Archive for the ‘Lindsey in London’ Category

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Lindsey: Exploring London

June 18, 2011

This weekend started off early being I didn’t have to work Thursday or Friday. After class on Thursday, a friend and I finally went to Harrods! The department store is huge, and you can buy absolutely anything there like groceries or an elephant! Everything is so beautiful inside the store, the chocolate room was my favorite 🙂 Here’s a picture of the outside of the Harrods:

Afterwards, we went to a free curry dinner sponsored by our program. Curry is a very famous and popular dish in London so we thought we’d better try some. They served us SO much food there it was unbelievable. We had two plates of appetizers plus our dinner. It was very tasty!

Yesterday (Friday) we went on a tour of Fuller’s brewery in Chiswick. It is the only Brewery still operating in London! We went on a tour with a bunch of older men who were all excited to learn about the brewing process, so they thought it was pretty fun that we were there! The tour was pretty cool, they had a majority of their old machines and equipment they used in the 1800s still there, next to the new machines they use today. We even had a tasting at the end of the tour! We got some lunch at their pub, the Mawson Arms, and one of the guys working in the brewery gave us all free Fuller’s polos! It was a fun morning!

Later in the evening, we went to the Victoria and Albert Museum. The building was extravagant and so beautiful. The V&A is a museum of art and design. Everything was so pretty, and we are going back to see more another day this week! They have an outdoor courtyard that was so beautiful last night:

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Lindsey: A Royal Weekend

June 17, 2011

Last weekend we went to see the Trooping the Colour at Buckingham Palace. This is one of the Queen’s birthdays. (Yes, she has two!) We lined up in the second row on the mall (the road that leads to the palace) and got ready for the parade to start. It looked just like it did for the royal wedding. There were tons of people there and the mall was lined with huge British flags. First, the guards in the black fuzzy hats paraded around in bands, on horses, and in kilts playing bagpipes. They make their horses walk sideways and backwards. So crazy!! While we were waiting, the entire royal family drove by in their fancy British cars, heading to the palace. Everyone went crazy when they saw them! When the parade finally started, more royal bands, soldiers, and police officers rode through on decked out horses. Then came the royal family!! First it was Prince Andrew, Camilla, Harry, and Kate. They were riding in an open carriage 15 feet away from us! It was so cool to actually see them! They all waved and Harry gave one of his cute scrunchy smiles. And if you were wondering, Kate is just as beautiful in person as she is in pictures! People just love her here. Every day in the newspaper, there is a huge new picture of her, showing what she was up to the day before. Anyways, then came the QUEEN! I thought people went crazy for Harry and Kate, but when she rode up they went nuts! In their British accents they all shouted “Oh my, it’s the Queen it’s the Queen!” and waved like crazy. It was so fun. Will was riding behind the queen in uniform on his special grey horse (everyone else had jet black ones). I couldn’t even tell it was him! But he sure looked good! We waited for the parade to come back and saw everyone again as they headed back into Buckingham. They all went up into the balcony of the palace and waved to all the commoners below as the bands played and people cheered. It for sure felt like a Disney movie. And a British version of 4th of July all in one. It was such a cool experience!

I would have written about this earlier but my camera’s memory stick is on the fritz, so I don’t have my pictures of this! BUT here are some of my friend’s pictures from the day for now!

Afterwards we finally went to Westminster Abbey, which was beautiful! We then all met up with our family friend Carl and he took us out for some authentic British food at The Albert pub! 
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Lindsey: To market

May 30, 2011

We’ve heard that the markets here are just amazing, so yesterday we decided to visit one. We were planning on going to the famous Camden Market, but one of my friend’s bosses told us to skip that one (because of all the other tourists) and to go to Old Spitalfields Market instead.

On our way there, we stopped by a few other street markets that were absolutely crazy. And not good crazy. There were people everywhere and the vendors were all pretty creepy. This was about enough for us to turn around and skip Old Spitalfields, but we decided to stick it out!

