London - Part 2
Hi again - quick turnaround on this post!
I'm about to jump on a bus headed to Edinburgh as my time in London has come to its end and I've found a nice comfy spot in a coffee house to make this post.
My last two days in London were as busy as the first few. I'm actually starting to feel a little exhausted and am looking forward to not having to think for the next 48 ish hours as my day tomorrow is completely taken up by a bus tour of the Scottish Lochs.
But for now, let's chat about London.
I had another early start on Day 3 venturing even further East to Oxford. It cost me 30 pounds to get a return ticket from London to Oxford which I thought was a little bit steep but worth it for what I was about to witness. Oxford is a truly stunning town? city? place? I'm still not quite sure what it's supposed to be called.
I set off on a self-guided tour following some generic directions on this website.
I walked past over twenty tourist attractions so I'll only go into a few key ones.
Firstly, I walked up to the top of St. Michael's Tower. It's the oldest tower in Oxford, dating back to 1040. It was also the church where William Morris (famous British poet) and Jane Burder were married in 1859.
I also saw the Eagle and Child pub where 'the inklings' (Hugo Dyson, Charles Williams, C.S Lewis and J. R. R Tolkien) would meet to write and chat.
I saw Blackwells which contains the largest single room solely devoted to book sales in Europe!! I think I found heaven the moment I walked into the Norrington Room.
I also walked in and around the Turf Taven, home to some scenes from Harry Potter (The Leaky Cauldron) and the place where Bob Hawke won a Guinness World Record for drinking a yard-long glass of ale in 11 seconds. A true aussie legend.
I saw a number of the college buildings, most notably Magdalen College (Oscar Wilde, C.S Lewis. T.E Lawrence and Andrew Llyod Webber attended) and Christ Church where the Great Hall scenes from Harry Potter were filmed.
I caught the train back to London about midday and headed straight to the Tower of London where I proceeded to spend close to 4 fours wandering around listening to an audio tour and learning all about what the Tower has been used for since it was first erected way back in 1066.
It really is enormous. I saw pretty much everything including the Crown Jewels which have a clever little conveyer belt on either side to keep the crowd moving.
Check out this line to see the Crown Jewels:
Understandably I was exhausted after another full day walking around. My poor toes have started aching!
Today started with a major dilemma. I logged on first thing to start my take home exam. I had managed to swap my assessment for my final exam to a take home exam that could be completed over 24 hours so I could complete it while overseas. However, I managed to stuff up my dates which resulted in my logging on a 6pm AUS time to find out the exam was due at 9am that morning. Talk about a panic attack.
I stressed emailed my professor pleading my case. He directed me to the exams team which I'm thinking will swap me to complete the exam with the next Semesters cohort. I've been sitting on a distinction average and to fail the unit now would be heart breaking. Especially from my own stupidity.
Anyway, I'll update when I know more. Keep your fingers crossed for me.
After this dilemma and emailing everyone I could I started by day. I dropped my bags off near the station and caught the tube to Holborn station where I headed to a deli called Giovanni's where Ray the chef whipped me up a meatball focaccia. It was to die for!!
I then walked over to the British Museum which is f*king huge! Again I was left with simply not enough time to look at everything. The map itself folded out into a bloody A1 size sheet. I looked like a small child holding that thing. I did manage to see a lot of incredible greek statues, some mummified bodies (freaky!) and the world's first chess set. It was a lot of walking and the place was packed but I'm glad I went.
After the British Museum I walked about a km over to the Jon Soane Museum. This was a suggestion from my dad and I am so thrilled he told me about it because the place was unbelievable. It's basically a preserved home from the 1800s that's been kept as a museum because of all the incredible artwork and artefacts he'd spent his lifetime collecting.
I particularly loved the paintings which were set on wall mounts that unclipped (like the last photo) to unveil a second layer of paintings.
The whole place was just breath taking.
I also loved the giant tomb dedicated to his dog Franny just chilling in the courtyard. I asked a guide about it and he led me through a locked door to get a better view (always helps to ask).
After the museum, I lugged my tired self and 8kg backpack to a café to write this post.
I'm really enjoying seeing the art and artefacts in these museums and all the old buildings that carry so much history in their walls.
Till next time,