. After Camden I took the underground to Oxford St. for the big Primark and Marks & Spencer stores.
I bought lunch before leaving M&S, and went back to my hotel to eat and rest. Only not much rest because I realized the National Gallery is open late on Fridays so I went there for a look around.
I got seriously lost at the intersection in front of Trafalgar Sq. looking for the entrance to the underground. It was just at a different corner than I thought, but getting there took the crossing of line 6 different streets. It was dark and I was tired.
Saturday was British Museum day. Or morning, just to have a look around. I always make a beeline for medieval Britain and Sutton Hoo, out of personal interest. I took a look a the Islamic world section this time, having not checked it out in any detail before. I usually run around the whole building trying to get into every room and see everything. This time I read some of the descriptions. I the Islam part there was a special exhibit of art books that I’m glad I got to see.
After lunch I went out to a place called Swiss Cottage that I didn’t know existed but they have a nice theatre.
I watched “Mary” concerning Mary Queen of Scots and putting her in a bit of a # me too context. It was dramatic, and didn’t have an intermission, which I like. I heard about it on TV while I was deciding what to do on Friday morning.
Sunday I took a train to Canterbury and looked at the Cathedral. It was sooo rainy, except for the 30 seconds when I took this photo.
I really liked the crypt here. I was there at opening so I was down there all on my own and it was cool and quiet. Many dark little chapels, and then a bright one with windows! And then some really old paintings on the ceiling of another! I sat for a while and just looked.
Monday was a bit of a piecemeal what-should-I-do-on-my-last-day-in-London day 2with intentions of going to the Tate and then shopping, but I added St Paul’s Cathedral as well because it intrigued me as I walked by.
I wanted to approach the state via the Millennium Bridge, you see. But it turns out that St. Paul’s is directly across the river. So.
Note that in the crypt at St. Paul’s there are lots of famous dead people. A video scavenger tomb-hunt is included with the price of admission.
After that, I shopped for ballet shoes and went for lunch in Covent Garden. I had the most amazing vegan sausage/mash/cabbage dish. With onion jam. And fig tamarind tea. Yum. Followed by ginger sticky toffee pudding. Also yum.
Tuesday I flew home. Everyone on the flight watched the new Thor, including me. I put it on right away and was so engrossed I didn’t notice when we took off.