Okay, so I know that prefacing something with ‘ye olde’ doesn’t exactly make it authentically English OR olde, I decided to go for it.
I went to the UK! Recently!
I’ve finally been able to get through some of the seven billion pictures we took. So JOIN ME on a virtual road trip through England and Scotland, won’t you?
This is the top of Westminster Abbey. We were there on Charles Dickens’ birthday, and there was a huge celebration for him inside. Pretty sure that Bono and Wills/Kate were there. Of course, it was by invite only and apparently the Queen forgot to invite me. Minor oversight.
This is the BACK of Westminster Abbey, which gets really overshadowed by the front, but I thought it was just as beautiful. Not often you can say one’s backside is just as nice as the front, is it?
This is the Parliament Building. Like pretty much everything else in London, it is amazing and huge and made of the ancient stone of awesomeness. Also, the cars were strange. Strange British cars.
This was at the top of a building and for the life of me I can’t remember its name. But I thought it was pretty, so…
INSIDE the Tower of London (which is a giant castle that gives off a really creepy vibe). They were big on swirly, claustrophobic stairs back in the day, and my Dude (who is 6’7”) had a very hard time navigating without smashing his forehead off the overhanging stone. Also, do not go to the Tower of London without comfortable shoes. Cobblestone is not made for heels.
There are baboons made of barbed wire outside the Tower of London. I… do not know why.
(Sidenote: I also saw the Crown Jewels (harhar), but we were not allowed to take pictures of them. Apparently the British frown upon any attempt to steal them so they thought this would be the easiest way to avoid it. BUT, I can tell you that you go inside a building, step into a room with red-coated guards, and step on a moving escalator type thing that whirrs you around the enclosed jewels. Quite impressive, and of course being a writer I immediately hatched a plot for a middle grade book about a kid who wanted to steal the crown jewels. Of course, I didn’t say that while I was in there, I could tell those guards had their eye on me. Obviously they didn’t realize I was Canadian and am therefore the least harmful spy on the planet.
NEXT: The London Bridge! In all its glory amidst the lovely brown water of the Thames.
General London scene: note the double decker buses (yes, I was almost hit by them no less than six times, luckily my travel buddy was watching out for me and protected me from what I now refer to as ‘the red devils’.) Also to note: posh dude in red pants.
This is St. Paul’s Cathedral, being photobombed by Neville from Harry Potter in his Cosby sweater.
THIS is the inside of the Museum of Natural History. This was my favorite spot in London itself, and if I had the chance, I would probably move in there (again, frowned upon by the Brits). Plus, they have a statue of Darwin, so the biology nerd in me was in full geek out mode.
See? Darwin. In all his immortalized glory.
SO THERE YOU HAVE IT. Believe it or not, that was Day #1 of our trip. By this point, I think we’d been awake for 28 hours, and basically faceplanted on the hotel bed after stuffing our faces with baguette and other street meat fineries.
RANDOM OBSERVATIONS to give you the true London experience:
- There are pigeon-eating pelicans there. Seriously. Look it up on Youtube if you don’t believe me, but don’t say I didn’t warn you!
- If you want to see as much as possible in as little time as possible, guided tours are the way to go. BUT, if you are one of a speedy metabolism (I eat every couple hours, lest I get squirrely), bring something to munch on, as you will be out walking for a few hours past some lovely smelling shops filled with pastries. My dude foresaw this little issue and stuffed his pockets with granola bars for me. Must be love.
- The Brits are very posh. They know how to accessorize. This includes the men, with their tight pants and big-buttoned jackets. And how the ladies navigate cobblestone and whatnot in their heels, I have no idea. Also, the sideswept emo hair is very much A Thing over there. 85% of dudes looked like they could be in a boy band. Coming from the land of plaid and stubble (Canada, and rural Canada at that), this was quite the novelty.
- Their fish ‘n chips are lovely. If you ask for a lemonade you will get a Sprite. If you ask for a ginger ale you will get a beer. Also, a beer topped up with ‘lemonade’ is called a shandy.
That’s all for today, but NEXT UP, your virtual tour will take you to the SOUTHERN COUNTRYSIDE and THE LAKE DISTRICT. *oooohhh*
Thanks for stopping by!