When we finally found Old Spitalfields, it was amazing! It is held in a huge open-air building with vendors everywhere selling things from clothes, jewelry, art, and food. Everything is made locally by the vendors in London, so there is no way you could by these things anywhere else! We spent around 3 hours just looking at everything. If the exchange rate wasn’t so bad, I would have had to buy some more things! Here’s a picture of the market right when we walked in:

We felt like we were some of the only tourists there, which was awesome. Everyone was from London enjoying the bank holiday weekend! For lunch, we decided to try something new and try some Caribbean/jamaican wraps. They were delicious! Here’s a picture of their food stand:
Looks so good, right? Afterwards, since we were in central London, we thought it would be fun to go see the Tower of London which is the castle where many kings and queens were beheaded and where they keep the crown jewels. We were all exhausted, but decided to do it anyways. After finding our way there, we discovered it was 20 pounds for a ticket! No way. That’s like $40. Our feet hurt really bad and we were all pretty hungry, so we just decided to go home and get some much needed rest! For good measure, here’s a picture of the Tower of London (the little slits in the side of the castle walls that look like t’s is were where the guards would shoot their arrows out of if you were not welcome):
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Lindsey: Cold, rainy countryside

May 29, 2011

Today we went on a day trip to Stonehenge and Bath. It has sure been a long day! After getting up at 5:45 and a two hour bus ride there, we got to see Stonehenge for a whole 40 minutes. Luckily there wasn’t a whole lot to see, but they were way bigger than I thought!

I guess there are many different theories about why Stonehenge was made around 3000 and 1600 BC. I personally like to go with the extra terrestrial theory. There are some pretty interesting stories about events that have happened there, like sacrifices and arrests, etc. I should really read up on it all before visiting it, but oh well, we got an informational packet instead. It would have been cool to actually be able to go up to the stones and go into the middle, but they have it all roped off so that all you can do is walk around it. Bummer. Here are some pics in the freezing cold am:

After Stonehenge we got back on the lovely tour bus for another hour long ride to Bath. Interesting fact: the people of Bath actually pronounce it like we do in America. Londoners pronounce it wrong for once, saying it like “both”. However, to make the ride there much more enjoyable, we got a great look at the beautiful english countryside. Even on a gloomy day it is so pretty! I promise I didn’t steal this from online:

Looks like a quilt right? Just picture this the whole way there, plus cute little valleys with random castles and historic buildings. Needless to say, we were all pretty mad the bus couldn’t stop for 5 minutes for us to take a decent picture, so this one was taken through a window on the speeding bus.

After getting a beautiful view of Bath from the top of hills while driving into the city we finally arrived! I thought all that would be there would be the Roman Baths and we would dip our feet in them and be on our way, but I was so wrong! The city is absolutely beautiful. I have never been anywhere this old before! Everything dates way way back. There is so many little nooks and crannies throughout the city with cute little cafes and shops. And for a rainy day there was sure a lot of people out and about! Here are some pictures of the city:

After a little walk around the city it was time to see the Roman Baths! Here’s a little history lesson for you all: When the Romans were passing through the area a while back, they stumbled upon these hot springs (about 80 degrees) that were full of minerals, etc. They then decided to build a city there. Later it became a luxury spot for the kings and queens of the time to go to escape the city of London and was a very prestigious place to live. Ok, now that you know what they are we can move on! There are many different pools you can visit, and since it was so cold out today, you could even see the steam rising up from them!

We even got to taste the water at the end! It was very gross and sulfur and irony tasting, but it is believed to heal!

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Lindsey: Life in London

May 28, 2011

Hi all! Its been about a week since I’ve written in here last, I thought I better update you all on my week! So this week was the first week of classes and for my internship. I am interning at a fashion company as an ecommerce intern. Very fun! It’s a way different atmosphere than anywhere I’ve ever worked, and I enjoy every second of it. And I’ve already worked 20 hours this week! Wowza. 

