Saturday, July 23, 2011

Goodbye London!

It has been a great experience here in London this summer. I have learned a lot about myself as a person, and I think that I can come out of this being a much stronger person in the end. I can be much more independent, and most importantly go with the flow. I have learned to live and let go, I can't hold onto every little thing in life that bothers me. I need to just deal with what I can control.

I have also made life long friends while I have been here. It is sad that we have to go our separate ways, but we will meet up again in life I'm sure, and thanks to technology we can keep in touch. I have to look at all of the positives in life, and remember to go with the flow, don't try to control and plan every little thing in life. It never works and always comes back to bite you in the butt.

Well I'm out! It's been fun with my blog, and I hope that you have enjoyed my London adventures. I might even start another blog when I get back to keep you updated on all of the random things that go on in my life, and how this whole "going with the flow" thing goes. I'm off to the airport! Wish me luck trying to take all of my luggage with me!


Last Day in London

Well yesterday was my last day in London. Sad, but exciting all at the same time!

Caitlin and I met in Piccadilly Circus, did some last souvenir shopping and then went our separate ways for the day. I continued walking around Piccadilly Circus, made my way to Leicester Square. I went into M&M world! It was amazing. Four floors of fun as they say. I can't believe how much crap they can make into M&M stuff!! But it was still cool to look around at thats for sure. After that...I made my way to Covent Garden walked around there. I went into a store that all natural cosmetics. It was a very cool store! I bought 2 things there, I couldn't help it. After that I went to Trafalger Square and sat in the sun for a little while.

I decided to come home because I was hungry. I came home and made more pasta...and finished watching the O.C. finally!

Caitlin and I met up one more time, and went to see the Tower Bridge at night. It was very pretty thats for sure! We went to Trafalger Square to see if it was lit up, but it wasn't kind of a let down. We walked through Leicester Square and then went into M&M world. I had to show Caitlin how awesome it was!! Then we went to Piccadilly Circus to see it at night, kind of like NYC. So then we had to go our separate ways, kind of sad actually! I made my way home finished all the last minute packing and went to bed! Last night in London! (pictures will be posted later)

Thursday, July 21, 2011

London Eye

Today I was woken up by the maid that comes into empty the garbage and vacuum my room. I can't believe I slept until 12:30. Oh well, I guess I needed it. I was up late reading last night, I decided that because I have time for myself I can actually read a book that I want to read, not something I have to read. I am determined to finish Deception Point by Dan Brown in 2 nights. I leave the day after tomorrow!!

But after I got up out of bed, I packed all of my clothes, except what I want to wear the last two days! I am definatily going to need to pay the extra charge for a heavy bag. It will be a humorous sight to see me going through the tube with all of my stuff. I really had no idea what to do today, so what better to do than go walk up and down Oxford Street. I did't really want to spend money, so I just went and window shopped. I went into the Body Shop, and they gave me a mini makeover, that was fun. I felt pretty for the rest of the day. After that I went to Liberty. I had to go there because Professor Wollan suggested that I go there. It was awesome, and fun to look at stuff but wayyy to expensive. I continued walking down Oxford street, and then came across a store that was shutting down. They sold shoes. I bought two pairs of boots for 25 pounds total. SCORE! They're super cute too. 

I had some time to go home and kill, so of course I watched an episode of the O.C. When 8pm rolled around, I went to meet Caitlin to go on the London Eye. That was awesome, it was beautiful at night. I of course took lots of pictures of the same thing but it was still awesome!! Totally suggested that you do it at night. 

Now it is time for me to read again! Goodnight. 

pretty sunset


Dinner and a Movie

So I'm officially done with doing actual work here in London. My internship was done last week, but I had my presentation and final this week and now i'm done. My final was yesterday. That means that I didn't do anything really exciting all day. I stayed in my room and studied. See, not exciting.

After the final Caitlin came over and we ordered Papa John's. This was definitely the highlight of my day. The highlight of my food experience over here too. I have never looked forward to pizza so much in my life!!!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Olympics in a year? I think yes....

Today started out like any other day. Wake up to an alarm clock, put on the snooze for about a half an hour, then finally get up to start the day off. 

