Throughout my day, I couldn’t stop thinking about the past weekend in the UK. Maybe that’s because Monday’s start at 8:45AM with the soothing Italian accent of my morning professor. Details, details.
I know I’ve given the play-by-play on the weekends events, but I want to step back one more time and recap my favorite things about “the Smoke”.
Are so nice. If you read “a rainy day in London.”, you saw a woman approached us on the street and gave us great advice for sightseeing. She wasn’t alone. All day, Alleigh and I were questioned about out nationality and travels with the friendliest of intentions. There was the man who saw us taking pictures of each other and offered to take one of the two of us, then suggested his favorite pub. And then there was the friendly old man working at aiport security in London. Clearly sad to leave, he cheered Alleigh up telling her she could marry him next time around so she wouldn’t have to leave.
Ok, maybe it was a little creepy – but we took it as sweet an innocent. Every Brit we met treated us with respect and kindness. We won’t soon forget it!
A modern marvel, to say the least. The a map of the Underground itself looks like a colorful funnel cake, and once you get the hang of it, it truly is a piece of cake. A quick and weather-proof way to get anywhere in London, the Tube is an iconic and ultra-functional tool – as long as you can Mind the Gap.
But when we talk iconic, we can’t forget the true symbol of London – those red, double decker buses. At first, I thought it was lucky to see one zooming by. Then I saw 100 more. And you know what? It never got old. I’m almost ashamed to say how excited I was to get a front row seat on the top deck. But I’m not, because it was awesome.
Once you get off the Tube, London is a great city to see by foot. However, giddy tourists (read: Alleigh and I) might get so caught up in the first sight of Big Ben they forget that the cars come from the opposite directions. Luckily, the city has “Look Left” and “Look Right” painted on the road afront crosswalks. Literally a lifesaver.
Other functional signage includes arrows pointing toward the main tourist attractions on nearly every street corner. This may be the single reason we saw everything in a day. It also provided a nice break from the constant struggle of paper maps and fighting over which direction is North that is Rome.
Check that, it’s spotless. I mean not even a paper napkin in the gutter on the street kind of clean. The buildings are scrubbed sparkley, leaves don’t seem to ever touch the ground, and litter isn’t even a word. Which is impressive, considering recent terrorist bombings have forced London to remove nearly all public garbage cans.
Not that I ever would have noticed this if I didn’t awkwardly carry around an empty Starbucks cup 45 minutes after finishing my chai.
Don’t get me wrong, the food in Rome is unreal. That is, until you want a break from pasta, pizza, and general excessive carb consumption. And while Fish N Chips aren’t within anyones dietary guidelines, the culture of the city led us to stumble upon a range of cuisine from traditional American, to real Chinese, to authentic Mexican. Along with the food comes the people. Like the good ole USA, London is a huge melting pot of many origins coming together and sharing their culture.
Ok, so I think I’ve done enough rambling about London to last until the next time they get the Olympics. At the end of the day, it’s just a great city filled with great stuff.
Poetic, I know.
Last but not least, I’ve made good on my promise and uploaded a London album to Facebook. Follow the link by clicking here, whether you do or don’t do the whole Facebook thing. Enjoy.
Ciao, for now.