After some unforeseen circumstances, I have finally started my journey to England. A week later, but I am here. I have to admit that traveling alone that distance is a little scary. I started with a flight to Chicago that ended up with the infamous seat next to a baby. Yes, the baby seat. DUN, DUn, Dun. He ended up being the cutest, and well-behaved baby ever that I got 2/3 hours of sleep on the flight. I even got to hold him. Something that is not in the job description of flying, is that you need to be at least 5’5 to even reach the overhead bins. Being 5’0 was a bit tricky to maneuver a bag the size of me with everything I would need for the month inside; but luckily, someone was always there to help give my luggage the last little boost or just bring it down for me completely. Shout out to the tall people who help the short people.

The flight from Chicago to London was about half filled so I got a little more room to spread out in. The meal they gave us was the definition of adorable. Everything was mini and Carly-sized and I loved every bite of it (even though the taste was a little off.) I succumbed to watch a romantic chick flick, but I spent the rest of the time either reading the genetics book or sleeping. The flight went by fast. I slept the last three hours of it, and for some unknown reason, the airline felt obligated to turn the cabin lights on with an hour left on the flight. That was prime sleeping time. I was able to watch the breathtaking sunrise from the plane (more like the sky just getting lighter as we flew to a new time zone) and see the beautiful English views while landing.

Getting out of the London airport was pretty much a five mile hike up and down escalators and moving walk ways full of people. I arrived at a 10:50 in the morning very tired and feeling like it was 2 in the morning USA time. I met Petra and her uncle in the city after a one hour bus ride that I slept on most of the way. The one day I am in London happened to be when the tube wasn’t running, due to a strike, which meant walking everywhere. We walked what felt like most of London. I have a blister to prove it. We first arrived at the National Gallery which had four paintings by Van Gogh- two of which were the very famous 'Sunflowers' and 'Chair.' It was amazing to see Van Gogh works in real life and not just a picture in a text book. (This only fueled my fire for the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam.)  

Our next stop was the Globe Theater. Once we got there, it was pretty ‘much ado about nothing’ when you can only go in with a paid guided tour. (Also, to my disappointment, the play Richard II was sold out for that night.) But from the outside, the Globe looked straight out of the Shakespearian era which was quite spectacular.

We then proceeded to walk toward Parliament, the London Eye, and Big Ben. I couldn’t spend my one day in London without seeing the touristy hot spots. The sun was just perfect behind them as it reached 6 o’clock, and Big Ben sparkled. We then got Petra’s luggage from her hotel and spent the next hour walking three miles across London to our hotel. It was too bad, but Petra didn’t pack light.

By the time I got in bed it was after midnight. I hadn’t slept since the plane nap and a quick nap in a hotel chair; I was exhausted, but also wasn’t. It was 4 in the afternoon back home, and I felt like my day had just begun.  

Bye for now,

Carly

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