After traveling in Italy for nearly a month and visiting cities both great and small, I am still in awe of everything that London has to offer. London was a wonderfully rich experience. Here’s what we did in a single afternoon, after exploring the city on foot all day.
On the way to a movie (more on that in a second), we happened upon a pub that had not only stood there longer than the history of America, but was actually the regular hang out of the captain of the Mayflower, which you may recall was the boat that just over 100 pilgrims used to cross the Atlantic to found the first American colony in Virginia in 1620. And it’s still serving cold pints and good food to this day.
After passing the pub, we came to Sands Films Studio, where we watched a movie about American sharecroppers. Our host in London, Duncan, remembered that my family has some sharecropper roots and suggested that we check out the movie. This studio is noteworthy because it produced the costumes for the recent big screen film Lincoln – and a whole catalogue of other films too numberous to list. In that same studio was a large, incredibly diverse library of reference material that people in the film industry could call upon for free. If you are making a period film and needed to know what a walking cane would have looked like in Germany in the 1750’s had the owner been of high social status, they’d have at least 3 books on the topic along with a few reference models and perhaps a prop used in a Blockbuster film from years past. The breadth and width of material was just enormous. And it was all there for free.
All of that in just a few hours.
Being in London and having nothing to do is an act of will – you have to seek boredom. Just like in every other major city, there are innumerable pubs, restaurants, shops, theaters, tourist attractions, museums, art galleries… the list just goes on and on. And the public transit systems in London are exceptional, so you are never more than a few minutes from anywhere.
In short: go to London!