44 Days Abroad: London, UK
We visited many parts of England before making our way to London. Going to London was like coming home. It reminded me of Toronto, just on a larger scale. London felt like being in a bubble, it was as if we left England altogether and somehow transported to a mega city. The bus ride into the city was bordering on gross to horrendous. I had to use the facilities, which were located at the back of the bus. As I entered the cubicle I realized this toilet was going to be problematic, even for going number one. I decided to flush the toilet as a good measure to see what I was dealing with. A jet of water shot out of the toilet about two feet tall and then came down covering the entire floor in toilet water. I backed out of the stall, shut the door and went back to my seat.
The Tube, London’s underground subway is amazing. I can’t remember having to take a cab anywhere while we were in the city. The museums, specifically The British Museum had some of the best collections of Roman, Greek, and Egyptian artifacts. The British Egyptian collection is considered to be one of the best in the world, and is a cause of controversy as Egypt has unsuccessfully requested the return of some of their items. History and Ancient Civilizations has always been an interest of mine, and part of me wanting to go to Europe was based solely on seeing the various collections of art and artifacts. The British certainly cleaned up during colonialism.
The best part about London is the boroughs. The city is pockets of communities that offer different flavors. Each area has it’s own unique vibe. Camden Market was gritty and real. The market itself was a lot of fun. I ended up getting a ton of stuff for fifty pounds, including a pair of BEATS ear buds. My girlfriend ended up getting some dresses for ten pounds each. Brixton was another treat. The entire community is full of shops, and fresh food markets. It’s a fun place to just walk around.
My advice to anyone going to London is to stay central to the places and things you want to see and do. The city encompasses a huge geographical region. Even though the transit is great, it can be slightly annoying to get from one end of the city to the next. Especially if you plan on flying in. I found Kings Cross to be convenient for me, as it was central enough and not the most expensive area to stay in. It fit my budget, well sort of. London was a city that I just scratched the surface of. More time is needed.