A few nice kids bathroom collections pictures I found:
Image by Wootang01
The flight arrived on time and the twelve hours although on board passed rapidly and with out incident. To be confident, the good quality of the Cathay Pacific service was exemplary when once more.
Heathrow reminds me of Newark International. The décor comes straight out of the sterile 80’s and is significantly less an eyesore than an insipid background to the rhythm of human activity, such hustle and bustle, at the fore. There undoubtedly are faces from all races present, generating a wealthy mosaic of humanity which is refreshing if not entirely revitalizing right after swimming for so extended in a sea of Chinese faces in Hong Kong.
Internet access is sealed in England, it seems. Absolutely nothing is free of charge almost everything is egregiously monetized from the wireless hotspots down to the desktop terminals. I guess Hong Kong has spoiled me with its abundant, totally free access to the details superhighway.
In spite of staying in a room with 5 other backpackers, I have been sleeping nicely. The mattress and pillow are firm my earplugs preserve the noise out and the sleeping quarters are as dark as a cave when the lights are out, and only as vibrant as, maybe, a dreary rainy day when on. All in all, St. Paul’s is a superb location to remain for the gregarious, adventurous, and penurious city explorer – couchsurfing could be a tenable alternative I’ll test for subsequent time.
Yesterday Connie and I gorged ourselves at the borough market exactly where there were all sorts of delectable, savory victuals. There was certainly a European flavor to the meals fair: simmering sausages were to be found everywhere and much as the meat was plentiful, and genuine, so were the dairy delicacies, in the form of myriad rounds of cheese, stacked higher behind checkered tabletops. Of course, we washed these tasty morsels down with copious amounts of alcohol that flowed from cups as although amber waterfalls. For the initial time I tried mulled wine, which tasted like warm, rancid fruit punch – the perfect tonic for a drizzling London day, I suppose. We later killed the afternoon at the pub, shooting the breeze whilst imbibing a number of diminutive half-pints in the procedure. Receiving smashed at four in the afternoon doesn’t seem like such a negative factor any longer, specially when you are possessing enjoyable in the organization of pals I can much more appreciate why the English do it so much!
Earlier in the day, we visited the Tate Contemporary. Its turbine space lived up to its prominent billing what with a giant spider, total with bulbous egg sac, anchoring the retrospective exhibit. The permanent galleries, as well, have been a delight upon which to feast one’s eyes. Picasso, Warhol and Pollock ruled the chambers of the upper floors with the products of their lithe wrists and I ended up becoming a massive fan of cubism, although establishing a disdain for abstract art and its vacuous pictures, which, I feel, are devoid of each motivation and emotion.
My first trip yesterday morning was to Emirates Stadium, house of the Arsenal Gunners. It towers imperiously over the surrounding neighborhood however for all its majesty, the location confident was quiet! Organization did choose up later, nevertheless, once the armory shop opened, and dozens of fans descended on it like bees to a hive. I, also, swooped in on a present-getting mission, and wound up getting a book for Godfrey, a scarf for a student, and a jersey – on sale, of course – for excellent measure.
I’m sitting in the Westminster Abbey Museum now, resting my weary legs and burdened back. So far, I’ve been verily impressed with what I’ve seen, such a confluence of splendor and history just before me that it would need days to absorb it all, when regretfully I can spare only a couple of hours. My favorite component of the abbey is the poets corner exactly where no significantly less a literary luminary than Samuel Johnson rests in peace – his bust confirms his homely presence, which was so vividly captured in his biography.
For lunch I had a steak and ale pie, served with mash, taken alongside a Guinness, added cold – 2 degrees centigrade colder, the bartender explained. It went down effectively, like all the other delicious meals I’ve had in England and no doubt by now I have grown accustomed to inebriation at half past two. In addition to, Liverpool have been playing inspired football against Blackburn and my lunch was full.
Having had my fill of football, I decided to skip my ticket scalping endeavor at Stamford Bridge and instead wandered more than to the British Museum to inspect their extensive collections. Along the way, my eye caught a theater, its doors wide open and admitting clients. With significantly rapidity, I subsequently checked the show occasions, saw that a efficiency was set to commence, and at final rushed to the box workplace to buy a discounted ticket – if you get in touch with a 40 pound ticket a deal, that is. That is how I grabbed a seat to watch Hairspray in the West Finish.
