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Tower of London and St Pauls

London, United Kingdom

Things have been so busy and crazy these past few days that Chris and I haven’t had a chance to sit down and blog, but now on Easter Sunday we’re resisting the urge to leap up and eat many Easter eggs and instead, blog. It’s probably better for our health..

So to catch up we shall pick up where we left off (if we can remember…)

After another huge breakfast consisting of the likes of toast, yoghurt, porridge & cereal we managed to smuggle out some more ham and cheese sandwiches for the day ahead. I know it sounds stingy, but it IS expensive in London, it’s not just a myth!

We skyped home and after a quick chat to the family hit the road. Today’s agenda consisted of the Tower of London, London Tower Bridge and then St Paul’s Cathedral. We were amazed by the size of the Tower. Again I don’t know what I was expecting really, but it wasn’t a 1000 year old Castle that just commanded the sky line and your attention.

It was huge and there was so much history in it that it took us a good 5 hours of wandering about to see what we wished too see, there are still rooms we haven’t discovered. The grandeur of the building, the architecture, the history, it’s all amazing and the views of the bridge from the tower are great. Of course, the most amazing and gorgeous part of the Tower experience is the tour of the crown jewels. Security here is insanely huge and so when they say “no photos” you listen and fight the urge to take a pic or two to show those back home! It was amazing though, the room was filled with gold plates, cups & bowls, full of diamonds, sapphires and pearls, full of amazing sculptures and of course, crowns from the ages. There are no real words to describe the room. I spent a long time just staring in awe of the craftsmanship that went into making such beautiful objects and although I don’t think of myself as a princess and I’d never ever wear a crown like that, I wanted one!

We moved on to the Tower next as the line ups, although we were missing them all by the skin of our teeth, were becoming to much and driving us mad (think a gazillion teen school groups who are more interested in impressing their peers than seeing the history)

The Tower Bridge was also amazing and wonderful. I know I keep saying it, but the work that went into these landmarks is just outstanding. There all 1000 years old but they’ve lasted to this day and age and are still standing in tact and more to the point, safe and useable! I wish that we could adopt this infrastructure in today’s day and age, it would make sense.. There were tours that we could do inside the bridge if we wished, but we were happy enough to just walk over the bridge for now as we were on a tight schedule for St Paul’s Cathedral.

Now, what can I say about St Paul’s? I know that I’ve ranted and raved about how wonderful and beautiful the Tower and Bridge were and I’ve used a lot of descriptive words, but oh, my, god! St Paul’s is jaw droppingly MASSIVE and I’mlostforwords spectacular! It is by far THE most gorgeous, sacred place I have ever ever come across. I could spend days and days in there and not be tired. It is massive on the outside, and not so surprisingly, massive on the inside. Every wall and the roof are covered with the most amazing paintings and with sculptures and just gorgeous tiles and art work. Everything in it is so grand and there’s this sense of history and ‘presence’. I spent a very very long time just staring and looking up at the ceilings (until my neck got sore and I had to look down to try and re-correct the ache..) We then walked up many MANY steep stairs to the ‘whisper room’ Here your meant to sit opposite one another in this very large round room (you can just see one another in the end!) and you give each other a signal to let one another know you’re about to whisper into the wall (that in fairness has to be a stage whisper) and the other puts their ear to the wall to see if they can hear it. Apparently when I stage whispered into the wall Chris said he could hear something, though he wasn’t sure it was me or not as there were a million other people whispering, but I was unable to hear Chris whisper to me. At one stage I thought “geez Louise! I can hear my name being whispered loud and clear! This is amazing!” but then I realized that it was the very loud American next to me “whispering” “Emily, can you hear me?!” to his daughter opposite the room. Oh well. This wall works as the globe shape of the room allows the sound to travel and priests could come up here and send secret messages to one another… what secrets the priests had I don’t wish to know… We were then able to climb even MORE freaking steps to the second tallest part of St Paul’s, and you could step outside. A great view from up here, and it was just a tad bit windy and a wee bit chilly. We got a few snap shots before heading back down to the crypt where we saw dead people. Not in the 6th sense way, but in the tomb, head stone way. Bit Indiana Jones like to be honest, we were just missing our whip and hat…. I thought it was pretty cool until I realized that what I thought were tiles, were in actual fact gravestones and I was walking over dead people. Then I felt bad and had to apologize to the name of the person I was ‘walking all over’.. I did this silently though as I would have looked a tad mad saying “I’m very sorry to be stepping on your head Mr Edward SoandSo” out loud.

So, it was a great day and we saw so so much and did so so so so much freaking walking! We caught a tube home where we then relaxed with a bath, TV, a book and our smuggled breakfast sandwiches. Mmmmm.

permalink written by  Chris and Emily on April 8, 2009 from London, United Kingdom
from the travel blog: Europe 2009
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