S. Worthen (owlfish) wrote,
S. Worthen
owlfish

One Short Day in the London Metropolitan Area

I met tisiphone on the cold and gusty slope leading down to the Tower of London this morning; I hadn't seen her in a decade but she still looked like herself, to my relief - otherwise finding her would have been a challenge. Long lines waited patiently to buy tickets; I suspect most of them hadn't noticed the lovely indoor shop next door which was not only warm, out-of-the-wind, and lineless, but also sold tickets, albeit only with debit and credit. Then we wandered the paths and courtyards of the Tower.

I don't think I'd been since I was 10. We both remembered there being far more jewels on display in the crown jewel display than there are now. There were no necklaces, bangles, or tiaras, but there were fonts, patens, and caddinets; also, curtana's namesake. The ravens were in captivity and the chapel blocked off, but there were still towers to view. In Beauchamp Tower, I admired the delicate little skeletons carved by prisoners into the walls over centuries. In the Bloody Tower, from Sir Walter Ralegh's History of the World, I learned that the Tree of Knowledge was a fig tree.

taldragon and I phoned each other simultaneously, so neither was able to get through. Shortly afterwards, on the other side of the city, we met up with her and with scien for lunch at Al Bustan, a Lebanese restaurant recommended by Time Out, which promised prix fixe lunches of UKP 10. The price had changed - it was only 9. The meal was pleasant, but nothing spectacular; it seemed a reliable and competent place, with table linens and good service.

We went wandering again, this time to the V&A for Fashion and Ironwork, where I admired much, but learned fewer entertaining factoids than I had in the morning. Still, I now know more than I did before about biscuit tins.
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