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Amanda Goes to England, Vol. 3: 14 May 2014

Late night Tuesday night = sleeping through the complimentary hostel breakfast Wednesday morning. A problem I never had before Twitter found me a social life in London for this visit to England! OH well, there was coffee and pain au chocolat to be had on the way to the Tube…

Before heading out for the day, I discovered that my beautiful Yashica-Mat twin lens camera had jammed up. A lot of my photography was planned around that camera. Not to mention the fact that I had to lug the thing around as nothing more than a paper weight for the rest of the trip! England Holiday 2006: my SLR kept jamming up. England Holiday 2012: my Polaroid SLR 680 “jumped” from my camera bag onto the pavement and got busted up. England Holiday 2014: the Yashica-Mat jams up. England is where my cameras go to die. (Though I have had my Yashica-Mat repaired since I got home this time – all was not lost!)

You know what though? It actually turned out to be a really pleasant day, due largely to the fact that the weather was bloody fantastic! I don’t even think I did anything particularly interesting that day. But enjoying the beautiful weather was an interesting enough experience for me.

My first stop for the day was the Museum of London.

Sort of a reflection self-portrait in neon circles sculpture across from Museum of London

I’m glad you can see how pretty the sky was that day, reflected in this window

Outside the Museum of London

From the Roman London exhibit

19th century lamp post, in the museum’s “Victorian walk”

 

The above photos are of the lift (elevator) from Selfrigdes, 1928. #AllArtDecoEverything

 

I enjoyed my visit to the Museum of London. Mostly the bits about the Victorian era/early 20th century. It wasn’t the best museum for photography, but I did a little there and moved on to my next destination.

I stumbled upon a “guild church” called St. Lawrence Jewry on my wanderings that really nice to just pop into. No one was really in there, aside from some school deans who were having a seminar in a room next to the sanctuary. It was pretty quiet, and I was able to grab a few snaps, undisturbed, and leave as quietly as I’d arrived.

Can my fellow Olympus XA users spot the familiar aperture shape?

 

 

Next to St. Lawrence Jewry is an art gallery at a place called Guildhall. I’m not sure what the story is there. The interesting bit is that it’s on the grounds of an ancient Roman amphitheater. There’s not much left of the ruins, so they have these futuristic lighted figures to represent what would have been going on during Roman times. That description doesn’t make much sense, and the reality of what I’m describing doesn’t make much sense.

Guildhall

Bust of Queen Mary, Queen Elizabeth II’s paternal grandmother
By Sir George Frampton

The Roman ruins I was telling you about

Don’t you like it when I take self-portraits in the mirrors of London’s finest loos?

I didn’t feel as if I was having the most photographically productive day. However, this was the most beautiful day I’d ever seen in London. While I’ve had sunny days in London, there was just something next level about this weather. It was a good example of how I’d hoped it be in Spring, compared to November (the other two UK trips I’d made were in November.) The weather was fickle for the first few days of my 2014 trip but became increasingly lovely as the week progressed. The beauty of the day really came alive to me when I saw St. Paul’s.

I have been in St. Paul’s once, in 2006. No photography is allowed inside (and admission is expensive!) so all I had was an exterior shot on a very crummy, bleak London day. In 2012, I just passed it by on a “meh” weather day and took a couple of exterior shots then.

For some perspective, here’s the lone picture I took of St. Paul’s in 2006

And what St. Paul’s looked like the day I walked by in 2012

But this time, it was ON! The weather and lighting were amazing, and the place was surrounded by happy people who were enjoying the cathedral, the gardens, and the general awesomeness of the day. I may have overdone it with the photos I took, but it was just such a different experience to me to actually see St. Paul’s on a sunny day.

Inscription atop the “People of London” memorial, honouring Londers who were killed in The Blitz:”In war resolution, in defeat defiance, in victory magnanimity, in peace goodwill”Sir Edward Marsh 

I felt more than satisfied with my photography for the day after I’d been to St. Paul’s. Not to mention, I did get to see something I hadn’t encountered before as I continued my stroll that evening before going back to my hostel:

Something I hadn’t seen before: The Holborn Viaduct

Photos taken with Nikon EM and Olympus XA

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