Ah, last day across the pond... was a great day, though. :)

We successfully got up with our alarm this morning to grab breakfast. We then came back to the room where I proceeded to fall asleep again for another hour or so. (My body needs 8 hours of sleep!)

...I've just been distracted for literally 15 minutes because Minority Report is on our TV...


We took a bus out to the south bank side of the Thames River to pay a little visit to Shakespeare's Globe Theatre. :)

Took a walk along the bank side to get to the theater, came across yet another crime warning sign:

We were lucky to get tickets - the show was completey sold out, but as we stood in the queue for returns, a woman came up to the line asking if anyone minded standing because she had extra yard tickets. Ah, I was a groundling at last! (Read a book, people.)

The theater is insanely gorgeous. Pictures don't even capture it. We were lucky to, yet again, have an absolutely gorgeous and sunny day. (In fact, the only rain we've had the whole trip was about a minute or so of light sprinkling. We're the luckiest travelers ever.)

The show was Romeo & Juliet, because I am destined to never see any other Shakespeare play... despite me being completely sick of seeing this play, it was really fantastic. But what else would you expect at Shakespeare's Globe? :)

After the show, we took a boat on the Thames up a bit to a tube station to connect to where we needed to be.

Stopped at a bookstore up near Charing Cross to grab a book someone asked Mike to buy for them, and then headed back to the Tower of London to take the "Grim Reaper" walking tour.

It was much shorter than the other walking tours we'd been on, but interesting nonetheless. It covered all of the hauntings and murders and the plague and the general "poor" area of London - the East End. We also followed the "trail" of Jack the Ripper, which was really freakin' cool.

Where one of the Ripper's victims was found:

The pub he used to hang around, where he'd find his various prostitute victims:

And, the clock tower the prostitutes would use to time their customers:


Accidentally took a picture while walking, but thought it was kind of cool:

A man playing a piano in the middle of the street:


Oh, and one other important thing to mention... our tour guide was a gorgeous british guy:

And, I'd seen this a million times on the back of ice cream trucks - or, rather, "super soft ice" trucks:

The tour happened to end around the corner from Brick Lane, home to ten or so of what we were told are the best Indian curry houses outside of India. And, having stated earlier in the week I wanted to try Indian food for the first time, it was pretty convenient. So we strolled over there and found a place to eat. The verdict? I LOVE Indian food, but I definitely need to have milk because water in not effective when your mouth is burning off. Right off.

Back at the hotel now... watching Minority Report, as I'd said before, and packing. Our flight takes off at noon tomorrow. The tube line near us goes right out to Heathrow, so we're going to take advantage of that. Eat some breakfast in the morning and then head out. Admittedly, I'm pretty sad to be going back. I really like it here and would love to spend another week or so. I definitely want to come back at some point in the future... it's a pretty remarkable city. And it's also, of course, made me want to travel pretty much everywhere else. But that's nothing new.

Okay, to sleep perchance to dream.



Day six in London, and I feel like we just got here yesterday... my how time flies.

Today was quite pleasant. We actually managed to get down to breakfast in the morning, though not without sleeping through the 7am alarm. TOMORROW we'll wake up with it. (She says as it slowly turns into midnight...) We then accomplished one of the highest items on my London list... Notting Hill. Just because of the movie? Possibly. But it's also a great spot to hit when visiting here. And I can vouch for it. The Portabello Road Market is GIANT and AMAZING. We didn't even get through the entire thing. Its all antiques and art and clothing and lots of really interesting little knick knacks. I got a great dress for only 5 pounds.

One of the first things we saw after getting off the tube at Notting Hill Gate. Very cool.

And, my attempt to recreate a picture of Hugh Grant from Notting Hill without even remotely remembering what it looked like except that he had his jacked swung over his shoulder and was at the flower stand...


Actual picture:

At least I'm 90% certain it's the same flower booth. So that's something. Anyway.

Had lunch at a cute place called Uncle's...

Spent a good hour or two just walking though part of the market. And then made the venture onto Abbey Road...

Similarity between the London Tube and the NYC Subways: Track work on the weekends. So that made our little trip out to Abbey Road just a *bit* more difficult. We had to take one line to another line to a bus at a bus stop which we could not find so we ended up at another that fortunately had a bus that took us to where we needed to go.

