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11 September 2007

Arrival in London


I just arrived in London. I'm in the excruciatingly small dorm room that I'll be staying in for the next week as I await my EAP orientation. So far, the journey has been exciting. I've already seen much of London, and I'm still amazed that all these famous landmarks and buildings are before me in real life!

The flight to London was really nice. I had a window seat at the very back of the plane, so I stared outside as much as I could, my view uninterrupted by the plane's wing. Each seat had its own TV screen, and I could control what I wanted to watch: That meant watching Blades of Glory, an episode of How I Met Your Mother, The Pursuit of Happyness, and parts of 28 Weeks Later. I also managed to get an hour or two of sleep. The food wasn’t too bad either. Dinner was beef with mashed potatoes, served, of course, with wine. The flight attendants were more British than I expected, saying "cheers" nonstop.

And so far, the people I've seen have been very polite and nice.

The tube. It’s different than any other subway I’ve been on. It’s easy to see that it’s the world’s first underground subway, but it’s also really comfortable to ride. The trains are smaller than on other subway systems, though. But the ride itself is much smoother than I expected, and there was little noise, so you could easily have a conversation as the train moved along.

It did take a while to get from Heathrow to my stop at Euston Station. (I also had to lug my two huge bags of luggage up and down several flights of stairs to transfer lines! Do they really not have escalators or elevators--I'm sorry, lifts here?!) I didn't mind, though, as I was sitting on the tube, giddy with excitement, I couldn't take my eyes off the scenery outside. The distant suburbs with their grassy knolls transitioned to older neighborhoods, and the train tracks merged and diverged. The trees and plants seem different than in LA; the sunlight seems different; even the air feels different. I'm definitely excited!

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