(This ended up being pretty much our only nice, non-rainy day.) I didn’t want to sleep the day away, so we got up around 10:30am. We ate some breakfast at the house and set off for Central London to do some walking tours. My aunt Karen gave us a book, 24 Great Walks in London, that guide you through some interesting, off-the-beaten-path areas. The house was about a 10 minute walk from the Tube – I was shocked at how small it was, with its low ceiling and extremely warm atmosphere.
We did our first walking tour and saw some neat stuff – the Monks, Murder and Masons tour. We saw some neat old buildings and a lot of graves! It appears that London is full of dead people. A lot of the parks have been built up on top of old graves and the tombstones were then moved to the park edges.
Before starting on our second tour we decided to eat at the Blackfriar Pub. The place was awesome – the deeper you went into the pub the darker and more cave-like it got. The windows were stained glass with monk images and the upper walls lined with dark, mosaic images of monks doing their monk things. The bartender had a ton of personality as well, flipping the glass before filling it with ale. I ended up ordering fish n chips – THE best I’ve ever had. Normally I can’t make it all the way through the fish because its too boring, but this I couldn’t stop eating!
We started on tour two, The Splendor of St Paul’s. Unfortunately I wasn’t allowed to take any pictures inside of St Paul’s and there was a service going on anyway. Very beautiful though. The building in the image is Christchurch Greyfriars, which still has many bombed-out fragments.
Towards the end of the day we talked about how London didn’t really feel foreign. But why? Are we too immersed in the culture? I think part of the reason it felt familiar is because we speak the language, watch British television and movies and the terrain reminded us of home (Ohio – Steve’s allergies came back almost instantly.)
We took a nap before dinner and just walked over to Primrose Hill and had some OK food.