Quickly Watson, to Westminster Abby!

There must be something in the cosmic order that wont allow tired people to sleep. All that fresh air and I couldn’t get to bed. Once again the room had gone cold and it sounded like there was a party in the room across the landing. Lucky me, oh well the day wasn’t effected too much by lack of sleep.

Was a little late getting up, but I wasn’t late getting the bus to London with the group. Breakfast this morning was a chocolate filled crescent, a bowl of applesauce and a glass of OJ. Aimee, two others and I went back to London, catching the 9 am bus. Normally it takes an hour to get from Oxford to London. Today it took two hours. Not sure why but it did. The group had made planes to go to the 11:15 service at Westminster Abby. That didn’t happen the way we had planned.

We got off the bus and went down to the subway at Victoria Station. They have an all day pass for 8.95 pounds. We each got one; this really helped with getting around the city today. Two people in our group split off once we got our tickets.

For us that remained, our first stop of the day was home to a famous detective that lived at 221b Backer Street. The Sherlock Holmes Museum. Now the actual museum in’t where it should be in the building numbering on baker street. It’s in the 300’s not next to 223 or 221. Go figure. You can find the place pretty easily due to the line of people waiting to get into the four floors devoted Sherlock. At first we stood in this line, not knowing that you had to go into the gift shop to get your tickets to view the place.

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Even the gift shop is done up in the Victorian style that would have been typical of the character. I would have thought that it would have been violin music that would be playing but it was a lady singing. You have to go all the way to the back of the shop to get your ticket, which is a great marketing scheme. And it works. I picked out the copy of the complete works of  Sir Arthur Conan Doyle that I was going to buy after I toured the museum.

Then we waited in line where we had stated. There was a man dressed as an old fashioned police man standing guard by the door. It was this man that when a bell rang inside the house, let us into take a look around. After going up 14 steps you reach the first floor which is the parlor and Sherlock’s bedroom. In the parlor we were invited to sit in the chairs and try on the hats. I tried on Watson’s hat. I even got a picture of the violin Sherlock would play. Up another set of stairs was Watson’s bedroom. Next to that was a room that had props from the stories. There was the gun in the book, the thumb of bad guy, there was even a voodoo baby in a glass case. Creepy to say the least. In this room there was a ledger where guests could record where they were from and the date that they visited. My name is now in the book.  The third floor was a wax museum of its own. I don’t know all the stories behind all the figures but I got pictures of every statue in the room. There was an attic to the house, but there wasn’t much to look up tour wise. A water closet and a place to hold trunks.

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Wait you said four floors.

I counted the gift shop on the ground floor as a floor to tour. After Sherlock we raced to Westminster Abby for the 3:00 service. I don’t have any pictures of the inside of Westminster, photography inside the Abby is not allowed. The Abby is nothing like the other churches I’ve seen so far. It blows everything else out of the water. The service itself reminded me a lot of the Catholic church I went to as a kid. In the basics: sit down, stand up, kneel, sing a hymn from a book (leaflet really) that you have no idea how the tune goes. In the simplest form the service was a concert by the choir with two readings and then a more personalized lesson towards the end. I’m really glad that I went.

On the way out I accidentally stepped on Sir Issac Newton. I don’t know if its a cool thing that I literally stepped on the guy who discovered gravity or if I should be ashamed. But thousands of people must walk all over him without giving it a second thought. Why do they even inter a body in the floor of a church where people step anyway!? As you can tell this might be bothering me a bit. On a brighter side I brushed against the floor tomb of Sir Winston Churchill. I say brighter because I didn’t out right step on him, and he was a major figure during World War 2.

During the service we bumped into the two girls who had slit from us earlier in the day and two other groups of our classmates. One of the groups had been spending time in the Churchill War rooms where Churchill had run England during WW2. The group suggested that one would need 2 hours to look around the place. Everything about the War Rooms is exactly as Churchill left it once WW2 was over. It’s not, “this is how we think it looked.” Everything is sealed in time the day it was when the War was over. There is a map with pin holes as they tracked where enemy troops were in the field. It was a goal for today to go see the War rooms but we ran out of time to view it properly. We have one more week, so we might get there yet.

The girls that rejoined us found a place that sold discounted tickets to theaters in the area. Aimee, me and one other had hoped to check ticket prices for the Lion King for the following Sunday. The prices were lower than what they would have been at the theater, but still too high for our taste. However there was another shop that caught my eye. Stomp. Think Blue Man Group without the paint and just percussion. But its not drums that they use. They use metal trash can lids, brooms and anything else that makes a sound. I will be going to see them next Sunday at 3:00, can’t wait.

For dinner the five of us ate at a pub called the Brewmaster. We ate on the second floor. Like the Dirty Duck you had to pay and order and the bar. I got sausage and mash with a Cosmo to drink. Now that I think of it, this is my first time having alcohol with a meal here in England. Sure I went out drinking with my classmates and was embarrassed to be with them, but this was a nice change of pace. Two others had drinks so I wan’t the only one. One got a cider which didn’t taste too bad, and the other had her traditional rum and coke. The food was good too. I got three sausage links with onion slices over a bed of mashed potatoes and gravy. I was only able to eat 2 out of the 3 links. I wish I had been able to eat it all.

