Sunday, January 30, 2011

Trip #1 Day Two

So. Did some homework. Not feeling dinner yet, so I'm just gonna keep going with this whole trip thing. Right. So Bath. Named after, well, the baths. Roman Baths are pretty sweet. Except we couldn't touch the water. Cause it is gross and untreated. You could taste a treated, safe version. It tasted like coppery or something. And I hate warm water. But I did it. Ha. Pictures!

Bath Abbey- Partially destroyed, but Elizabeth I wanted it rebuilt

A ladder to help the angels climb to god?

Audio tour!

Minerva's head

People used to sit here and do business and enjoy the baths and stuff!

This somehow was a heating system

Roomies at the bath!

The baths and the abbey

An entertainer in Bath. Juggling torches on a unicycle

Bought some prime fudge in Bath. Casey was excited

This guy ran by. We were confused

Then these guys went by

It was a foxhunt!

Casey captured it on video:

So. Stonehenge. It's a bunch of impressively maneuvered and placed rocks. Pretty cool. Except there's only so many pictures you can take of the stones before they all start to look the same. So we decided to be creative.

So cold. So many rocks.

Well, there it is

Because there's so many other cool things around Stonehenge to distract you.
Get it?

We decided to get a cute roomie pose

And then we made the new Stonehenge. Yeah. We are that awesome.

And then we came home. It was an excellent trip. Totally worth it. Next one is to Liverpool. Here's to hoping it isn't 0 degrees.

Trip #1 Day One

This weekend marked the first subsidized trip from the London Center. They offer 4 each semester, though I think Bill said there is talk of a fifth. I dunno. Anyway, this weekend, we headed out to the West Country. This included stops in Avebury (to see rocks), Glastonbury (to see ruins of the abbey), Wells (to see the Cathedral), Bath (to see, well, the Baths), and finally Stonehenge (to finish the trip with more rocks).

It was a bright and sunny day when we left, not a cloud in the sky and the temperature was warm and delightful. Except not. This is England. And at 5 am when I had to get up, it was not sunny, it was cloudy and cold. Now, I know you all at home are getting hit with an ice blast, but here where it has been no lower than 40, walking around for extended periods outside to see some rocks while it was freezing (I say this because it was literally 0 degrees Celsius, meaning it was technically freezing) sure chills ya to the bone pretty quickly.

Anyway, Avebury is lesser known than Stonehenge, though apparently equally impressive. I mean, apparently it took years to drag all of those rocks and arrange them in a circle. Well, two circles I guess. There were a couple cool ones, like the fertility rock/devil's throne. Sit on it, it will bring you many years of fertile child bearing happiness. Run around it 100 times counterclockwise, it will bring you the devil. Yeah, how those two ended up on the same rock, I have no idea. There's also a big ditch. I guess that was important. Yeah, you can see I'm really into this.

Trying to push Casey in the ditch

The boys really loved the rocks

It makes me look short! Oh, wait...

Willie is communing with his inner Ariel. As he said "Imagine a wave behind me!"

You can't really see the circle cause there isn't really a good way to get it, but you can see how big the stones are

They train horses around here too!

We then headed over to Glastonbury (it is at this point that I excitedly say I've finally been places my father hasn't! He keeps saying 'I've been there" every time I tell him about something. So THERE! Kidding Dad, love you). Anyway, Glastonbury has this HUGE Abbey. Well, it did. Till the Reformation. Then the Protestants destroyed it and it lies in ruins. Lots of cool stuff here, included King Arthur's tomb (ITS THE REAL DEAL CESCA), a thorn tree (it's Mediterranean, no idea how it got to England), and this GIANT HILL called the Tor. We climbed it. I almost died. But the view was lovely. Casey made a video and we have tons of beautiful pictures. Check out my Facebook for more!

Our Glastonbury tour guide. He was Sir Dunston. I think

Some of the ruins

King Arthur's supposed tomb was here

So huge and cool

The thorn tree that shouldn't be there

The Tower on top of the Tor... What a walk!

