Autumn,  Travel

rolling into london

“picadilly circus? what a shitty circus.” — garth

just rolled into paris from london on a nine hour bus journey!  (and remember kids, book your channel tunnel train tickets early!) it really wasn’t that bad since we were on a ferry for three hours of it.

we were really lucky to be able to stay with one of our previous host’s sister, who lives in the pimlico district of london, so i felt right at home.  my favorite part of london was the first night we got in which happened to be warm and calm (before it starting gradually pouring down rain): walking along the opposite side of the river to parliament and big ben.  it really hit me that we’ve left scotland and are continuing on our “european capital tour 2012– five cities, one month”.  and not very often do i find myself strolling along the thames gazing out at parliament, so wow.  london’s one of those cities you know you’ll always return to for some reason or another.

i could stare at this clockface for whole minutes, maybe even five minutes. does big ben remind anyone else of my favorite long-lost disney film, the great mouse detective?

tower bridge as seen from the tower of london

other favorite thing is that LUSH products are super cheap in london, even with the pound being as it is.  this is because they are made nearby and since many of the materials they purchase come from turkey, it is cheaper to get them to the UK than the US. soooo, i stocked up.  kind of glad to get away from the pound, not gonna lie.  i will miss being able to communicate, friendly locals, and tea time.

so happy to be in paris!  and for halloween too!  so it seems fitting that we’re staying in the gobelins district (13eme).  finding some jack-o-lanterns at a french market is priority two or three… after purchasing a proper winter coat.  (my coat i brought for winter sort of fell apart on me and there’s no way i can shamefully wear it now that we are in paris.  it ugggly.)  gobelins is a pretty central area of the city and it is a relatively short walk to things like the pantheon, blvd saint germain, and jardin des plantes.

fortunately we are staying about two weeks so there’s no rush for anything– just how i planned it.  today strolled leisurely around for about five hours… north to the ille de la cite and notre dame, along the seine looking at the bookstalls and fall foliage, up to the tuileries, then picnicked on a bench on blvd saint germain… quiche and a big pink macaron.  really, i this thing was the size of my fist.  i thought macarons were just tiny little things!  best pastries in the world. paris = magic.