Today I begin drafting this post on the bus from Essen to Cologne (in case I haven’t spoken to you recently, I’m back in Germany at the moment). My relatives are at work, so I figured I’d best make use of my time by picking a place on the map and seeing what it has to offer. I have no internet or prior knowledge/research about Cologne so let’s see where the day takes me (you’d think I’d learn a lesson after Portugal haha).
Anyway, there’s still another 2 hours til I arrive so it’s a good time to recap a little on my 3 days in London last week after leaving Lisbon.
The first time I popped into London 3 weeks ago was pretty mediocre. However, I think I subconsciously associate those few days with the suffering i was feeling post-Tomorrowland, hence London wasn’t one of my favourite moments. This time round, the plan was to pop in for 1 night, collect my HK visa and hightail outta there to Paris. Due to some logistical issues, I ended up staying for 3 nights and I’m very glad I did.
Thanks to the kind hospitality of friends in London, I got to experience more of what the locals get up to to distract themselves from the gloomy weather. People who live/have lived there constantly speak of the ever evolving nature of the city – there is always something new to see and do. Make space on the bandwagon for me guys!
I couch surfed at Steve Gieng’s place on night 1 and had a lovely time around Islington. I spent the day exploring the antique stores in Camden passage (Carol you would’ve loved it) before heading over to Shoreditch for my first hostel experience, where Mlee was also staying (Survived it and met some really nice people as well! The bathroom light virtually didn’t work so I have no clue how clean it was. Ignorance is bliss…)
The Cereal Killer Cafe in Shoreditch, with a wide selection of international cereals, which you couple with milk from a range of flavours (salted caramel!!) and various toppings (berries and peanut butter chips for me)
I was also taken around by Audwin, an Aussie from Perth currently living in London who we had met at Tomorrowland. Did some really cool things – had awesome burgers at a pop up Wonderland in Southbank (complete with a spinning carousel equiped with a bar in the middle), drinks at an underground bar in Soho (pandan flavoured cocktails, omg), explored the Borough markets and sampled really delicious food (including truffle cheese and the best fish and garlic prawn wrap I’ve ever had!).
Mlee and I got to explore the Museum of Natural History – I have to go back one day and get more photos for Joshie (soo many insects)!! This wasn’t before I made him spend the arvo at a quintessentially English pub with me to watch the cricket haha – not even sorry! Ive coincidentally been in London twice when the Ashes were on, but due to poor planning, I didn’t have tickets to go! Seeing as I did get to have a pint in England while watching the Ashes, I’ll give that bucket list item a partial tick.
The Museum of Natural History
We met up with Thien and his flat mate for drinks and dinner in Shoreditch and to collect get my prized visa. I’m baffled how late the locals stay out for a Thursday night! Absolute troopers. I have a thing or 10 to learn before I come back.
Battling serious dehydration on Friday morning, I did some shopping in Regent st and finally met up with Jasmine for a proper catch up dinner at Hoi Polloi (this time where I could stomach more than canned soup!).
Ok London, you’ve impressed me
It was a surprisingly busy 3 days but thanks to the awesome people in London who took the time out to hang with me, I had a fantastic time!! It sure made the subsequent 13 hour overnight bus ride to Düsseldorf worth it (even with the hyperactive kid kicking my chair for hours on end). Thank you !
By the way, please don’t ask if I’m gonna go to Banksy’s new dismaland exhibition. Devastated to be completely missing out 😔
Bucket list – watch the Ashes in England ✔️ (partially)