qatsi (qatsi) wrote,

It's Quicker by TARDIS

On Saturday we travelled to Cardiff to meet up with my university friend Rhodri WINOLJ. Having checked the train times, we needed to make an early start. Due to engineering works the train diverted from Reading to Westbury, then up to Chippenham, back to Swindon, before on to Bristol, Newport and Cardiff - essentially doubling the travel time. In fact, GWR failed even to do that, as an earlier service was blocking the line and we were diverted to Bath and then Bristol. At Bristol Parkway we waited for nearly half an hour, while the train crewe were driven in a taxi from Swindon. Ho hum.

So we arrived about half an hour later than planned, but at least in these days of smartphones we were able to keep each other informed. We'd decided on a visit to the Doctor Who Experience - although I'd been to the exhibition in London five years ago it was a good excuse to see a new place and to see what had changed. The basic format was the same: an interactive dramatic section with iffy acting from the guide, playing along to Peter Capaldi's recorded video as we walked through various sets, including a 3-D section. It was a nice touch to have the introduction narrated by Lalla Ward.

Obviously that first part was particularly designed for children; the remainder of the exhibition is more general-purpose. Some of the exhibits I'd seen before, but others were new, including the TARDIS set from An Adventure in Space and Time, Bessie, members of the Paternoster Gang, several Davroses, and some exhibits from each episode of the most recent series. As David Tennant once said, "there's always room for a little shop". In fact, of course, there was room for quite a big shop. All sorts of things were tempting, but I restrained myself to a copy of the Shada novelisation, and a Gallifrey mug in vintage travel poster style.

Afterwards we wandered around the bay and had coffee and a chat. Rhodri seemed to be doing quite well for himself and I am pleased we had the opportunity to catch up, before our long journey back. Our return train ran more or less to time, but we had entertainment from Margot and Jerry behind us who were very concerned that they were going to be late for some golf club dinner (that was after they had discussed their trust funds). I did wonder whether they had meant to sit in standard class.
Tags: exhibitions, friends, travel, who
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