Tuesday, July 21, 2009

London is BUSY!!

So, I've been in London a little over a week now and have done a heck of a lot. However, it is incredibly busy. Busy both in terms of what I've been up to and in terms of the number of people that are around London at that this time of year. The weather is nice so it's tourist season. There are people everywhere!

It's been busy almost everywhere I've been. Last week I went to The Tower of London; Tower Bridge; St Pauls Cathedral; The Winston Churchill Museum and Cabinet War Rooms; The Florence Nightengale Museum; The Globe Theatre Exhibition and Hampton Court. The only 2 places that weren't busy were The Florence Nightengale Museum and Hampton Court. In saying that everything was amazing and it was fantastic being in these places where so much has happened that has influenced the way we live today. Be that influence on architecture, lifestyle, language or just plain freedom; London and the places nearby is a place that is full of influence. It has and will be for centuries and it's amazing to see the places where that influence has been formed or played out.

Last Thursday I was in Paris for the day. It was also busy, so I rushed around and did what I needed to do then came back to London. I saw the Mona Lisa, the Venus de Milo, Le Arc du Triumph, Notre Dame, Le Trocadero and The Eifel Tower. I went by Eurostar so I also saw some of the French countryside by train. It looks really cool.

Friday I got my haircut, shopped, shopped, shopped, had an NZ style coffee, shopped some more, then went to a show. Priscilla was awesome. Drag queens, music, dancing, fantabulous. We had crappy seats but that's ok because the music was actually fantastic anyway and so long as we could see the shoe.... I was happy.

Since then I've had a few relaxing days. We went to Oxford to catch up with a friend for the day on Saturday. We went punting and checked out a science museum there. Sunday was just a chilled out day. Went and saw a movie but wished we hadn't. That movie should not be allowed to screen in theaters... eeeeew. Bruno was one of the worst movies I have ever seen!

Yesterday it was back to walking in the footsteps of historical figures in Greenwich and at the Bank of England Museum. I stood one foot in the eastern hemisphere and one foot in the west. I held a gold bar. I saw the clock that made navigation possible and enjoyed spending the day with my sister's boyfriend.

I've been having loads of fun and have a busy day planned so I am off to eat my breakfast now. :D

Thursday, July 16, 2009


Hi all!

It's been a while since I last wrote something here because I am a lazy bum.

The past few months in Japan have been really hard on me. I was in a show for charity in which I had a speaking role, minor but significant enough to make me just a little stressed. It also got really hot in Japan all of a sudden about the time I last wrote something here. I kid you not the temperature lept up from about about 24 degrees celcius to 28 with much more humidity within the space of a week. It took its toll on my health and am now very much so enjoying the relative cool of London on my 2 week vacation.

Needless to say, the show was a success. Reports from other ALTs indicate that it may have been the best one in a while so that's good.

Before I came on holiday school was winding down for the summer break and not much was going, except my stomach but that is another story that shall be resolved in due course, roll on September when temperatures will be approximately what they are in the UK again.

Currently, I am on the holiday that I had been planning for months before I came here. It is a relief I can tell you to finally be on holiday in a place where English is the principal language and where things are at least similar to home. The temperature here is much more like what I'm used to and I'm not sure that I'm looking forward to returning to the heat in 10 days time but I might be sick of my sister by then and actually want to go back, who knows.

I've been in London for 4 days now and have successfully managed to be a tourist.

On Sunday, my sister took me for high tea with her close friend. It was one of the most extravagant things I have ever done. £43 for champagne, a fruit platter and an assortment of cakes designed based on actually dresses, shoes or handbags. For example there was a green handbag made from mint marzipan with chocolate something inside. It was amazing. We also got tea on top of all that. I had the chocolate mint, it was divine I tell you! So there I was in London all dressed up with nothing to do, so my sis and I took some random photos and went for a random walk past Buckingham Palace, through St James's Park and on to Westminster. I had been in London less than 24 hours and was in complete awe of the place. These were places that I'd seen on TV and are significant for anyone from a Commonwealth country but that I had always just assumed were on the other side of the world and too darned expensive to get to. 4 days on I still can't believe that I am here.

In the last 4 days I have managed the amazing feat of doing a few things in depth as opposed to a million things superficially. Bearing in mind that all but one of these things was included in my London Pass I shall give you a run down on where I've been in the last few days and possibly, though unlikely, will elaborate later.

I have been to: The Tower of London; St Paul's Cathedral; The Globe Theatre; The Florence Nightengale Museum; The Dali Exhibition (not on the London Pass!); The Cabinet War Rooms and Churchill Museum; and last but most certainly not the least, in fact I'd say one of the most important to have seen, Hampton Court Palace.

It was all 100% worth it and I really recommend the London Pass. Not sure if I recommend the Dali Exhibition so much, though, it was £14, if you like Dali but don't love him it might not be worth the money. That's just my honest opinion.

So far I am loving London and sitting here eating corn thins is doing wonders for my sanity. :D

Hope all is well for all of you. I'm going to go and watch English TV now. :O

Photos to come later!