Thursday, June 7, 2012
Tower of London
Sorry for the crappy photos today -- our collegiate visitor Sarah and I went to the Tower of London yesterday and I didn't feel like lugging my real camera. So these are all iPhone shots -- pretty good for a phone, but only OK for a camera.
I'd been to the Tower once before, nine years ago. But this was a first for Sarah, and obviously if you're visiting London the Tower is a must-see attraction. So we made the trek.
The photo above shows a corner of the White Tower (left), which dates from the time of William the Conqueror. It can be a little difficult to wrap your brain around the fact that you're standing in a building with a functioning Norman fireplace!
Lions and baboons made of chicken wire were prowling around the Tower site. These are sculptures by artist Kendra Haste, being shown as part of the Tower's Royal Beasts exhibit (which I must confess we did not see).
An aside: I was very sorry to hear about the death of Ray Bradbury -- at least, as sorry as I could be about someone who died at age 91. I eagerly consumed his books as a teenager, and "The Martian Chronicles" remains an all-time favorite. In the late '90s I wrote a newspaper column about Bradbury, critical of the fact that "Chronicles" had been re-issued with updated and slightly revised text. I argued that such an important work should have been held sacrosanct. To my surprise, Bradbury called me to make his case that revisions were acceptable to keep the work current, and keep readers enthusiastic about the promise of future space travel. I didn't entirely agree, but he was a nice guy, and I wrote a second column giving him vent. Getting a call from Ray Bradbury remains one of my best journalism memories.