After several months of sorting out the new flat we found time to go up to London for some exhibitions and my annual skin check at The Mole Clinic, which, btw, is not part of the NHS but I think the price worth it as I get a whole body check with every mark and blemish (and I have many) looked at with a monocular; essential with my sun-damaged skin. And all clear – yay and big cheer.
Here I am on the train wearing my thrifted Karen Millen jacket with the (Lady Hale) spider broach.
And as well as the visit to the clinic we did the thing I like doing more than anything, yes, went to not one but three exhibitions over two days as we stayed overnight. The first was a visit to the V&A and ‘Cars: Accelerating the Modern World‘ which was much more than just a glorification of cars but a cultural investigation of their history and impact. Mind you, there were quite a lot for the enthusiast ranging from some early models like this.
To the quirky – remember these!
Towards the end the exhibition made you think about the car’s impact on this earth.
That number clicked down a digit every second. And the last exhibit was a huge panoramic shot from a drone of lithium extraction in South America which was absolutely mind-boggling. I had no idea that this extraction caused such devastation – left me feeling a bit down as I had thought that one of the ways to combat global warming is for all cars to be electric. Well not until we solve the challenge of the battery.
We moved on to another exhibition at the V&A on the photographer Tim Walker. I’d never heard of him before but wow, just wow! What a feast for the eyes. I got quite transported out of my downer into a different, more flamboyant world of someone’s exceedingly creative imagination. There were installations galore.
And many portraits – yes that is Margaret Atwood.
And this is his muse, the actor Tilda Swinton. What about those rings!
I forgot, we found another exhibition on sustainability which had some glorious photos.
So that was three exhibitions on Monday. In the evening we had a pizza and I wore my hat.
Which I wore pretty much all the time! Here I am at the Tate on a very grey and wet Tuesday for the 4th exhibition we went to, which was the Dora Maar one, which was good but tbh I didn’t really do it justice or appreciate it as much as I should have as by then, on the second day and after my skin clinic appointment and travelling from there to the Tate, I was just too tired.
That really was the light – the photo hasn’t been enhanced. Foot looks bit weird but the boots were actually very comfortable. And that was important as we walked and walked and walked – gosh not surprised we were tired!
I have to say that London has changed so much since my days as a nurse at St Thomas’. I love London for the buzz, its busyness (up to a point) and just the cultural fix I get every time I go there, which I need, it’s my elixir of life. However, wherever you go there seems to be a building site and there’s the constant noise and hubbub of building works, alongside that, the roads are congested and the air really isn’t all that pleasant to breathe. On the second day we finally got a taxi and our taxi driver was one of those Londoners who tell you how it is, and he certainly did that. Beyond and beneath the beauty of the city is a dark heart of poverty, drugs, gangs and knives. He knows this as he lives with it daily (a relative, won’t say more). Left us with much to think about. What London needs is radical leadership and thinking outside the box, and maybe, some money into rather than cuts from youth services. And what about some police out and about on the beat? Will London get that? We’ll see. I’m glad I lived there once, but now it’s great to visit, especially those glorious museums and art galleries, but it’s so good to get back to the sea breezes of Brighton.
Here’s a last view of the Thames and the skyline from Blackfriars station.
With love, Penny, the Frugalfashionshopper