8 – 9th July, 2011

Productive days! We looked around some houses at midday on the 8th, and saw some with definite potential which is great – we really do need to get cracking on with it, anyway. Afterward a friend and I popped our noses into the Science Museum and the V&A – which is always a stimulating experience, and all entirely free.

This was, however, to fill time before going to the fantastic ‘Summer Science Exhibition‘, so called ‘Science Live’ held at the Royal Society. It was my friend that had found out about it and I wasn’t sure what to expect but it was amazing. Well, for me, at least, it was – and my review can’t really be reflective of the whole exhibition because I arrived at the first kiosk and spent nigh-on all my time whilst I was at the exhibition right there. But before I delve into that let me explain better what it is. You may have been to craft fair where a vendor puts out their work and you can talk to them about it and see what they’ve done, and perhaps even buy something and it’s all jolly interesting. This was almost exactly like that except instead of quilts and sequins, it was scientists showing to the lay public what they have been researching. And since it’s not bottled up in a formal edition of Nature, it had guitars and iPads with swishy short films and all the rest of it – far from tacky, it was great to get people interested in the subject. I often see science as a big tall beast that is simply terrifying to approach, but if you have a friendly tour guide to help you through it (which I fortuitously did in this case – see later) it really breaks down the beast into simple chunks and you can really get to grips with it. At any rate, the kiosk I spent all my time on was talking about ‘Quantum Computing’ but I’m afraid I didn’t really chat to the incredibly bright researcher much about that, though he did use some of the facilities available there to illustrate a point to me. I spoke to him about fundamentals – what is a wave? What’s a field? How can an electron act as a wave and a particle? How can an electron be in two places at the same time? All the way to ‘How does Heisenburg’s uncertainty principle influence our view on free will? He was such an interesting character and so helpful in explaining concepts and dealing with my vastly less intelligent mind. I love this sort of thing, and really believe that talking with others is one of the best ways to learn and develop one’s opinions.

After leaving thoughtful and with a smile on my face we went to the outrageously delicious Haagen-Dazs restaurant (yes, you did read correctly) in Leicester Square and I eventually pottered home.

Today we met at the friend’s house with others and relaxed and chatted for a good portion of the day, not doing a lot but it’s nice to spend time with people your own age and just talk about meaningless things, I think it appeals to the root face that we just enjoy company and friendship. We then pottered off to do some ‘Pick your own’ Strawberries, which was great fun and engaged in a picnic. I then headed back and have been since trying to keep up with my iambic pentametre and cryptic crosswords. Tomorrow I’m trying to plan of getting up insanely early to see how that affects my use of the day, I’m not enjoying the ‘wake up at 11pm’ malarkey any longer.

I also can’t leave without mention the News of the World. What a sham. As far as I’m concerned their actions can be described in no other way than evil. It’s immoral and inhuman to do such things to ‘get a headline’. Further, due to moronic comments from one of the editors of The Times (see video) I will now no longer be purchasing any of their products, and I will in fact implore others not to do so either.

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