Sunday, June 27, 2010

London, day 2

Well, I'm much more coherent today than yesterday -- don't even wanna read yesterday's post. Though, I did wake up around midnight after two hours sleep. Here, I was rubbing my eyes raw. I had been sneezing after visiting Hyde Park, and it lingered; something there triggered my hay fever. But it's all good now.

I got up about 7:40 this morning (Sunday) and had a complimentary English breakfast in the hotel, though I skipped the eggs. Then I was off to the Shakespeare Globe.

I decided to walk, but when I got to where I thought it was, the West Ende, I realized I read the map wrong. So I went to the nearest Underground station and took the tube to where the Globe is actually at.

They do a great job at the Globe. Part of the property is an exhibit, which I cruised around in (nothing original . . . mostly reproductions) until my tour started at "half past eleven". The tour goes into the actual Globe Theatre, where they put on performances in the afternoon and evening; they were setting up for the former while my group of 50(!) visitors got schooled by our Shakespeare guide. I knew the Globe was a recreation. What I didn't know that the original held three times as many people (3,000) and that it was destroyed twice. First time a pyrotechnic during a production landed on the thatch roof and burned down the place; the second time the Puritans took it down along with other theatres in London, 'cause they saw plays as immoral.

Next it was off to the British Museum. Before going in I hit a deli a block away. Got a veggie sandwich -- this time I ate the eggs.

The British Museum is awesome! Puts Philly's Art Museum to shame. Took tons of pictures, including of the Rosetta Stone. I'll post several of those Museum pics when I get back to home.

Around four o'clock I came back to the hotel and mapped out tomorrow's itinerary. I'm only here two more full days. Tons to do. So on impulse I hopped on the tube to Buckingham Palace. Oh, I bought a day pass for five pounds, sixty pence. WHAT A BARGAIN!

Buckingham Palace is in/near Grace Park, I believe it's called. Tours are only in August and September, so with about a hundred other onlookers, I took numerous pictures. Even got a couple shots of the two beefeaters. Interestingly, they're behind the black-iron fence, about 30 feet back; I'll let you convert that to metres.

Leaving Buckingham Palace, my allergies acted up again, but not as bad as yesterday. I took the tube back the Paddington train station, which is a few blocks from my hotel. I was going to eat in a fish and chips place, but they had no restroom (I'm sorry, toilet). So I went to a restaurant across the street from the train station, a steak place. Good call. I don't eat steak at home. Got an 8-ounce steak, mixed vegetables, mashed potatoes and a pint of milk. Good stuff and not too bad a price at 24 and change. I put 35 on my credit card 'cause the waiter, with the French or Italian accent, was very good.

It's about 10:20 on Sunday night. Gonna shower then watch the Doctor Who episode I just downloaded. Seems fitting to watch it in the UK.

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