Fair warning: The pictures and story below are a frankly cheesy account of my shamelessly cliche final day in London...
Want to join me? Come on, here we go!
If you're going to play tourist, might as well go all the way.
So we start at Trafalgar Square, where the bells in St. Martin-in-the-Fields mingle with street carneys and gaggles of tourists crushed together gazing at the stature of Admiral Nelson and trying to decipher their maps...
Then through the Admiralty Arch...
along Green Park, the Jubilee Walkway.
And then we entered the Royal Gardens and heard a child's voice, an excited stream of British English...
"Mummy! I want to see the Queen!! Will we, Mummy? Will we see the Queen? Will she walk out the front door?"
There we were... Buckingham Palace.
Quintessentially British. Royalty in spades.
Gilt and splendor everywhere.
If architecture can be glitter and glam, this is the perfect example.
And then (you knew this was going to happen, didn't you???)
we saw the Changing of the Guard!
It was not publicly announced so the press of tourists wasn't what you'd expect... we had a front row view. We were livin' the stereotype... London tourists all the way.
And I didn't even mention the National Gallery, did I?
Or the pigeon man?
Or the taxis, the shop windows or the souvenir underpants emblazoned with the Union Jack, which blessedly did not come home with us.
Since we were embracing the cliches, we decided to drop into a pub for steak and ale pies for dinner and then sit on our suitcases to press them shut in preparation for the flight out in the morning.
Home and studio await.