Intended primary for my Creative Inquiry on Woolf and Place (2012-2013)
and my capstone seminar on Virginia Woolf (Fall 2010),
this blog also contains an account of our Woolf trip in May 2012
as well as posts about flowers and gardens in the life and work of Virginia Woolf.

*Photo of Monk's House Garden taken from door of Woolf's bedroom*

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Day 9—Free Day in London

Sunday: May 20, 2012

Desultory morning,  organizing pictures, writing blogs, sorting receipts.  About 11:30 took tube down to Temple to explore Fleet Street and environs, particularly Clifford’s Inn, where Leonard and Virginia lived from October 1912-Dec 1913.  I knew that much of it had been destroyed (it was torn down in 1934) but wanted to see what remained.  Had thought Sunday would be a good day to explore the City since it wouldn’t be busy, but had not realized they locked it up tight on the weekend – couldn’t even walk thru the Middle Temple.  

When I finally located the little back lane leading to Clifford’s Inn, the door was locked.  But I persevered and went poking around until I found a way in through a gate to King’s College.  The college buildings are on the north side with St. Dunstan’s Church on the west, and office buildings on the other two sides.  What remains of the garden/ green is a much divided patch of hedges and unmown grass with scattered benches, obviously used mostly by the students who’d left behind scattered detritus of cigarettes lighters and plastic cups.  There’s a statue of Confucius at the center.

Mission accomplished, I wandered west through various legal streets, finding this cat sitting in a window, complete with judge’s ruff.

Wandered around Covent Garden which was getting more and more crowded.  There was an Arts and Crafts Market as well as a whole building full of booths selling do-dahs, like old type-high printer’s ornaments, jewelry, cheap scarves, bendable fairies dressed to kill, every kind of lavender concoction you can think of. 

 Had a lovely time browsing, until I started getting tired and hungry. So I settled down at one of the many sidewalk cafes scattered about and ordered a warm Pims with apple juice—quite the tonic for a damp cold day (I listened to the weather report and was only wearing a sweater; they keep promising warmer weather…) and a plate of Shepherd’s pie.  

After this late and relaxing lunch, listening to a guy wi dreds playing blues on his electric guitar on the plaza, I found I’d satiated my desire to shop and made my way back home on the tube, easily switching lines to get the shortest route home, avoiding the lines closed for maintenance and suffering delays because of “a body on the line” (worried about that a little).

Took my clothes over to the launderette, only to discover it was closed on Sundays.  Met some of the girls in the lobby and talked through tomorrow’s trip to Cambridge.  Now to do a little hand-washing.  I bought enough clothes today that I may be able to make it wiout a machine wash. 

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