Saturday, January 14, 2012
Day 212: Gray is Fattening for the Feet
Day Four: England 2011/2012
Boxing Day has never been a huge deal for me. I'm not one of those people that anticipates Boxing Day even more than Christmas. I don't rush out of the house early in the morning, shop simultaneously with hoards of other people, stopping only for some lacklustre mall-food at lunch and then continuing shopping in a fat-induced stupor, coming home with things that you inevitably don't need, but are much too lazy to return.
That is not fun for me. Fun for me was Boxing Day in England.
There was a train strike, which meant even less people were out and about. Krista and I took a cab to Camden Market. For those that haven't been to England, Camden is England's hipster/artsy district. Lots of punk-style clothing, souvenir shops, tattoo places, etc. Camden market is huge. It's like a giant flea market, where most everything is new instead of used. I loved it. And, there was almost no one there. Krista was taking pictures of how dead it was and sending them to her friends. I was in heaven. We had free reign of an enormous market! I still had the nasty stall food for lunch, but I wasn't overwhelmed by people. I over-bought, but all cool things that I would never want to return. Well, except for when I realized I bought lights that have a british plug on them. That wasn't smart. But with an adapter, they are still beautiful and useful!
After our morning/early afternoon at Camden market, we headed to the "touristy" places. Trafalgar Square was next up. Obligatory photo by the London 2012 Olympic countdown clock. Then, a short walk to Big Ben.
We took photos of Big Ben, we took photos with Big Ben, we took photos of us in red phone booths with Big Ben in the background:
Then, Westminster Abbey. Could I really go to England and not see the church where Kate and Wills stifled smiles while marrying each other, because apparently marriage is a serious affair and you can't possibly be happy during the ceremony? Of course I couldn't. Westminster Abbey at night is a creepy and wonderful sight to see:
After all of this, we went to Krista's house and she whipped up some delicious pasta for dinner. Lots of veggies...mmmm.
Then, Winter Wonderland! This place is the Calgary Stampede turned Christmas. It was so enchanting! You wander around with your beer or mulled wine (yes! finally!) and take in all the bright lights of the rides. And as Krista and I discovered, a carnie is a carnie, no matter what city you are in. They are equally as strange in London as they are in Calgary - and likely have equal amounts of missing teeth. We took pictures with basically every Christmas statue we could find. I took my obligatory photo of me kissing a statue while on vacation. This one was a little bit more exciting though because as I went in for the kiss, Santa almost fell over. He almost got a little more than he bargained for, lucky old man:
After all the festivities of the day we were still gung-ho so we grabbed Starbucks coffees and went to Piccadilly Circus. I got hit on in the bathroom by an Italian man. The two washrooms shared a common sink area. While drying my hands, I was approached. Here's a tip, boys - don't try to pick up a girl in a dirty place like a bathroom. It won't go well for you.
Then we waited forever for a bus, since the train was out of commission and there was an accident blocking buses from getting through. It was an exciting trip back to Krista's, but we made it, exhausted.