hahaha……so of course today didn’t work out the way I necessarily envisioned it last night. I didn’t just sit here and have all day to upload pictures and comment on my trip to London. But a promise is a promise and I’ll give you a fast and dirty version of my trip…….
I arrived on a Thursday, heading straight to the Chelsea Flower Show, which was of course way more than I ever expected. The booths were out of this world. So much effort was put into things that were only going to be there for 5 or 6 days. All of the plants are sold off at the end, so there isn’t much waste. It was an amazing site for anyone who is even remotely interested in plants but it was a Mecca of sorts for someone like myself. A great event to have attended during my trip. Cheers to the Team for sponsoring my attendance. This picture to the left is from one of the booths. Yes everything you see there has been put in place for the week. Amazing.
I had a great time with my couchsurfing buddy Tom for the first two nights. We enjoyed some pub quiz, an indie club and beyond. I saw more of Brixton than I ever thought I would and I’m happy for it. It wasn’t nearly as dodgy as I thought it would be.
The weekend was jam packed as my friend Neal came over from Dublin. The weather was amazing and most of Saturday was filled with walking from one side of central London to the other side. We made a stop at Tate Modern for “The Big Weekend” exhibit they had installed. It was an interactive exhibit which we of course got into. It was kind of silly basically things to balance and walk upon. I’m not sure what the art of it all was but it was entertaining for a good half hour. We walked around the museum a bit and saw some good Modern art for sure. I don’t know why, but this trip I was not feeling the art galleries and museums very much. I found myself much happier to be outdoors in the nice weather and relaxing. It seems like I prefer to be indoors checking out the cultural splendors of the city, but not so much this trip. No complaints though. I was happy just to be enjoying my days off.
Our weekend cap was us going to a premiership match (Fulham v. Everton) at Craven Cottage. That was great. Fulham lost but I was super happy to have attneded. I have definitely been following football much more in the last few months than I ever have, so it was cool to see some European Football in person. On top of that there were some other big matches happening while I was there as well. The Champions League final and the FA Cup final were on as well. I watched both on the telly.
After Neal took off I went to a cricket match and went on the Fuller’s Brewery Tour. Attending my first cricket match was great. On Saturday night the Heineken Cup (Rugby) was on and not only did Neal explain the rules of rugby but all the rules of cricket. So attending the match on Monday was great because I totally understood everything that was going on. It was really fun and I found it much more entertaining than baseball. I wish it would catch on here more. The cricket match I attended was Middlesex v. Surrey which is a County match. The match was at Lord’s which is the “home of cricket.” It was super neat to see a match there and it was a really good and exciting match as well.
The Fuller’s tour was ok. I’ll spare you the pictures. The beer in England is typically “real ales.” Real ales means cask and warm. I like the cask part but the warm part was not very fun and by the end I couldn’t wait to get back here for some cold beers. I know it drowns out the taste the colder it is, but also goes down smoother and allows me to drink a lot more. The Fuller’s tour taught me a good amount about real ales and was grateful for that. Other than that, I’ve been on way to many brew tours here in Bend and already knew all they were going to teach me.
The rest of the days were fairly lazy. I spent one day on the frisbee golf course in Croydon. It was a great course actually and did three rounds there trying different things out. I had a great time out by myself. It was nice for one day to not have to be a tourist and just do something I love to do in my spare time here. The weather was great and the park was super cool. I know I’m a total dork having brought my discs over to LDN, but it was well worth it. I really wanted to take my couchsurfing host out there, but he’s just going to have to come here and play with me! He was well interested in it all. (Note to self: send Joe a note about disc golfing).
I spent a lot of time just walking along the Thames taking in the hours I was blessed with being able to spend with it. There were many lazy hours where I laid in various parks and gardens taking naps, taking in the weather and just enjoying life. I would say I enjoy life and take it easy more than a lot of people, but this was crazy for me. Things just seemed to slow down and I wanted to just go with the pace I was feeling. I’m happy about it for sure.
The Saturday before I left I got up early and spent almost a full day in Kew Gardens. Let me tell you, there are not very many things better in life than a beautiful sunny day walking around Kew Gardens. If I am to live in London, I would definitely be a member and go there as much as I possibly could. There are always new things in bloom and interesting exhibitions. Plus they have their own special beer. How many gardens do you know that have their own beer?
Yeah, I’d say the trip was a complete success. No complaints. It’s kind of tough being back, but I’m so happy to have had the opportunity to have lived some life in London this year. So I’ll stop bitching for a tiny bit about not being there. Actually, I probably won’t but let’s pretend for a while that I won’t.
Alright my dinner just arrived here and I’ve got a fridge full of beer so I need to go pay attention to the immediate needs. Thanks friends!