Today was Sam's last day here in London, she is probably getting home about now as I am writing this blog post. We decided to go to Camden Market when it opened so that she could do something the last day here. Unfortunately when you get there 15 minutes after it opens, there's not a whole lot going on. We still got to walk around and I had a wonderful bottle of freshly squeezed orange juice again! So good, I love it. We only got to walk around for about an hour before we had to head back so that she could get her bags and depart for the airport. I walked her to the tube station, and then went separate ways from there of course. I am not looking to have to get all of my luggage to the airport on my own, it will not be fun. 

So Caitlin and I met up to go to the Olympic Venues. I just wanted to see it before I left, and going to see the venues made me want to come back for the games! I can't even imagine what it will be like in a year from now. It will be amazing. We couldn't really do a whole lot there, but walk around a few different areas and take some pictures of the construction. 

Aquatics Center!! <3

Main Venue, Opening and closing ceremonies will be here

After that, we couldn't really do anything else so we decided to head back to go to Camden Market again because Caitlin hadn't been since we went at closing a few weeks ago, and I needed to get something that I regretted not getting before. So we got on the DLR train that went from the Olympic Venue to Bank station so that we could switch there and go up to Camden. We had to make a transfer on the DLR and I found the big financial district outside of London. If I were to ever work in London, I'm sure that would be where I would work. Its weird because its outside of London, but still considered to be in london. So its on the outskirts, but then there is this little grouping of huge buildings that were all just Citi, Barclays, Bank of America, KPMG, Credit Suisse, and many more. I couldn't even imagine working there in a few years from now, or even a year. 

Financial Heaven

So we made our connection, arrived at bank and went to switch lines to get to Camden. This became an issue where there was an announcement over the loud speakers "due to a reported alert, all passengers must evacuate immediately." Caitlin and I were very confused and really didn't know what was going on, but we made sure to get out of there. Once we were leaving a bunch of maitenance people were watching the videos in the observation room, and then there were a bunch of fire trucks that zoomed past us. So we were still wondering what was going on, but we caught a bus and headed towards Angel to get on a tube station we knew, and was far away from Bank. So when we got to Angel there was a notice saying that due to a reported fire there would be no stopping at Bank, but we were going the other way so that was fine. It just always seems to be Caitlin and myself that run into problems and bad luck. Oh well, we made it there, walked around for a little bit. 

When we decided to leave I went to Kings Cross to get a tshirt from the London 2012 store, it was cheaper there than at the actual site. Pretty pumped. So after that we went our seperate ways. I got to Angel and was wondering what I was going to have for dinner, of course all I have left is cup of soups or pasta. Of course I had pasta. With the pasta I wanted to have garlic bread, so I stopped at the 24 hour mart that usually has some, they were out. The texaco was out, and the other 24 hour mart didn't carry any. So I had to walk all the way to the grocery store just to get a simple thing of garlic bread. Oh well it was so good and worth it!! :)

Other than that I watched some episodes of the O.C. and read some for my final tomorrow. I'm getting ready to go to bed now!! 3 Days!


Monday, July 18, 2011

Today was my presentation. So the only thing that I have school related left is my final! WOOHOO!. My presentation sucked though, I had so much information to spit out that I totally blanked and had a hard time coming up with exactly what I wanted to say. But its done so all is good. On my way home though it DOWNPOURED! It sucked, but hey I made it home and could change which was good.

After that I sat in my room updating my blog, and the Sam got home from the zoo. We went to the Eagle for a dinner before she leaves tomorrow. I can't believe its been a week already, seems like she just got here. We sat there for a few hours just talking having a great time. Other than that I slept in until 1pm today, that tells you how tired I really was!! I'm going to go to bed here soon too.


Heading Back to London

So Sunday it was the day to head home. I was ready to head home though, I was tired of hearing French, and I had seen all of the big sights and was ready to head home. Well to London.

So, in the morning we went to the market in Paris. It was very sweet. It had a lot of food and flowers. I liked looking at the pretty flowers. I wanted to buy some because they were very pretty and I had never seen any like that before, but I didn't know what I would do with them. It was fun to look at all of the amazing fresh produce and meat cuts. On our way to the next destination I got a crape it was sooo good, sausage and cheese of course.

