First off I have to admit that I haven’t taken this photo today and I am not even sure who took it, one of my aunts or uncles I guess.
My Mum and Dad have gone to London today to my cousin Mark’s wedding. He and his wife Jeannine got married in the OBE chapel at St Paul’s Cathedral. Unfortunately due to limitations on the numbers able to fit into the chapel most of the cousins were not able to attend the ceremony. The happy couple are having a party on the island next month I think so hopefully we will be able to go to that instead.
Anyway, I gather the guests travelled to the reception on a London bus and I just love this picture of Mum and Dad standing in front of it.
Our last day in London so we met some of my friends for lunch. For them it was an Italian meal with several bottles of wine and then we headed to Soho for a few more drinks.
I seem to have done really poorly with taking photographs over the last few days. We spent so much time just wandering that I forgot about the camera! En route to Gatwick Airport I snapped this photo of the iconic Battersea Power Station.
It’s been a lovely few days but I was very glad to be back in my own bed!
This morning The Mister and I went to the Science Museum. We started at the top with the medical science and history which was fascinating and worked our way down. The last thing we saw was an exhibition about Alan Turing who was a brilliant scientist. It was a sad story though as in 1952 he was convinced of homosexuality and sentenced to a year of female hormone therapy. He died in 1954 from cyanide poisoning which was believed to be suicide.
This photograph is of The Mister standing next to a genuine Iron Lung. This probably won’t be funny to anyone except The Mister’s brother!
After the museum we went off and did more shopping and mainly managed to get everything we needed before going to a fab pub for dinner with friend from the Ship of Fools.
This morning The Mister and I went to the Writing Britain: Wasteland to Wonderland exhibition at the British Library. The Mister found it really interesting, but I found it a little bit dull. The only things that I found really interesting were the original Harry Potter manuscript and the original Alice in Wonderland that was presented to Alice.
We spent quite a bit of time wandering through Covent Garden and we walked past this bakery with the most amazing cakes in the window! We then went to Oxford Street and tackled some shopping, but we didn’t do very well. I kind of lost the plot at about 4pm when I was so shattered that The Mister made the decision to go home.
In the evening we went out for a delicious Turkish meal with our Yangtze and then we went to a gig at the Union Chapel which is just the most fantastic music venue. The gig was Jonathan Coulton (who The Mister loves), supported by Paul and Storm (who I love). It was a fantastic gig, although I was seriously struggling sitting in the pews by the end because my back was so painful.
At the weekend The Mister and I took a little trip to London. There were several reasons for this. It is The Mister’s 30th birthday next weekend and he wanted to see a Ray Harryhausen exhibition at The London Film Museum and it was also the Gambit Shipmeet.
We decided to stay in a nice hotel in Victoria which meant we could walk everywhere rather than getting public transport. On Saturday we walked from the hotel to the Houses of Parliament, over to the London Eye, along the Southbank to the Tate Modern where we went to see the Sunflower Seeds by Ai Weiwei over the Millenium Bridge to St Paul’s Cathedral and then back to the hotel. We walked for several hours but it was just so nice to be out and about and taking a bit of time to explore.
In the evening we went to a pub and met with 20 or so people from the Ship of Fools for the Gambit Memorial Meet. Gambit was a Shipmate who used to organise regular meets in London and he died a few years ago from a heart problem. He was too young, only in his twenties, and this meet helps us to remember him, and others from the Ship who are no longer with us.
It was a brilliant, but exhausting weekend. It was good to see old, and new friends, and it was good to get a bit of time, just me and The Mister. It didn’t do my diet much good though!
We also had a new toy to play with – a new camera, so here are a selection of photos. Just to say, the bottom photo is a picture of the traditional pint and cigarette left out for Gambit, the photo and the funeral leaflet is for Erin. Both much loved and much missed Shipmates.
This weekend has been really hectic because it is my last weekend in Hertfordshire.
