So much to highlight, so little time. Let’s see…I was there for 5 days (3 of ’em I was working). The weather was beautiful MOST of the time. I must have walked about 325 miles and saw ALL the hot tourist spots. I have a gazillion pictures and loads of stories! But I realize that you also have a life and can’t hear EVERY story…so here is an abreviated version and MY opinions of the most expensive city in the world!
If you want amazing architecture, London is the place to go. With so much history, you can pretty much walk anywhere and see something where something happened hundreds of years ago. And if history isn’t your bag, then there is plenty of modern architecture and art to keep you busy for days! I was partial to the Tower Bridge and Big Ben, but there are museums out the wazoo and parks littered with statues and monuments. Seriously…it was almost too much! We didn’t really get to see the inside of so many places simply because there wasn’t enough time! London is a place where you need time to explore. Unfortunately, I didn’t have a lot of time (2 days with my wife), so we had to do the quickee tour of walking by most things. However we did get to ride “The Eye” and have a walk in the rain to see a dark Kensington Palace (What? No Lights?!?!), so there WAS adventure!
THE TRAFFIC IS CRAZY!
The first thing I noticed about London is that the drivers are pretty much insane. So insane, that they decided to drive on the OTHER side of their cars AND on the other side of the road! So…as an American driver, it’s bass-akwards! So no matter if I was IN the vehicle (if you have to take a cab, ALWAYS ride in a jitney! It’s the fastest AND most entertaining way to travel) or walking the streets, my life was always in danger.
For those of us who prefer NOT spending our life savings on vehicles speeding through alleyways, I would recommend The Tube. The Tube is London’s subway system and is quite efficient for getting from place to place. We rode it everyday and got around to every spot within 15 minutes or so, depending how far we were going! Just remember to bring hand sanitizer, don’t mind some of the smells and you’ll be fine…
THE FOOD IS AWESOME!
I don’t know where I heard it, but someone once told me that British food was boring. And it might be…but I wouldn’t know because I had just about every kind of possible food that there is! From Indian to Sri Lanken to Italian to French to…well…whatever…there was LOTS of food and it was all very good. And if I were to recommend a drink it would be “Strongbow”, a tasty cider that is on tap and is sweet to taste!
Listed as Rolling Stones’ 14th greatest album of all-time, The Beatles released “Abbey Road” way back in 1969 (when I was but a toddler) and was the 11th album released by the band. It was #1 on the charts for 11 straight weeks and is as well known for its album cover as much as it is for the great songs on it! So, of course, I HAD to cross that street! And so we set out to find the Abbey Road studios and that famous street. And we DID find it, we DID cross it and we DID go to visit Paul McCartney’s home on Cavendish Ave. For a music lover like myself, it was quite possibly the highlight of my trip!
Here are a few high’s & low’s from the trip that I wanted to mention…
- Delta conveniently lost my wife’s luggage for 3 days…so she only had her clothes for 1 day of her trip! Luckily for her, there were a couple of places in London for her to shop…like THIS place…which happens to be the world’s GREATEST department store!
- Watching the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace was cool…but nowhere near as cool as seeing Royalty clogging down the street in their carriages. Don’t know who it was in there, but they must have been pretty high up to get THAT kind of ride!
- Wembley Stadium was cool…and NFL fans got to see a good game between 2 really good football teams! The Saints ended up winning the game, and I got some cool pics of cheerleaders, Joss Stone and the stadium!
- And then MORE pictures…
Seriously, there are no BAD shots in London. Everything is breathtaking. And the food is awesome and the stores are cool. The British dress so much nicer than I do, that it was almost embarrassing to walk around in my Columbia boots! But I did it, and I wasn’t ashamed. A couple of quick notes…second-hand smoke is a way of life in London. If you don’t smoke and don’t like those who do…then STAY AWAY! Also, as far as I know, Gerry Rafferty is STILL missing! So if you are feeling the urge to hum “Baker Street”, then you must know that Gerry wrote the song about busking in the Tube station back in 1978. A few months ago, he checked himself out of a hospital and hasn’t been seen since. With all the fine restaurants and such on Baker Street, he might have simply gotten lost on the way home. So if you see him, point him east, will you?