Wednesday, 13 October 2021

It Was Diana's Day Off Again,

so glad rags on,

 the above photograph was taken with my pocket camera,

this one with Diana's new telephone,

it was for glad rags for both of us, as there are a lot of photographs I am only making this one post today,

a selfie in the park,

and one on the train,

and here we are The Natural History Museum, Diana had wanted to go to the Victorian & Albert, but there were no time slots available so Diana decided to go here instead, at the moment the ground crew are getting ready for this years ice rink, as it happens in December 2018 we along with Steve and Kai had bought tickets to go here and skate,

the Christmas tree up already, well it is only 72 days to Christmas!

what a magnificent building,

Alfred Waterhouse's Museum of Natural History had roots in designs by Sir Richard Owen, the museum's creator, and an 1864 competition won by Francis Fowke, who as it happens had also designed the Royal Albert Hall and parts of the Victoria and Albert Museum, for look in to the architecture and the building of the museum there is a really interesting post here.

Diana just had to have a couple of poses,

as we made our way to the entrance,

there was not really a queue,

just a steady stream of visitors,

one more selfie,

and we are inside, no admission fee, but donations are welcome,

well I had to have a pose as well!

I dropped my coat off at the cloakroom,

some one is gong to be doing a serious bit of filming!

which I guess is why the upper floors are cordoned off,

everyone's favourite, dinosaurs!

a machine,

that puts an impression of the museum onto coins,

in case you get lost here is the map,

Diana decided she needed a dino tail,

and here it is,

Christmas present it is then! as it happens just last May the fashion of wearing tails hit our blog,

Diana continued looking around the gift shop,

another present in the bag!

the first time I saw this cabinet in the early 1950s with my grand mother, she commented that when she took her son here, (my father), he commented, 'look a man and a horse with no meat on!', it could have been clothes, the memory lost in the sands of time,

but here the display still is,

in my mnd, one of the world's most improbable animals, a kangaroo that lives in a tree!

I kid you not,

Diana was fascinated with the Pangolin

we made our way to the Darwin Centre,

which is a new addition to the museum,

as well as the Cocoon which is split over several floors,

a huge horseshoe crab, many years ago Diana and Riza ordered one of these when we went to a seafood restaurant in May 2009, they were also popular at a seafood restaurant we often uses to go to in Thailand,

as well as mounted animals, birds, fish, and insects there are many pages from reference works on display,

I particularly like looking at illustrations of fish and fossils, like this one of a longnose butterfly fish, (Forcipiger flavissimus),

and yes it's nose really is that long, the engraving took me back to the time when I worked at Kingfisheries and we used to sell these,

and this page of fossil fish interested me, as it happens I have three of the ones illustrated in my collection,

but something was not quite correct,

the book was upside-down, D'Oh!

I can see what has happened, the legend was printed back to front, that is the left should be on the right, and the right should be on the left, so rather than reprint the card,

put the book on display upside-down and hoped no-one would notice!

on to the dinosaurs,

as I mentioned everyone's favourite,

dinosaur eggs, so here is the thing, at this time there were no birds, so what came first the chicken or the egg?

I always think of Tyrannosaurus rex of having the biggest meat eating teeth,

but according to this legend there were a few dinosaurs with even bigger teeth,

it is sometimes so difficult to imagine how big these creatures really were,

but this is a good example,

leaping dinosaurs!

all through the hall there were learning displays,

and full size exhibits,

I think this was the dinosaur that for many years was the main feature as you walked into the museum,

the bit of a T. rex,

you do not want to met up with in real life a few million years ago!

a last look at the dinosaurs,

as we make our way to the cocoon,

and big it is too,

a quick pose,

or two,

as we look at one of the many exhibits,

this one about Gilbert White,

we also visited the Attenborough Collection,

along side the cocoon,

here it explained the science behind the collections,

with all manner of creatures on display,

with many tit-bits of information, I never knew that birds are always placed in their jars of alcohol head down, to protect damage to their feet, I never knew that!

into the lift,

to the top of the cocoon,

it is 8 floors high, a queasy long way down,

the cocoon over looks the old building,

lots of informative information on the way through the galleries,

also housed here are books,

thousands of them,

many huge,

the cocoon leads gently down to the lower floors, but today only 3 floors were open,

well we had to look here,

especially as just a few days ago we were on the very beach at Charmouth, that Mary Anning found this huge fossil,

and here she is,

there were just so many fossils on display, you really do have to call in to see them yourself,

nearby a small gift shop,

we nearly forgot the insets,

or creepy crawlies as the hall is called,

we started towards the exit,

but we had one last shop to look around, not that we wanted anything, it was just fun to look at what was on offer,

 before you ask, they had sold out of live dinosaurs,

pick up my coat,

and we were outside looking at the building of the ice rink,

a quick pose on the way out, as Mr. Fox makes his way towards the museum behind Diana.

well I just had to have one as well,

we made our way past the Victoria & Albert Museum,

this entrance closed,

and very fine it looked too,

looking back towards it,

by the side the tradesman's entrance,

no mistaking where to go!

a bit of a rarity, a working telephone box,

although a bit difficult to see, The Bunch of Grapes had a nice display of hanging baskets,

and this is where we were heading,

in we went, we fancied a bite to eat, but looking at the prices just a small steak and chips with a drink was going to be over £100.00 a bit too much for a midday lunch, 

so back to the The Bunch of Grapes it was then,

the interior had a nice old town pub look about it,

up to the bar to order,

I brought the drinks back from the bar,

a J2O orange for Diana,

a house red for myself, 'Cheers!',

a steak and wild mushroom pie for Diana, scampi and chips for myself, our lunch came to £47.00,

we passed another café with a great display of flowers,

making our way back past the London Oratory,

the day had been fine, but it was now starting to cloud over,

another fine bookshop, selling not only books, but maps and illustrated pages, 

like this one,

going past the V & A we slightly turned left towards the tube station,

the next time we must remember to book a time slot,

this is all new, on our last visit cars were driving here, now this area has been pedestrianised, also under the last awning behind Diana there was a huge bookshop situated there, now a coffee bar,

but this small bookshop had survived,

and hopefully will continue to be successful selling books,

and posters,

into the tube station,

to South Kensington, it was just 2 stops to Victoria, 

then for myself I stopped at Beckenham Junction to go shopping in Waitrose, Diana stayed on the train to Bromley South and then caught the bus to her work, Diana had to pick up the keys as tomorrow at 04.00 AM she has to open up the restaurant and let the staff in to prepare for the 05.00AM opening to the public,

I walked back through the park,

and home to await Diana returning home, where after a few quiz shows it was feet up for a Midsomer Murder and a New Tricks, then as Diana has to catch the 03.04 AM night bus, as the bus stop is about a twenty minute walk away, we will be up early, so for us we were off to bed.

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