Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Day 9: Still in London

The best news was from the day before when Katherine returned to the hotel, having had a one-hour conversation with our air carrier to Damascus (BMI) and having scheduled a flight for this Thursday. Now all we need is for it to take off.

Another gorgeous day in London. I was still feeling stuffy and congested so decided that I wanted to stick closer to home (the hotel has now become home) and found that the Saatchi Gallery had moved maybe ¾ mile from here. So I walked over and found, to my great pleasure that Phillips de Pury & Company was organizing a huge auction of contemporary art called BRIC, featuring work from Brazil, Russia, India, and China. I wasn’t blown away by the overall quality but I was blown away by the number of artists included and their commitment to making art in these emerging countries. There were some pieces, mostly photographs, which I found gorgeous. One from Russia entitled Our Daily Bread from Hit-or-Miss Art (How to Create Works of Art Just in the Kitchen) was so fun I couldn’t believe it.

We returned to Gaucho, the restaurant where I ate by myself the first evening in London. We shared a great meal of Peruvian Shrimp Causita, a marinated sirloin steak called Churrasco, the same green peppercorn sauce I had the other night, sautéed mushrooms and my favorite Humita, the corn husks filled with a delicious sweet corn mixture. This time I took photos with my Nikon (rather than my IPhone) so that I would be able to show you the meal. It was a great meal.

We returned home and just casually flicked on the TV. To our great surprise, the headlines were that British air space was open and that flights were both landing and taking off. It isn’t clear why the ban was lifted. Did the flights from Shanghai and Vancouver which took off while the ban was still in effect essentially force Britain to rescind the ban? We cheered whatever the reason and hope against hope that we can fly on Thursday to Damascus.

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