The show was worth forty pounds. The music was addictive and the stage design and effects had been not so significantly kitschy as delightfully stimulating – the pulsating background lights have been at after scintillating and penetrating. The actors as well had been vivacious, oozing charisma even though they danced and delivered lines dripping in humor. Hairspray is a high quality production and most definitely advised.
At breakfast I sat across from a man who asked me to which nation Hong Kong had been returned – China or Japan. That was fairly funny. Then he started spitting on my meals as he spoke, entirely oblivious to my breakfast becoming the receptacle in which the fruit of his inner churl was becoming placed. I guess I recognize the convention nowadays of covering one’s mouth whilst speaking and masticating at the identical time!
We in fact conversed on London life in common, and I praised London for its racial integration, the act of which is a prodigious leap of faith for any society, trying to be inclusive, accepting all sorts of men and women. It wasn’t as even though the Brits have been attempting in vain to be all factors to all guys, using Spanish with the visitors from Spain, German with the Germans and, even, Hindi with the Indians, regardless of whether or not Hindi was their native language not even contemplating the absurd thought of encouraging the international adoption of their language thereby fully keeping English in English hands and enabling its proud polyglots to "practice" their languages. Certainly, the attempt of the Londoners to avail themselves of the rich mosaic of ethnic information, and to seek a typical understanding with a ubiquitous English accent is an exemplar, and the bedrock for any planet city.
I celebrated Jesus’ resurrection at the St. Andrew’s Street Church in Cambridge. The parishioners of this Baptist church were warm and affable, and I met a number of of them, including a single going to (Halliday) linguistics scholar from Zhongshan university in Guangzhou, who in fact had visited my tiny City University of Hong Kong in 2003. The service itself was more conventional and the believers fewer in number than the "progressive" solutions at any of the charismatic, evangelical churches in HK yet that is what makes this part of the physique of Christ distinctive besides, the message was as brief as a powerpoint slide, and informative no significantly less the power word which spoke into my life getting a question from John 21:22 – what is that to you?
Big trees exquisite lawns and old, pointy colleges that’s Cambridge in a nutshell. Sitting here, sipping on a half-pint of Woodforde’s Wherry, I’ve had a leisurely, if not languorous, day so far my sole duty consisting of walking about although absorbing the verdant atmosphere as although a sponge, camera in tow.
I am back at the sublime beer, savoring a pint of Sharp’s DoomBar prior to my fish and chips arrive the drinking age is 18, but anyone whose visage even hints of youthful brilliance is most likely to get carded these days, the bartender told me. The youth drinking culture here is practically as twisted as the university drinking culture in America.
My remain in Cambridge, relaxing and desultory as it may be, is about to end after this late lunch. I an not certain if there is anything left to see, save for the American graveyard which rests an not possible two miles away. I have had a wonderful time in this town and am thankful for the access into its living history – the residents here have to demonstrate exceptional patience and tolerance what with so many vacationers ambling on the streets, peering – and photographing – into each and every nook and cranny.
There are no rubbish bins, but I’ve seen on the streets numerous mixed race couples in which the males tend to be white – the women also belonging to a light colored ethnicity, typically some sort of Asian as nicely saw some black dudes and Indian dudes with white chicks.
Individuals here hold doors, even at the entrance to the toilet. Often it seems as even though they are going out on a limb, just waiting for the one who will take the responsibility for the door from them, at which point I rush out to relieve them of such a fortuitous burden.
I visited the British Museum this morning. The two hours I spent there did neither myself nor the exhibits any justice since there genuinely is as well considerably to survey, adequate captivating stuff to last an complete day, I think. The bottomless well of artifacts from antiquity, drawing from sources as diverse as Korea, and Mesopotamia, is a credit to the British empire, without whose looting most of this remarkable booty would be unavailable for our purview much better, I feel, for these priceless treasures to be open to all in the grandest supermarket of history than away from human eyes, and worst but, in the hands of unscrupulous collectors or in the rubbish bin, possibly.
