The Day I Glimpsed St. Paul's, Big Ben, House of Lords and Westminster Abbey  

Posted by Heidi

Most of the photos I take are of architecture; it is an art form that I absolutely adore.  There is no particular reason for this that I can  discern--I just seem to be more thrilled by shape (and therefore, carvings of people like the "eaves droppers" above) than I am by paintings.  So, if you are a fan of architecture, my travel posts are for you. 

We were still in the midst of our coach tour.  (You can read about the first part of our coach tour HERE and our trip to the Orangery at Kensington Palace HERE.)  I was very excited to stand outside of this dwelling; that of Wellington.  It was called "Number One London" because it was the first house that one arrived at when they drove into town.  Wellington is a regency-era hero, though I have not written him into any of my books as of yet. 

Perhaps standing outside of his home is the inspiration I need.

I couldn't say for sure if the above photo is still his house--I don't think so.  I do so love the blue slate roof and the urns, of course.  One can never have too many urns; that's my motto.

The above is St. Paul's.  Some of you might remember the role it played in the movie Mary Poppins.  It is where the bird lady sat and fed the birds.  One is no longer allowed to feed the birds.  Neither are Two or Three and so on and so forth.  This means there are a whole lot less pigeons around to dive bomb your head.  This is a very good thing.  (More on St. Paul's when I blog about the day we actually went inside--it was a thrill of a lifetime I didn't even know I was missing.)

This photo depicts Westminster Abbey which was built in the last gasps of the great English perpendicular style.  Amazing.  To the right is the House of Lords and the one in the yellow stone is The Royal College of St. Peter in Westminster, better known as Westminster School (of which I took many photos, to follow).

The abbey itself has a wedding cake delicacy to it that I can't get enough of.  Add to it all of the gothic arches and this building quickly became a favorite of mine.

I imagine that you must get the picture by now.  (Please pardon my effusiveness.)  (If, indeed, effusiveness is a word.  I went first for "effusion", which makes total sense to me, but means something other than what I intended.)

This view has a very fairy tale castle look to it.  (Either that or it is a different building altogether and I have simply forgotten.)

Nope, wait, this is the same set of towers and is, for sure, the abbey.  I very much lurve the turrets. 

 Next is Big Ben.  I do believe that the building with the small, minaret-style towers just above the blue bus is the House of Commons, but I wouldn't bet on it.  I have no recollection of being told what it was.  So I'm guessing.  (How can one go to London, see it all with a guide, and return home so ignorant?  I blame the illness that demented my mind in the interim.)

I had to snap this photo, which I did through the coach window, because of the banner on the red bus.  I, too, love Mormon(s).  In fact, I love a great many of them.  This, however, is an advertisement for the show "The Book of Mormon".  I hear it is pretty entertaining. 

It wasn't until I got home and started looking at photos of this area online that I realized there is water somewhere around here.  I hadn't a clue. 

Here we are again at the all boy's educational facility fondly known as Westminster School.  The yellow stone really stands out against the gray sky.  I love this building so much that I could almost be happy about attending school here.  (If they would let me.  Which they won't).  (This is something on which I would happily bet money.)

Perhaps they would allow me to be the person who waters all of the flowers in exchange for room and board, though I suppose the rain does a fairly regular job of that.  Nertzy!

If that is a dragon at the feet of the man with the sword, I would have to say it depicts St. George.  Why the school should have a carving of George when the school is named after St. Peter, I couldn't say.  (More carved people.  This is an art form that inspires awe in me and boggles my mind.  I have written books, poetry, music, done some drawing and a smidge of painting, could act my way out of a hat (but that's about it) and I play a number of instruments (though not well).  I have a flair for photography, flower arranging and interior decorating.  And yet, how one would go about this art form is something I can't begin to fathom.  I suppose that is why I find it so inspiring.  (My favorite carver:  Grinling Gibbons)

Who wouldn't want to walk through these portals every day?  (I suppose some of the young boys might see the whole thing a tad differently than I.)  (Poor, homesick lads.)

There's a carved king up there in the niche.  Or perhaps it is St. Peter (finally!).

I have no clue what this photo depicts specifically.  I only know that I took it when we were at Westminster.  Looking at its medieval-styled Victorian deliciousness, I surely wish I had gone through this arch with more than my camera.

And there is the London Eye.  (Clara Oswald has a print of the London Eye hanging on the wall in her apartment.  True story.)  (I do so love Clara.)

The Methodist Central Hall is another absolutely delicious building.  It has quite an illustrious history, not the least of which is that Joseph and His Technicolor Dream Coat premiered here. 

The ladies in their flowing robes!  The niches!  The scrolls!  The carved animal and human faces!  The columns!  Why can't I live here! (I would die from lack of sunshine.  This I know.)

I don't know for sure what this building is.  It might still be part of the Methodist Hall.  Or it might not.  It first appears in the photo of the London Eye.  Those whatchamacallits above the windows are stunning!  (I am going to put those on my Christmas wish list.)

Here is a close up so that my husband (and other family members) can get a good look at them for their Christmas shopping.  Not sure where I will put them but I will make space. 

The friezes full of carved people are of especial interest to me.  What an imagination one would have to have!  I suppose the artist used models but still!  It just boggles the mind! 

Here is a close up of the "eaves droppers" from the photo at the top of this post.  They are simply smashing. 

I am not Catholic but I have a weakness for Marys.  She is always so lovingly rendered.  Also, she is usually fully dressed, a claim I cannot make for some of her less virtuous sisters. 

Next time, more of Big Ben, the London Eye and The Royal Horseguards Hotel, one which I thought would make it into this post but, alas, did not.  It's a stunner!

This entry was posted on Friday, August 14, 2015 at Friday, August 14, 2015 . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .

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