01 August 2011


Spent a couple of weeks in London and I have to say, they were two of the most memorable weeks of my life thus far. It's my favorite place in the world. There are so many architecturally cool buildings, everything looks like it's out of Harry Potter. I love pubs. Best places ever. Also, English Breakfast tea. That stuff is the bomb.

They have really good shopping, too. First of all, they have places like Topshop and H&M, which exist in America, but only seldom few.  They also have this place called Primark, which has REALLY affordable, cute clothes (and DOESN'T use forced/child labor. I have no idea how they manage to manufacture clothes so cheap. It's beyond me.) They also have the best flea markets in the world. There's a couple really big, famous ones, like Camden Market, which we went to and is awesome (an entire stall chalk full of vintage suitcases. I was in heaven), and then there are smaller antique markets in big shopping areas like Covent garden, where you can still find really unique stuff, but it's not totally crazy. 

The music is wonderful. I didn't go see any of the well-known artists that were playing there, like Arcade Fire and The Foo Fighters and Alicia Keys, and I still saw some really impressive music. We just went to free concerts at the Meltdown music Festival at the Southbank centre, and were totally impressed. I fell in love with The Caezars, an upbeat, rockabilly-type band, and a couple other indie bands. I also went to go see Wine, Women, and Song (a.k.a Matraca Berg, Suzy Bogguss, and Gretchen Peters), who are actually from Nashville. Matraca just came out with a new album, The Dreaming Fields, and it is stupid how good it is. 

The people are really nice, too. And fascinating. When you're in London, you don't have that feeling that you do when you're in other big cities like New York, where everyone is really rude to each other, and you constantly feel unsafe like everyone is trying to take advantage of you because you're a tourist. Everyone's really helpful and nice. Also, there are these bicycles for hire all over the city, called Barclay's. They would probably be gone in a day if you put them in New York. But not in London. People actually use them, too. There are people on bicycles everywhere, on the streets, and riding through the parks. I think London is the only place where you can live in a massive city, and take advantage of everything that that entails, and still get to experience beauty and nature and kind strangers on a daily basis. There are beautiful courtyards and gardens and parks all over the city. In a couple of the public parks, there are these free standing lawn chairs all over the place, and if you happen to come across a day over 65 degrees, EVERY ONE OF THEM is occupied, and there are people sprawled across the grass, including men in business suits. It's SO COOL. 

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