The whole point of going to Cardiff was to get here. I stressed about this part of the trip more than anything else. The website says that you need to get a ticket for a specific time. I didn’t know exactly when we would get there so I didn’t want to buy tickets ahead of time. But, the website said they might run out. I was horrified at the thought that I might not be able to get in so I aimed to get there as soon as they opened so I could get tickets. It was no problem though. We got right in. Of course it was a Friday in May so not exactly peak visiting hours.
To get here from the train station we took the number 6 bus. There is a huge bus depot just outside the station. That isn’t where you get the bus. You turn right when you leave the station, go to the next big intersection, turn right, and the bus stop is down the road on the left. You can remember that or you can ask the cop outside the station like we did.
My mother has no Doctor Who knowledge. She also doesn’t understand how into it I am. I spent more time deciding what to wear on this day than on all the rest of my clothes. I went with the Bad Wolf t-shirt but then had to layer a lot over it because it was the coldest, rainiest day of the trip.
We got off the bus in front of the building and my mother says to me, “I think there are enthusiasts behind us.” She made enthusiasts sound like some sort of contagion. I looked behind us expecting to see someone in full cosplay but there were just two people. I was thinking, “You’re walking around with the person in a Doctor Who shirt. You might have the enthusiast.”
While we were waiting for our tour to start I motioned to a Weeping Angel in the lobby. “I need you to take a picture of me with that at the end.” She asked if it was because I was such an angel. I decided to ignore her snark and said that the angels were bad guys who can only move if you aren’t looking at them and if they touch you they send you back in time. She looked concerned about what type of thing I had dragged her to.
The tour starts with a mandatory trip through the interactive part. I could have done without this. I’m not really an enthusiastic joiner. I would have preferred more displays instead of marching through a canned adventure with a group.
Most of the displays are from 2005 on. There is an older TARDIS set but not much else. That’s ok with me because I’ve never seen the older shows but I would think other people would like to see the older props.
There isn’t as much signage as you’d expect either. Some of the costumes were not labeled at all. I sort of surprised myself by knowing exactly what most of the costumes were even if there weren’t signs.
I did get this dress wrong though. I thought it was one of Madame Pompadour’s but it was Queen Elizabeth I’s from the 50th anniversary.
Other props and costumes from the 50th anniversary.
Bille Piper’s costume
The War Doctor
I was majorly geeking out in my head, quietly so as not to alarm my mother. I got pretty excited though about the TARDIS control center from Doctors 9 and 10.
Costumes from 9 and 10
The 12th Doctor
I took my Weeping Angel picture with this much scarier angel inside the exhibit.
|Me – saving the world|
I told my mother exactly what picture I wanted of me staring at it. I was standing there and she said to me, “Get closer to it.” I actually panicked a bit. “What! No!” But, I also looked over at her when I said it so it would have totally gotten me and I’d be dead.
As I was wandering around in geek bliss, my mother was watching another woman who wasn’t as quiet of a fan as me. She was taking pictures of everything I was. I think she might have been my soul mate. At one point my mother whispers to me, “I think she is more than an enthusiast” just I as rounded a corner and screamed in my head, “IT’S THE FACE OF BOE!!!!!” I’m sure my mother can’t understand where she went wrong that her adult daughter was so excited to have her picture taken with a disembodied head. He is my Facebook picture now and my blog picture on the upper right.
I don’t know if she ever fully understood that I’m just as weird if not weirder than the other people.
As we left, there were two ladies sitting in the snack area waiting to go in. They appeared to be mother and daughter. The daughter was saying to the mother, “The angels are actually evil…”
The Doctor Who Experience