You know how we love a bit of culture here at Ville de Brighton. When Little G’s London living cousin invited us up for a visit to the current Matisse ‘Cut Outs’ exhibition at the Tate Modern, we jumped at the chance.
Cousin L and his Mummy and Daddy met us at London Bridge (close to where we used to live nearly 12 years ago…wowzers). We then had a super walk along the South Bank to the Tate Modern. I seriously think this is one of the best walks in London…and being away from cars, it’s super toddler friendly too. The sun shone and we strolled and people watched (and occasionally ran after the toddler cousins who were in their element).
Doing the South Bank – London Bridge to Tate Modern
- We walked from London Bridge, through Borough Market (picking up a few snacks enroute), past the Golden Hind ‘pirate’ ship (great if your child is into pirates!)
- ….along Clink Street, past the old prison…(sadly no skeleton hanging outside anymore…anyone else remember that?)
- …past many tourist filled restaurants that have filled every nook and cranny along there, past The Anchor pub, to the wobbly bridge, to the magnificent Tate Modern (and back again)
- We stopped for lunch at the Clink Street outpost of Bill’s…yes that Brighton & Lewes favourite has gone London style. It’s not the Bill’s we used to know (having sold out and been taken over by the suits), but it provided us all with a decent burger and chance to rest our feet.
Doing Matisse – Toddler Style
- I love Matisse. In fact above my desk is print of his house in Nice (from a visit about 15 years ago). And the exhibition didn’t disappoint. I do admit it was hard with a hungry toddler, so we did it in record time…
- So if you do decide to nip to Matisse for culture catch up with your little one…don’t be embarrassed by fellow gallery goers who sneer when your child says ‘that’s not a snail, it’s just bits of paper‘…when stood in front of one of Matisse’s most famous images…of a snail.
- Also don’t be embarrassed by same gallery goers when you are stood in front of another classic paper cut trying to find the dinosaurs ‘but Mummy I can’t see them…’ (shh, keep looking!) *lots of eye rolling*
- Do be proud that you are immersing a small person in a gallery experience…and not dragging them around a shopping centre (or leaving them glued to an iPad or TV)
- Do treat yourself to a glass of rosé over lunch after gallery experience…you will probably need it.
- We also picked up a fabulous cup cake from Borough Market for a sugar hit on the train home. We made it back to just outside Brighton before Little G passed out with exhaustion…and we weren’t far behind her…
It was great to visit our ‘old stomping’ ground, but it was odd to see how polished and smart everything is now. It used to have a certain shabby charm, but I think everywhere seems to have cleaned up now. My recent trip to Carnaby Street left me feeling the same. Still, as much as London changes, I still love our visits…and coming home to Brighton at the end of the day. Bonne nuit.