My shiny little online spot to help y'all keep track of me while I galavant around London.

Monday, September 27, 2004

And, how was your weekend?

Okay: I'll summarize quickly at the top for you busy people, and follow in detail for you bored people.

Friday: went to my first british pub!
Saturday: went to central London!
Sunday: went to some random market!
Monday: started classes.

Links to photos are below. If you want my (first ever) cell number or my address, email me.


Friday: My first British Pub experience

There are several pubs on New Cross Road (where I live), but we decided to take in the one on the corner of our street. It's either called Marquis de Granby or Kelly's Pub, or both, or maybe Kelly was the Marquis of Granby--I don't know. I had a Guinness (cold) and they played Bruce Springsteen, the Eagles and Johnny Cash--so much for British identity. I don't know if I expected them to play only U2 or Coldplay, but it did seem weird to have such American icons on the stereo.

The bartenders are exactly how you'd imagine them, or they were here at least: slightly dodgy looking, call every girl "love," and appreciative when you order good beer.

After the pub, Marc (one of two guys from my class) and Helen (scottish flatmate) went to the Student Union bar (I think it's called the stretch). Basically, like the Den, but with stickier floors.

People in London do dress more creatively tho, mixing colours and clothes that I never would, but it does make for good people watching...

Saturday: Central London
On Saturday, went into Central London. I took a few photos, but my camera sucks, so I'll try harder next time.

We took the bus in (the tube out), and as we crossed the Thames into the city, and I caught first glance of Westminster, I broke into such a grin that both I and Helen laughed. That smile never left my face.

Westminster is massive and beautiful--the perfect introduction to London proper. We didn't visit it Saturday--just drove past--but I can't wait to go and see it more fully. We headed into Oxford Street, and from there went shopping and generally sightseeing, to Caranaby Street, Regency, Picadilly circus and Leciester Square.

At base level, they're all just big streets or squares--there's nothing obviously special about them, except a vibe or a feeling that they must be special, because why else would a thousand other people feel the need to be there too, unless these spots were special?

(Aside: Bought a cell phone--or a mobile, I suppose, as they're called here--which is the first I've ever owned. I'll probably never be without one again, which is both frightening and reassuring. My incoming calls are all completely free, so call me as you like...)

Leciester Square is a massive area; a small green space surrounded on all four sides by shops, cinemas, bars, restaurants and theatres. We went to see Wimbeldon, which was actually pretty good (I don't care about tennis, but actually felt tense in the match scenes) which was good, as it cost £11 to get in. Also, like other places in Europe (or so I'm told by South), you get a specific seat, like in theatre or sports events. Weird.

We went home after that, and I was exhausted, but still couldn't fall asleep until 5am.

Sunday: Wandering aimlessly thru East London
Sunday we went to Spitfields (or something like that) market, which was awesome. However, it took us ages to get there, as Helen wasn't sure of the most direct route, and we kept stumbling onto other markets and getting distracted.

People here sell everything from market stalls: cell phones, designer clothers, melons. It's freaky, but fun. We had bagels (mine with smoked salmon and cream cheese for 1£) and eventually found Spitfields, which was worth the wander. It's massive, and full of some of the coolest clothes I've ever seen; thankfully I didn't have much cash on me, or I might not have been able to pay tuition...

We went back early, as we were all wicked tired from not sleeping well the night before.

Monday: Back to work...
Classes stared today. Monday's are my worst day, as I have shorthand at 8:30, and am basically busy straight thru until 4:00pm. We divided up our class into beats today, and I get to cover crime in the area, which is good, as there seems to be a lot to cover, and hanging out with cops is always fun.

What else...
Finally beginning to feel more settled; the cell phone helps with that, actually. Talked to my mom for the first time since I left today, as she's always out, or something. And, got my room more decorated; in a fit of homesickness (which happens about every 2 and a half minutes) I put a selection of photos from my huge stack up on my walls, which to be honest, only reminded me more of everyone I'm missing, hence worsening the homesickness. For photos of my room, click here. Tho, I'm sure the only one who cares about what my room looks like is Amanda...

For my class, I apparently need my own TV and computer, so this is going to get even more expensive than I first thought. So if anyone has a spare iBook, I'd appreciate it. :)

Oh! And Jolaine gets in tonight! Yay! I haven't seen her in a year and a half, so it's pretty freaking awesome to see her here...

I think that's it for today. That, and the library is about to close. Stupid early closing library.

The links for the photos, in case you can't get them to work, are:
My Room:



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