U.K.

A Quick Stop in London

It seems like a lifetime ago that I left home to travel to different parts of the world and see new things, but here I am at the end of my trip. Tomorrow I fly home and conclude my six month(ish) travels. My last stop was a quick visit back to London where I went on a tour of Westminster Abbey, checked out the National Gallery, and saw a musical in the city.

Somehow on my last trip to London I managed to miss Westminster Abbey. It’s one of the biggest things in the city to go see, so I had to catch it on my return to this amazing city. I’m so glad I got to, because I’d forgotten how amazing it is inside. Unfortunately, photography inside the magnificent building is forbidden, but it really is incredible. Not only are there beautifully carved vaulted ceilings, sculptures, and decorations all over the walls, but there are memorials and tombs of some of the most famous and influential people in history in the Abbey. Isaac Newton, Paul Dirac, Michael Faraday, and Charles Darwin are just a few of the famous scientists there. Shelley, Keats, Lord Byron, Jane Austen, Charles Dickens, and a memorial to Shakespeare make up just a fraction of the Poets corner. Henry’s and Edward’s and Mary’s and an Elizabeth contribute to some of the royalty buried there. It’s absolutely incredible, and I’m glad I got a chance to stop by.

The National Gallery was another big site to check out in the famous Trafalgar Square of London. It’s quite the overwhelming art gallery, with famous Da Vinci works, Raphael paintings, Botticelli works, and more. I actually got lost for a minute or two in there, there is really an incredible amount of artwork and it’s too much to see in just one trip (unfortunately for me).

Overall, it was a full and fun day in London, and a great last day of my travels. Up next: home!

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U.K.

We Never Win At Home And We Never Win Away

So as I write this I am actually in Ireland, but I just finished up with a weekend in the UK! Specifically I was in London, and was fortunate enough to be joined by my aunt, uncle, and mother for the weekend! We had a great time drinking our way through the city, checking out a couple of tourist sites, and watching our soccer team get thrashed by weaker opposition!

Normal tourism visits for Lexi and me are full of walking from famous site to famous site, keeping costs as low as possible, and occasionally getting to bed early in order to get an early start the next day. In London, our first day with our family was spent entirely devoid of tourist attractions. Instead, we got up and went straight to a pub. After that, we went to find tickets to a play, but wound up at another pub. Then we went to meet up with a family member, at another pub. After enough pub shenanigans, we decided to get serious. So we went to a pub to meet up with a friend for a bit. Things started to calm down, so we went to another pub to grab a drink. Finally, we rounded out the evening with drinks and cards back at the apartment.

Our next day was a bit more traditional for London tourism, we went to see Trafalgar Square, visited Big Ben, and went to the Camden Market, which was a massive sprawling city market selling everything from cheap soccer jerseys to Colombian street food.

Our last day was the one we were all waiting for, the Southampton vs Manchester City soccer game! We changed things up and went to a pub before the game, and then made our way over to the stadium after spending a couple of hours singing City’s club songs with other fans in Southampton. The game got underway, and the entire away section was singing and cheering endlessly… For about 20¬†minutes. Then Southampton scored, and the cheering turned into cursing endlessly… For about 5 minutes. Then Southampton scored again, and the cursing turned into silence.

Things more or less continued until the score was 4-1, at which point the away fans had essentially decided the game was over and cheering was for suckers. Rather than encourage City to win the game, we all started singing “We never win at home” (my personal favorite), “We’re f***ing s**t” (a catchy tune), and “Are you watching, Real Madrid” (sure to intimidate even the most fearsome team). It made for a fantastic second half, and proved that you don’t have to be on the winning side to have the time of your life at a soccer game!

So now I’m in Ireland, and spent the day driving around the countryside and the west coast. Look out for a post on it soon!

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