A Dippy Day

We had a day out today up in town as Lady B was staying at the boy’s place. Quite by chance we’d seen adverts for the return of Dippy the Diplodocus to the Natural History Museum and as Lady M hadn’t been in years, we turned it into a day out for Lady M. Dippy has been on a tour around various museums around the United Kingdom and has been the focal point of exhibitions and work around how the world changes as part of the framing of the tour.

Dippy the diplodocus fossil, assembled and free-standing in a brick and stone and timber hallway. People are gathered all round, admiring and taking photos

I have many fond memories of Dippy in the main hall on my many visits during my childhood. The long face would peer down at all who entered with what seemed to be a gentle smile – and was that rare thing in not being tucked away behind glass. I’m happy to report that while Dippy has not returned to her old spot, she is still not locked behind glass. Moreover, the pose is now more active, with tail in the air in line with the spine, curled above people’s heads rather than coiled and heavy on the ground. It adds an air of dynamism and nimbleness to counterweight that long neck that feels a better depiction of poise.

For those wanting a closer look at the skull, a replica is available to touch and examine on a nearby table – and a ten-minute looping video plays on various screens around the hallway with people talking about how they’ve taken inspiration, or have worked in areas of research that fill out our pictures of how Dippy lived and moved when alive.

The whole museum was pretty busy – especially in the earth sciences section as the majority of people were being directed to use the side entrance due to some development work in the gardens – but Dippy was undeterred and unbothered – and her hallway remains a quiet pool of wonder. I was impressed at how the whole building felt turned around and invigorated, and will definitely go back soon to rediscover it

D-Day Museum

Lady M and I visited the D-Day Museum in Southsea yesterday while lady s was at work, and I found it just as powerful and human as I did the last time I visited. It tells a rounded story of local people, the preparation, the fears, and the events and aftermath of the D-Day assault without indulging in jingoism, cliche, or fantasy.

The exhibits are carefully curated and laid out in a highly efficient use of the space available, and the whole place just feels…loved.

I can’t recommend it enough, and the cafeteria is friendly and full of tasty things too.

A Day In Town

I’ll admit it was a bit of an impulse, but we decided to break with tradition and actually do something with our day off. I suggested the Victoria & Albert Museum, mostly because I’ve never been before.

With Lady M’s resurgent interest in dress design and cosplay, it seemed as good an excuse as any to look at the design elements of fashion and the items around us – and we spent hours happily admiring beautiful things.

The V&A is a huge building; I hadn’t appreciated how much they have on display. From silver reliquaries and stained glass windows, to consumer electronics and protest posters, by way of a history of fashion over the last four hundred years or so it was a visual feast.

It was too much to take in, and we’ll have to go back for targeted, bite-size, repeat visits. Was it a grand day out? It was fascinating. It’s also given me a few prompts for stories, so there’s an added bonus…