We returned above ground to take a black cab to the London Eye. Long queues for tickets – book ahead! Too bad the local mime artists can’t operate inside the ticket office – the riverbank is lined with acrobats and strange painted figures, as well as dare devil skateboarders.
Tickets purchased, we got a gondola pretty quickly, and began our gentle ascent skywards. The view really is very good indeed: Westminster was laid our before us – we could see Downing Street and Buckingham Palace. To the east lay the Sci-Fi outlines of the strangely elegant Swiss Re gherkin and the rather ugly BT tower. Worth doing.
We finished our walk by first heading east along the Thames, then crossing it to reach Somerset House, whose courtyard hosts a temporary skating rink and an ice climbing tower. A very beautiful sight as the sun set, with real torches burning, but – curses! – booked solid. We wandered off through almost empty streets, at one point finding ourselves within The Temple – a kind nature reserve for barristers. Lucky devils. I wonder if the gates are there to protect them from the public – or vice versa?
Thence to Liverpool Street, and home – but we’ll be back.