Monday, April 27, 2015

London, England, Day 3 - National Gallery, Undiscovered London

March 28th This morning was an early start since I had a tour at 10:30am.  I met a girl named Rosa who's Mexican and on exchange in Vienna at the moment.  She was staying in the same hostel as I was and part of the same group.  After a short trip to the YHA where we picked up a few more people we caught the underground to green park to meet the larger group.  From there we proceeded to Buckingham Palace, St James Palace, Pall Mall, Trafalgar Square, The Mall, Horseguards Parade, Whitehall, Downing Street, Westminster and Big Ben.

Green park

Green park is a royal park and had flowers initially but then the king’s wife became jealous of the king’s womanising ways, he used flowers in the garden to court other women, so being the queen she ordered the flowers ripped out.  And ever since then the green park has been bald.

Buckingham palace

Buckingham Palace.  The union jack flag was up so that meant the queen wasn’t in.  There was a story of how someone broke into the queen’s home and the guards didn’t spot him and it wasn’t illegal to break into the queen’s residence back then.  But then after that incident they passed a law saying that it’s illegal to break into the residence.

Palace guards and horses

Nose in the wall (1984 style)

The nose in the wall was created during a time where the government was busy sticking its nose into other peoples’ business.  And a reminder that people shouldn’t be doing that.  Of course people started to take them down so now ironically there’s a surveillance camera watching the nose since there’s not many of them left.

Me with palace guard

Coco Chanel lamp post

The tour ended in the big patch of grass just in front of westminster abbey.  There's where Prince William and Kate Middleton got married.  After that Rosa and I bought tickets to the east end tour which starts at 11am the next day.  Then we walked over to big ben, took photos there, then walked to the other side of the bridge and caught the underground to leicester square.  Had lunch in a small restaurant in China town then walked to the national gallery, that was free entry.  Spent a few hours there, not everything was open, but it was big enough to spend a few hours.

North Cape in Norway

A Wheatfield by van Gogh

Sunflowers by van Gogh

Telephone booth

A few hours later we headed back in the hostel.  I bought a ticket to Chappie for Leicester which isn’t Leicester Square.  Turns out it was the wrong cinema. :(  So I ate noodles (Char Kuay Teow) in Chinatown instead.  After that back to the hostel I talked to the french guy who I met in my room, and an italian girl whose name was Lena but who had Russian parents so it’s like she looks Russian but is Italian.  She was also my rookie.  So I wasn't alone that night anymore.

Can’t remember what time I slept but probably before midnight.

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