Wednesday, July 21, 2010

A Rather Cheeky Town

Well, if you thought it was number two...

You were wrong, sorry. Bob's your uncle! We did option 3. We got up bright and early to take wander toward Buckingham Palace (by way of tube, as it were). First, though, we needed sustenance. We stopped at this little cafe for pastries and coffees. Adorable little pastry boxes, eh?

After getting off the tube at Green Park, we had a nice stroll through it before reaching the Queen's place. It was so weird emerging from the park to see the palace right there! I've been to BP (no, not that one) before, but I don't remember approaching it quite this way.

Don't you want a coat of arms?

We didn't get to see the changing of the Guard, but we did get to see this guy march around.
Notice that he doesn't have your standard Beefeater outfit and hat on. Shannon provided what I believe to be an excellent guess that this is their summer uniform.

I hope the Queen was glancing out her window right at the moment we chose to pose for this one:

*Sigh* I want to live in a palace.

I didn't really know what we'd do next, but Michael seemed to have a direction. We wandered through St. James' Park. He promised it would be beautiful. HE'S AN HONEST MAN, FOLKS.
Can you see the London Eye faintly between my and Shannon's heads?
A glance back at Buckingham past gorgeous swampy marshes and weeping willows, no big deal.

I thought we were just meandering, but it turns out Michael had an agenda the whole time. So imagine how excited I was when we rounded the corner and saw this bad boy:
Yep, Big Ben. Don't mind the horrible angle (my chins and I thank you), but I'll take a moment to be boastful and say this is one cool photograph!

Ben's right next to Parliament, so we got to see that too.
And across the river and over the bridge is the London Eye.
We walked sort of past Westminster Abbey (not really close enough to take a good picture) and finally got to Trafalgar Square. This place was a madhouse. It just happened to be the day of this big race (maybe a half marathon? maybe a 10k?) through London. So literally thousands of people were running around the round-about around Trafalgar and a bunch more people were cheering them on.

We took the tube over to Leicester Square and walked over to Picadilly Circus. I'll be honest, I was a little disappointed in this. It looked like a bunch of the other squares we had been to.


I know we didn't actually go inside any of these places, but I am so happy with how many things we saw in a three hour window! London really is a wonderful town. It has so much history, so many sights so close together. It's so accessible and clean. I was just very impressed overall.

But there was still one thing that I had missed out on: a pasty or meat pie of some kind. So after we'd gotten through security at the airport, we ate at a little pub. Shan got some authentic aged cheddar macaroni and cheese, the guys got fish and chips, and I got this handsome fellow:A steak and ale pie with a side of mash and cooked veggies. Pastry. Mmm. Meat. Mmm. Gravy. Mmm.
That's the end of the line, folks! I hope you've enjoyed reading about these travels as much as I've enjoyed reliving and recounting them. If you didn't, well, tomorrow I will resume your irregularly scheduled posts of a more weekenderly nature. Thanks for taking the journey with me!


  1. Wow! You really saw a lot in a short amount of time! Great job! Like Lauren said, "You are a great narrator." In fact, I think Samantha Brown from the Travel Channel should be worried for her job. You are better than she is at bringing out the best in foreign cities!!!!
    Looking forward to future posts.

  2. Yay, I was right. I love London, glad you toured it. I love Big Ben too and riding on the Tube. Fun.

  3. Me loves some meat in pastry.

  4. I loved your blog posts about your trip, so sad it's over! By the way, I have been meaning to ask...are those Keds you are wearing?