Two of my favorite story archs

Two of my favorite story arcs

After dinner on of the girls headed back to Wycliffe on her own. The remaining four of us went on a bit of an adventure. As we were trying to get on to the subway, Aimee say some people with bags from M&M World. She asked where the store was and the people were kind enough to point us in the right direction. We got there pretty close to closing time, so we didn’t get the best look around. Just picture four floors, again with the four floors, of nothing but M&M merchandise. Clothes, dolls, statues, pictures. We plan on going back again next Sunday. Stay tuned for that.

DSCN0733Once we had regrouped outside the then closed shop, we went back to the subway and hopped a ride to the London bridge. before we got there we made a detour at the Kings Cross Station. There was a line to get our picture taken with the famous trolley half way through the platform. I missed my letter by 11 years so I didn’t get my picture taken with the trolley.

 

When we found the London bridge, the song got stuck in my head as we crossed it. To tell the truth it looked like a normal bridge. The bridge that i had always thought as the London Bridge was actually the Tower Bridge. my bad. Both of these bridges make an appearance in the amine “Black Butler,” and that’s one of the reasons I wanted to see them. The character Sebastian sings about the London bridge in an extended version of what got stuck in my head and in 24th episode of season 1 a battle between two characters takes place around the Tower Bridge that was under construction.

On heading back towards Victoria Station we crossed the Millennium Bridge, the one that collapsed in the Harry potter movie. Thankfully as we passed over the Thames there weren’t any flying wizards trying to blow it up. That’s a good thing, I don’t swim all that well and the Thames is still pretty nasty to this day. The walkway of the bridge has ridges on it to stop people from slipping so much I suppose. To me and another girl they are they perfect noise makers. Dragging our feet as we walked we made that bridge sing.

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From the bridge I could see the Globe Theater, the reconstructed place where Shakespeare preformed his plays. The reconstruction isn’t in the same place as the original, but it looks almost identical to how it would have looked. Granted there are some modern additions like plumbing, lighting and security. We wont get to go inside the Globe but it was still something to be so close to it.

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Our feet so bad as we made our way back Victoria. We managed the subway like bosses and made it on to an Oxford tube without any trouble. It felt so good to sit, I almost didn’t want to get up when our stop came. But the four of us are back at Wycliffe safe and sound. Classes resume again tomorrow, and I have three of them. Guess I better call it a night so I don’t fall asleep in class. 😉 Night all.

 

In case you missed the Links:

Sherlock Holmes Museum: http://www.sherlock-holmes.co.uk/

Sherlock Gift Shop: http://www.sherlockholmesmuseum.com/

Victoria Style:                          http://www.interiordesignipedia.com/victorian-interior-design.html

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle:  http://www.sherlockholmesonline.org/biography/index.htm

Westminster Abby: http://www.westminster-abbey.org/

Anglican vs Catholic Church:  http://anglicansonline.org/resources/essays/whalon/AngRC-diffEng.html

Sir Isaac Newton:  http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/historic_figures/newton_isaac.shtml

Sir Winston Churchill:  http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/people/winston_churchill

Churchill war rooms: http://www.iwm.org.uk/visits/churchill-war-rooms

Lion King: http://www.thelionking.co.uk/buy-tickets/london/

Stomp: http://www.stomplondon.com/

Blue Man Group:                     https://www.universalorlando.com/Shows/Blue-Man-Group.aspx

Brewmaster: http://gkpubs.co.uk/pubs-in-london/brewmaster-pub/

Sausage and Mash Recipe:  http://www.bbc.co.uk/food/recipes/bangers_and_mash_with_80175

Cosmo Recipe: http://www.wikihow.com/Make-a-Cosmopolitan

M&M World: http://worldchocolateguide.com/shop/mms-world/london/

Kings Cross Station:                                   http://www.visitlondon.com/traveller-information/place/898577-london-kings-cross-railway-station

Famous Trolley: http://www.harrypotterplatform934.com/

London Bridge:           http://www.discoverlondonbridge.co.uk/default.aspx?m=23&mi=195&ms=0

London Bridge Song:  http://animeloverforever204.deviantart.com/journal/London-Bridge-is-Falling-Down-Black-Butler-Style-313713893

Tower Bridge: http://www.towerbridge.org.uk/TBE/EN/BridgeHistory/

Millennium Bridge: http://www.londonmillenniumbridge.com/

Millennium in Harry Potter:                            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mo-U5iOinM8

Globe Theater: http://www.shakespearesglobe.com/

Original Globe: http://www.shakespeare-online.com/theatre/globe.html

 

Wow that’s a lot of links

 

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Categories: EuroSpring 2014 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

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2 thoughts on “Quickly Watson, to Westminster Abby!

  1. Pingback: Weblog and wiki project review week 3 | Surviving Free time, My Way

  2. Pingback: Touring the Studios, Or Something | The Gist

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