Thursday, August 06, 2009

Trip Report Part 4: The Tower of London

Naturally our time in London included a visit to the Tower (as a place of historic significance a morning spent there allowed me to justify taking the girls out of school for six weeks).
I thought the most impressive view of the Tower of London was as we exited the tube station. You come up into daylight and there it is-big impact. The morning was showery, necessitating the purchase of a grossly overpriced ‘souvenir’ umbrella, but the rain held off long enough for us to join a guided tour, led by a beefeater with a great knowledge of history and a very dry sense of humour. His commentary (though I’m sure long rehearsed) felt spontaneous and his little asides about modern life at the Tower gave the place vivid colour.
After the tour we duly stood on a moving walkway and were conveyed past the crown jewels, which, to be honest, were not nearly as impressive as I had expected. The crowds we were warned against did not eventuate, which was a good thing seeing as how the dodgy weather encouraged those people who were there to stay inside.
During our time in London we also managed to stroll past the houses of parliament, admire big Ben, and not tour Westminster Abbey. This last was a decision of Boy Genius, who after walking around the outside flatly refused to enter and suggest the alternative ‘go home have afternoon tea’, and so we did.
Thus concluded our time in London, more or less.
There was a lovely, lazy day spent visiting my hero’s brothers, but I’ve decided not to go into the intimacies of family contact in this recount of the edited highlights of our trip.