Friday, June 05, 2009

Day 2 - A day in Londontown

Hello everyone. I'm writing this 8 hours ahead of you. It's almost Midnight here. Just two more minutes. Vacations are supposed to be restful, but for some reason, they rarely are. Today, I go up a little after 7. My dad was up before 7 and could hardly wait for breakfast. I would have slept in, but it's too noisy when my dad is around. He turns the tv on loud and then talks to you whether you are still asleep or not. We had breakfast in our hotel... which is weirdly across the street from our rooms, and headed back downtown to take a free river cruise... well it wasn't free, but included in the price of the bus tour we purchased yesterday. I'm not sure the bus tour was worth it. If it were me, I would have skipped it, but my parent's wanted to go so we went. The river tour was nice... I think I have a picture of it... let me see... Here's one...

I also have a picture of my parent's in front of Big Ben

In case you didn't know it, London has a beach on the River Thames (possible the dirtiest river I've ever seen. (Floating trash included (they even have a floating trash collector. It has it's work cut out for it)) But the beach exists, even though the ones in Morro Bay are much nicer.

The beach is not sideways, but I can't figure out how to turn the picture in Blogger.

There is also an Obelisk from Egypt given to a king a long time ago by some Egyptian guy... maybe a Pharoh. I don't remember. The base was under reconstruction, but it had a couple of statues around it:

I also went to the Globe today. It is a reconstruction of the Globe that Shakespeare wrote his plays for. I'm going to try and see a show this week, but am not sure if the schedule will work out:

I also saw the Parliment building up close, but couldn't go in. This girl with a uniform and English accent told me so. She said that I could come back Monday between 2:30 and 10:30 to see the MP's debating. MP's are Ministers of Parliment... I think. It could also be the Mouse Patrol or the Money People.

Some general thoughts about London (in order of which I think them):
1. Drivers are crazy here, passing each other by just a couple of inches (no metric system here, except for the selling of beverages and gasoline (petrol for the natives))
2. Bicyclists are even more crazy, passing cars by fewer inches, not seeming to care that they are smaller and would die if hit by a car.
3. Locals cross the street whenever they feel like it, whether cars are coming or not. I've witnessed numerous close calls, where the pedestrian had to jump back before being hit.
4. The river seems to still be the town's sewer system.
5. There seem to be more Tourists than Locals
6. Of the locals I have seen... or thought to have seen, more than half are Arab, Indian, or African, still with English accents, but I have yet to see a white person working in the Airport, gift shops, or hotels... okay, maybe I saw a few in a gift shop. Not that I think this is bad, just unexpected.
7. The Subway (called the Underground) is crowded, but everywhere and super convenient... I just wish it was super cheap.

I hope to do some more solo-exploring tomorrow. I like my family, but I also like just walking and seeing what's around the bend. My family likes to plan things out and I usually just go along. I spend about three hours tonight online catching up with some friends and emails and downloading pictures and stuff. I hope everyone is well and I'm praying for you... most of you. I hope you all have a good night... I mean day.

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