Friday, November 1, 2013

London! Day One!

It's 7am, my flight has landed in London Heathrow International Airport. I did not all! I sat beside a kind football player that traveled to the US with his teammates. I must say, British moms do a good job. He was such a polite and helpful young man. 

Anyway...back to my arrival to...LONDON!

I tell you, I walked off that airplane with the biggest smile on my face! I think I actually skipped down the lane and possibly did a little victory dance. I made my way to the immigration line, answered a million questions, and was finally allowed to enter the land I'd dreamed about since childhood. 

I was thrilled! And then, I was nervous. The London Underground (the tube) awaited me. Instead of freaking out over having no idea where to go, I gathered my wits, bought a tiny cup of coffee from Costa,
and charged my cell phone. We, my friends, are embarking on an adventure, and I'll need all of the caffeine and battery life I can get!

I must say, I am one lucky girl. I was surprised to find that my Italian friend, Antonio, that I met off a social networking site called ASW, booked me a room at a 5 star hotel...directly across from St. Paul's Cathedral! 

Holy moly! 

Who is this guy? 

I'll tell you. He's quite possibly my guardian angel. 

Anyway, I used the incredible, FREE, texting app called whatsapp to contact him and get directions, bought an Oyster card, and hopped on the train to St. Paul's station. Still, I kept smiling! I sat down on the tube and prepared myself for the time of my life! 

Once I arrived at the station, Antonio carried my bags and took me to my hotel, The Grange St. Paul's, and set my bags aside with the concierge until my room was ready. Then, we set off to the Tate Museum, just across the Thames River.

 I was entranced. I always knew London was beautiful. Actually being there is another thing entirely. My heart fluttered at moment. I think I could have cried, but I didn't want to look like a strange weirdo. Haha. Instead, I just kept smiling (probably still looking like a weirdo). I had brunch at a cafe in the Tate Museum.
It was delicious! Then we wandered around the many amazing rooms of art. There was plenty of Salvador Dali and Picabia, and a special exhibit by Paul Klee. Lovely!

Then, we walked over to the St. Paul's Cathedral.

I wish I could show you the inside, but cameras were not allowed. It was beautiful! Stunning! Unbelievable! I also learned quite a bit from the audio tours they hand out to you once you buy your ticket. The crypts were my favorite part of the tour. Creepy and beautiful. 

I finally made it to my room afterwards, showered and changed, then headed out for a little exploration on my own once Antonio headed back to work.

Enjoy the photos! Shops, Soho, and club hopping ensued!