With the time difference this post should come in right on schedule.
In five days we have seen Picadilly Circus, Harrod’s, Hyde Park, Buckingham Palace, The British Museum (home of the Rosetta Stone), The Tower of London, London Bridge, The Shard (the tallest building in the European Union), St. Paul’s Cathedral as well as the market at Camden.
All were unique and brilliant, adding a special touch to our vacation but my favorite part of the trip was the literary piece I saw at The National Gallery, our last stop.
All the artwork in The National Gallery is timeless and deserves attention but I was especially drawn to the “image as text” in Titian’s An Allegory of Prudence. The painting dates between 1550 and 1565. It features the face of an old man facing backward, the face of a man in his prime facing straight ahead and the face of a young man facing into the distance. Below the old man is an image of a wolf, while below the image of the man in his prime is a lion and below the image of the young man is a dog. I learned from the audio guide that the wolf represents wisdom while the lion represents strength and the dog represents eagerness in keeping with the Latin inscription at the top of the painting. It reads, “Learning from yesterday, today acts prudently, lest by his action he spoil tomorrow.” So it is a philosophical painting as well. It is believed that Titian painted himself into the allegory as the old man.
Tomorrow we head home, but only after one more continental breakfast at Richoux, which was established in 1909. I have enjoyed lovely starts to the day there, complete with classical music and a novel that will soon be revealed. The rest of the days have been dedicated to tourism, connecting with family, and making new friends.
I am returning with two souvenirs: a black and white painting of London that contains a splash of red in a tree and the signature red booth as well as a Tshirt that reads “Keep Calm I’m a Teacher.”
It has been a splendid holiday and I am looking forward to reuniting with Caesar in Charm City.