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10 December 2009 @ 10:27 am
The travels of Brammers, part 5  
Ahhhhhhh ...

That is the sound of a good night's sleep ;-)

The giant suitcase and I made our way north to the home of the lovely raitala and Mr Rai, also abode of Raicat, where much relaxing has been done. I am being a Raicat maintainer for the next few days while our heroes decamp to Prague, but even with minimal Raitime, I am feeling calmer and more organised already. She is a good influence. Though we haven't even really talked about art, which is odd for the two of us.

Excitingly, she lives within walking distance of one of my fave shops, so I am off to buy silks this morning and will throw myself into a frenzy of narroware weaving when I return home. And then, to the National Gallery and some further ambling.

Yesterday I decided to address my museum overload of the day before by visiting the British Museum. I limited myself to AD 500-1600, but even then had sore legs and an aching brain by the end of the day. I had forgotten the taxonomy they have there: things are sometimes arranged by time and sometimes arranged by type, so if you are looking for, say, Northern European glassware c 1340 for a novel you may allegedly be working on, you may find it in a cabinet talking about glass, or about the 14th century, or about Northern Europe.

A friend once described it as 'You know, that big building in London that contains everything, ever.' He was quite right. Yet again I did not see the Rosetta Stone. My ability to avoid the obvious by accident is quite refined now!

I also went trekking through the Museum of London, where a friend works, and really loved it. Their displays are sorted wholly by 'how people lived', which gives wonderful snapshots into the past 30,000 years of London. I particularly liked the prehistory section where they talked about the massively different geography of the city. Chatting with my friend afterwards I suggested that it would be great to have a topographical map that changed with the era, and she promised to float the idea past the people responsible for that area, which was quite thrilling.

My quest for boots that fit people with wide toes, high insteps and slightly porky but very muscly legs continues to be thwarted. One or possibly two of these things can be accommodated, not three. However, I have a new camera card and will soon have millinery wire, so the shopping missions have been mostly successful ;-) And an A to Z of Elizabethan London, which may or may not be used for a future writing project.

No winter coat as yet: puffy sleeveheads, London? Really? I know you love the '80s, but that's ridiculous.

And a hoodie helped me with my suitcase on the tube yesterday. Restored my faith in Young People Today.
Meredyth: Pyjamasmeredyth_13 on December 10th, 2009 10:55 am (UTC)
My arches are aching in sympathy - oh, I just can't wait to get back to all the wonderful museums in London. The British just about killed me, last time (and still holds the award for worst museum food EVER!). Between it and the V&A my legs ended up a whole inch shorter (which involved some serious redistribution of fatty tissue to my ankles).

Puffy sleeves? Remind me never to show you my wedding photos. >.>

Give my regards to Rai when she returns. I am still wallowing in mad envy - it's so unattractive.

British youth and manhood seems to be maintaining a far better grasp of courtesy and gallantry than poor Aus. It gets my tick of approval.
blamebramptonblamebrampton on December 10th, 2009 09:44 pm (UTC)
I knew better than to try to eat there. The National Gallery has good food, wretched service, though ;-)

And puffy sleeves were acceptable in the late 20th century, but now we know better!
down the hills and round the bendsnorton_gale on December 10th, 2009 12:44 pm (UTC)
Should you find such shoes on US wondersite Zappos.com, I'll be happy to send them to you (they ship free to the US).

Wish I was in London with you! Quick jaunts to Europe should be possible again within a few years - ideally I'd go when my in-laws visit, lol.
blamebramptonblamebrampton on December 10th, 2009 09:43 pm (UTC)
Hee! Well, we will sort something out in 2012 or so! And I will try a few of the 'comfortable' shops here, or I may just commission a pair from one of the good Aussie bespoke cordwainers at this rate ... But thank you very much for the offer!
It's a Deensedeensey on December 10th, 2009 01:05 pm (UTC)
I spent a year going to the British Museum on a bi-weekly basis an still managed to not see masses of things that I wanted to. I feel it's a curse.
blamebramptonblamebrampton on December 10th, 2009 09:44 pm (UTC)
I bought a postcard ...
It's a Deensedeensey on December 10th, 2009 10:46 pm (UTC)
This is a good thing!
Coffeejunkii: coffee and sunshinecoffeejunkii on December 10th, 2009 04:02 pm (UTC)
i'm amused that you missed the rosetta stone because it's right there on the ground level, just off the courtyard :D

