My friend, Holly, asked me how much of a Sherlock Holmes fan I was.
Well, not a very knowledgeable one, as I’d never read any of the books. My favourite portrayal of this brilliantly quirky detective is by Robert Downey Jr. I am joined in my love for Sherlock by my baby sister, who is a bigger enthusiast than I am… Ayesha, the very first thing I did in London was for you.
The Brits take tourism very seriously. This fellow greets all Sherlock’s visitors at the door…and allows you to take pictures with Sherlock’s hats and pipe.
The house has five levels. There is a staircase that leads from the front door on the ground floor to the four levels above it, and every visitor is greeted at each level by…
…a maid. The first level up consists of two rooms – Sherlock’s study and adjoining bedroom.
The next level up consists of Dr Watson’s room and Mrs Hudson’s room.
Die-hard readers will recognise some of the famous characters and scenes from the literature in the room on the third floor.
Right at the top (in what looks to me like an attic) is the bathroom. I would either wet the bed or die from a bladder infection or kidney failure before using that bathroom at night (who knows what could be lurking up there).
I love old buildings, old furniture, so despite my limited Holmesian knowledge, this whole experience was a real treat. There are many things I love about the character – his vast knowledge, his ability to make unlikely connections across different disciplines, his naughty, droll and sometimes macabre sense of humour, his rebellion against convention – but what I love most is his unique vernacular; and being a writer myself, the following feature, tied with the creaky wooden floors, is my absolute favourite in the whole museum.
To echo Sherlock’s sentiments: I find that London life suits me very well at the moment. I have some excellent companions with whom to dine and have had some interesting conversations…
Yours in high spirits, Mariam