Three days to do the impossible. That’s all we had was three days to explore the city of London. It was the weekend of November 15th, 2015. I will never forget this trip with just us three amigos, Taylor, Ryan, and myself. It was a spontaneous decision on my part, as I never thought I would get to travel to the UK at the fetal age of 20. It was a few weeks before I would celebrate my 21st birthday in Rome. Our other friends had made plans to travel to other exciting destinations, but we were set on London. And so….
We flew from Rome late on a Friday night, and arrived around 1 am to our hostel, the Generator Hostel (pretty awesome, btw. Airbnb hooked us up with a great deal!) Our 4th roommate, a 26 year old Australian guy was already fast asleep as we came bumbling into the room with our luggage. But he was a good sport about it. I don’t remember how far we got into the conversation before he decided in his mind that my friend Taylor and I reminded him of two female characters from The Walking Dead. I don’t think I need to tell you which character I reminded him of…
Anywho, the next morning around 6 am, we awoke to a beautiful rainy day. (Not the full London experience without rain, right?) We ate an early breakfast and set out on foot to explore the city. (Side note: As a broke college kid on a budget overseas, it was a test of my willpower to survive off of a meager 20 pounds for the duration of that trip. But I survived.) Transportation cost an arm and a leg and 4 cows so we decided to walk to save a little money. We wandered around dainty, elegant neighborhoods, got to see 10 Downing Street (where the Prime Minister lives), the Palace of Westminster and Westminster bridge (as pictured above), Buckingham palace, London Chinatown, the London Eye, Big Ben (he actually is really big…), visited a couple of parks, saw sculptures of Abe Lincoln, Ghandi, and others, viewed memorials and a cemetery of fallen soldiers, King’s Crossing Railway Station (and platform 9 and 3/4 for all you fellow Harry Potter wizards), got to witness a mayoral horse procession, got to pet a guard’s horse (although I think his type was blondes cause he was in love with Taylor), got to take a picture in one of those awesome red tellies, saw double-deckers galore, had “high tea” at this chic little restaurant, visited Fortnum and Mason (tea heaven for us tea addicts), and enjoyed other little adventures (Starbucks for the W! Cause it was only appropriate to drink a London Fog tea in London, yes?)
There is a certain old-time charm to this beautiful city and its people. It was nice to cross over into not a 2nd, but a 3rd culture that I had no idea was so mind-blowing. First, the Italians. Then the British. I’m telling ya, the next bridge that leads you to a whole new world, do walk across. And remember, knees up!