We then headed off to the Champs Elysees. Basically this was like oxford street in London. It had a bunch of high quality stores on the street and was amazing to look at. I swear I was drooling at the bags in the Louis Vuitton store, and the shoes of course! I wanted to buy one so bad, and if it wasn't more than I was expecting I totally would have come back with a new Louis Vuitton bag from Paris. So we walked up that for quite a way until we came to the arc de triomphe. We took a lot of pictures of that, it was HUGE! From there we wanted to go to the Eiffel tower to take pictures in the day time, because we had of course taken a lot of pictures at night, but none in the day time. So pictures galore, fun times. Before we got on the Metro, I bought a painting from a man in the tunnels below the arc. They were selling paintings and pictures, and I wanted to buy one because it was very similar to New Orleans, and I bought a painting there, so I figured why not!? It is great, and the best thing was that I got it for a fraction of the price because I bargained to no end! I was the wheeler and dealer!

Before we headed back to the hotel to get our bags we went to the Fat Tire Bike tour office, because I had regretted not getting a tshirt from there, so we went back so that I could buy one! YAY! After that our time in Paris was almost to an end. We ate lunch at a cafe, and we got the most delicious meals ever! It was a meal deal so you got an appetizer, entree, and a desert for 16 euros. Such a good idea. So I got some sort of salad, then steak, and a chocolate mousse! SOOOO GOOOD!!!

Then of course we had to leave, go to the train and head back to London. That was all fine and dandy except that on the train I sat at a table with 3 children and a mother that didn't care what they did. I was very annoyed, and all I wanted to do was sleep!!! Oh well, I got a lot of reading done, and everyone around me felt bad for me. So yeah it was a long train ride home. Then once we got home we had to carry our bags home...that sucked too. Anyways we finally made it home, and I uploaded my pictures to my computer and passed out. I was so tired.
Sideways but you get the idea


Birthday in Paris

Not many people can say that they celebrated their 21 birthday in Paris. Well I can. So Saturday we woke up an hour later than we wanted to, not on purpose. It was a complete accident...our phones didn't change back from the time difference so yeah, our day started an hour late. It was ok though, it all worked out. We went to the Louvre and the line wasn't long at all! So we of course made our way to the Mona Lisa first saw a bunch of stuff a long the way. Then we wanted to go to another wing, but the person at the check in took our ticket so we couldn't really leave without getting back in! So I stood there and pretty much just stood there until I pissed them off and they called over to the other wing we wanted to go to. We got in to see the old moats of the louvre...pretty sweet.

So we left the Louvre and made our way to Notre Dame, took some pictures and then left to go back to our hotel. We took a much needed nap...and then got ready to go out for dinner and the Eiffel tower. Our dinner was great! Probably the best part of the night. We went to a fondue place, and I had to climb over the table to sit down. But it was because it was such a small place. And then we drank wine out of baby bottles. Such a great experience. So then we made our way to the Eiffel tower to meet up with some other people...and because it was raining there was no line! That was nice. But I would have much rather it not be raining. So we got in the elevator and made the long trek to the top. It was extremely windy and cold up there. We couldn't find the champaign I got half of my birthday wish. But yeah. I didn't get to wear my new shoes either because it was so windy cold and wet that I was afraid that I would fall! Not taking that chance. After that the rest of my birthday was anticlimactic, we went back to the hotel. HAHA! Sleep was a wonderful thing though.


Dominating Paris

Friday morning was chaos. The alarm was set for plenty of time for us to get ready to go to Paris, but of course we slept through it and woke up 5 minutes before we were supposed to be at the train station. So it was a good thing we had packed the night before, so we threw on our clothes and ran out the door. We finally made it to meet Caitlin at King's Cross, Sam only had a few minutes before the check in closed for her train, so we went our separate ways.  Caitlin and I went to get our converter from UK to annoying. Then we made our way to Costa to get breakfast and a drink. I got an iced coffee because I was super hot, and the iced coffee was more like a room temperature watered down coffee. It worked though.

