Holy crap it's freezing. I packed light, considering it's summer and I thought I'd be worried about getting sunburnt everyday. Instead, I'm worried about having feeling in my toes when I wake up in the morning. Why is it so cold!?! I had to go shopping and buy a jacket, and I may buy some sweaters too. of course, I only brought one pair of pants, so these jeans are getting broken in pretty quick.
I hope the Mediterranean is warmer when I head there in september or I'm in trouble. At least this means I should be pleasantly comfortable in India this summer, right?
Anyway, I took the Gatwick Express ($17.90 one way) to Victoria station, where my friend Gavin met me. He's a friend of mine from Guelph who is potentially doing his PhD at Oxford, so he decided to move to London for the summer. He found this amazing loft on sabbaticalhomes.com, so I chose that over a hostel (tough choice, I know). So we are staying in a prof's flat who teaches political science at LSE, and is in Africa for six months. Pretty neat set-up.
Gavin convinced me not to nap when I got home, so instead we got changed, dropped my stuff off, and went on a walking tour of london. I saw - Buckingham Palace - Parliament - Big Ben - The London Eye (but we didn't go up, I refuse to waste money on that unless its a date in which case I shouldn't be paying anyway) - A telephone booth - A traditional English Pub - The Prime Minister's House - St. James' Park
which is quite a lot for one afternoon. I was frozen and exhausted by that point, so we headed home for a nap. When I woke up we wandered through Belsize Park (the neighborhood we're in) and found "Chez Bob", a (you guessed it) french resto. It wasn't bad, I had chicken kiev--although I thought that meant broccoli inside--apparently in England it means liquefied butter. Bring on the heart attacks.
After that, I had a quick experience in a gay karaoke bar in Soho, which we exited promptly after a rousing performance of Celine Dion's "All By Myself." If you keep singing, I'm fairly certain you'll know why, buddy.
We headed across the street to O Bar, where they had amazing music and old couches with wood paneling-kind of reminded me of Pravda in Toronto, but authentic. At the end of the night, Gav and I managed to navigate the late-night bus system (the Tube stops at like 2 am I think) and found our way home.
Tomorrow I am meeting up with Olly, (for you Beacon Hallers, Mr. Jeffery's nephew that was kind enough to meet me for a drink and chat for a bit) so I'll keep you posted. Until then, a good first day!