Thursday, 16 September 2010

London Impressions no.1

This is how it works. I'd like to write a travel journal about my vacation in London but as it is already over and I had no permanent Internet access there I'm going to write them like a memoir. Every day from today I'm going to post on my impressions of the day exactly one week ago. I hope you'll like it although it is mainly of personal value as I'd like to preserve my experiences.

One week ago ...

I woke up in my hotel room and almost feared to open the curtains. The reason for that for sure lies in the uncertainty of English weather. Two days ago the weather forecast predicted rain for my whole stay. But as I was an obedient child all year long I deserved a little sun and that is what I got.

I didn't expect much for breakfast but as the hotel runs it's own coffee shop especially my fair trade coffee was very good. Could I have asked for more?

Buckingham Palace

My company and me decided on one of the most famous and important sights to see first, we decided for Buckingham Palace. Somewhere I read about it lovingly referred to as Buck Home. Maybe the Queen likes to call it that? I would have loved to see the Changing of the Guard but this ceremony is only carried out at 11 am every second day and unfortunately Thursday was no such day. Actually it was possible to go inside Buckingham Palace as the State Rooms are open to public for August and most of September when the Queen is in her summer residence. I decided against it to use the nice weather outside and of course to save a small fortune. Me and my company strolled through St. James Park where I planned to feed the ducks but forgot to take bread or biscuits with me. Luckily not all tourists were as careless as I was.

We continued our walk to Trafalgar Square crowded with people and traffic past Downing Street which is actually a dead-end street and heavily guarded by security and a huge gate. When one fine car accompanied by another loaded with security left this street I felt invited to imagine that this may have been the Prime Minister. Who knows?

View at Parliament from park behind it

We walked by the Houses of Parliament and Big Ben and Westminster Abbey where all important royal ceremonies are held, such as weddings and things. We had a picnic right behind the Parliament as there is a little park next to the Thames. Suddenly the clouds broke loose and Londoners all over the place changed their sun glasses for their umbrellas. Luckily I was prepared too. We took the tube from Westminster to Mansion House (because Blackfriars is closed until late 2011) to walk over Jubilee Bridge which is a bridge only for pedestrians. On the other side Tate Modern daily opens it's doors to fans of modern art. Admission is free as in most London museums. Actually I can not say I'm a fan of modern art as in general I'm an amateur in art things. But I enjoy looking at pictures or sculptures and trying to find what the artist possibly wants to express or just what I think the piece of art is meaning to me. More than once I got a feeling that a certain work meant nothing at all. Today I still remember some famous artists and works I have seen that day such as Summertime by Jackson Pollock, The Kiss by Auguste Rodin and Water-Lilies by Claude Monet.

Tate Modern

After the art lesson I felt so worn out for all the walking and staying around all day I needed to get a rest in my hotel room. Later I craved for some Italian food for dinner and we went to a restaurant on Queensway near our hotel in the Notting Hill/Bayswater region. The food was fabulous and the prices reasonable although we had to wait for our pizza for more than thirty minutes but as the wine was good too I didn't care that much. Later I recognized that this restaurant actually belonged to a chain of Italian restaurants which is called Bella Italia and is spread all over London.

After a short walk for exploration reasons in our neighborhood we went back to the hotel to get a good night's sleep.


  1. Sounds like a great start to a nice vacation. I thought I might just mention a few spelling things - it's a 'picnic', and we 'crave' Italian food. Hope this helps... I'm moving on to your other blogs on London now.

  2. Thanks so much! I appreciate it. :)