Edited at 2009-12-10 04:02 pm (UTC)
blamebramptonblamebrampton on December 10th, 2009 05:45 pm (UTC)
I know. I did sort of glimpse it out of the corner of my eye as I ran off to Finnish jewellery of the 11th century, and I meant to come back ...
waterbirdwaterbird on December 10th, 2009 04:59 pm (UTC)
Glad you are having a lovely time. I've been here for four years and still haven't seen the Rosetta Stone. I am a very bad tourist.

I didn't realize the puffy sleevehead thing was a local phenomenon. I think the 80s retro phase is finally fading out and grunge is coming back. (Geez, has it already been twenty years?! That can't be...) I do prefer soft plaid shirts to the whole 80s foof, I must admit.
blamebramptonblamebrampton on December 10th, 2009 07:48 pm (UTC)
Hee! It's like the inside of Il Duomo in Firenze: so nearly, so often ... I always mean to, but am distracted at the last minute.
theodoraleft on December 10th, 2009 06:42 pm (UTC)
Have you tried "Duo" for boots? They come in a range of calf-widths. I don't know about London, but we have a shop in Bath; yes, I admit I'm trying to tempt you here so I can show you round the Roman Baths and Museum of Fashion! As for the Hoodie, working as I do in tourism, I find young people invariably good natured and amenable even if their manners are as yet unrefined, whereas the only downright rudeness I've encountered tends to come from much older, quasi-respectable people! Love reading your travel journal, have a good time.
blamebramptonblamebrampton on December 10th, 2009 07:46 pm (UTC)
You know, I sat down and seriously tried to make time to come to Bath, and it just isn't possible! I will probably even have to strike Canterbury from the schedule at this rate :-(

BUT, I will be back over next autumn, with Mr Brammers, so fingers crossed you are still there as we will make Bath a priority!

And I think you should know I have had Solsbury Hill going round and round in my head for weeks now, thanks to you.
snottygrrl on December 10th, 2009 09:15 pm (UTC)
you get a pair of kumfs from welly. they specialise in wider feet. which i realise doesn't exactly help now. but you know, could in the future.

hugs to rai.
blamebramptonblamebrampton on December 10th, 2009 09:42 pm (UTC)
Ah, this is not strictly true. They SAY they specialise in wider feet, but what this means is that they have four wide models that look like mid-twentieth century librarian shoes, while all the fashionable ones are quite narrow. I wore my pair four times before giving them up for a failure and now have them slated for the charity bin :-(

Hugs to you, too!
snottygrrl on December 10th, 2009 10:03 pm (UTC)
huh. well as someone with narrow feet i can tell you that all their styles are definitely too wide for me (which made me weep). and right before i left welly i was at a party where a couple of ladies that claimed to have wide feet were swearing up and down that kumfs was the only place they could find fashionable shoes [*shrugs*] guess all feet are so different that it really depends.
blamebramptonblamebrampton on December 10th, 2009 10:15 pm (UTC)
Oh they call those wide feet. Ha! I'll show you wide feet ;-)

But thank you! Chick tips are always terrific!
Jaeenchanted_jae on December 11th, 2009 04:14 am (UTC)
I am enjoying going on your adventure with you!
blamebramptonblamebrampton on December 11th, 2009 08:33 am (UTC)
You are an excellent travel companion!
Eli/Ellie/ellie_norellie_nor on December 11th, 2009 11:11 am (UTC)
Glad you are having such a fabulous time!

Re. boots, have you tried Evans? All their shoes and boots are wide fitting as standard.
uminohikariuminohikari on December 13th, 2009 02:47 am (UTC)
Why would they have three systems? That makes no sense!