Tyler and I are huge museum lovers. I would like to credit this to our thirst for knowledge, our fascination with history and culture. But yes.. it’s also a little bit of our preference for a quiet place to go in the middle of the day. Museums just have it all, right?! (;
When we arrived to London and started collecting recommendations of things to do and see, we quickly put a few museums on the list. One of the first days we spent out getting a feel for the city, we accidentally stumbled upon this one— along with Buckingham Palace and Trafalger Square. What can I say.. we like to live like locals and just run into sites as we come upon them! Unfortunately, the downside is that you sometimes arrive at inconvenient times. Like twenty minutes before they close. Undeterred, we grabbed a museum map and left determined to study up on the place and return for a longer visit.
So, return to the British Museum in London we did, and we had a fabulous time. Here’s some photo proof!
A look at our afternoon exploring Brick Lane Market and Columbia Road Flower Market
One of our very first days in London was a Sunday, the perfect day for markets in the East End. We didn’t know yet that this would be one of our favorite places in the city, but it was an exciting introduction nonetheless. The East End was already immortalized in our minds by its association with Jack the Ripper, but there is a much deeper history here that has helped foster the growth of many sub-cultures of London.
And of course, what better way to taste and see the sub-cultures of a place than to actually taste their culinary offerings and peruse the open-air shops? We first hit up the Brick Lane Market for loads of ethnic food carts and piles (literally. piles.) of vintage clothing at street vendors lined down the street and around the corners. Next, we walked the several blocks over to Columbia Road to enjoy a different kind of “sights and smells”– a flower market! Although we didn’t make any floral purchases there, we were awed by the crowds of people packed into the market, all haggling for their favorite plants.
Most days, we end up sticking close to home and venturing out just to poke around in the woods across from the house, taking short jaunts across and into town for a bite to eat, a pint to drink, or simply groceries for dinner. Our charge, a very needy and adorable canine, also needs to stretch his legs and do his business twice daily, so that is certainly motivation for those odd rainy days when we’d rather really stick closer to home.
The woods are large, beautiful, and crossed with paths. Too many to even count or keep track of! I have the worst sense of direction but we’ve managed to claim a few routes as our own, so I’ve now got the idea of how to get from our road to various other neighborhoods, the train station, and another park or two. London is just chock full of parks!! But none hold a candle to our woods, which are so near that they feel comfortable and so quiet that they feel entirely ours. Even though we always pass at least a handful of people out walking their dogs or their children.
Knowing I had to travel pretty light this year, I did a lot of research in advance to make sure that I was going to be happy with what I had in my pack. When you go to your
closet suitcase every day and stare at the same handful of outfits, you better feel pretty confident in each of them.