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Tuesday, August 15, 2017

The adventure continues....

Well this is Margee on Scott's blog.  He called me the other night and said that he had been working on his blog on the iphone ( speaking into the mic) and hadn't published it yet, as it wasn't perfect.... and then tried to make a correction on what was now, a many paged blog, and wouldn't ya know it.... he lost the whole dang thing.  I suggested that he just use the old fashioned method, and physically write it ( I had given him a small diary to take on his trip with him for just this purpose ;-) ... then use your new fashioned cell phone to photograph the page and I would type it up for him and add it to the blog for him here in Tulsa.  So Plan B.... Send the photo and I will sharpen/adjust contrast and just plug it into the blog as a jpg!  Brilliant!  So here is the continuation of the Scott adventure saga.

Saturday, August 5, 2017

8/4 Day 12 of Scott's European adventure

 Today our noble guide, Bill,  wakes in a festive mood.  Having slept well, he is looking forward to going to the national Museum, as am I.   I however, having returned home late from the pub the night before, I am not so energetic as our guide.
I enjoyed an evening at the Betsey Trotwood Pub, hanging out with the "lantern society" of folk musicians. They are a happy bunch of poets and musicians,  despite the fact that our host welcomes us to the  Boulavard of broken dreams, and then proceeds with a beautiful poem to start the evening. He says all artists rise from broken dreams  and speak truth, giving hope in times of oppression and shattered dreams.  We are in those times now he declares. The audience is clearly with him as the applaud.
 I had a pint or two and enjoyed wonderful songs and poetry throughout the evening. Fortunately I remembered to ask someone how late the buses and underground run.  I left in what I thought was plenty of time to catch the last underground out of Kings Cross.   However, after waiting 15 to 20 minutes at the bus stop, someone told me the stop was closed for the night. This meant  I must walk to the underground, which though only supposed to be a 20 minute walk, still increased  my anxiety, being a stranger in a strange land. I began to walk in the direction of Kings Cross.  To make a long story short I at some point asked a young lady  directions to the underground and she sent me the wrong direction, which meant that I had to run the last stretch to reach my destination.  The good news I did make it on time, weary, but relieved.
 Nevertheless, tired as I am, I am ready to see Trafalgar Square and the national Museum.   The square is itself, something to see with many statues surrounding a fountain and people of all nationalities gathered.  There are street vendors, buskers, and break dancers.   Also there are many floating figures all around the square. Apparently the British are quite taken with Star Wars figures that levitate. I should  have taken a picture of one of these floating figures.  Bill, our guide, asked me if their arms didn't get tired holding themselves up the way they did all day.   I may not know Vivaldi from Mozart, but I understand an illusion when I see one, so I had to explain to the professor how the trick was done.
 There is so much to see in the national Museum that thankfully we had our great Guide with his Rick Steves Guide book to help us on our journey.  Our guide, though very knowledgeable in his own right, seems to rever the words of this greater Guide, with whom he must have a relationship, because he refers to him  often, saying, " let us see what Steve has to say,"  as he consults the guidebook to find out which paintings are worthy of our time. Thankfully we have this greater guide  and Bill our lesser Guide to help us on this journey or we would be Forever wondering among paintings of virgins, Saints, and Angels;  not that I have anything against them, just that I can take only so many  virgins and cherubs in a day.
 With the help of our two guides we were able to find our way to Rembrandt, Turner, Monet, Degas, Van Gogh, Matisse  and others.  There are endless rooms of beautiful works of art, but fortunately because of our Guide we were not allowed  to waste our adoration for lesser works, as he would shuttle us off to find more worthy works of art. Apparently Steve is a jealous Guide,  and has written down which pieces of art are worthy of our adoration. I am so grateful that  our own guide is in such good communication with Steve and can convey to us his wishes.
Again, I poke fun at my friend. With the vastness of this museum and extensive collection of art, I was grateful to have Bill, (with help from Steve) who knows my tastes in art to help me use my time wisely.  I highly recommend the National Museum in London.

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Day 5- 11 of Scott's European adventure

 OK I admit, I have been neglectful in my daily journaling, the result being this  readers digest version of the last few days. There is a reason for this failure on my part to keep up, that being there is never a moment to sit down and write.  We are on the move from the moment we get up until we return home in the evening and by then we have enough energy to eat and crash. I am traveling with some sort of strange  species of human different from my own. These people actually take down notes and chart out every moment of the day and every destination.  They have an affection for Maps and guide books and they consult them often while walking down the street.  I wonder at the things they might be missing as they scurry about with their guide books and maps for there are strange and wonder pis people everywhere to behold.
 I of course and poking fun at my compadres on this trip, Bill and Linda Epperson and Pauly Carroll. Truth be told without them this ADD boy would probably be wandering aimlessly around the city,  enjoying myself, but lost nonetheless. They have made sure that we got places mostly in a timely fashion,  because of their organizational skills we have been able to pack in a lot in these few days we have. For instance we have visited  Hampton a beautiful little town with rolling hills in narrow streets, which has the distinction of being the home for Keats, one of the most  distinguished romantic poets. In that town we also visited the Hampton Hills which is a large beautiful park with a hill that overlooks the city of London.  We have taken to boat trips on the Thames River,  visiting the famous Cutty Sark ship  on one day and on another day we went to the Kew botanical gardens.  I thoroughly enjoyed both of these outings. We have seen three plays i.e. the first was  A musical about the life of Carole king, the second was Shakespeare's "much ado about nothing", which we saw in the globe theater, and the third was "the tempest."
 So to give you an idea of what it might be like for these three companions of mine to travel with me I relate the story:  on the day we were to go to Kew Gardens,  everyone got up dressed and ready to leave on time. We lock the door and began the two block walk to catch the bus upon arriving at the bus stop,  I realized I had left my oyster pass and my wallet at the house. I quickly dashed back to the house running uphill. I used the two keys to unlock the door, remembering folks this is the first time I have been the one to unlock the door and turn off the alarm, I turned  both keys and pulled the door, nothing happened. The door did not open I turned the key back the other way and pulled, nothing happened. I turn the key back again and pulled, nothing happened.  I am quite anxious by this time wondering if I have set off the alarm, but I couldn't hear any beeping. I decided to run back to the bus station and explain my dilemma.  Finally after a breathy explanation and Bill asking me did I use both keys, which I had, Linda said did you try pushing the door? Long pause – no  Linda that never entered my mind. Needless to say I ran back the two blocks pushed the door open, turned off the alarm, and retrieved my wallet.  I ran back to the bus station and the day could only go uphill from there. I might add that on that particular day my fit bit reached 22,000 steps.