Friday, January 18, 2008

Off with their heads, and other bits...

Good morning! It's 10:00am here, which makes it 2:00am for most of you. Which, of course, means you're up reading my blog! Yesterday we started out at the Tower of London. It was overwhelming. You could easily spend an entire day there, maybe more. It's completely amazing that something 1000 years old is in such good condition! The structure is impressive today, much less 1000-800 years ago. The good part of the morning was spent here basically gaping at the fact that we were standing where Anne Boleyn was beheaded (and lots of other people, well over 1000). There is a staircase where the bones of two princes were found (ages 13 and 8). The staircase now has a taped recording of little kids wondering where their brother is (WAY too sixth sense for me).

Then we trooped across the Tower Bridge and walked along the South Bank of the Thames to the London Bridge (Tower Bridge is the one everyone thinks of as being London Bridge; London Bridge looks like any old overpass). Then we walked farther down the South Bank, through Southwark, London's historic, but no longer, redlight district. There we came across a thousand year old market straight out of Dickens. Came across the Golden Hinde (or at least a replica), the ship Sir Francis Drake captained to circumnavigate the globe. Farther on we passed the Globe Theatre. Mayhap you've heard of it? It's actually a replica that stands "near" the spot of the original, but it's cool none the less. We ate at the Anchor and Bankside Road, one of only 22 remaining licensed "inns" -- tavern/brothel/restaurant/nightclub/casino, where we ate the traditional fish and chips. Make a note: when asked if you want mushy peas, say yes, the alternative is bleak. The inn is so old, Shakespeare hung out there, and of it, Chaucer wrote "if the words get muddled in my tale/just put it down to too much Southwark ale." Shakespeare, Chaucer, Marlowe -- I had John breathe deeply.

Then we crossed the wonderful Millennium Bridge and basically traversed all of London. From St. Paul's to Trafalgar, to Piccadilly Circus, to Leicester Square, to Big Ben/Parliament, to Westminster Abbey, then all the way back to Victoria (the site of our hotel).

This morning, we're off to see the inside of some of these places we walked by last night, starting with Westminster.

Hope you guys are doing well. Cheers!

P.S. Europe doesn't like Macs... none of our photos will upload (sorry, Mom). We'll try again later.

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