Monday, June 30, 2014

London: Abbey Road

On a trip in my class we decided that we were going to visit Abbey Road. The class I am taking is The Cult of Celebrity and so visiting a site that was made famous by celebrities was a requirement for my class.

We took the tube to the closest station and walked the half mile to Abbey Road. I expected it to be amazing and mystical, but in all honesty it was just a road with a cross walk.

It was not until I saw Abbey Road studios and all of the Beatles praise on the walls surrounding the studio that I got excited to be there.

I got the chance to write my own message on the wall by the studio. After making my mark at Abbey Road I got the chance to walk across the cross walk.

It is not the exact same angle as the album cover, but it can be seen and recognized that I am on the same street.

This little adventure was an exciting one for me and to any Beatles fan. After the trip I found myself listening to the album for two days after.

It seems I will be having more smaller local trips while I am here. I am noticing that my money is disappearing rather quickly when I travel far distances. I am doing my best to keep a tighter grip on my money, but living in London is expensive.

So for now I will go. I still and a student and do have work to do. Cheerio!

Wales: Big Pit Mine and Tintern Abbey

After quite a restful sleep in the hotel we ventured downstairs for a continental breakfast. I ate several croissants and had green tea. While there I also snagged a handful of more tea to take home with me. I have listened to my Nana's advice. :)

After breakfast we drove to The Big Pit mine.

I could not take photos while in the mine, but it was an incredible experience. I got to walk around the mine and see what it was like to be a miner in the time of coal mining. It was eerie and silent as we walked through the dark.

After the tour I got some pictures of the landscape.

After the mining tour we got to get lunch in Henry V home town of Monmouth. I got tea and some more Welsh cawl for lunch.

After lunch we went to our last destination, Tintern Abbey. Built in 1131 and the second Cistercian foundation in Britain, and the first in Wales. It was rebuilt in the gothic style in the 13th century. When King Henry VIII lived Tintern Abbey was robbed of all valuables and left to ruin. Today it is the oldest and best survived Abbey ruin in Wales.

It was a spectacular view and I loved wandering the halls where monks used to worship and songs used to echo across the halls. It was a peaceful place and I loved seeing everyone respect the ground they walked on.

After the abbey we returned to London where I went back to my flat and went straight to bed. The four days of travel left me exhausted, but blessed.

I am glad I got to share these travels with you and I plan to share more as my time in London continues.


Wales: Caerleon Roman Amphitheatre, Caerphilly Castle, and St. Fagans.

So after my fabulous time in Cardiff I turned around and headed right back to Wales to explore the countryside.

We started off in Caerleon to see the Roman Amphitheatre. It's amazing to think that the Romans were here in England. When one thinks of the Romans they think of Italy and all of the Roman architecture there. Well, they did get into England and built lives there.

After our time in Caerleon we then traveled to Caerphilly Castle. It was not a long drive, but I got to look at the Welsh countryside.

On the way there I spotted my first castle!

It was not a medieval castle, it was a renaissance castle. Doesn't matter to me though. A castle is a castle and there are none in America for me to look at.

The next castle I saw was Caerphilly Castle.

It was amazing to walk around this castle and think that it used to be a grand home. This is a castle that was not built for a king, but for a noble that was close with King Edward II of England.

As I walked around I imagined myself in that time period. How full of life this castle must have been. We stayed for a few hours and then made our way to St. Fagan's.

St. Fagan's is a museum of traditional Welsh houses and castles that have been moved and built back into this plot of land. I did not take any pictures of the houses for I ran to a small tea house to have high tea before they closed. 

 It was my first time having tea in bone china and having the option to have one or two lumps of sugar. Although, my time in London has changed my tea buds and I am now only putting milk in my tea, but while it was there I added one lump to my second cup just for the sake of it.

After St. Fagan's we drove to our hotel and got the rest of the day free. The girl I shared a hotel room with walked to a nearby Nando's and got take away. We then went back to the hotel room and watched documentaries on Stonehenge because we are cool like that.

We then went to bed early for the next day was going to be just as busy.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

London: Doctor Who Experience

Today was the day! The day that was going to make my fandom heart soar! My was it the perfect day. I went on the Doctor Who walking tour of Cardiff to all of the filming locations. I ran like a little child all over the main entrance taking pictures of everything. I also had my first tea and scones in the museum.

The actual interactive walk-through itself, I was such a child. Pushing myself to the front and squealing with delight as the Daleks attacked and my eyes peeled open as I walked through the forest of angels. in the end I walked into the museum part and stood in front of the original TARDIS used in the Hartnell years and cried. My heart swelled with happiness that I could not control. I took pictures of everything I could and had the employees take pictures of me in front of everything I could.

To explain everything in writing is not possible, I will just post all of my favorite photos of that day here.