London is an amazing city that I have been to a few times during my stay in Oxford. It is probably my favorite big city that I have ever visited.
London is great city. Some of my favorite memories that I will take away with me will be my time in London. I have come to love the underground train and all of the parks. London holds many historic sites and is home to some of the best museums, including art, history, and science. During my last trip to London, I went to a museum to view the art I have been learning about in class. Seeing the beautiful art pieces in person gave me a whole new perspective to what I have studied this spring.
Greenwich Mean Time
Location (Latitude, Longitude):
How far did I travel this week?
This week I travelled 52 miles from Oxford to London, the capital of England.
How did I get around this week?
This week I travelled by bus and underground train. Just like the underground train in New York is called the Subway, the underground train in London is called the Tube. I have learned a lot about public transportation while I have been in England. I was a little nervous about using the Tube in London. Even though I have used underground trains before, learning about the different lines, connections, and directions is a little overwhelming. After going to London a few times, I got the hang of it and now I really like using the Tube and I think it is fun too.
What was the most interesting place I visited this week?
The most interesting place I visited this week was the David Bowie Exhibition at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. David Bowie was born in England in the 1940s. He became really famous in the 1970s. He is mostly known for his music, but he has also acted in movies. Bowie was also talented in fashion. He designed many of his extravagant costumes that he wore in performances. Many artists today are inspired by the work of David Bowie. The exhibition was filled with his written notes and lyrics, along with interviews and his many costumes. While I viewed all of this, his songs were playing throughout the exhibit. I have never been to a museum exhibit like this one before.
The Victoria and Albert Museum
The Tube is London’s underground train
Other travel news:
I take the Oxford Tube, which is a bus, to go to London. This bus runs about every 20 minutes, 24 hours a day. It normally takes about an hour and a half to get to London from Oxford. I went to London with my class this past week so that we could go to the Tate Modern Museum and the David Bowie Exhibition for our Humanities class. There was so much traffic that we were running late to meet our professor. We found out later that the reason the streets were so congested was because the Queen was opening a new session of Parliament! When the Queen makes public appearances, traffic is always affected in the city. Our class was lucky that the Tube was not busy, or else we would have been really late!
Weather Tally (enter the # of days for each weather type):
Partly cloudy: 2
What is the air temperature right now? 58° F
How was the weather this week?
The weather was very normal for England. My home-stay mom even said to me when I came home in the rain one day, “Now this is typical English weather.” It was not too cold and it stayed in the 50s and 60s. It has been cloudy most of the time. The sun has peeked through every now and then but not for long. It was even raining when the sun was shining through some clouds in the distance. Needless to say, I used my raincoat and umbrella this week.
What animals did I see this week?
This week I saw the typical animal of a city, pigeons! The pigeons were everywhere, one even got down into the Tube station. I am used to seeing pigeons, but I am not used to them being so used to humans. When my friends and I were eating our lunches on a bench outside, the pigeons would bob right up to us and even walk around our legs looking for any crumbs that dropped. I also saw swans this week. London has many beautiful parks and many times those parks have lakes. The graceful white swans spend much of their time gliding across the water.
What was the coolest thing I saw in nature this week?
The coolest thing I saw in nature this week was thunder and lightning! I do not experience thunder and lightning very often and I guess Oxford does not as well. My home-stay sister exclaimed, “Did you see that?” when the first flash of lightning cracked across the sky. It was a few seconds before we heard the boom of thunder. It did not last long, however the rain poured the rest of the night.
What languages are spoken here?
English is spoken here in England.
What type of money is used here?
The British pound is the type of money that is used here.
How much does a bottle of water cost?
A bottle of water costs about one pound, twenty pence.
What was the best meal this week?
The best meal I had this week was the roast my home-stay mom made me. It was delicious! We had turkey, broccoli, cabbage, roasted potatoes, and homemade Yorkshire pudding all smothered in gravy. It was the perfect meal after a long day in London in the rain.
What music did I listen to this week?
I listened to Heart radio. My family likes to listen to Heart radio, which is a radio station that plays a great blend of music from the oldies to current popular music. My home-stay sister asked me the other day if I missed music from the US. I replied that many songs on Heart radio station are the same ones I listen to when I am home. The one type of music that I really miss is country music. I am a big country fan and they do not play any American country music in England.
What activity was the most fun this week?
The activity that was the most fun this week was discovering a street market in London. On my lunch break a few of my friends and I decided to walk along the Thames River to see if there were any good places to eat. When the path veered inland, we saw a small street market underneath an overpass for trains. It was loud like thunder every ten minutes or so when a train would pass by, but the food was amazing! I had a homemade falafel. A falafel is a Middle Eastern dish. Pita bread is stuffed with hummus, cabbage, and other vegetables. For dessert, I had authentic Italian gelato. I bought it from a man who was from Italy. Walking around the market, I discovered that the vendors were mostly from different countries or from small local markets. Many people were dressed in suits and came to the market for their lunch break. I am so happy that my friends and I decided to explore a little because it paid off when we discovered this market.