A week before Christmas we went to London for three days, but with the holidays I hadn’t had a chance to share the photos yet. Not that we took a lot of photos; Joop brought his camera but wasn’t really feeling like taking any photos. He just wanted to enjoy the city. I usually stay away from cameras altogether when we travel, because I tend to get caught up in taking photos of everything instead of just being there. So on the first day, we left the camera at the apartment early in the morning and had the most wonderful day, eating chestnuts from an open fire, churros and a bratwurst, all within an hour and seeing a lot of the city.
The city was very lively and diverse, with lots of different neighborhoods, lots of people and something to do around every corner. It was very different from the Netherlands, but also very familiar in the way that every big northern European city is familiar: with lots of big, old buildings and statues and the same sort of layout, bringing about a sort of naturalness of getting around. I was swinging back and forth between being impressed with all the city had to offer and simply feeling quite at home.
On the second day, we ventured a little further away from the city center, where our apartment and most of the action was, to Notting Hill. We had tickets to go see the Hobbit in the Electric, a beautiful old cinema on Portobello Road, which was wonderful. After that we strolled over the Winter Wonderland Christmas fair and market, enjoying the lights, sights and sounds and a huge waffle with chocolate sauce.
On the last day, we strolled over to Buckingham palace, right around the time that some sort of parade came from the gates and started walking right on the road, holding up traffic. The very English couple crossing the road after the parade, made the scene complete. It was the perfect ending to a lovely trip.
(all photos taken by Joop)