Sunday, December 27, 2009

Time in Greenwich

There was a definite nip in the sunny December air as we took the tube to Greenwich, England from London.
Wanting to take a break from the madding shopping crowds, we rode to this quintessential English town that is just 6 miles from London. A short walk brought us to the Old Royal Navel College which stands on the grounds of the birthplace of Henry Vlll, Queen Mary l and Queen Elizabeth l. This was originally the location of Greenwich Palace, or Palace of Placentia. The Old Royal Navel College, designed by the renowned English architect Christopher Wren, was originally built in 1696-1712 as the Greenwich Hospital. The most spectacular parts of the Old Royal Navel College are the Baroque Painted Hall and the Chapel. Services are held here every Sunday. We were here on a Saturday so we didn't get to hear this magnificent organ that is flanked by Grecian columns. The Spiral Tulip Staircase is thought to be the first spiral staircase in Britain. Some believe it is haunted, but these are my friends walking down...I promise. Outside looking up, you can see the Royal Observatory at the top of the hill. This was the original location of the Greenwich Castle and was a favorite place for the insatiable Henry the Vlll to bring his mistresses, since they could easily be shuttled between the Palace and Castle. After a steep climb to the top we arrived at the Observatory. A very lively gentleman was giving some background history, by the Prime Meridian, 0 degrees longitude line. Until 1954 Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) was determined here. There is a museum here that takes us through time, literally and the process of how latitude and longitude were devised. After touring the museum, it was time for tea at the Pavilion Tea House. It wasn't a fancy place, but the hot tea and cream scone couldn't have tasted better on this chilly afternoon. By the time we finished, the short winter's day was winding down. The walk back down into town brought us to a majestic gate to the streets lit in Christmas regalia. It was a wonderful day with my friends. My only regret was that I had brought my point and shoot camera with me instead of my DSLR, which my back thanked, but my eyes objected to. Each time I don't bring my DSLR, I swear I'll never do it again, but I do :-(

Next time.

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9 comments:

Ry @ Sotto Il Monte Vineyards said...

I enjoyed this very much! It is always interesting to tag along on your travels. Happy 2010!

zurin said...

Oh that was so much fun! I love your posts about places....inspite of the point n shoot the fotos are beautiful and so enchanting. Ive visited and lived in England for a year at one time..long ago ..and I loved visiting the museums n historical places....well almost everything is a historical place in England! :)I feel nostalgic when i see fotos of England.tq for sharing :))

Melanie said...

Beautiful. I can relate to your camera regret- I've done it once, and vowed to never do it again. My DSLR is just part of my travel bag. :)

Amongst The Oaks said...

Positively delightful! Thank you so much for sharing that. We visited the prime meridian, but arrived a few minutes after it closed, so never got to see the inside.
I hope you didn't see me drool over the scone. Sorry.

La Table De Nana said...

I love your trips too! I don't think I'll ever get to England so this was great!Thank you!

Karen @ Mignardise said...

I was just thinking how nice your pictures are then you tell me it's with your point-and-shoot. You must have a very good eye - the photos are beautiful. Looks like a very fun trip.

Happy new year!

Alastair said...

Had quick peruse tonight. Will be sure 2 read more. Thank you so much for letting my great friend sit next to me for a bit. Here is a link to my flickr page if your interested.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/22805329@N02/

Alastair - Business Class LHR-BOS Dec 30 seat 2F
NB the 2 things you should check out in photography are HDR (Hyper Dynamic Range)and RAW (raw disk image format) or digital negative

Mari @ Once Upon a Plate said...

Such beautiful shots Diane.
It's always a mini-vacation for me when you share your travels. Thank you for sharing the beautiful eye candy.

2 Stews said...

Ry...Happy 2010 to you, too! Thanks for visiting.

Melanie...I think one of my New Year's resolution is to forget that I even own a point 'n shoot! I'm always trying to lighten my load, maybe I should just take something else and leave the camera :-)

Monique...you would love England, but I understand that it just isn't possible to do it all.

Karen...that is so kind of you. I'm always trying to kick it all up a notch!

Alastair...it was great to have you on board from London and my pleasure to help you reconnect with your friend. I really loved seeing your pics. You are very, very talented. I showed my son your flicker page, and he was impressed, too. I shot some snow pics this evening in RAW...now I just have to figure out what to do with them!
Cheers.

Mari, thanks for stopping by...so glad you enjoyed the visual trip.

Happy New Year, all!

Diane