Exploding Art Mimbulus Mimbletonia style

A blog by Julia Felix about experiences on the CAMS New Media in NYC and Europe study abroad program.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Chips, crisps, and brown bread

First off, I want to apologize for my ranty blog this morning. I had to get that out of my system though. I was in a terrible mood. Maybe I'll delete it.

Today went much better than yesterday did. I woke up at 9:30ish after a really weird night of sleep (I kept waking up feeling like I overslept from a nap or something), and ate a very european breakfast of....bread!!! A croissant and some wheat toast (the lady asked me if I wanted white or brown...hehe) with butter and jam. It was good.

Caitlin slept in until about 12:30, so I waited for her to get up and ready before I went to meet the IES people and presumably John at the subway (tube!) station. John wasn't there and the lady (Miia) pretty much told us stuff we could have figured out on our own about buying a subway (tube!!!!!!) pass. Basically, we should probably get a pass because it's only 22.30 pounds for the week, and therefore probably cheaper than paying for tickets individually. The whole meeting only took about 5 minutes, and then we were free for the rest of the day.

Stacy and Rachel went out with some other people to do stuff and wander the town, and Caitlin, Alissa, and I decided to stay in and unpack/mess around on the internet. We got some lunch (I bought a bunch of apples and some peanut butter...protein and fruit!!) Eventually, it was time to find food and go meet up to go to the Globe Theater.

We decided to walk since it wasn't REALLY far away (about an hours walk), and because we were hoping to get more acquainted with the city. Alissa made a sandwich and ate it while we walked, and I bought a snack (bread!) when we went into a store to buy a map. Then we were off.

One thing that I don't like about London is that I feel so much more uncomfortable here. I think a big part of that is due to the fact that I can never ever figure out what direction I'm going in. In New York it's really simple because if you're on a street, you can figure out which direction to go based on the numbers of the Avenues. Also, New York is in a handy grid pattern most of the time, so if you start going north, you pretty much continue going north if you go one or two blocks over and walk up.

I don't even know how london works. It seems to be some kind of a circle or something. Everything spawns out from the center somewhere, and goes off it odd directions. There aren't really any landmarks that you can see, because most of the buildings are the same size, and all the streets have different names that just kind of sound like they were named after some english guy. But back to the story.

With much help from our maps, we found out how to get to the Globe. We crossed the Thames on the Millenium bridge, which was kind of cool since it was sunset, and ate at a random greek restaurant near the theater. We started off by ordering water. Apparently it's a very american thing to do here to order tap water. But we managed to get the waitress to do it. She tried to put it in a carafe to make it look nicer, but since the carafe's here aren't really used for anything except wine, the water just kind of tasted like wine and was totally nasty. So we didn't drink water. Caitliin and Alissa got some kind of pita/wrap/gyro thing, and I ended up getting "chips" (bread-like!) because they were only 2.75. Then we sat outside for a while eating food and making fun of how English people run.

Afterwards, we went into the globe and watched Comedy of Errors. Our seats weren't great, but they weren't terrible either. Overall, the play was pretty good. There was a part where the characters were talking about a woman and describing her by pretending she was a world map, and then asking questions about particular countries. At some point, someone in the audience screamed out "SPAIN!" and the actor sat there trying to think of something funny to say about Spain for a while. That was pretty funny, and it was also pretty funny when they couldn't come up with anything good to say.

Afterwards we took the subway (TUBE!!!!) home. It's so different than in New York. In New York, the trains are kind of small and dingy, and all the seats are plastic and everything is all mismatched. But here, the trains are kind of big and roomy, everything is really clean, and the seats are fabric (clean fabric!) and cushiony. Also, here, you need to have your ticket to get on *and* off the platform. Caitlin lost her ticket somewhere, and we were waiting for her while she looked for it for about five minutes before a station worker just let her go. I yelled "thank you" to her from across the room, and she acknowledged it, so that's a start. Maybe London people aren't THAT bad? We'll see.

So before I go, I'm going to try this again. The other day, my post was eaten by the computer. In that post I was going to start a new game that was going to be really fun (I think). The thing is, I don't always have enough pictures for my blog posts (they're kind of long...as you can probably tell). So I was thinking that when this happens, I'll pick 5 or so random words, go onto google image search or something and type them in, and then pick the weirdest picture I find from that word. I'll list the words in the post, and you guys can try to guess what picture belongs to what word. Yay interactive blog! If you want, you can post your guesses in a comment, and I'll post the answers in the following day's post. I can also keep track of who gets the most correct, and whoever wins might get something extra when I come back.
So here are the words for today:
1. Boot
2. Silver
3. Glassgow
4. Furry
5. Sheer


Anonymous Talia said...

London is more sensibly designed than most European cities, seeing as most of it burned down in the 1600s and so everything had to be rebuilt. But there's still a few centuries of damage on that: used to be everone just owned their little piece of property and could build it into whatever shape they wanted, and "streets" would just naturally evolve between the buildings. That's not how it's usually done now, but you can see the leftovers.

I got terribly lost quite a few times, especially when out of the main "city" since for some reason they don't make maps of the East Side.
Oh, try to see the Victoria and Alber Museum or the Museum of London while you'r there. I didn't see either of them but I wish I had. And go back to the British Museum when you can and see more stuff.
You're kind of lucky that it's not hot out now. When I was there, it was really hot and I was walking everywhere, so I kept finding myself spending 2 pounds ($4) on cokes and things everyplace I went.

9:04 PM  
Anonymous Mararrrr said...

Yeah, Talia is right, London is at least a *little* more organized that lots of European cities. It has one of the common themes, a ring street, if I remember correctly. Vienna has a pretty prominent ring street also. It's a sort of logic to setting up the city, but not quite as easy to grasp as a straightforward grid, and since London has had longer to screw up that logic than New York, it's more screwed up. That was redundant.

Don't worry, you're from Santa Fe, "where all the streets veer slightly to the right", you'll figure it out :)

9:57 PM  
Anonymous mATEJ said...

OK;) so hurray for interactivity!

Let me guess...

Picture 1: Silver
Picture 2: Glassgow
Picture 3: Boot
Picture 4: Sheer
Picture 5: Furry

Only the last picture am I remotely certain about... the rest is sort of weird and crazy... I guessed one was silver because it looked like a microscopic image. As far as the 2 babies and the umbrella... I have no idea.

10:00 PM  

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