Irene and I took in the ballet Giselle at The Royal Opera House in the afternoon. The developing is a plush marvel, and a testament to this city’s really like for the arts. The ballet itself was satisfying, the first half being superior to the second, in which the nimble dancers demonstrated their phenomenal dexterity in, of all areas, a graveyard covered in a cloak of smoke and darkness. I admit, their dance of the dead, in such a gloomy necropolis, did strike me as, strange.
Two amicable ladies from Kent convinced me to go to their hometown tomorrow, where, they told me, the genuine, "working" Leeds Castle and the mighty interesting home of Charles Darwin await.
I am nursing a pint of Green King Ruddles and asking yourself about the profusion of British ales and lagers the British have completed a excellent deed for the globe by producing an interminable line of low-alcohol session beers that can be enjoyed at breakfast, lunch, tea and dinner and their disservice is this: in addition to this inexhaustible supply of inexpensive beer ensnaring my inner alcoholic, I feel myself placing on my freshman fifteen, virtually ten years right after the reality I am going to have to run a bit harder back in Hong Kong if I want to burn all this malty fuel off.
Irene recommended I stop by the National Art Gallery given that we were in the location and it was an hour properly spent. The gallery currently presents a particular exhibit on Picasso, the non-ticketed section of which attributes many seductive renderings, including David spying on Bathsheba – repeated in clever variants – and parodies of other masters’ performs. Moreover, the major gallery homes two fabulous portraits by Joshua Reynolds, who happens to be favored of mine, he in life being a close buddy of Samuel Johnson – I passed by Boswells, exactly where its namesake initial met Johnson, on my way to the opera house.
I prayed final evening, and went via my list, lifting everyone on it up to the Lord. That felt good that God is alive now, and ever present in my life and in the lives of my brothers and sisters.
Doubtless, then, I have felt fairly wistful, as even though a specter in the land of the living, getting in a location where religious fervor, it seems, is a point of the past, a trifling for many, to be hidden away in the opaque corners of centuries-old cathedrals that are much more pricey tourist destinations than liberating houses of worship these days. Certainly, I have however to see anybody pray, outdoors of the Easter service which I attended in Cambridge – for such an ecstatic moment in verily a grand church, would you think that it was only attended by at most 3 dozen spirited ones. The individuals of England, and Europe in basic, have, it is my hope, only locked away the Word, relegating it to the quiet vault of their hearts. May it be taken out in the sudden pause before mealtimes and in the nevertheless crisp mornings and cool, silent nights. There is nevertheless hope for a revival in this place, for faith to rise like that splendid sun each morning. God would enjoy to rescue them, to provide them in this day, it is particular.
I wonder what Londoners consider, if something at all, about their police state which, like a vine in the shadows, has taken root in all corners of day-to-day life, from the terrorist notifications in the underground, which implore Londoners to report all issues suspicious, to the pair of dogs which eagerly stroll by way of Euston. What tends to make this all the more amazing is the reality that even the United States, the indomitable nemesis of the fledgling, rebel order, does not dare bombard its citizens with such worry mongering these days, especially with Obama in workplace maybe we’ve grown wise in these past few years to the dubious returns of surrendering civil liberties to the state, of obtaining our bags checked everywhere – London Eye Hairspray and The Royal Opera Residence check bags in London even though the museums do not somehow, that does not add up for me.
I am in a majestic bookshop on New Street in Birmingham, and surely to confirm my suspicions, there are just as a lot of books on the death of Christianity in Britain as there are books which try to murder Christianity everywhere. I did discover, however, a nice biography on John Wesley by Roy Hattersley and The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis. I might pick up the former.
Lunch with Sally was pleasant and mirthful. We dined at a French restaurant nearby New Street – yes, Birmingham is a cultural capitol! Sally and I both tried their omelette, even though her boyfriend had the fish, without chips. Conversation was light, the levity was there and so was our reminiscing about those fleeting moments in the course of our first year in Hong Kong it is wonderful how friendships can resume so suddenly with a smile. On their recommendation, I am on my way to Warwick Castle – they also suggested that I pay a visit to Cadbury Globe, but they can not take on further guests at the moment, the tourist workplace staff informed me, considerably to my disappointment!
