26 October, 2006


People always say, "It must be so wonderful to live in London, all those museums [or galleries, or restaurants, or theatres, or fancy shops]." All those wonderful whatevers that we never go to, use, eat at, do or buy! We live as if we were in Southbury, Connecticut, most of the time. That is, eating at home, wearing the same old clothes, watching "All Creatures Great and Small" or arcane BBC programmes about word origins.

But this week: we went to the National Portrait Gallery! Again, you might ask? Well, we didn't want to do anything TOO radical. So yes, at Avery's request we went back to the Tudor Portrait Galleries and she looked and looked, and copied her favorite Elizabeth I portrait, and mused on having the same name as her middle name, only spelt differently. What a coincidence. Who could deny anything to a little face like this? She has the absolute longest attention span of any child (or even adult) I have ever known! We sat in the one gallery for nearly an hour.

We actually did something new, as well: lunch at the Crypt, a little cafe I remember from long ago, under the church of St Martin in the Fields, where "Sir Neville Marriner" used to conduct, I remember from National Public Radio. Can that be right? Could there have been someone called Sir Neville Marriner? It's quite odd, in any case, to walk along in the cafeteria line carrying your tray, getting a nice plate of tuna mayonnaise in an avocado half, and be stepping on gravestones all the time.

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