Yay!! My first official post on foreign turf. Today was EXTREMELY eventful and I am thoroughly exhausted. I still have a little over 3 hours to kill until my bus leaves, so I have plenty of time to catch up. I uploaded some of my pictures from today into an album. I've decided that to save time, and my sanity, I'm only going to upload a select few pictures onto the blog for each day. To put it into perspective, I posted 12 pictures and I took 79. I'll save you the trouble of redundancy.
So today started at about 11:00 when I got through customs at Gatwick airport. I took at train into London and wandered about aimlessly for about 30 minutes, completely overwhelmed by the Victoria train station. I finally managed to figure out that I would need to take a bus to the Waterloo station to catch the train to Windsor and that the castle closed at 3. So I had to hurry. I took the bus a couple of blocks and thought I needed to get off, but ended up in the wrong place. I stumbled upon Westminster Abbey and the Parliament building so I walked around and took some pics before heading back towards the bus stop. I found the train station and took the hour long train ride across the country. I made some realizations about how incredibly tiring this trip is going to be. We arrived at Windsor/Eton Riverside station where I walked up a huge hill and into the castle at about 5 til 3. The ticket man let me in and said that they usually didn't start kicking people out til about 4:30 so I had a decent amount of time to trek.
There were almost no people there. I talked to a tour man who was sitting alone and he informed me that most of the pictures I got usually have about 300 people in the foreground. I thought it was the perfect way to see the castle. I could really picture royalty walking around and being... well... royal. It was so quiet and the only noises were cute little British cop men chatting about things. Once inside the castle, there really wasn't much to see except walls and towers. St. George's Chapel was absolutely stunning. I literally cried when I walked inside. I guess it's a first timer's kind of experience but I really had never seen something so intricate. The wood carving, stained glass and beautiful marble tombs were breathtaking. After that I sat on a wall and ate a Tuna sandwich and watched tourist kids take their pictures with the guard and try to make him come out of character. After they left, he coughed, which I thought was really funny, and I laughed and I swear he winked at me. Haha... oh the things that entertain you when you're alone.
After that, I took the hour train back to London and met a nice man who kept me company. He actually had a very funny story and told me that the only time he had been to the states was when he studied abroad in college... And of all places, he studied in Madison, Wisconsin... strange. He said he loved it though. I guess anything new can be fascinating.
Once I got home, I got back on the bus to head back to Victoria station (because that's where my bus leaves, and I wanted to be close to here). I missed my stop and assumed that the bus ran in a circle. WRONG!! About 40 minutes later, I was in some town past Chelsea. So I had to get off, and get on a new train which took me back into town. Yikes!! Lesson #1: Do not assume that you know what's going on with busses.
I'm back in London now, about to go grab something to eat and possibly see if I can find a sports bar. Apparently, Chelsea has a football game tonight so I'm going to see if I can watch.