25 February 2008


V&A Cafe, William Morris Rooms

Going to the theatre alone is not a problem--never hesitate. Once the production begins it really doesn't matter who is sitting beside you. Having seen Les Miserables in Chicago many years ago, I expected it all to be familiar. I loved it! And, it was such a different production--Victor Hugo's story remains the same, but each production has its own perspective. Theatre in London is the best! Just walking through Picadilly Circus down Shaftesbury Avenue at night draws you into the excitement of theatre.

What a lovely day... After securing tickets in Leicester Square I took the Tube back to South Kensington and wandered the streets ending up at the Natural History Museum and took in the dinosauer exhibits and human biology--each exhibit is geared to appeal to children as well as adults.

Couldn't resist tea and scones at the V&A Cafe again today and then on to Kensington High Street for some shopping. At Marks &Spencer I bought some strawberry Wellies for my small granddaughter and a black trench coat for myelf. Since everyone in London needs a raincoat, prices and selection are excellent. London is a great place to browse and window shop, but not the place where Americans should buy clothes or other fashion items. Prices and selection all around the U.S. are better.

Late afternoon, I ended up back at the Victory & Albert Museum--explored a few more exhibits, including the remarkable Ardabil Carpet in the Asia rooms and then the Cafe for a chance to rest up a bit before heading out for the evening. Turns out that the V& A Cafe reduces the price of their prepared foods late in the afternoon. Enjoyed a Sicilian sandwich and French-press coffee.

Just at nightfall, I reached Covent Garden and explored the shops--Octopus carries much the same inventory as the Pylons stores in NYC and Paris, and David & Goliath offers quirky and opinionated clothing. Had a hard time resisting the bookshops on Charing Cross Road, but it was time to walk toward Picadilly Circus and Queen's Theatre for the 7:30pm curtain.

Thinking ahead I realized that I would be late arriving at Heathrow for catching the Hotel Hoppa shuttle, so I made sure to have plenty of pounds so that I could take a cab. My hotel borders Terminal 4, so I thought, "What can a cab cost?" Plenty. Before we even reached the outskirts of the airport the meter was up to £12 . I jut reminded myself that it's "play money" and forked over the £15. I never felt afraid during my time alone, but I did think through safety issues to make sure I never ended up alone in a scarey place.

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