Hey friends and family! I blog to you today from the King’s College library while eating an over-priced but delicious yogurt/granola combo.
I survived my exam double header and celebrated with a walk along South Bank and a small trip to Greenwich. We walked from Waterloo Bridge to London Bridge along the river, drinking up the scenery on the first sunny (and warm) day in a long time. It’s really hard to believe it’s June, because temperature-wise, it seems like I’ve been suspended in April for the past two or three months.
Highlights of the walk were the massive street art displays on the outside of the Tate Modern building and then of course… food. We arrived to London Bridge right around noon and just in time to slip into Tapas Brindisa, a Spanish specialty restaurant that is always completely packed with a huge wait outside. Even though Jared and I didn’t exactly know what the hell a tapa was (our general idea was proved wrong when the first dish was brought out), I have always wanted to eat there. It was some good eating and reminded me of the days of living it up gastronomically in Croatia. I had some steamed mussels and a pork fillet dish, Jared had mackerel and chorizo on toast, and we shared some goats cheese with grapes. And to end the meal, in Eurotrip fashion, we finished up with a shot of espresso with brandy! Mmm.
Enough about food. We then went to Canary Wharf to check out all the fuss about the other financial center of London. Big buildings, investment banks, lots of people rushing about in suits. Not much to write home about overall. But it did remind me a lot more of the United States. Streets were wider, more people were driving cars, and there was that nasty urban sprawl feeling that I get when I’m walking around San Jose, CA.
From there, we walked to Greenwich where we headed to the Great Royal Observatory. Greenwich was really pretty and had a lot of charm and its university (or some university) seemed so luxuriously campus-like compared to the schools in London. We walked past a music school and we could see a flutist standing in the window while hearing violins and drums from other directions. Surreal. These students looked a lot more happy carrying their violin bows around campus than the London students with their noses buried in the Financial Times.
We made our up the hill and walked through the exhibits, most of which were time-keeping-related. Who knew that keeping accurate time was such a complicated process? I didn’t even know how my digital watch worked until I read a little blurb. Then we finally made it to the part that everyone cares about: the Prime Meridian Line. We queued up, straddled it, took a picture, and went on our merry way.
That’s enough recapping for now. My next exam is on June 11th and until then, I’m studying and preparing for departure. I’m currently packed up for the most part and living out of a suitcase but more disassembling of my room will soon be underway.
Check out some pictures from South Bank, Greenwich, and the state of my room post-exam here.