Tuesday, October 22, 2013
London: Day 2
Happy Birthday to me. First birthday of my life where no one sang "the song" to me. I could get used to the anonymity. Though the passport guy did wish me a happy birthday.
Oct 14 - Woke early - 5:00 or so - and showered and dressed. After breakfast in my room, I took the tube to Leicester Square and walked to get my London Pass. After picking that up, I wandered to Leicester Square, where there's a statue of Shakespeare. Kind of random how they scatter statues about this city. The square is surrounded by cinemas and, of all things, casinos.
I stopped by a little coffee shop for strong coffee and a bagel. The owners spoke with heavy italian accents and were roasting up a shwarma. Kinda like a gyro, but spiced differently, by the smell.
I walked to the National Gallery and got an audio guide. Spent 5 hours wandering around looking at 13th-century through early 20th-century works of art. Lots and lots of virgin and child, Greek myth themes, and TONS of saints. I now know more about how saints died than I care to know.
The Gallery was teeming with groups of art students and primary school kids in uniforms. It was great hearing parts of lectures and gangs of kids excited about art.
After the gallery, I grabbed a cup of tea and went out to Trafalgar Square and sat and watched tourists and wondered about the giant blue cock sculpture.
After a walk back through the rain to the tube station, I came back to the hotel for more salad and a gruyere fondue and some more wine. My feet hurt, so I took a hot bath and sat and checked Facebook. Lots of birthday wishes.
Another early night. Asleep by 9:00.