Then there are times when something grabs his imagination and he can't stop talking about it. Back in the 19th century, a bloke called John Snow proved cholera wasn't airborne as previously suspected. He mapped incidences of the disease in one area of London and identified that the cause of the outbreak was contaminated water from the public supply. Once the pump in Broad Street had been shut off, the outbreak ended. Howzat! Louis became obsessed by this story. I am now a leading expert on epidemiology as a consequence. He begged me to take him to see the site of the pump when we were next in London. The idea didn't fill me with excitement. A trip to a dodgy old water source does not make a good day out in my book. But who am I to stamp out my boy's nerdy proclivities? I acquiesced and agreed to help him find it on the way to The National Maritime Museum the other day. Believe me it was a bit of a detour. Soho is nowhere near Greenwich. This is a combination of 'attractions' that will never catch on as far as self guided tours in the capital from Southend-on-Sea go.
Were my doubts unfounded that this could be a new tourist attraction to rival the Tate or the Tower of London? Err no. In fact it was more of a let down than I could have possibly envisaged. There was a pub named that bears the name of John Snow but it was a bit early for a pint in celebration of finding the source. The site of the pump itself is normally marked by a replica but it had been taken away because of building work in the area. We had to make do with this placard and were seriously underwhelmed. Louis' perky smile must have been put on. There was a consolation price. Our detour took us past the Japan Centre in Leicester Square. We had proper sushi on the tube on the way to Greenwich for elevenses.