Monday, April 20, 2015

(Picnic at) The Horniman Museum, 21st March

I have had on my List for about four years ‘picnic at Horniman museum’. Does eating a slice of chicken and ham pie in the cold count? I think so.

For our day’s diversions we took Stephen’s mum and her husband to the Horniman museum where they also happened to have a farmer’s market on. The best looking stall was the one dishing out sausages in baps but by the time I joined the queue they had run out of rolls so instead I got the pie. Tasty, but not the best thing to eat in the biting cold. We then went into the Horniman itself and whiled away a couple of hours staring at all the taxidermied animals. Sure it's kind of morbid but that's half the fun (the other half maybe being a juvenile delight in the name of the museum itself).

The most famous of which is, of course, the Walrus – stuffed so full that none of his natural wrinkles exist (it even has its own Twitter account). This is such a cute story from this age of exploration – people were going out and having these adventures, bringing back tales (and specimens) of exotic animals but the people back in Blighty had only the intrepid explorer’s descriptions or they had to guess at what the animal looked like. Hence overstuffing Mr Walrus. They didn’t know he had wrinkles in the wild.

How much fun can a museum full of stuffed animals be? Well, quite a lot actually. They have so many types of wildlife and species on show, we easily spent an hour wandering through it all. It gives you a chance that you would get many other places to get up close to animals of all shapes and sizes. So what if they’re dead? And, I must admit, in many cases, rather mangy looking. Some of them are more than a little forlorn. The accompanying text is a bit 'students on a field trip' but ignore that and it's just as fun for an adult to meander through and look these animals in their beady dead eyes.

They also had an exhibition on Romanians in London and a gallery dedicated to African art and culture which looked quite interesting but interest from my other parties was beginning to wane so we headed back into town for Blacklock.

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