"Do you trust me?" 
All of us on top of the Tor

Everything the light touches is our kingdom.
A king's time as ruler rises and falls like the sun. One day, Simba, the sun will set on my time here, and will rise with you as the new king.
yeah, we went there with the Lion King references

Casey made a video at the top for your viewing pleasure

Then we headed over to Wells for a short trip to Wells Cathedral. Couldn't take pics inside without a permit, so I didn't. But it was pretty sweet and I have a postcard with a lot of the inside stuff on it

Wells Cathedral

Finally, to end day one, we got to the YMCA we were staying in in Bath. It was more a hostel, so it was pretty nice. We were exhausted so we went out and got food (I got fish and chips!) and then crashed at like 9. It was glorious.

The beds were cute!

And that was day one! Will update about day 2 after I do some homework and make dinner (Oh, so grown up!) which will include Bath and Stonehenge. Pretty sweet. 

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Touristy things

So Wednesday night we decided to do some touristy things we skipped the first week (and were unable to do because stupid washing machine man decided to make us wait all day last Sunday). After creeping on me at my work placement, Casey, Andrea and I wandered around Piccadilly for a little while, hit Trafalgar and then went over to the Westminster stop to meet Sarah and check out Big Ben, Parliament, Westminster Abbey and see the London Eye. We didn't ride it cause Liz wasn't with us and that wouldn't be fair, but that is in our future. Not really much else to report- so here's some pics!



Ship in a bottle

So cool

Two major attractions


They're all obsessed

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Three Day Weekends Are Throwing Me Off

So, it is Sunday on my first 3 day weekend in London. You know that feeling you get where your brain is confused because you should be at work or school or something and you're not because it is a day off? Yeah, I can see that happening like every weekend here. Thursday night feels like Friday night, so on Saturday I felt like I should be getting ready for class the next day. But no! Which, in actuality, is pretty sweet.

Friday we went on an adventure to find Fish and Chips. We wanted to go to the Goose, where we got amazing ones last time, but it was really crowded. We also thought that maybe we should try somewhere else, just to make sure. Well, everything closes really early in London (it was only like 9 o'clock) so this was a bit difficult, but we ended up at a place called the Broadway Cafe. It was a fun time, but we can all definitively say that the Goose is way better. Well, at least we can say we tried other places.

Saturday was a packed day. Casey and I got up early to go on a walk with Bill, the Director of the London Centre who is basically a walking encyclopedia of knowledge about London. We went all over, seeing St. Paul's Cathedral, St. Bartholomew's hospital and church, The Museum of London, the Guildhall and a couple of other things. We also crossed the Millennium Bridge (the one that gets destroyed in Harry Potter 5) and walked by the Globe Theatre, but didn't have time to stop. We will be returning.

After about 4 solid hours of walking, we hopped on a train (not the tube, but the railway, which was pretty cool) to Charlton to meet the rest of the gang and catch a football match. By this time, I was freezing (though I hear I can't complain, as the temperature at home is in the negatives sometimes), but the home team won and we had 2nd row, unbelievable seats. We had been planning an adventure to a karaoke bar but we were all just so tired that we chilled around the flat instead, played some cards and watched Big Fish, an excellent movie.

Today on the agenda is a visit to Tesco, as I have run out of lots of things, a visit to Piccadilly Circus to wander around the area, and a stop at Westminster to see the Parliament Building, Big Ben and Westminster Abbey, hopefully. All of this is contingent upon the washing machine guy getting here soon... Because I would really like to not have to go to the laundromat to wash my stuff. I don't have time for that!

Anyway, here are some pictures of my adventures this weekend!

There is currently a lake inside our washer

 First Football match in the UK!

St. Paul's Cathedral

St. Bartholomew's

Bill calls this "The Mel Gibson Memorial"

The Guildhall

It is ginormous inside

We were super excited to cross the Millennium Bridge

They segregate the fans

Casey loves football

Celebrating their second goal