Friday Headlines

the weekly newsletter from Dr Ruth Weeks, Headmistress

Psychologists discover Freud

13 October 2017

Everyone was at the train station for 8:15am, eager to head into London and learn more about Freud, his home and his general theories.

We made it down to the platform and all clambered aboard the train. It was a great hour of chatting, hurriedly munching on station-bought breakfasts and listening to music before we reached Euston. We were led down the winding tunnels of the underground to the gates … where we found one of us could not pass. The ticket, despite being valid, had decided to add some excitement to our journey by refusing to function at the gate.

Several train rides later, we reached our destination. Despite it being Autumn, we emerged to the bright, sunny city of London. Ms. Graham led us through the streets of Hampstead to a stunning red-bricked home with a baby blue door with a porthole window in it. Everyone was delighted to get inside to see the last home Sigmund Freud, father of psychoanalysis, had lived in.

We were each given a questionnaire to fill out, and once we had had a talk from one of the curators of the Freud Museum, we all split into groups to explore. Freud’s office was lavish with antiques from Egypt, Peru and India giving his study an eerie vibe that we all agreed must have upset some patients.

We all got a good view of the famous coach and some of us decided that lying down for this sort of thing may have been a necessity after the sensory bombardment in his home. Up the sweeping, grand staircase, past the landing which swarmed with pot plants, bookshelves and the odd Perspex statue, were several more of his rooms. One contained large glass cabinets displaying items belonging to the Freud family including jewellery, letters and various artefacts. Once everyone had filled in the questionnaire, we headed back down to the gift shop and garden where we lounged in wait for the hike towards food. We unanimously decided that Wagamama would be our best bet.

After lunch, everyone headed back to the meet up point to be taken on to the Wellcome Collection museum. They had outstanding exhibitions on whether ‘Graphic Design Could Save Your Life’ as well as various floors and rooms dedicated to medicine, both old and new. They also had a ‘Reading Room’ which featured two floors of books and a grand marble staircase adorned with weighted pillows. Students and casual readers alike were curled up on these great pillows and some of us decided to join them. Others wondered around the exhibitions and learned about the spreading of yellow fever, how medication is now and was then, and the benefits of clear public information adverts, notices and warnings.

Once everyone was roused and gathered in the lobby we walked back to the train station for the last train home. We got back at around 6.30pm, tired from travel but enthused from what we had seen, as well as being ready for the weekend.

Gaia Wales, Year13

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