To pass my last afternoon in London, I decided to mix things up with a little something old and a little something new, especially since they were next door to each other.
First I headed to the reconstruction of the Globe theatre, which, if you’re ever in London, is definitely worth the pounds and time. Having a chance to see about as faithful a reproduction as you can get (given today’s building codes, for example) to the original, combined with some great insight and vision from the tour guide, lets ou almost feel like you were there. And if you go in the summer months, you actually have a chance to do just that. I almost want to come back in the summer, just to stand in the intimate space. Hard to believe they use to pack 3,000 attendees in a space slightly smaller than the one we were in.
For something new, I headed over to Tate Modern, London’s modern art museum. And, unsurprisingly, I had much the same reaction I always do to modern art. Most pieces leave me asking the eternal question, just “what is art?” After all, if I can create something that looks exactly like what’s on exhibit, is it art? If someone painstakingly invested time and a career in creating some of the items, only to leave me with the impression that I could do the same thing, should that be considered art? If it looks like a stunt designed to get a cheap emotional rise out of me, is that art?
In any event, Tate Modern had two things going for it that most modern art museums don’t. First off, it was free to enter the regular exhibits, which meant I at least didn’t feel as though I was being ripped off. And second, one of the exhibits was a series of slides, available for your use (free tickets required for the slides on levels 3, 4, and 5, no ticket required on level 2). And, I swear to you, these slides were awesome. I can’t judge distance well, but the highest slide had to be between 50 and 100 feet high. Now that’s some modern art I can really get behind.
I finished off the day at a Thai restaurant near the hotel, which wasn’t bad but left me wanting the Thai food back home. London certainly isn’t the culinary capital of the world (though the conversation I overheard at dinner was certainly amusing enough).