Weekly Review: London at First Glance

 

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Well, here I am in merry ol’ England. I’ve only been here five days, and yet it feels like I’ve lived here for years. I don’t say this to convey the “you’re never coming home” thought, but London (big cities in general), have a way of warping time and messing with my mind. In cities like London, Chicago, New York City, etc., I always feel wonderfully alone. Don’t get me wrong, I live with five other girls, there’s absolutely no chance of being actually lonely. In big cities I’m constantly terrified and intrigued by the hoards of people that bustle every which way. In a city so drenched in thousands of years of history, I can’t help but feel that the souls of this city have stayed to watch. The buildings seem to communicate through their architecture and their inhabitants-whether that be good or bad I cannot say! I think most cities have these aspects, but it certainly feels increased in London. I have had the fortunate pleasure of visiting England before, which makes me feel guilty when my reactions to the city are not as animated as some of my peers. Then I feel bad for talking about my previous trip because then you’re being THAT kid who rants and brags about their travels. It’s a thin line between actually being interesting and causing those around you to suddenly find reasons to leave.

Classes don’t start until tomorrow, so the past week has been filled with orientation and  fun activities planned by our program. On Saturday we had a tour of the Bloomsbury section of London, which was a great tour showing an extremely posh part of town. It’s hard to imagine Bloomsbury as a center for an artistic renaissance because of how  polished it is now. It seemed like there were millions of little squares (aka parks), one on every corner practically! Although I have only read some of (sorry Dr. Fuller) Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf, it was still extremely exciting to know that I was walking the same streets that she and so many incredible authors have once walked. Today, Sunday, we did a general tour of  London from a coach bus. Both tours were led by “Blue Badge” guides, who are extremely intelligent and were both great guides. We only got out of the bus at St. Paul’s Cathedral and Buckingham Palace. I had never been to Buckingham Palace before, and it was okay. Out of all the beautiful architecture in London, heck England overall, this palace is somewhat disappointing. Hopefully these negative words will not cost me my head! Today was the anniversary of the great fire of 1666! A simple mistake led to a three day blaze in London, ruining most of central London. Tonight they lit aflame a miniature scale London on the Thames river. The model reminded me of how unknown (I didn’t want to say dead) the carpentry business is. Was it worth standing in a crowded area for 2+ hours? Sure? Am I glad I did it? Yes. There were several groups of people gleefully yelling as they watched their home burn down! How odd. Is that being a patriot, a traitor, or an arson fiend?

Very excited to see how classes go this week. Until then!

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