Tuesday, April 19, 2011

25oC in London

As we walked to Bethnal Green station this morning (Tuesday) we could definitely tell the day was building towards being a warm one. Although once on the Underground we didn't emerge again until we were virtually at the entrance to the Science Museum on Exhibition Street in South Kensington.

This was Rob's choice today. With only two days left in London we had to make some tough decisions about what we would see and what we would leave until the next visit!

The Science Museum proved to be a great choice for Rob (and all the other boys entranced by the exhibits) and very interesting and educational for me too.

My favourite exhibits were those on space travel, Who am I? and the thought provoking exhibition on Climate Science. I was wishing I could haul Barnaby Joyce and Tony Abbott over to have a look. It might just help them "get it"!

Two hours later we make our way up Exhibition Road towards Hyde Park, and start to realise how really warm it is today. This is Rob standing at the Alexandra Gate, one of the Southern gate entrances to the park.

The park looked gorgeous on this bright sunny day, loads of spring flowers everywhere, verdant green grass, the trees all in bright green new Spring leaf.

Walking through the park on West Carriage Drive Rob noticed this chauffeur driven Rolls Royce. We are very close to Mayfair and Belgravia after all. Typical of him he particularly noticed its amazing (apparently) wheels.

We made a detour towards the Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Fountain, which was crowded with happy splashing children today, no doubt as intended. The Memorial is in a perfect position overlooking The Serpentine, and is adjacent to the Lido Cafe which looked very French Impressionist today.

The memorial was very controversial in the years after its opening, with waders slipping on the smooth (Cornish) granite and problems with drainage on the site after rain. However today it looked like a good percentage of London's children were really appreciating this memorial to the princess.

Walking across the Serpentine Bridge gave us a great view of all the paddle boats, swans and ducks on the water and the Tower of London beyond.

We completed our walk, feeling thirsty (and hungry) in the increasing warmth of the sun as we approached Bayswater Road. Predictably, we found a Pret a Manger at Marble Arch that filled our need for rest, food and water very well.
We spent a few hours then trailing around the Oxford Street department stores so Rob could stock up on more London undies and socks and a few new shirts from John Lewis. We ended up spending enough to make us eligible for a VAT reimbursement, which was another new experience for us.

Once back at London Fields we made our way around to see Cath & Eddie at the Empress. Eddie had had an amazing day, taking his first (Overground) train trip, over an hour long, to see a friend of Cath's for lunch. He was a big hit on the train and loved the opportunity to do some people watching. After his big day he was a bit sleepy by the time we got there and according to Cath was a bit cranky (for Eddie). She must have been right because it took him longer to go to sleep tonight; it was closer to 8.00pm than his usual 7.30-7.45pm.

We enjoyed a delicious summer salad and another bottle of Margaret River Cab Merlot with Davey and Cath tonight, with their darling little boy fast asleep for the night.

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