Loki in London, Day 11: Dear Thor, We’re Here; Wish You Were Fine

Our objective today is Greenwich.  You know, that place where my dear “brother” Thor is not welcome.  Ehehehehe.  We are back on the south side of the river and, apparently, it is too much trouble for most tourists to come out this way, because we have the place much more to ourselves than has been the norm in most of the rest of the city.  There’s a lot to be said for elbow room.

The Tube station debouches right next to a very famous ship.

cuttysark

It is just a bit bigger than the one I sailed to Svartalfheim.  Sigyn, did you know it was named after a lady’s undergarment?  True!

There are all sorts of fun things in the ship’s gift shop (every place we visit has a gift shop.  I think Waitrose has a gift shop.)  I could use one of these chests for those gold coins I saw at the British Museum.

treasurechests

But which size?

A short walk has brought  us to what used to the the Royal Naval College.  It may look a little familiar.

maritime-college2

You can see that they are still putting it back together from where Thor smashed it up.

greenwich-repairs

Now this whole complex of buildings is the campus for the University of Greenwich.  Some of the old fanciness from the age of Brittania Ruling the Sea survives.  The painted ceiling of the old dining hall is, um, ornate, to say the least.

ceiling

And that’s not even all of it.  Sigyn, you will get a crick in your neck trying to see everything!  The human male is trying to photograph all of it.  Silly mortal.  Hmm.  I wonder– if I painted myself into all of this ornatery, how long would it take anyone to notice?

(later)  We looked at the ceiling–and the painted walls–for what seems like hours.  Our next stop is the National Maritime Museum.  Lunch first, please!

quichelunch

Poke, poke, poke.  Egg pie?!  That’s not very nautical!  No, I think the human female needs some weevily ship’s biscuit and salt beef

There are some interesting exhibits–carved figureheads, model ships, and this very fine portrait of a redhead in a beribboned dress, which the museum is trying to buy.  (The portrait, not the dress.)

armada.jpg

It was painted to commemorate a big sea battle.  Maybe that’s what I need–a really fancy portrait. It seems to be good PR.  So is a sea battle.  If you win it.

Sigyn’s favorite is this model lighthouse.

lighthouse

I think I can spit on the human female’s head from up here…

The floor of one whole room is taken up by the most enormous map.  Look, Sigyn, that’s right where we are now!

greatmap

Do you see that red line?  It’s a very important line!  It marks the establishment of the  Primer Idiom, that very precise and pompous way the British have of speaking as if England is the Center of the World. If we hike up the hill to the Observatory, we can learn all about how it came about.

(later)  Ehehehe!  The human female, despite all the recent walking, is certainly out of shape!  She is puffing like one of James Watt’s steam engines.  But she made it, I’ll give her that, and did not (to my disappointment) keel over into the nettles on either side of the path.  There’s a great view back to where we’ve already been.

topview

Well, rats.  It’s getting very late, and it’s a bit expensive to get into the Observatory.  The miserly humans have decided to content themselves with looking at some of the free exhibits and the collection of nautical chronometers.  Clockses in boxes, that’s what those are.

We can’t get into the big courtyard where one can stand with one foot in the Eastern Hemisphere and one in the Western, but there’s a little secret kissing gate that will let us into a smaller area where the junction is similarly marked.  Here we are, Sigyn!

prime-meridian

I promise, love, that this is the only thing that will ever come between us.

Going down is easier than coming up, which is good, because the human female is moaning about her sore feet again.  Of course, now that we have found an unexpected herb garden on our way out, she and Sigyn are all enthusiasm once more.

greenwich-garden

We are making very slow and painful progress back to the tube station.  The other three have detoured to look at a pretty but slightly shabby church.  Go in and look.  You know you want to. I’ll just sit out here and wait.  Goodness knows the Future Ruler of Midgard has nothing better to do.

Now we are having to weave in and out of a traffic jam that has no apparent cause.  I’ve noticed that this happens a lot all over London.  The humans have taken to calling this time of day The Honking Hour.

(later)  We have successfully regained our “home” neighborhood, after sticking our heads up at a Tube station we haven’t seen yet, just to see if there was an interesting place to eat dinner.  There wasn’t.  There was a big monument, commemorating some enormous fire that happened years ago. (I didn’t start it, I swear!)

(a bit later) Now we are eating take-away kebabs in the hotel, having a sort of carpet picnic.  I think the human female is going native, because when she was buying the food, she was muttering about “queuing at the till.”  Or maybe she’s just being pretentious.  It’s hard to tell.

How about an early night?  More to see and do tomorrow! Believe it or not, Sigyn, we are not yet done exploring London.

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