Friday, September 7, 2018

Europe - Day 11


Our plans today are museum, another bus tour and then another museum. Plus whatever else we roll into while we are out (but, that probably won't be much - our young man has said he is tired of new plans).

So we took advantage of the kitchen and enjoyed a simple breakfast in the room. I will admit I am missing the fancy coffee machines from Germany and France, but here they have a nespresso machine and I tried my hand at that this morning.

Also a Backup Plan BINGO update... we have a bingo! So the kids will get some bonus pounds to get something at one of the Museums.

And we are off.... First stop, after a couple trains - the Museum of Natural History.

We heard rave reviews of this last night on our bus tour and thought we should check it out. It was clear that we wouldn't be able to cover the whole place in a few hours, but we decided on few exhibts that we were most intersted in and went from there.
This place is amazing! Just the building is breathtaking.. all the carvings and stone work... I took as many pictures of that as the exhibits.

We enjoyed our time and the kids hit the store - BINGO prizes.

Then we were back to the Underground to our next stop the B Bakery Afternoon Tea Bus. What? High Tea service on a double-decker bus while touring London? That sounds just about perfect!
It was. We loved it! Well, the girls loved it. Hubby said it was good. But tea service isn't really our son's thing. We knew this going in and he had a some lunch beforehand, so he enjoyed the sights and had some scones and a cupcake. The rest of us helped out by eating his food for him.... we are just helpful like that.

Our Bus!

View of the first level of the bus

Our tea service.... tea still to come

Does this even need a caption... perfect

Sights along the way.

Cutest Scone ever!

Trafalgar Square

Sadly Big Ben (or the clocktower) is undergoing a multi year refurbishment. And we were not able to see the icon. Just a LOT of scaffolding. 

This fellow looks concerned to me.... I wonder why.

This tour had very little narration. It had some, but between the music and the ladies all talking it was hard to hear. We knew this ahead of time an it was actually part of the reason we did the night tour... for all the narration. Both tours took similar routes. But today's tour had clotted cream.... enough said.
In all honesty it was a fun way to have tea. Not too fancy, and clearly locals use it for celebrations - based on how many times we sang happy birthday.

After our tour - it was time for the British Museum. This was our plan from yesterday. Our young man really wanted to go here. I knew he had some "Night at the Museum" reasons for wanting to go, but beyond that I didn't know his specific intentions. Whereas the Natural History Museum is detailed and ornate, the British Museum feels more open and modern.... modern, seems like the wrong word. Either way both are very cool and a few hours isn't enough to make much of a dent.

British Museum...Here we come 

Trying to decide what is next.
Equally as interesting building as the Natural History Museum... but completely different

We ran into an issue here as our young man very much wanted to see the Great Wave off Kanagawa, which the British Museum has one of the originals of. However, what we didn't know is that the Japan exhibit is being remodeled and won't open until "September", when I asked I was told the 27th. So that was a bust. He was rather disappointed, but all in all got through it well. But it did put a big damper on our plan for that museum. We looked through a few more galleries and hit the store, where we picked up a book about the Great Wave. [Editor's note: Researching this later, we learned that it usually isn't on display and the last time it was on display was from May-August 2017 before being locked away again to preserve it. It sounds like the British Museum only displays it for a few months every 5 years or so. There are others in New York, Los Angeles and Chicago, but as far as I can tell, those aren't currently on display either.]

At this point in the day we decided to call it... dinner and be done.

We did some research earlier on and found a Mexican place called Tortilla, that looked like a Chipotle type thing. I know Mexican food in UK is a funny ask, but we wanted different than we had been having. [Editor's note: And it's not really Mexican. They don't even advertise it as that. They refer to themselves as "Californian" since they were started by a couple from California who missed the burritos from the Mission District in San Francisco.] It worked out great and was tasty - I wasn't sure I would ever be hungry again after our Tea, but low and behold, I enjoyed a taco etc.

Back in the room we are just relaxing and making plans for tomorrow. At some point soon we need to pack.

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