From Thurloe Square, it was a short walk to the Natural History Museum. Our timing was perfect. It was after four o’clock, and the entry was free.
This famous Victorian museum was enormous and smelled as old as the fossils and dinosaur bones it contained. We walked around one of the newer exhibitions featuring dinosaurs covered in plastic skin that roared and clicked and made slobbering sounds. Kate was fascinated by dinosaurs, as most young children are, but even so, she was a little disturbed by their realistic look. And yet she was quite unperturbed, once I picked her up, by the huge, life-sized, animated Tyrannosaurus Rex we encountered in the high-ceilinged atrium by the museum teashop. Odd to see a fearsome dinosaur swishing a huge tail, roaring and swooping about as weary museum-goers drank their tea and did their level best to ignore it. In England, dinosaurs should not make scenes in tearooms. It just isn’t done.