Friday, April 29, 2016

Kensington High Street

First of all, a giant shout-out to our adorable nephew who is serving as a missionary in greater London. We ran into him by chance at the Hyde Park chapel where we hold class two mornings a week--what a great surprise! He seems so happy and loves being a missionary.

After class and a brief lunch of Waitrose delicacies we went to Harrods. No trip to London is complete without a visit to Harrods! I found this inspiring watercolor book that I'm very excited about and eager to work through some of the exercises.

Already lamenting a hasty last-minute decision to leave my easel and painting kit at home, I researched art stores in the area, knowing London had to have a great one. I found an excellent one located right on Kensington High Street (same road as Harrod's) and made a few essential purchases so I can continue to paint while I'm here.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

They're Here...! Pub food, BFI welcome our students.

The students arrived yesterday. All day long we met groups of them at the tube station and walked them to their dorms. Then we had a big group dinner in the upstairs room of a favorite pub, where they served up all sorts of traditional British fare: Bangers and Mash, Lamb Shank Shepherds Pie, and Fish and Chips. Here's what I had:

Everything was delicious!

After that we walked them over to the BFI, where we bought mountains of tickets to feature films.   By the time we were leaving to head back home, it was pouring rain, and then started hailing! Thank heaven for down parkas, good raincoats, extra umbrellas, and gloves!

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Signs that We're in London

First of all, Jet lag is real. Getting up and going this morning was pretty challenging. The good news is, we're here for nearly two months, so it's kind of like having an annual pass to Disneyland...there's no pressure to wear yourself out trying to see it all at once! We have plenty of time.

One of the things that delights us in Britain is the signage. They're far more courteous than American signage, and also use a lot more verbiage. Here are some examples we love:

We also love the century-old iron typography of the signage on the tube station:

Monday, April 25, 2016

White on White in London

After an easy direct flight, we drove past street after street of beautiful white row houses in stately South Kensington until we arrived at our flat. Already it felt like we'd only just been away for a short spell, even though it's been nearly two years since we were last here. We quickly pulled coats out of our bags as we stood on the porch, the reality of the brisk air and chilly rain setting in: we're in London! Again!

Once settled in our flat, we walked to the tube station, then on to Chelsea to see the student accommodations.

We were surprised to find ourselves in the Bridal district, with beautiful gowns adorning many of the shop windows. It brought back vivid and memories of our daughter's wedding just four days ago, the joy still fresh. We held hands as we walked home in the cold night air. Once again we were greeted by the white buildings of South Kensington. Here, white signals home.