- 3 people wearing Converse plimsolls
- 5 people listening to iPods
- 4 people reading the Metro
- 4 people reading books
- nobody reading an e-reader
- 1 person asleep
- 2 women wearing black woollen tights (one of them with black Converse plimsolls - very good)
- 3 people texting, emailing or playing games on their smart phones (or maybe reading ebooks actually?)
- 2 men wearing suits and ties
- 1 sleepy-looking teenager carrying a yellow vuvuzela in a matching yellow Selfridges bag
Seen at the Sargent and the Sea exhibition at the Royal Academy:
- sunsets over the mid-Atlantic
- boys playing on a Normandy beach
- Breton oyster sellers carrying unwieldy baskets on their hips
- pencil sketches of rigging and furled sails
- stormy seas
- the grey skies of Whitby
- the saturated heat of a Mediterranean beach
- gondolas in Venice
John Singer Sargent, 'En Route pour la pêche (Setting Out to Fish)', 1878.
I met my parents at the Royal Academy today, and we went to see the Sargent exhibition together. Every aspect of my day reminded me why I love living in London so much:
- The entertainment that is to be found by people-watching on the tube.
- The ease with which the tube whizzes us around this enormous city. Londoners like to moan about the tube, and admittedly commuting endlessly on it is tiring and crowded, but secretly I think it is wonderful.
- The endless exhibitions, shows, plays, sports and other activities that are put on for Londoners and visitors all through the year. There is no need ever to be bored living in London.
I am starting to put together a list of the things I want to do around London this autumn. So far my list looks like this:
- Diaghilev and the Ballets Russes Exhibition at the V & A
- trips to Kew Gardens to see autumn colour and smell the damp earth
- The Glasgow Boys exhibition at the Royal Academy
- A late evening visit to the Natural History Museum. Like almost all of the big London museums, the NHM opens late on a Friday evening and puts on special events, free to the public. I really like the look of this one next week, and am wondering if the children would be up for an evening trip out
- A series of walks to explore the Lee Valley Regional Park, which runs within walking distance of our house, and about which I know almost nothing.
- A visit to the Olympic Park, which is going up really fast and gives me tingles of excitement every time I see it.
What are your favourite London destinations? Where do you head for first if you are visiting for a day?