London Part I

So it begins, Scarlett and Giselle is now a travel blog. I have been in Europe for 5 days. I flew from LAX to Charles De Gaulle on Wednesday. Took a very long nap and went out to Korean food with Ian and his friends. The next day we went to St. Chapelle with his class and then headed off to London. I think it's going to become a curse that whenever I go to Europe or just anywhere out of the country, I will have to make a stop in London. This probably won't end until I live there. And I do plan to live there. I don't know what it is, but it just feels like the place I am supposed to be. But for now I must settle for visiting every time I can. 

Sadly the fact of the matter is that I got notably better at taking out my camera and snapping photos as the weekend went on. We spent 4 days in London and I took as many photos on the last day as I did on the first 3. C'est la vie. So this post is days 1 and 2, with much fewer photos than will be in the following posts. I tried to link to as many restaurants and cool spots as I could, so click on the names to check them out. I would pretty much recommend everywhere we went. London just has the best food.

Day One started with the Eurostar Chunnel train, complete with a cheese plate as our "light meal." We got into St. Pancras (shout out to our Tube stop in our Travel Study days) and made our way to our Airbnb in Chiswick to check in. It was a bit out of the city, but still in Zone 2 on the Tube and it was rather nice to be able to go back to a quiet flat. We then headed out to the Serpentine Bar & Kitchen to drink some Pimms and watch the sunset. We got some ice cream and walked around Hyde Park, reminiscing about our days in the park two years ago, drunk on beer and each other. We made our way to my favorite thing in the whole wide world, the Peter Pan statue. It was nice to say hi to him. Then we headed home after a very long day that started in Paris and ended in a little flat in London.

Day Two found us up around 11 AM (boooooo we are bad travelers) and took us to a cute bakery called the Stamford Larder for some goodies to hold us over. We then headed inwards to hit up Tortilla, which is a chain burrito place that is kind of like our Chipotle, but the food actually tastes like it's made of real ingredients. Ian and I actually met at a terrible burrito place in London so we just had to get burritos this trip. Then we walked to Southbank and visited the Tate Modern. I spent waaaaay too long in that museum when we went on our Travel Study because I wrote a paper about two of the works in it, so we didn't feel a strong need to spend a lot of time there. We did see some cool stuff like the Nam June Paik installations and a very spooky video piece by an LA local. We kept going and made it to the Southbank Centre. I just love Southbank; it always feels alive and un-self-conscious. That's how I feel about a lot of London, and I think that's why I like it so much. There is just a sincerity to it as a city that grows and changes with time. So as the day came to and end (and I got colder and colder - I packed for hot Spain and forgot about cool London) we sat in the gardens of St. Paul's cathedral to read a bit before our dinner plans. We made reservations at a restaurant in a crypt of a church called the Cafe Below. It was ridiculously delicious. We split a caprese salad and gnocchi with lentils and asparagus and finished off with a delicious apricot parfait. It was a beautiful first full day in London.

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