Hugely exciting – we discovered that Haynes motor Museum not only has a massive collection of cars, but also has an indoor soft play area…. Car themed. My idea of heaven.
The best bit about it – because we gift aided our tickets back in December when we visited we get free, unlimited visits for a year!!
Guess where I now want to go every time we go out!
I went to the Chalke Valley history festival today as the Big D and my godfather were doing a talk there on Waterloo. It was very good. They packed out the tent!
I saw lots of friends such as the Big D’s goddaughter and her family and also some friends of the big D who he met at the Weald and Downland Museum. I also saw my god brother, Rory and my old friend William who is growing at a rate of knots like me!
We saw loads of cool things like old planes flying in the sky, Ian Hislop, Roman Soldiers and the Big D’s bread oven which he built from scratch in the Anglo Saxon encampment.
For those that haven’t been before it’s well worth a day out. Too late this year as tomorrow is the last day, but 2016 is already shaping up to be a corker.
So I came all the way to Rome and then slept through the main event. Yes, I snoozed my way through the Sistine Chapel. Criminal, the big M and D should be arrested.
It was a very mucky day weather-wise so unlike yesterday we took the buggy so I wouldn’t get too wet and made our way on foot to the Vatican. Because of the rain we breezed through the queuing system (which in the summer I can only imagine is stupidly long) and made our way to the dome. The first level was a walk around the gallery inside St. Peter’s looking way down at all the people, as small as ants. The big M did not enjoy this at all being scared of heights. Then it was onwards and upwards…. Up another 350 very small, windy stairs.
The big m really did not like this. In fact half way up she chickened out when some other yellow-bellied Brits gave up and made the decision to turn tail and flee (despite the staircase being one way). They talked the big m out of continuing. So the big d and I bravely strode on and made it to the top, whilst the big m retreated. What a breathtaking view!!! Amazing. When we made it back down again, the big m decided she had been an idiot and that she would give it another go. So the poor big d had to carry me all the way up the 350 small, windy stairs (and down again!) again. But it was worth it as the big m conquered her fears.
We then spent a leisurely hour wandering around St. Peter’s Basilica and it’s treasury. Here I am having a pootle, getting in everyone’s way
But what a place! Indescribably beautiful. Almost too much to take in.
And then it really got too much to take in. We hotfooted it to the Vatican museums, which are four miles of objet d’art and masterpiece after masterpiece after masterpiece. I became art blind and needed a lie down, so I put my head down in the buggy at around the Egyptian gallery, or maybe the philatelic museum, I’m not sure which. When I came to I was out the other side zooming past the plethora of gift shops selling all manner of finger- touching goodies.
The big m and d didn’t even buy me a fridge magnet. Although I can’t complain given they purchased a Vatican rosary for me
Well let’s face it, I did throw my coins in the fountain yesterday (albeit the fountain with no water) so I will return to Rome one day. When I do I’ll be sure to revisit Michelangelo’s famous chapel.
It tells the story of the Venerable Order of St John (unsure if this is pronounced sinjin or not), who started out as a band of knights in Jerusalem during the crusades. They started a hospital dedicated to St John the Baptist which catered to sick or injured pilgrims making their way to the Holy Land. Today they are more widely known as St John Ambulance.
It’s a small but interesting little place tucked away under the arch on St John street and comprises an eclectic mix of paintings, archaeological artefacts, crusader coins, weights and measures, first aid equipment. I think it looks like it should be in a Harry Potter movie!
The best bit, however, was the arts and crafts table where kids can make their own knight gear. Here I am with my sword.
The big M helped me decorate it with sticky gems and crayons.
Last night I had the auspicious honour of staying at the Cavalry and Guards Club on Piccadilly. Typically children aren’t allowed but because I’m soooo charming I managed a free pass.
What an amazing place! It rivals any five star hotel.
Given my fledgling appreciation for art, the paintings and objet d’art are incredible – from a huge silver candelabra through to enormous oils on canvas. It really has an opulent elegance of days gone by. In fact Edward VII was known to spend a great deal of time in the Cavalry Club premises in the 1920s and 1930s, when he was Prince of Wales. I really could become accustomed to such a place!
A big thank you to my godfather for arranging my stay.