Today was quite the mash up of cultures. We visited the British Library this morning, had Iraqi food for lunch, and visited the Tate Modern Museum to end the day.
The British Library was my mecca. It had all kinds of ancient and priceless texts and documents. It was amazing to see the Gutenberg Bible, the Magna Carta, and Shakespeare’s original works in the same room. It was like a thief’s dream. I was surprised at how many priceless objects were in the same room. Although I could hardly make out some of the authors’ handwriting, it was still really cool to see their notes firsthand.
One of my favorite objects in the room was Queen Elizabeth I’s prayer book. She is one of my favorite characters in British history. It brought our visit to the Tower of London and Westminster Abbey full circle for me. Elizabeth was one of King Henry VII’s (the lustful, murderous king) children. Elizabeth was a much fairer ruler than her sister Mary, who was known as “Bloody Mary,” and her people loved her. I wish I could have held the prayer book myself.
Iraqi food is delicious. It reminds me of the Greek food my family makes, but it has slightly different flavors. Lamb is a common factor between the two cultures, however. Each neighborhood in London seems to have a different atmosphere. There are quite a few Middle Eastern neighborhoods, which adds to the city’s great diversity.
The Tate Modern Museum is verrrry different than the British History Museum or the Victoria and Albert Museum. I couldn’t help but ask myself if some of the things I was seeing was actually art. I suppose art has a different definition for each person.
Paris in two days!