We heard this quote on a bus tour. I have only been here two weeks and two days and I cannot agree more. Just walking this city gets one excited. Not to say that things are so much different than back in the states, but there are some differences that make you say, “Wow, the Europeans really have it figured out.” I learned recently from a bus and boat tour that the reason that they travel on the left side of the road is because that’s the way they would travel back on horse as they fought battles two thousand years ago. The swordsmen would carry their swords in their right hands to jab their opponents as they rode by on horseback. Thus, they have not changed it in two thousand years. That was just a small anecdote that I found interesting and thought I would share. It is after all when we find the answers to our questions that we become enlightened.
Beyond that, we have done so much in so little time already and I am having a blast. Since I have been here, I have taken quite a few walks alone, discovering some of the other neighborhoods and boroughs that border our own. It is in doing these walks that I found, many good street vendors, Buckingham Palace, the church I ended up attending this past Wednesday and Sunday, and the pub that my friend recommended for me to visit.
The latter two, bring me to my next point. The pub, Ye Old Cheshire Cheese, which was renovated in the 1600s and again I’m sure since then, was by far the most authentic pub experience. The layout is rustic, the feel is cavernous, and the food is great. I had fried mushrooms, chicken breast, chips (fries), and a hard cider, all while I read a few chapters from the bible. The service there, as in many pubs, is expedient. No matter how many people, no matter how much food you order, you are not waiting more than 10 minutes. That is something I have yet to experience in the states. Not to mention, the servers are very nice, as are the bar tenders.
I went to the Bloomsbury Baptist Church on a Wednesday night for a violin recital, but ended up staying, after I was invited, for a bible study called “Exchange.” Both events run weekly, but exchange is specifically aimed at students and visitors to this country who want to have a faith-sharing experience. I met so many people that night and upon returning that following Sunday, everyone knew me. People spoke to me as if I had been going there since I was little or something. What surprised me most were the people who hadn’t met me the previous Wednesday who came up to me saying, “You must be Dorian.” I enjoyed the service, and was just overwhelmed by the love of people who hardly knew me.I joked with a friend saying that I may not come back home, and I said to another that I definitely need more than one semester here. It may not happen close to my return, but I will definitely be back to London. I know this will be the case because I am not tired of living.