Wednesday, June 20, 2012

London Calling

A few weeks ago, one of my best friend's got married. This wedding led me to London, and so I kind of made an extensive holiday of it.

Three weeks to be exact. In London (with a pop up to Liverpool and Manchester), Paris, and Hamburg. It was delightful. And now that I'm well recovered from my jet-lag, I figure I'd used the next few posts to share some of the highlights (and lowlights) of the trip.

Highlight #1: The Wedding Itself

I've been to a lot of weddings over the last few years. I feel like there's been at least 5 a year since I turned 21. And while most of them have been family friends and/or "relatives," only recently have my actual close friends been the one tying the knot. Ugo and I have been best friends since I was about 13 Granted I met him when I was 8... but I refused to be his friend due to some childish reasons. I'm glad I got over it. Cause even though we've been an ocean apart, he has probably been one of the biggest constants in my life. It's been a great friendship. And it was sooo weird to see him get married. And so exciting at the same time. I know I smiled a lot. And while a part of me was a little sad (let's face it, I'm obviously not his best friend anymore), I was so happy to see him so happy. I'm still smiling thinking about it all.


Highlight #2: The Queen's Jubilee

So I boycotted the Royal Wedding last year. Even though I really did want to watch it. But I just got so tired of all the Will & Kate coverage (which I'm still trying to figure out why they spell Kate with a 'K,' when she spells her full name Catherine... with a 'C'). I mean, Lifetime even made a MOVIE about them! I just couldn't do it! A part of me regrets it now. Because, like most Americans, I do have a slight obsession with the Royal Family. Okay, maybe it's just a small passing interest, but I do remember exactly where I was when I heard Princess Diana died. I was in Minna. But I digress...

My friend's wedding happen to coincide with the Queen's Diamond Jubilee. The second Diamond Jubilee ever in British history. And I got to take part in some of that history. And that was cool.

I didn't do everything related to the Jubilee, and missed out on the street parties and apparently a pretty cool parade. But I did get to stand along the Thames with tons of Brits waving the Union Jack and watching the boat parade (which they kept calling a pageant). The queen's boat was fabulous, and we could actually make out the members of the Royal Family on deck. It was also super cute to hear kids yelling, "Queenie! Hello, Queenie!" in cute British accents. My favorite part of the parade though was when the flags of all the Commonwealth Nations came through. I cheered extra loud for Nigeria :)

Some of the Commonwealth boats

The Royal Barge


Highlight #3: Tulips!

I was walking down the streets of London on my own, trying to figure out how to get to Oxford Street so I could shop, when out of no where a guy and his mate approach me.

"Do you want some flowers?" he asks.
I stop, slightly dumbfounded. Eventually, I manage a respone. "Are you serious?"
"Of course... you want them?"
"Why...?"
"Because you're beautiful! Why not?!"
"Oh," I smile. "Thanks!"

And that's how I ended up with a beautiful bouquet of tulips. They brightened up the room for a week. And also led to a lot of jokes from my friends and family. But I didn't mind... I got the tulips.

They were even prettier once they bloomed

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