Day Eight Five

Pussy cat, pussy cat, where have you been?
I’ve been to London to see the Queen!

Or so the nursery rhyme goes….but we, himself and I, are off the
Palace today. Excited! We’ve been to London three times and not
managed a visit, but we have the first tour today, at 9.30am.

Our ticket covers the formal state rooms and the coronation display
which displays the jewels, dresses and events of the day. A great
celebration of the Queen’s 60 year reign.

Over time, I’ve heard a few things about Buckingham Palace. At one
stage the tour had to be booked a year in advance, which put me
off, and other commentary indicated that it wasn’t quite as fabulous
as other palaces one might see. Well, I’m here to tell you, that last
view couldn’t have been more wrong. The Palace is divine. It started
life as a house for the gentry in the 1600s and has been
progressively redeveloped and redecorated by each monarch.

The state rooms are spectacular. Each is themed; the blue room, the
green room, the white room, etc and the level of detail is
breathtaking. Beautifully domed ceilings, ornate and gilt inlaid, the
rooms are opulent with endless magnificent crystal chandeliers, silk
wallpapers and gilted French antiques. I am in palace decorating
heaven.

All I can think as I walk through, is “well done Kate”. I would love,
love, love to live here. Even at the cost of the occasional paparazzi
sneaking shots of my boobs on holidays.

Amongst the formal rooms, we see the banquet room, the receiving
hall and the portraits hallway where works by the masters reside,
but my favourite rooms are the white room and the green rooms.
Exquisitely detailed in silk, crystal, gold and the colour they are
named for, these rooms are just gorgeous. A visual feast.

The real treat of today though is the coronation display. Featuring
the Queen’s ermine trimmed purple velvet robe, her gold
embroidered boned dress, her attendants’ and royal family dresses
and their jewels.

Omg…the jewels. Diamonds larger than a quail’s egg. Tiaras,
earrings and necklaces, oh my. Again, well done Kate. Some lovely
sparkly things in your future. The diamonds alone are lovely enough
to make you weep.

We also see princess Anne’s teeny weeny little frock ( I think she was
all of 3 or 4) and Prince Charles’ outfit. We are also treated to film
footage of coronation day. I particularly love the footage of the
photo shoot taken of all the crown heads of Europe in their finery,
with the newly crowned Queen. There are so many carats on display
that the footage fair pops off the screen with the sparkle of it.
Sparkle city.

She was only 27. It must have blown her mind. Princess Margaret
looks ticked off in most shots. Can’t say I blame her. Supportive
sister aside, there must have been some part of her that at one
point at least, thought “why her and not me?”

We finish our tour with a brief walk in the garden (a separate tour)
and then have morning tea in the Palace Cafe. Scones with
strawberries, jam and cream. With the Queen. And lovely they are
too.

I’m so pleased we went.

Palace tour completed, we set off in ernest to complete the shoe
quest. Both pairs are re-tried, and size is questioned. More stock is
brought in, and whilst this occurs, we head into Harrods for lunch.
We have yum cha in the food hall, and apart from the blistering
expense of it, it’s yummy. Dim sum at its finest.

After lunch we set off of Hyde Park to squirrel. Again, they climb all
over Chris, and this time, happily sit in my lap for treats. I am beside
myself. Squirrels in my lap. Happy, happy, happy. Squirrels IN MY
LAP.

We also see a pair frisking up a storm and one little one goofing at a
competitor who invades his nut space as I’m feeding him. I video to
sustain me in my non squirrel months. I’m going to miss them. I do
love them so.

After squirrels we compete the shoe quest at last, and then set off
to Barclays to learn how we can set up an international UK account
to save carrying cash and double dipping on cash payments and
transfers. A task for the start of next year.

Banking sorted we head home to catch our breath before we head
out for dinner.

And dinner proves to be a perfect end to a lovely day. We have
champagne in the cocktail lounge and then head out for Italian –
Olives – where the speciality of the day is a home made pasta with
fresh black truffles. It’s orgasmically good. Seriously. That good.
Chris has an osso bucco, and we drink a wine from the region the
truffles came from – Piedmont. Cannoli, espresso and grappa finish
the night.

A perfect end to a perfect day.

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