Visiting Warwick Castle really made for a fantastic day out. The castle, parts of which have been established by William the Conquerer in 1068, is as significantly a kitschy tourist trap as a meticulous preservation of history, at instances a sillier version of Ocean Park even though at other individuals a dignified dedication to a most glorious, inexorably English previous. The castle caters to all visitors and not surprisingly, that which delighted all audiences was a giant trebuchet siege engine, which for the 5 p.m. efficiency hurled a fireball high and far into the air – fantastic! Taliban beware!
I’m leaving on a jet plane this evening never know when I’ll be back in England once more. I will miss this quirky, yet endearing spot and that I shall miss Irene and Tom who so generously welcomed me into their home, fed me, and suffered my use of their toilet and shower goes without having saying. I am grateful for God’s several blessings on this trip.
On the itinerary these days is a trip to John Wesley’s residence, followed by a pay a visit to to the Imperial War Museum. Already this morning I picked up a tube of Oilatum, a week late maybe, which Teri recommended I use to treat this obstinate, dermal weakness of mine – I am pleased to report that my skin has stopped crying.
John Wesley’s property is alive and properly. Services are nonetheless held in the chapel daily and its crypt, so far from becoming a cellar for the dead, is a vibrant, spacious museum in which all issues Wesley are on display – I in no way realized how much of an iconic figure he became in England at the height of this idol frenzy, ironic in itself, he have to have been as popular as the Beatles have been at their apex. The house itself is a multi-story edifice with narrow, precipitous staircases and spacious rooms decorated in an 18th century style.
I discovered Samuel Johnson’s property inside a maze of red brick hidden alongside Fleet Street. To be in the home of the man who wrote the English dictionary, and whose indefatigable really like for obscure words became the inspiration for my personal lexical obsession, this, by far, is the climax of my pay a visit to to England! The best undoubtedly has been saved for last.
There are a multitude of portraits hanging about the residence like ornaments on a tree. Each and every likeness has its own story, meticulously retold on the crib sheets in each and every area. Celebrities abound, including David Garrick and Sir Joshua Reynolds, who painted several of the finer images in the house. I have created a specific affinity for Oliver Goldsmith, of whom Boswell writes, "His person was short, his countenance coarse and vulgar, his deportment that of a scholar awkwardly affecting the straightforward gentleman. It appears as although I, also, could use a much more flattering description of myself!
I regretfully could not cease to attempt the curry in England I guess the CityU canteen’s take on the dish will have to do. I did, even so, have the opportune job of flirting with the cute Cathay Pacific counter employees who checked me in. She was beautiful in red, light powder on her cheeks, with true diamond earrings, she mentioned and her little, delicate face, commanded by a posh British accent rendered her positively irresistible, electrifying. Not only did she grant me an aisle seat but she had the gumption to return my fawning with zest she have to be a pro at this by now.
I saw her once more as she was pulling double-duty, collecting tickets prior to boarding. She remembered my quest for curry and in the fog of infatuation, where nary a man has been produced, I fumbled my words like the sloppy kid who has had also considerably punch. I am just an amateur, alas, an "Oliver Goldsmith" with the ladies – I got no game – booyah!
Some final, consequential bits: because of the chavs, Burberry no longer sells these fashionable baseball caps due to the fact of the IRA, rubbish bins are no longer a commodity on the streets of London, and as a result, the streets and the Underground of the city are a soiled mess and because of other terrorists from distant, much more arid lands, going via a Western airport has taken on the tedium of perfunctory procedure that doesn’t make me feel any safer from my invisible enemies.
At last, I saw so many Indians functioning at Heathrow that I could have simply mistaken the location for Mumbai. Their presence surprised me since their portion of the common population certainly must be much less than their portion of Heathrow staff, indicating some mysterious hiring bias. Regardless, they do a superb job with cursory airport checks, and in basic are absurdly funny and witty when not tactless.
That’s all for England!