BLOG DAY24- The changing of the Gourd...oop's Guard
The long march to Buckingham, where talk runs wild and world polatics are solved
Our mission is in sight, now to find a place to stand and see it all
A trip to London would surely be a failure if you didn’t take time to see the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace. So we started the day with a brisk walk from the hostel down to Buckingham. We stopped by a local market and bought a little food to pack in the backpack that I carried with us today. Nothing special really, just a few croissants, a little cheese and some fruit, some candy bars and cookies……………gott’a have those Hobo Creames by McVitties………………the kids loved them.
The Gaurds in Blue give way to the Royal Red Coats
Buckingham is quite the Palace, the grounds are immaculate and when we arrived the guards on duty wore the standard Blue Tunic version, not the bright Scarlet that I think we all have become accustomed to. One of Darren’s main goals for the trip was to have his pic taken next to one of those “BearfurHattedscarletcoatedstiffasapoker” guards that we see in the movies in front of that tiny guard shack thingy!!!!
Our first bad news for the day was that the Bear Skin hated guards follow the Queen up to Scotland when she goes north…………………so none here today…….SORRY!
We took in the changing and the small ceremony that is held in conjunction with it. Not trying to be a bit biased, but my kids have seen the changing of the guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Washington DC and by comparison ours is much more precise and drill like. The English version on the other hand is more of a performance with some precision drill work and the band that accompanies the changing. We expected them to burst forth with some patriotic marching tunes like John Phillip Souza or something like it……………….but no, they burst forth with a medley of well known musical scores ie: James Bond, Pink Panther and Star Wars.
We arrived with a little time to spare before the changing was too take place and we were all glad that we did, or we would have had no room nor chance to see the actual changing take place. We as a result of having a spot next to the Buckingham fence did pay a price in the way of a very thoroughly tight squeezing for our being early as the undulating crowd pushed and swayed against us and the fence.
Next we took in the Royal Apartment Tour, which Mom wisely bought for us while we held our spot against the fence at Buckingham. The Apartment tour was quite fun and very informative, we took in all of the open to public sections of the Buckingham Palace rooms. Sorry no camera’s, and a pile of docents keeping an eye of the tourista’s……..so no seek peaks from JW and his concealed camera. We moved on and took in the Royal Mews and Stables. This was a better place for me, since it involved most things equestrian and had a ton of neat looking harness hardware and other such furniture. Cameras are allowed so I took a ton of carriage and what not pics. We also found the Royal Horse Guards and managed to find time to get a pic with them on the way thru.
From the Mews we headed for the Queens Royal Gallery, now here is a place I could spend some more time. It houses one of the largest collections of early drawings by the likes of DaVinci, Raphael etc. The sketches for the most part are of works that were being carried out in Italy during the very earliest years of these artists lives. And today you could go to the many Cathedrals etc that they worked on and see the finished piece, be it a Fresco on the roof or a pillar treatment in the Cathedral. For me it would be really cool to take the time to go and see the finished pieces. In all there are some 900 items of art within the Queens Gallery, and they were all magnificent. Not sure whose work I like better, DaVinci or Raphael but I think DaVinci……….he was so darned inventive, as can be seen in his many mechanical idea sketches housed here.
Next stop was JW’s main objective for my time in London……….The Victoria & Albert Museum. WOW, and Poochy Maggie what a place. If I could have been selfish about it all, I know for a fact I could have spent my whole 4 days time in London right here at this one Museum……………but then I had more than me to appeal too. As it was we only had about 2.5 hours to walk and take pics to my hearts content. It is unfortunate that you cant really walk and shooot pics at the same time so I covered 1 floor partially by my self, and I sent my crew scouting for other items they felt I should take a very quick peak at before we are kicked out.
We stayed till the last possible moment and took our leave. Decided to walk home to the Hostel, the night was a great one for walking………..and it wasn’t more than 200-300 blocks so no problem. Now may be the best time to tell you folks who like the fast style cars, that London is your kind’a twon. I am not kiddin, when I say that you can easily see a Lamborghini at every intersection. And if it isn’t a Lambo……..well it will be a Ferrari or Spyker, maybe a TGV. Did someone mention Porsche, well sorry the sixteen year olds get their learners in them and then maybe discard them for the big guns. It is amazing how many of these sort of cars you see prowling the streets once the sun goes down and the night cruisers come out. Every once in a while you will hear one of those street beasts getting turned full throttle and you should hear it bark and bellow between those closed in building walls………Poochy Maggie, that is a very cool sound.
Needless to say with the setting of the sun also comes the night creatures and that whole obscene scene. Through it all we seen too much at times, but nobody got hurt and the kids are all fairly mature so a little exposure was good in the end for maturity’s sake. We done the micro wave dinners and headed to the Hostel to eat and play cards………and yes type on the blog.
The gal who shared our room at the Hostel is from China, and she is in London for 3 months to take an intensive English Immersion class, upon completion she will return home and work in the political and business translation business. Very nice gal, quiet as a mouse,we hardly heard this gal at all while we were in the room. She was out by 6am or sooner and in bed by 9pm…………gott’a appreciate that sort of commitment for sure.
Poochy Maggie, I and the crew are plenty tired its about 12:05am
Good Night and God Bless