Steve n Jen's UK adventures

UK and European adventures. Read on my pretties, and discover what two stray Aussies can get up to on their travels.......

26 July 2010

July 2010 b

And so we visited a beautiful famous city for a quick weekend jaunt. See if you can pick which city from this first photo...

Fri 23 July 2010
After work we hopped in a cab and 15 minutes later were going through security at London City Aiport. Gotta love the convenience!

Sat 24 July 2010
After a quiet evening at an airport hotel we bussed and trained into town. 

Thankfully tonight's hotel were OK to look after our small luggage before check-in time so we were able to stroll for 10 minutes and find ourselves here:

If you haven't figured it out yet, yes we were in Paris, and this is the Louvre. We decided to just focus on seeing the Egyptian stuff, which has always been closed every other time we've visited. Here's a fab egyptian chair with front and hind legs:

Below: Steve amongst the sculptures

The interesting this about this stone sarcophagus (of Rameses III) is the "lid" is in the shape of a cartouche. This lid is in Cambridge's Fitzwilliam Museum - so we'll definitely need to make a date to see that too. The body is in Cairo - talk about sharing the chap about!

Looking out the windows gave this lovely view of the church (right) across the street. Aaahhh Paris, you are so strewn with splendid architecture!
When you're not absorbed by the artifacts and artworks in the Louvre, it's the rooms themselves that are distracting. 

The winged Victory has such amazingly fine and delicate subtlety to the folds and curves - it is an astonishing masterpiece and what a shame she's so incomplete.

Before we knew it, it was 2:30 and definitely time to have lunch. Its just so hard to drag oneself out of the Louvre with the lure of more stunning artworks around every corner.
After lunch we tried for the national library, but the interesting museum stuff was just closing up (early) when we got there at 4:30pm. So we headed south, strolling down through the Palace Royal gardens.

With tired feet, we legged it back to the hotel for a nanna-nap and to freshen up. We had an early dinner/snack and headed off to Madeleine (church) for a performance of Mozart's Requiem. The performance was pretty good, although the venue was a bit too echoey for its own good.


 Then off to bed.

Sun 25 July 2010
After breakfast we had a 10 minute walk to the world's most extraordinary gift shop. Or that's how it seemed when we walked in.....

Yes this is the gift shop! Loved the details - the glass baubles and enamelled glass panels inset as part of these rondel/icon paintings. The little symbols on all the columns were also subtly relief sculpture. Lush!


Above: you can see the glass panels. This makes the walls seem to glitter and the colours are so intense it's crazy!

OK, so all this it is directly underneath the famous Sainte-Chappelle, early 14th century chapel for the King of France. It is gorgeous and extraordinary. We were really blown away by the lush rich colours and exquisite detail covering every square inch inside! Check this out...

Admittedly the rose window is a later addition - 15th century. Still pretty glorious nonetheless!

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21 July 2010

July 2010 a

Fri 02 July 2010
Today Steve picked up his spankingly new apple iPhone. A new fun toy to spend hours playing with!
Tonight Jen got very very erm, Tipsy! Jen's work colleague, Ruth, held leaving drinks at the local watering hole. Jen went home eventually, after 5 hours (and 5 vodkas). Meanwhile Dan and Elizabeth came around to stay the night. Dan cooked dinner, Steve supplied condiments, and simply kicked back and chatted until Jen came home (and amused them all).

Sat 03 July 2010
Very early this morning, Steve rounded up Dan and Elizabeth, and headed out to the far side of Norwich to attend the Battle of Brothers SCA event.
Jen instead hung out with Edith and went to 'Freerange' together, a gallery display of graduating art students' works, on Brick Lane. It was a glorious, sunny, hot day. Here's a couple of photos from the exhibition:

At the SCA event, after a small hiccup in the first battle scenario, the side Steve was on was victorious, or rather "slayed them to the 4 winds". Steve was later asked to regale the day's exploits at the feast that evening.

Sun 04 July 2010
Jen had a relaxing day, Steve came home, all is excellent in the universe.

Thu 08 July 2010
Tonight we won a bid on a second hand Ikea sofabed and also picked it up about a 20 minute drive from our home. Steve used his amazing tetris powers and managed to get the whole lot into the car as if it was made for it! So the large bedroom is now an office/library/spare guestroom. Here's the sofabed set up and Steve modelling his new iPhone all in the one shot:

Fri 09 July 2010
We're really amazed at how wonderfully well the garden is going. Here, the dancing blueboy (vine) put in last year has completely taken off!

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