Saturday, May 31, 2014

The Science Museum and St. Martin in the Fields

I think the fact that I don't feel a touristy need to update this blog daily with excited reports of our adventures serves as proof that we're settling in comfortably. And we have! We've got the hang of the tube map and can now confidently plot a route anywhere in the city, we've been happily exploring coffee shops and pubs, and this week for the first time, I headed to the British Library by myself while husband ran some other errands. Oh, and hobnobs have become a staple of our grocery runs. (And to those who recommended we give caramel digestives a try, we have, and while nice, they still can't compare. But it's been fun to try all these different kinds of cookies!)

On Wednesday, we had a fantastic time at the late "drinking and thinking" event at the Science Museum, with a theme of "Making, Hacking, and Doing." They say about three thousand people attend these events, and we see why - it was fun to see the regular museum exhibits, awesome to participate in their special events, such as a screenprinting demonstration and a science comedy show, and truly epic to stand around a great museum drinking. We think all museums should follow this one's example and offer wine and cider!

This is one of the steam engines husband geeked out over.
A truly brilliant new invention that was on display for this special event:
bicycle lights with the international bicycle symbol. Drivers notice them better and
even behave better because of the little person. I told the demonstrator that they
really need to start selling these in the US - I would definitely buy them!
On Thursday, we took a long lunch break and trekked over to St. Martin in the Field's for one of their lunchtime events of choral music, Scripture readings, and reflections by one of their priests (not quite a service, though I'm uncomfortable calling it a concert). They sang music for Ascension Day, and I was utterly enraptured by their rendition of Finzi's God is gone up, which along with Wood's O Thou the central orb (which we heard last week at Westminster Abbey) remains for me some of the best that Anglican church music has to offer.

We've been impressed by the food options at King's Cross - it's no ordinary train station! This week we tried their pasty shop, loving both the sausage roll and their traditional Cornish pasty, and also Caffe Nero's, a local coffee shop chain that advertises itself as England's favorite (though sadly, neither its hot chocolate nor its almond croissant could compare to Paul's last weekend). We had meant to try either the Indian or Chinese restaurants just around the corner from our flat, but didn't quite get around to it. And next week we've picked out a very special pub - one that's been described as "Catholic church meets Harry Potter" - to celebrate our three-year anniversary.

Today was a slow and sleepy day, which I think is a brilliant way to spend summer weekends. Grocery shopping in the morning, afternoon naps, and then I finally started the actual prose writing for my encyclopedia article for Oxford Press. Articles like this don't have theses, which is very freeing on the one hand, but I found it difficult to start the actual writing because I didn't have as clear a grasp on my article's structure. I've ended up crafting a thesis anyway, and that seems to have helped! Now I just have to figure out how to fit at least 9,000 words of notes into a 2,500-word article!

Finally, isn't this an awesome gate? Husband likes it so much that he insisted on this photo, and has since turned it into his facebook cover photo. We're ever so pleased to have this opportunity to work in this institution every day.


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