Friday, May 17, 2013

Museum Death March: London Edition

My husband doesn't believe vacations are for lolling about.  If we were stranded on a beach he would tunnel all the way to China or build a bulwark out of clam shells.  To his credit, he has great curiosity about the world.  We are just back from 8 days in London.   We saw two palaces, the Cotswolds, the Tate, the Tate Modern, the British Museum, the Victoria and Albert, the National Gallery, Tower of London, Museum of London and the British Library.  And those are just the places I remember.  I have so many images ricocheting through my head I am dizzy.  I may have stopped paying attention.  At one point in the National Gallery my husband pointed out the room was full of Titians.  I am the artist of the family.  I should have noticed that but I was busy sidestepping munchkins.
  I am all for introducing young people to art, but not in bulk.  Platoons of youngsters, with identifying fluorescent caps or vests clotted the galleries in every museum we visited.  Invariably, they were parked in front of an image that I would have liked to study.  Some sat, others splayed out on their stomachs writing on their worksheets,  forming a ten foot barricade.
  London has an efficient  underground system.  Trains were astonishingly clean considering that so many people eat entire meals while rocketing about underground. I was struck by the number of beautiful women eating pastries.   What London doesn't have, and I'm amazed they can get away with it in this day and age, is handicapped access.  So many stairs between platforms and exits. My knee threatened to buckle.  My husband pointed to a woman pulling herself up the stairs by the railing while her son followed with her crutches. That pretty much ended my whining.
   London was on my husband's bucket list.  I had been twice before.  It's odd being somewhere and knowing you'll never see it again.  There are too many places still on his bucket list to consider revisiting those crossed off.  He asked what was on my list.  Some place flat, I answered.