We Hit the Ground Running

Trip Start Dec 27, 2011
Trip End Jan 11, 2012

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Flag of United Kingdom  , England,
Tuesday, December 27, 2011

The flight to London was, for the most part, uneventful. We had a lot of turbulence for a while when we were getting close to London, which made me a little nervous, but, otherwise, we had no issues. Aside from her name, I know the everything there is to know about the girl who sat in the middle of the aisle behind me (as do her row companions, much to their distress, I think). She talked until she fell asleep, and immediately upon regaining consciousness, began talking again. Stephen, the guy who sat in the middle of my row, was quiet, which I liked, but a little unusual. The girl sitting on the aisle was in high school and was on her way to London with a big group of high schoolers (that was fun) to perform in the New Year's parade. He had to go to the bathroom quite a lot, and at one point the high school girl was sleeping. He attempted to climb over her at the exact point that she sat straight up, leaving him in the awkward position of straddling her. It was quite humorous. 

I got into Heathrow and made it with no hangup to the entrance to the tube. I waited for Katie as per our pre-flight arrangements. About 40 minutes later, when I was about to head to the tube, Dean Kaufman showed up with his family. He texted Katie for me to discover that she had flown into a different terminal and had just left with Dean Faught and Chris (among others).

I rode the tube to Russel Square. It took about nine stops for the Kaufman son to stop laughing at "Cockfosters." The Goodenough Club is about three blocks from the tube station, and when I got there check-in was a breeze because my co-occupant had already arrived. I came to my room to find Katie, Chris, and Umang. They were about to go exploring, so they invited me to join. 

We walked quite a distance before running into St. Paul's Cathedral. We took pictures of the Christmas decorations around St. Pauls', Occupy London (which mostly seemed like a campground), walked across Millennium Bridge to look at the Tate Modern and Globe Theatre. By the time we had gotten to the Globe, we were all exhausted. We walked (mostly in silence) back to the Club. I was really proud of myself because once we hit St. Paul's, I knew exactly where I was in London and was certain I could get myself back to my flat from 2008. Unfortunately, I had no idea how to get back to this year's homebase. 

Katie and I took a nap for three hours before getting ready and heading to the Churchill room of the Goodenough College for a quick lecture about the neighborhood of Bloomsbury. We are within walking distance of the British Library, the British Museum, Charles Dickens's old house, and a number of other interesting spots. 

After the talk, we walked to Wagamama for dinner, an asian fusion type chain place that the group eats at every year on the first night. I had Chicken Tama Rice, which was okay but kind of bland. 

After dinner drinks at the Lamb helped make up for the somewhat disappointing dinner. I wasn't going to drink because I wanted to be able to get a good night's sleep, but Dean Faught insisted on buying me a half pint of something (1664). I believe that he thought I wasn't drinking because I wanted to save money, but I was just trying to feel good for the next day. For better or for worse (it was very nice of him)...I ended up with a half pint. 
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