Day 2 in Europe: In which I got very, very lost, and then found.

My last post, Day 1, was posted earlier today (1/28) while I waited for my friend to finish her class.  Now that today is over, I am posting about today’s adventures!!

We woke up, got ready, and climbed on the bus.  After dropping my friend off at her class, I continued on to Trafalgar Square in London.  I was supposed to go to the TKTS booth to buy us theater tickets for tonight…but, as is wont to happen, because I’m me, I got lost.  Like, super lost.

I ended up walking about 10 minutes in the wrong direction, stopping at a cute little cafe for breakfast and tea (milk tea!), then turned around and wandered for probably 45 minutes.  There are lots of maps around, so I kept finding myself, but I could never seem to get to Leicester Square for the booth.  Even when I did find it, it still took some wandering to get to the actual booth.  But, in the end, it was okay.

After that it was a hop, skip, and a jump onto “the tube” a few stops over to get to the Aquarium.  I got off at the right station, and promptly got lost again – this time being spirited away by a Russian grocery store in search of sour cream (an elusive thing here).  Found my way back, checked a map, and started walking.  Got lost, again, found my way, again, found the Aquarium.

It was pretty expensive, but the London Sealife Aquarium was very cool.  Right away, you walk over a floor made entirely of acrylic under which the big sharks swim.  The ray exhibit was excellent, and consisted mostly of ridiculously beautiful Atlantic skates.  Some other highlights were the penguins, the rainforest area’s spongey floor and piranha exhibit with live plants, and the huge sharkray/bowmouth guitarfish.  Biggest I’ve ever seen.  Also, some of the fattest fish I’ve ever seen.  Seriously.  I would look at the sharks and think, “oh, maybe she’s knocked up” and then I would see the claspers, meaning it was a male.

I got done with the Aquarium just in time to cross the Westminster bridge (Queen’s Walk) to see Big Ben and Parliament.  Hopped back on the Underground, got off at the school, and found my way neatly to my friend’s building.  We shuffled back to the flat, changed our clothes, and went out for a very chilly night on the town.

Our first stop was dinner at a Bento place.  It wasn’t bad; a bit greasy, but tasty.  And filling.  Our true destination was The Shard, which is a really huge fancy building with an amazing view of London.  We went to the bar and had to order drinks – I decided to try something called the “Keeman Guo” and it was like drinking kerosene.  So much alcohol!  I could barely even sip it.  I ended up ordering and very much enjoying a delightfully nonalcoholic beverage instead.  We got some beautiful views and had fun conversations.

We made it, perfect timing, to the theater.  We saw Wicked!!!!  And it was wonderful.  Great story, great acting, beautiful singing, gorgeous stage setup, and ice cream at intermission.  A+ for everyone!  It was something that my friend had wanted to see, and seemed very interesting to me as well.  Yay!

Falafel wrap for dinner, and now blogging.  Pictures for you to enjoy 😀 See you tomorrow!

After Wicked.  I daresay it was a "wicked" good time!!!  hahaha!

After Wicked. I daresay it was a “wicked” good time!!! hahaha!

the view from The Shard....ladies' room.  32nd floor

the view from The Shard….ladies’ room. 32nd floor

Love this picture.  This is the Tower Bridge, NOT the London Bridge.  It fell down.

Love this picture. This is the Tower Bridge, NOT the London Bridge. It fell down.

This is the County Hall where the Aquarium is.  Some random french dudes said bonjour to me, like they were proud to be french.

This is the County Hall where the Aquarium is. Some random french dudes said bonjour to me, like they were proud to be french.

This is a clock.  We have them in America too.  But not like this :)

This is a clock. We have them in America too. But not like this 🙂

This is a shot of the London Eye and the Thames

This is a shot of the London Eye and the Thames

Skate Egg cases at the London Sealife Aquarium

Skate Egg cases at the London Sealife Aquarium

Octopus in a pot = poctopus

Octopus in a pot = poctopus

Beats me what this building is.  I just liked it.

Beats me what this building is. I just liked it.

The National Gallery at Trafalgar Square.  Um, I didn't go in...

The National Gallery at Trafalgar Square. Um, I didn’t go in…

Trafalgar Square.  Cool shot, anyway.  I was trying to take pictures here, and some guy kept talking to me in Polish.  Finally, he asked me "Aren't you from Poland?" in English and I was like, "Noooo....."  But to his credit, I'm part Polish; just never realized I look it.

Trafalgar Square. Cool shot, anyway. I was trying to take pictures here, and some guy kept talking to me in Polish. Finally, he asked me “Aren’t you from Poland?” in English and I was like, “Noooo…..” But to his credit, I’m part Polish; just never realized I look it.

Cool fountains!

Cool fountains!

With mermen! Or whatever.

With mermen! Or whatever.

DSC00114

Double-decker buses all up in this town

Thoughts on London thus far:

-I can navigate the Underground!  Yay!
-WHY IS EVERYTHING SO HARD TO NAVIGATE?!
-Seriously, what’s that smell?
-It’s raining, no it’s not, yes it is, no it’s not but have some wind
-Pretty!!!
-I’m having too much fun 😀

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About MurasakiOkapi

Work has taken over a huge portion of my life in recent years, but I am trying hard to get back in the habit of being at least marginally creative on a semi-regular basis. Other than that, I'm a nature enthusiast and love all animals. I try to see things from many perspectives, and live on the sustainable side. I wouldn't say I'm a positive person, but at the same time I don't tend to get too down about things.
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