Anyway, we did finally arrive there to see the famous crosswalk and Abbey Road Studios.

The studio:

And then, of course...

Close enough.

Okay, so I've been meaning to take pictures of something and post them since I've been here, and was finally able to snap a couple.

Everywhere you go, and I mean everywhere, there are warnings about pick pockets and theives. It's a little unnerving to see them, but really I've felt pretty safe since we've been here. So either the signs are working, or the pick pockets are just as polite as the rest of the people here and you can't pick them out of a crowd.

There was a sign on the back of a bathroom door yesterday in a restaurant warning about bag theives. Unfortunately, I don't tend to bring my camera along with me to the loo. So I couldn't get a photo of that one.

After that fun jaunt, we successfully made it onto the bus back to our hotel to get ready to see X-MEN THE PLAY. Otherwise known as Waiting for Godot starring Professor X and Magneto. Or Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellen. Whatever.

I hate Samuel Becket a lot, especially this play, but you know what- whatever. I'd watch the two of them read the dictionary. They're both completely astonishing on stage. I'd seen Jean-Luc Picard once before, but never Gandalf. It was pretty cool.

OH, and to give proof that they sell ice cream during intermission...

Okay, I really need to go to sleep so we actually wake up in the morning. Hopefully catching a show at the Globe. Yeah!



Hellooooooo. It's just before midnight here in foggy (but not foggy at all because we're the luckiest tourists ever) Londontown!

Today included jaunts to all parts of London, starting with another trip to the TKTS booth to purchase tickets for We Will Rock You. But... more on that show later.

After successfully obtaining tickets, we went over to Covent Garden to eat some lunch and see what it's all about. The verdict? I <3>very reminiscient of Boston - or, well, I guess that'd be the other way around. Either way, it reminded me a lot of the Quincy Market area in Boston.

We walked around the different kiosks a bit, where I'll be returning tomorrow to purchase an adorable dress for my niece, Willa.

While on the quest to find somewhere to eat, we walked into the middle of a street performance that caught our attention, so we stopped to watch it.

This guy:

He was a comedian/general juggling escape artist performer.

Mike being told to raise his hand... but why...?

To be a selected volunteer of course! (Coincidence that him and the other guy match.)

'Twas a fun little show.

Afterwards, we found a restaurant nearby and grabbed lunch there:

And our desert was a waffle...

After Covent Garden, we made the journey out to East London to see the Tower of London, which is not so much a tower as it is a castle...

Oh, and the London Bridge...

We didn't end up going inside the castle, because it would have cost 17 pounds each... and really, it was quite nice from the outside.

After that excursion, we went out to Camden Market in... uh... Camden. It was pretty much London's St. Marks Place, only with more street shops. Same general tone though. Which is AWESOME.

Looked around a bit there, and then tore myself away before I bought every pretty funky dress there was. (Which was a lot).

Got back on the tube and went out to the area where the theater for We Will Rock You is, and ate at a really cool pizzaria called Italian Grafitti.

The pizza was amazing, and I've now decided that our next worldwide trip must be to Italy.

And then we ventured over to the Dominion Theatre to take in some Queen music. The show was really pretty bad. It was fun to hear Queen songs sung by insanely talented people, but overall it was a pretty ridiculous story with pretty bad writing. But they performed Bohemian Rhapsody at the end, so I can be pretty forgiving. :)

Now we are back in the hotel room, getting ready to sleep. We did not make the goal of waking up early this morning to catch breakfast, unfortunately. Mainly because we were up at 5am because the carbon monoxide alarm was going off in the apartment in New York, and Mariah contacted us. Thankfully it was just the batteries going dead and no actual carbon monoxide. And now the fire department knows our place. ;-)

But TOMORROW - we vow to get up early to finally take advantage of the hotel breakfast, and then start knocking off the last of our sight seeing. Left on my list: Notting Hill, Abbey Road, Fleet Street, back to Covent Garden. And then we have tickets for Waiting for Godot tomorrow night. Sunday we'll be going out to Shakespeare's Globe to catch a show for 5 pounds. I thought it was a nice match for our last day. :)

Sleep now. More tomorrow!


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