One Friday night I went out for pizza with my colleagues after work and then a bunch of other people came to meet us in the pub. Also The Mister arrived on the train so it was a chance for him to meet some of the people I have been working with over the last few years.
On Saturday we went into London and paid a visit to the The Old Operating Theatre and Herb Garret Museum in London. It is a fascinating place and is an old operating theatre which is found in the roof space of a Baroque church. The theatre pre-dates Lister and his antiseptic surgery techniques and this theatre must have seen some truly horrifying amputations and other types of surgery, many of which would have been done without, or with limited, anesthetics. There are some pretty gruesome saws and knives on show too. Fortunately I find this stuff really interesting, although I kept wondering what stories the walls of the theatre would tell us if they could.
After the museum we took a long walk along the Southbank passed the Golden Hinde and the Festival Hall, across the bridge by Big Ben and the Houses fo Parliament and then up to Buckingham Palace. Al lovely walk, although it started getting chilly as the sun went down. We then went to The Jugged Hare in Pimlico for a meet with some people from The Ship of Fools. An excellent meet with some old friends and some good food and wine. The Jugged Hare is well-known for it’s pies and The Mister and I tired one of their tasting plates – 5 small pies with some mash and peas. Yum!!!
On Sunday, The Mister and I went to church where they prayed for us as we move on. I have to admit though that I was so tired that I kept falling asleep during the sermon!!! After that we went out for lunch with some of my wonderful friends. Now, I am sitting at home, watching The Mister play on the Wii Fit. In a short few minutes I will have to drive him to the train station. Thankfully this is the last time that we will have to do the whole Sunday evening travelling thing! Next week I will be up in Yorkshire, the weekend after that we will be in Guernsey and the weekend after that I will have moved.
I am very much looking forward to reclaiming my Sunday evenings!!!!
Today The Mister and I took a little trip to The British Museum. Apart from a brief visit earlier in the year to see the Hadrian exhibition I have never had the chance to wander around the museum. It’s fascinating, but I have decided that I really do have a fascination with death, dying and the rituals associated with these major events. Anyway, the other thing I realised is that I do have the shortest attention span in the world… after about 15 minutes of seeing one thing or the other I get pretty bored. I still adore the roof though, and The Mister had to stop me taking even more photos of it.
At the British Museum at the moment they have five contemporary sculptures on display including one by Ron Mueck that The Mister wanted to see and an Anthony Gormley that I wanted to see. The Ron Mueck one is pictured here on the right… it was fab but odd. He does very realistic sculptures of people, but they are either enormous, or dinky. This was a huge one and you could see each individual whisker and spots on the face. Very cool.
Anyway, after we had spent a couple of hours at the museum and I had got bored we wandered off to find something to eat before The Mister managed to get a cup of his favourite Tim Horton’s coffee. It’s good to keep him happy!
Yesterday was a really lovely day. The Mister and I went on a Ship Meet in London and we met down at Tower Hill, wandered across Tower Bridge and then along the South Bank past the Tate Modern and almost up to the London Eye where there was a Christmas Market. After a very slow meander we went to a pub where we had manage to acquire the whole of the upstairs to ourselves, where we proceeded to eat, drink and be merry. We were even joined by a bishop and the Captain of the Ship of Fools himself. Apart from being a bit drizzly it was such a fun day.
Days like this remind me just how important the Ship of Fools has been for me over the last few years. I am sure that many people would think that the idea of an online community is a little strange, and the idea of meeting up with members of that community really quite bizarre. However, the Ship has given me a safe space to consider different issues and to discuss them with a broad spectrum of people. The Ship is no longer just an online community, I have many ‘real-life’ friends who I originally met online, and yet these days they are just friends, not online friends. Ship-meets such as this one mean that these friendships can develop and extend, and they continue to be a vibrant and important part of my social life. I have met many good friends online and indeed I have met some particularly special people through the Ship.
So, God bless this ship, and all who sail in her!