London, England

Trip Start May 14, 2006
Trip End Sep 29, 2006

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Flag of United Kingdom  ,
Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Well here I am, in an internet cafe in downtown London. My trip has begun and I couldn't be any happier. My flight was fairly uneventful other than the fact that I got drunk before my flight to Boston and have now learned to never do that again. I had to be right after take off to save myself from an embarrassing situation, and the flight attendant did not like this very much. Once I arrived in London, I had to wait about 10 hours for Eric to arrive. This went much better than expected. I found my own row of chairs and slept for a majority of the time, something that I did not think I was going to be able to do. Once Eric got in, we made our way to the London underground to catch a train to our hostel. This was also very easy.

Once we checked in, Eric and I set out on foot to explore the surrounding areas and headed up towards Notting Hill. We probably walked 7+ miles during that walk but it was great. I love the housing architecture here in London, everything is at least a hundred years old and has a really romantic feel. Last night we went out to a pub with some guys for the hostel to meet some of their friends and had a great time. One guy was from Norther Ireland and the other two were Aussies. The friends that we met where very cool, the Irishmen was hilarious. AND GET THIS!!! For employment here in London, they work for Budweiser as quality control inspectors. THEY DRINK BEER FOR A LIVING!!! Wow, that's got to be rough.

Today we got up nice and early, at our free breakfast that was provided by our hostel, bought an unlimited train and bus pass and headed towards downtown London. The subway system here is so simply to use and efficient, it makes getting around very easy. Downtown was very cool, in between the larger streets and little ally's where cars are not allowed and they are very charming lined with pubs, markets and other such stores. We then headed to the National gallery where was walked around and saw some of the most widely recognized paintings anywhere. I was about a foot away from Van Gogh's Sunflower painting which was very surreal. Then, while walking around, we noticed a crowd at Westminster Abbey, so we pushed our way to the front and about 5 minutes later got to see Queen Elizabeth about 50 feet away, so that was very interesting as well. TOnight we are going to get some authentic Indian food down the road and just take it easy, possibly watch some movies in the hostel and hang out. We might go to either Bathe or Cambridge tomorrow, we are still undecided. It kind of depends on how expensive the train tickets are because our train passes and not valid here in the U.K.

Overall, London is much better than I had ever expected and truthfully, makes Seattle look like rubbish. A few things we have noticed. 1. Nobody is overweight. We have seen like 2 overweight people in as many days. 2. London is incredibly expensive if your not smart. Beers at the pub last night were the equivalent of 6 or 7 dollars and most of the food is double what we pay back home. 16 bucks for bad Thai!!! 3. Their are no trash cans anywhere. I walked around with an orange peel for half an hour trying to find one. But the strange thing is that it is the cleanest city that I have ever seen. 4. The people are very nice and couldn't be more welcoming.
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