BIRTHDAYS AND MUSEUMS
“The swing doors swung open, and there one stood under the vast dome, as if one were a thought in the huge bald forehead which is so splendidly encircled by a band of famous names.”
— Virginia Woolf entering The British Museum, ‘A Room of One’s Own’ (1929).
My birthday was a couple of days ago. Here’s how I spent it (without spending).
A couple of days ago I turned 23. I spent the afternoon quietly celebrating alone. I decided to walk around Bloomsbury and visit some of the locations mentioned in The London Compendium. This book acts as a beautifully written London directory, highlighting the history and culture of every neighbourhood. Walking and reading brought Bloomsbury’s streets to life, but I got tired and cold so went into the British museum to sit and read.
I often struggle with The British Museum and the artefacts it has long possessed, which arguably do not belong to them. However, the space is undeniably beautiful and has acted as a cultural hub for hundreds of years. I felt that there was no better place to read about Bloomsbury than in one of its vital organs.
I then decided to visit The Wellcome Collection, which is one of the best and most interesting free museum spaces in London. I tend to visit a couple of times a year, enjoying its architecture and constantly changing exhibits. The intersection of science and humanities fascinates me and The Wellcome Collection always come through with exciting and accessible exhibitions.
I decided to go into ‘Living With Buildings’ , an exhibition exploring architecture and its impact on physical and mental health. The space was both intellectually and aesthetically stimulating and really brought architecture to life for me. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to take any pictures but will post some of the brochure below.
I also want to note that I didn’t spend any money in it’s stupidly pretty gift and book shop. It was so hard not to.
After the Wellcome Collection I met up with my boyfriend. Instead of going out for dinner, we decided to make ourselves pasta sauces from scratch, as well as having garlic bread, salads and chocolate cake. The food was delicious and lasted me four days. Dinner in was nice and cost basically nothing compared to a meal out.
I think I still may be in a pasta coma.