I’m starting to feel way more at home here now. Since I ride the tube/bus everyday, I’m also starting to fit in, as long as I don’t talk so that they hear my accent. People from here say that we all speak American, not English. I’m not kidding, everyone says that. O well! I even grab a newspaper every morning to hide myself behind on the tube, just like everyone else. No wonder Londoners are so up to date on US current events—it’s all over their newspapers! However that might have been because Obama was here this week. Who knows. Also, in every single store I go into they are playing American music. AND on TV all they show is really old American reruns! Crazy. We may speak American, but they don’t seem to mind our culture. I’m also getting used to crossing the street. It’s such a difficult task. First, you have to remember to to look right first, NOT left. Then you scurry across to a tiny little median and wait as the cars go by on either side of you. Finally, you look left and run across. The cars drive like crazy over here, and we learned tonight that if they flash their lights at you, it means they will let you cross! 
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Lindsey: Tea Time

May 20, 2011

Alright, day three. It seems like I’ve been here for a week already! Today we had a safety orientation from a London police officer. He was a funny guy, but wow am I tired of orientations! Today was more of a low key day. After the orientation we were starving like usual and discovered our new favorite restaurant! It’s called Paul and is a french-style cafe-but super cute! If this doesn’t make you want to eat there I don’t know what would:

After lunch we rode around the tube to find our internship locations so we don’t get lost by ourselves. So no worries, I won’t get lost now on my way to my interview. Then it was time for our welcome reception with some afternoon tea! I definitely felt like a true brit at this point, without the accent:

Later we went to Primark, our new favorite store! Everything is super cheap and really cute! Like sundresses for 5 pounds (about 10 US dollars) and sunglasses for 1 pound. The clothes reminds me of an H&M or Forever 21. Definitely need to stay away from that store or I will buy too much. But I only bought a 3 pound bag and an awesome pair of sunglasses!

One thing we take advantage of in the US is that stores are open past 6:00. Here, they are all closed by then! Talk about inconvenient. This just shows the American work ethic vs. Europe’s. You can also tell in restaurants. Not much customer service or friendly salespeople! They need to start working on that.

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Lindsey: First take!

May 19, 2011

I finally made it to London! I got here yesterday, and besides all my nervousness, I found my way to my apartment (or flat as they call it here). The place we’re living is very nice, it’s a year old and I share a flat with 5 other girls. Three from MN and the other two from the university of Pittsburgh.

So, a sum up of my last two days here:

Yesterday we got here, got settled in, and toured the neighborhood. It’s very residential where we live and there’s little parks everywhere; very cute. We all bought cell phones and of of course had to get the most touristy one out there: the Kate and William wedding version. The phone is painted like a British flag and has a background picture of the couple as the background. Just in case I forget where I am. Ha.

We finally got some lunch around 3 at Pizza Hut. Pretty American right? Not in europe! We just wanted a quick pizza BUT it was a fancy sit down restaurant! Well not super fancy, but fancier than normal pizza huts in the US. After that, we came back showered and went right to bed. Soooo sleepy.

Today we finally got to use the tube!! It was surprisingly easy and wayyy better than Minneapolis Metro Transit. The people riding it are actually normal. But absolutely no one talks. They just sit there and read their paper/book/kindle. So when a group of noisy american girls got on, we definitely got some evil stares. Londeners are very much to themselves, which I don’t mind at all!

We had orientation today about London and another one for our internships. It was a long time to spend in a classroom on a sunny day! Inbetween orientations we walked around the neighborhood to Kensington Park which reminds me a lot of central park with all the people. There we saw Kensington Palace where Princess Diana used to live. It was our first palace we saw! Probably many more to come. Also there is shopping everywhere! Even on random little streets. It’s so hard to just go in and look around and not buy anything! It makes it easier if I keep telling myself I can go to Paris with my money. Here’s a picture of the place where we take classes:

And here’s princess Diana’s Kensington Palace (bad picture, I know):

We took the tube back and finally bought some groceries because it seems like we’re always starving. We’re cooking supper now and are starting to plan the rest of our trip! Tomorrow we have a welcoming reception and Saturday we’re going on a tour of London! Exciting, exciting!!

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