Well, it’s been another week here in London-town and I really don’t feel like doing more homework for at least a little while so here I am writing in my blog.
What have I been up to…
Well I went to Wales last Monday and Tuesday. It was beautiful and wonderful. Even though it’s not very far removed from England, it really has kept a lot of it’s own culture. Everywhere you go things are written in both English and Gaelic. We were able to go into a coal mine and really grasp the reality of the mining. We spent the night in Cardiff, the capital, and a few of us went to the Doctor Who pilgrimage locations, namely the Millennium Center where the Tardis generally lands and which is the secret headquarters for Torchwood. But my all-time favorite thing about our trip, was Tintern Abbey (the inspiration for one of Wordsworth’s famous poems). It’s an abbey ruin that’s absolutely gorgeous. We were able to walk around it and then the group decided to sing in the old knave. It was a really powerful experience.
I spend the rest of the week discovering the V&A which is one of my all-time favorite museums. They have the British exhibit that is fascinating and then also a fashion through the ages gallery and a sculpture room that is unbelievable. That’s all that I was able to see in my two afternoons, but I’m sure I’ll visit it a few more times before I leave.
Monday we had a Fireside on the London Blitz from a man who lived by the docks (kind of by Canary Warf) during the second world war. I think I forget how much this country was affected by war in this century. I mean they lost a tenth of their male population in the Great War, and then finally turned around and made a stand against Hitler before they’d completely recovered. And everyone was directly involved in the war that lived during that time, even if they were only a child, they remember.
Tuesday was Remembrance day. It was wonderful to see the somber consideration made by everyone. There were little red poppys that you would receive when you donated to the veteran fund and pin to your lapel. For the last two weeks, wherever you go, everyone has them. And then yesterday at the Imperial War Museum I was able to go their In Memorium gallery commemorating the war and it was unbelievable. I actually got teary eyed just reading the men describe their experiences. The Great War is unique because it was a very literary war. The way people talked about it was beautiful and terrible at the same time. Very touching.
I think it was Tuesday of this week, but I finally did Portobello Road. It was really cool. They had such a variety of goods and an amazing cupcake shop called the hummingbird bakery. I thoroughly enjoyed my afternoon just window shopping. Plus, in getting there I got to know my neighborhood a little bit better (that’s my euphemism for getting lost multiple times).
Wednesday I went to Hampton Court Palace which was pretty cool. I got to stand on the ledge that Shakespeare first performed Macbeth before James I. However, I think my favorite part were the Palace Gardens. We just walked around them for over an hour. Because Hampton court is so close we were able to get back relatively early, and so that night I got to go to Les Miserables! It was the best musical I’ve ever seen, granted I’ve only seen two others. But oh my gosh I loved it sooooo much. I don’t even know how to describe how good it was. The stage was often circling and so it made the play really fast paced, but not rushed. And it was just so well done. I’m so glad I got to see it.
Unfortunately seeing Les Miserables the night before I saw Lion King made me not enjoy it as much as I think I might have in another situation. That being said, I loved Lion King too. I thought they did some interesting things with both Zazu, Rafiki and Scar’s characters. And like everyone says, the costumes were unbelievable and the music was spectacular.
Earlier that day I was able to got to the Imperial War Museum. I walked right in and thought of Scott and Joshua and how cool they would think it was. I was there to go through the James Bond exhibit for my mystery class, but my favorite was the In Memorium room. It was amazing.
And today, I’ve been spending my free time getting caught up on some stuff that I didn’t do on my last two musical nights. And that’s it for now. London is amazing. Love you all.