Sunday, August 3, 2014


The weather has been perfect for me, but unusually warm for the locals.  I have enjoyed walking all around London, the time I spend walking impedes on my actual activities, but the walks have been a real joy.  For those readers who have not been here, London is like a series of small villages that have grown up as a large attached city with lots of gardens. We all hear about Kensington Gardens, Hyde Park and Regent’s Park, but there are numerous smaller and very pleasant gardens throughout out the city.  Some are private to which one must have a key to enter, yet many are public venues that are used daily by Londoners and tourists alike.  At noon-time these parks are full of people sitting on the benches and on blankets on the grass lunching with their friends and co-workers. There are joggers, walkers many with dogs, skipping children, all manner of society enjoying this lovely very green city.

This visit, I was staying very near Covent Garden and the theatre district, so I enjoyed walking there. I also walked to Folye’s bookstore, advertised as the largest bookstore in the world. Folyes has recently moved to new ‘digs’ down the road from it’s old store, which was so full of books it had become a hodgepodge of confusion.  The help understood the system, but I don’t believe I have ever gotten above the third floor of its seven floors full of books.  The new Folyes is a mastery of organization, and I enjoyed being on every floor. I even bought a book for my new grandson, little Max, which he can take in the bath.  After all, books should be read everywhere.

Set for Matilda

Matilda, the British theatre rendition of Roald Dahl’s children’s book is a smash hit still going strong after three years, with full houses every matinee and evening. I had wanted to see the Book of Mormons but it was no longer on, so I checked out Matilda. On the one day I could attend there were only four seats left.  Andy, a very charming ‘senior’ staffer, who shared this information with me, actually took me into the theatre and showed me my choices.  How could I resist; and what a charming play.  There were no really memorably hummable songs for me, but over all it is a wonderful play about a brilliant little bookworm who is discriminated against by her boorish family and her school principal for being bright.  

The cast is made up of mainly children, and each part has four different children cast, so different children play their specific part on different nights and matinees.  I was highly impressed by the incredible talent of all of the youngsters among the cast members I saw. The show is a smash and well it should be.  

I was also impressed by the audience. I was surrounded by children, an international group of children. The smalls next to me were from Argentina, on the other side of me were children from China, in front of me, the family was Japanese.  There were also lots of English kids and their moms and some dads as well.  They were all full of Oohs, Ahs and laughs. A great afternoon from all aspects.  

List of some of the inventions at the Design Museum

Design Museum
A walk to the Design Museum to see a history of Kahn’s architecture, Weil’s clocks and designs, and Winning New Designs and Inventions, which included everything from fashion, medical equipment, fantastic cars,  a folding electric bicycle, stand alone materials for clothing designs, and on and on.  Wonderful stuff.  

VW electric car 

Front - isn't it WOW?!

After, I enjoyed a long walk from the museum up to tower bridge and beyond to the Tate Modern Museum along the River Thames.  

Tower bridge

sailing on the Thames River

Then across the Millennium Bridge to the underground and home to my College Hall rooms at the University of London.  After a nice dinner, I went back to my room to pack for Netherlands the next day.
Hurray for London, my favorite city in all the world, and hello to Holland and the Dutch canal boat, the Ahoy.  

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