We went and got in queue to get on our train, and had our bags checked and got more stamps in our passports and loaded onto the train. I sat next to a lovely woman that was from Greece. We chatted and then I did some reading for our final that is Wednesday. It wasn't a bad train ride. It was pretty cool though going through the Chunnel, although there was no climax, really you just went through a tunnel and then came out the other side. We finally arrived in Paris at the train station. We met up with Sam right away and made our way to the hotel. It was interesting trying to find our way around with no least we had Sam though who knew a little bit of French. 

So we got to our stop, got out of the station and made our way to the hotel. I was afraid that no one would understand English but fortunately the man at the front desk of our hotel was very nice and knew english. So we were on the top floor, and thank god there was a lift to get us up because going up 6 floors would have sucked. So we got in there and were pleasantly surprised. It was a 2 star hotel, but for the location and price it really wasn't bad at all. We had a balcony with a lovely view.

So it was time for us to head out. (I'm not going to even attempt to spell or even remember what the names of the places that we went to were) We went to a big cathedral on a big hill. It had an amazing view, it was beautiful. The weather was great. It was such a beautiful place. We took some pictures and then made our way through the "red light" district of Pairs to get to the Moulon Rouge we took some pictures and left. We went to the Fat Tire Bike tour place to make sure that we could get into the night tour. We bought tickets, or well....Sam bought me mine for my Birthday! It was great. 

Ben, our tour guide telling us to DOMINATE
While we were waiting for the tour to start we went and got some food, it was cheap but gross. I know where not to eat anymore in Paris. But it filled us up for the tour. So we mad our way back to the tour place, waited around for our group and then it was ready to get our bikes. We got on our bikes and then made our way to meet our tour guide. His name was Ben, and he told us to Dominate Paris! We needed to take over the roads so that we wouldn't get hit. We rode our California Cruisers through Paris. I felt very European, it was a lot of fun. So we went to Notre Dame, and on the bridge we were standing on, there was a lot of locks on the bridge. He said that they were the locks of love. If you met someone in Paris that you wanted to lock your love together you would go to your favorite bridge in Paris, write your names on it, and then throw the key into the river. He said that the locks get cut off every couple of months because it gets so heavy that they start to pull the railings down. 

Then we went to get ice cream. It was all natural ice cream. SO GOOD! And even better, Johnny Depp has an apartment above where we got our ice cream. So we continued around Paris, saw a few more things (like the Louvre) and then finally got to the boat. Boat you ask? Yes, it included a boat tour down the river! We also got red wine to drink too. It was a lovely ride. I eventually gave up on taking pictures because they never came out good because the boat was I saw the sights and talked to Ben about how I could possibly do it next summer! Super cool idea. We got off the boat, and made a stop at the Eiffel Tower at night. It was about 10 minutes until midnight (the first minute of my birthday). Every hour on the hour the tower would start to sparkle, so Sam and Caitlin got everyone to sing happy birthday to me. So the first minute of my birthday consisted of everyone from the Fat Tire Bike Tour singing Happy Birthday, and the Eiffel tower sparkling. So then it was time to ride back to the office and head off for the night. We dropped off our bikes, and we were hungry again and since our tour was 5 hours, the only thing that was open at 12:30am was McDonalds. 

I got a chicken sandwich and fries of course. Then we made our way to the metro and home to the hotel. Let me just say that I officially hate the Paris metro at night. We were almost to our stop, and then there was this man that was dressed up as snow white and his friends tried to make their way to sit down, well that failed. He fell into Caitlin's lap and as that happened his cheap alcoholic drink spilled all down me. I was not very thrilled to say the least. We made it home FINALLY!! Then it was time to shower, eat my McDonalds and then go to sleep. 


Sam's DELISH Dinner

So, Thursday was my last day at work wich was GREAT! So excited.

I came home, met Samantha and she had been to Borough Market, which is a food market here in London. She had bought some great food, cheese, sausages, green beans, bacon, and an onion. She made us dinner, it was AMAZING.

Home made Mac & Cheese, best I've ever had. The cheese made it so much better because it was such high quality cheese. I know you may be thinking how big of a difference? Well a huge difference. It was so good! Then we had green beans with caramelized onions and bacon. And lastly we had two different types of sausage. It was delish.

Then we had french bread with brie and cherries on top. Such a good dinner the night before we headed off to Paris.