It was no surprise, given all we had seen and done the day before that we didn’t get up as early as we had planned to on the Saturday for our trip to the Portobello Road market and then we got distracted by Starbucks so by the time we got there it was incredibly busy and we didn’t make it very far down. Although we did find a stunningly beautiful shop that was full of vintage costume jewellery, old lace and the most gorgeous black mantelpiece, to be able to work in such gorgeous surroundings would be a dream come true for me. We were all very bad though and hardly managed to take any photos at all on the Saturday and I can’t remember what the shop was called so I’m afraid it will just have to live in my memory until I get the chance to visit it again.
Giving up on Notting Hill our next port of call was the National Portrait Gallery for the exhibition The First Actresses – Nell Gwyn to Sarah Siddons. Whilst the exhibition was a little small for it’s ticket price of £11 it was definitely worth the visit. To see some well known and not so well know paintings up close was wonderful especially as you got to see all the fine details in the costumes and such like. Funnily enough, although we walked around the gallery separately, we found at the end that we all shared a favourite painting. It was this one by Daniel Gardner and featured Georgiana, The Duchess of Devonshire with her friends Elizabeth Lamb, Viscountess Melbourne and the sculptress Anne Seymour Damer as the witches from Macbeth. We were very disappointed when we got to the shop and they didn’t have any prints or postcards available of it.
In the evening we went to see Les Miserable. It was the first time that I’d been and I’d tried to avoid reading that much about it so the story was new to me. It was so wonderful and moving, I cried through most of the 2nd part. It helped that it was Alfie Boe’s (who was playing Jean Valjean) last night so there was an extra tinge of sadness within the cast which came across. At one point when he finished singing Bring Him Home the majority of the audience gave him a standing ovation, which is quite a strange thing to happen in the middle of a show.
Here is a video of Alfie singing Bring Him Home at the Les Miserable 25th Anniversary concert
Right well, Christmas is in full swing and I still have quite a bit of shopping left to do but I’m hoping to post some pictures of my Christmas decorations very soon.