|Strawberry jam on toasted crumpets with Irish butter and tea (and scrambled eggs, if you must know)|
We only had two touristy things on our agenda today: Afternoon Tea, and the British Museum. Before we got to either, however, I have to mention that we stopped in a local bookshop. I had planned to look for a travel bookshop in Notting Hill, but settled for an English Literature bookshop near the British Museum instead. This was, indeed, a proper book shop, as most of the books were in the $500 US range. In fact, the door was closed and locked. We wouldn't have made it inside at all if we hadn't been loitering there when another couple actually knocked, pointed at a book in the window, and managed to convince the cashier that they wanted to buy it, which forced him to open the door.
No, I didn't find a book that I felt was worth the price. Quite the opposite, in fact. Most of the books looked like ratty old college textbooks from the early 20th century that universities were trying to get rid of. Now, somehow, they're rare and collectible. I'll stick with the Internet for now, thank you.
Afternoon TeaA block past the bookshop was our Afternoon Tea appointment at Tea and Tattle. Yes, you have to make reservations for Afternoon Tea. At least, that was the case at our venue. Typically, Afternoon Tea starts around 4:00 p.m. We decided to have it earlier, serving as a light lunch.
The tea consisted of several components. First was the setting itself, which wasn't as cheery as I'd hoped, and was in the room leading directly to the kitchen. The other room was connected to the bathrooms, so there was no ideal seating. We were hoping for a garden seating, but this venue doesn't have a garden at all. I didn't let it bother me.
The second was the tea set, which was made of a lovely bone china.
|When in doubt, pinky out!|
Fourth is the food, traditionally including a sandwich and scones. Optionally, a pudding is included, and those of you that know me can guess whether or not I opted in. ;) My sandwich was a banana/walnut/honey affair, while Tanya had a slightly more traditional salmon and cucumber. Scones and clotted cream and jam were had, and a flakey dessert finished the experience.
Despite the picture above, my upper lip was SO STIFF by the time we left that I felt like I needed to prefix everything I said with "Oh, I say..."
British MuseumWe entered the British Museum with great anticipation and some slight trepidation. Remember how I said the weather was good? Well, it was even better on this day.
|Don't let that hoodie fool you. It was 80F.|
|Time for a selfie!|
The British Museum is vast, like the Tate Modern, except filled to overflowing with interesting exhibits from all over the world. We signed up for the guided tour (of course) and, after waiting for a few minutes, were underway.
As with the other guided tours, this one was quite long (more than 90 minutes), and yet only covered a relatively small fraction of everything at the museum. I'll show a few highlights, with links to more information.
|The Lewis Chessmen|
|The David Vases|
|It's actually COLOSSAL!|
|"Instructions on how to become a Samurai: 1) be born a bad-ass..." I stopped reading after that.|
This was the last of our adventures for the day, and I must say that I felt like we'd accomplished the British Feeling goal in spades. Tomorrow's plan was pretty laid back, but included three (potentially) cool stops: Borough Market, Sky Garden, and Hyde Park. Stay tuned to see if the good times continued to roll!
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