More sights of London
We got an earlier start this morning and were on the train by 10.30am.
We went straight to Tower Hill and the BOSS joined the Yeoman Guard for the tour of the Tower and I went to climb Tower Bridge. Lucky for me there was a lift to the walkway and the exhibition at the top was very interesting. There was a lot of photos and short films on the selection and building of the bridge and also the engine rooms and mechanics.
After the BOSS had finished drooling over the Crown Jewels, we met up again for boat ride up the river (included in the cost of our sightseeing bus ticket) which, once again, was commentated by a very funny young man. We cruised slowly up to Westminster and then jumped back on the Big Bus even though our tickets were just past their time stamp (the driver didn't bother checking). As today's temperature was no different from yesterdays, we were hot and sweaty and getting sun burnt by the time we reached Kensington Palace an hour later. Inside the palace was just as hot as outside - the difference being, there was no refreshing breeze. It was stuffy and oppessive with very few fans moving the hot air around. The first exhibition of period costumes was very interesting, and the special display of some of Diana's evening gowns was particularly delightful. The rest of the palace was either displays from Princess Margret or rooms from Victoria's era and I found it a little odd that although Diana has spent 12 years living in the palace, there was only one vague reference to her.
It was six o'clock when they threw us out and we decided to try again to get tickets for a show. We caught the tube to Leicester Square but the only tickets we could get for that night were full price. Instead, we purchased advanced tickets for Les Miserables for the following day's matinee.
As we were wandering down towards Trafalgar Square we were delighted to discover that that National Portrait Gallery stayed open until nine pm on Fridays. We grabbed a quick and very average Italian dinner and then immersed ourselves in portraits from King Henry VIII through to Harry and Wills and everyone in between. There was a special Beatles exhibition which had me captivated and I was most disappointed to be thrown out of the gallery when I was only half way through.
We ended the day by visiting Trafalgar Square. One of the few memories the BOSS has from her visit aged 5 is sitting beside the lion statues in Trafalgar Square. So we repeated the exercise.