It’s with a tear in my eye that this is the last of my London posts. And, as we wanted to make the most of our quickly dwindling moments in London, Mr. Husband and I took advantage of a night at the museum…no, not the Ben Stiller movie, although you may find a familiar face from the movie in this post.
Sure the museums of London (including the Museum of London) are places where you can see oodles of pretty things, learn about ancient cultures, and admire the craftsmanship of days gone by, but one of the best things about many of the museums in London? They’re totally free (okay, they’d like a donation, but no one will bar your entry if you don’t drop a few coins in the box).
This not only means you can go into museum overload (as we did a bit in Greenwich) and stay on budget, but you can also pop in a museum for a bit, see a few things, leave once you can’t stand the sight of another pot shard, then come back later once you’ve regained your mental clarity.
Among the freebies is the British Museum.. We’d been there the last time we were in London, but this time we went with a list of a few must-see items thinking this planning ahead would save us time. Um…no. Why? Because every room we went through to find the object we were looking for had things that caught our eye. Ah well, so much for planning. Of course, before we left, we had to stop by to see this handsome, but dimwitted fellow…
Another freebie stop was the Natural History Museum, mainly because I wanted to ride the earthquake simulator…which I ended up doing a couple times (I’m easily entertained). Then it was off to their Rock Collection so Mr. Husband could ooh and ahh over case after case of hunks of stone while I made a beeline to The Vault that houses some spectacular sparklies including a giant emerald and a cursed amethyst (spooky!).
Our Final Night Out at Vicki and Bert’s Place
Another terrific thing some of the museums in London take part in is staying open late one night a week. These nights are great as we learned during our last trip to the big city because, for the most part, the tourists are gone and the museums’ halls are mostly empty (in kind of a creepy way sometimes).
Our final night in London was a Friday and that coincided with the late-night opening of the Victoria & Albert Museum (the V&A for those in the know). I can’t describe this museum. It’s meant to showcase design across the ages and across cultures, so it has tidbits of all sorts of things from fashion to furniture, but the layout is such that you feel like you’re discovering room after room of treasures.
If you arrive by Underground, you walk through a loooong passageway and enter the museum’s lower level that has a loooong gallery of sculpture. including Theseus and the Minotaur, which I had to get a picture of since that’s the myth my current novel is based on.
There’s also a full room of sculptures that were copied from the originals to give people who couldn’t travel abroad a chance to see these works of art.
Although the museum is quite safe, you should watch out for the cats…
Stairwells are guarded by some odd creatures at the V&A….
And, you can’t leave without a stroll through the room full of stained glass…
We ended up spending far longer at the museum than we intended, but eventually we had to drag ourselves back to the apartment so we could pack our bags and bid a sad farewell to this fabulous city.
I’m not only saying goodbye to London in this post, but also goodbye to all of you for a couple weeks. (I’m sorry, I should have warned you that was coming so you could get some tissues to dry your eyes.) With a new art show to prepare for and set up, a couple grants whose applications need filled in with intelligent answers (ha!), and the rewrite of my novel getting thisclose to completion, I could use a little extra time.
Despite all the “Star Talk” episodes I listen to, I have yet to figure out the physics of time travel and need to hack something off my to-do list to gain a little extra time. So not only will I probably be quiet on social media (even more quiet than I have been lately), but I’ll also not be posting here for the next two weeks.
But mark your calendars because I’ll be back at the beginning of July brimming with posts about my new art show, a few pieces of new artwork, and the happy dance-inducing progress of my book. Hope to see you then!
How about you? Ever take advantage of the late night offerings at London museums? Does your city offer any free museums or open-late evenings? Have a favorite museum in the world? Tell me all about it (especially since I’d love hints for future vacations!)