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Very belatedly, I wrap up the saga of the CUSA London tour. We really had only two major outings scheduled for the final week. First, Kensington Palace,

the "Enchanted" Kensington Palace

which was a bit different this summer from what might be the expected “royal palace” tour. It is undergoing some major renovations, so only the upper floors were open to the public, and they were all done up as a sort of postmodern exhibition entitled “The Enchanted Palace“:

taking inspiration from … the princesses who once lived there – Mary, Anne, Caroline, Charlotte, Victoria, Margaret and Diana.

The complex and mysterious world of the royal court is opened up through spectacular light installations, interactive theatre, intimate storytelling, soundscapes, haunting film projections and a series of intriguing clues hidden throughout the historic rooms, revealing tales of love and hate, surprise and sadness, secrets and jealousy.

If one took the time, it was still possible to see a good deal of the antique foundation, and to learn some significant history, but otherwise, it was more of an entertainment. We followed that adventure with cream tea (late lunch) at the Orangery.  The Orangery was in no way responsible for the unfortunate event which transpired, and which I shall not recount here. Overall, a lovely afternoon.

On Tuesday, a tour of the magnificent St. Paul’s Cathedral, where Prof. C and I had worshiped on Sunday. They discourage

Looking up at the dome of St Paul's Cathedral ...

Image via Wikipedia

random photography in the cathedral, but you can find many official photographs online. None of them can possibly replicate the experience of being there. The more intrepid members of the group climbed to the highest viewpoint of the dome for an awe-inspiring view of the city. Those who had a basis for comparison said it was better than the view from the London Eye. Maybe next time I’ll try one or both views.

Wednesday & Thursday were devoted to wrapping up academic things and making sure we got in any missing touristy things or souvenir shopping. We can’t be all high-minded and serious all the time! Hope everyone likes their prezzies. Wish I could have taken you all with me.