t2.bmp (300054 bytes)  London 08/08/2007

 

August 8, 2007

On our last day, we got directions to the Royal RAF Museum because Karen wanted to see the exhibit on the Cold War.  But it was going to be quite a trip -- and it was such a lovely day -- so we decided to blow it off and go for a River Thames tour instead.

Now we are on the boat tour of the river Thames, taking pictures of the buildings we pass.

The water was a sort of freaky brown, but it was not smelly.

We heard all about how the first London Bridge was purchased, dismantled, and then re-assembled in Arizona.

We saw the London Tower and Crown Jewels and all that on our first trip.

Cool picture with the bullet-like (Gherkin) building in the background.

The London Bridge, after we passed under it on the boat.

This is the Royal Observatory in Greenwich. The orange-red ball has just dropped, indicating that it is 1:00 PM.  We arrived just in time to see it drop.

Thanks to Nicki and Ivan for letting us know what this building is.  It is called Gherkin.  Nothing special I hear.

We're sitting on a bench, resting, because from here the path gets really steep.

The view from the observatory.

We were in a peaceful wooded area, and yet off in the distance, there were high-rises.

Looks like an awesome spot for a picnic and a romp with the dogs.

Strange nearby buildings

Now we are back on the boat, headed back.

This is a 24 hour clock.  It was a bit confusing because the clock said that it was 1217 (12:17PM) but my watch said it was 1:17PM.  I forgot that we were on BST (British Summer Time). They do not change this clock for BST.

Every day, at about 5 minutes before 1:00 PM, the ball is raised to the top of the pole.  Then it drops so that it reaches the bottom exactly at 1:00 PM.
Here is the long line of people waiting to get to stand in front of a statue along the Prime Meridian. At first, we thought there was no way we would get into this line, but we did.

Karen is straddling the Prime Meridian.  Cute sneakers. 

It is important to amuse yourself even while waiting in line.

It seemed to take us forever to get to the front of the line.  There was a Chinese guy who insisted on being the official photographer for a huge group of Chinese people.  He would take the picture, and then the woman would run up to him to see the picture on her digital camera to make sure it was good enough, and then she would run back to the statue so that the guy would take her picture AGAIN on someone else's camera... This went on and on!  It was funny, even though Karen's feet hurt. 

Karen took like 4 pictures of Lou so that we could choose the best one for the web. 

Lou on the other hand took only this one of Karen; he is a more confident photographer.

We are in a grand round hall where dignitaries were entertained.

We lucked into a fantastic free guided tour of the museum and learned all about Harrison and his amazing clocks (see cruise log).

This is one of the original clocks.  It had been sold off to raise money by the widow of the first royal astronomer --  but was later found and placed in this case.

We have just had tea and snacks and are all refreshed.

Here we are arriving back at our starting point.

This is a window cleaner statue suspended from the glass ceiling in the lobby. We liked this hotel a lot.  It was nice that there was a big open seating area off the lobby to hang out in.

We spent some time hanging in the lobby bar.  Karen drank pots of lovely tea, and Lou had Gin and Tonics and experimented a bit with the gin selection.

Oh man, we had been sitting around for awhile when this guy came out of an unmarked doorway and caught our eye. 

He was wearing a freaky red wig and looked completely whacked.  He sat alone for a bit and then chatted up some nearby ladies and then joined them.  Ugh. 

By the time we were getting ready to split, he had finally taken off the wig but still looked like a psycho.

Lou is pretty sneaky with the camera.

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