A Travellerspoint blog

Wicked


View Study Abroad on flame1985's travel map.

Adam and I had a wonderful night last night, but I'll start at the beginning. We went to the box office at the Victoria Theatre to get tickets for Wicked that evening. On our way home we stopped at a couple stores to go clothes shopping. We took the tube to Selfridges first, which is this big department store. They had a food depertment inside with an American food section. Oh how I miss Kraft Mac & Cheese! Alas, they were charging £4 a box. We also tracked down the location of Sergio's restaurant, just for future reference.

Next we stopped in H&M, where we both bought something. I kept picking out clothes that I wanted to try on and Adam would wince. He made me try on this shirt that I ended up buying. I said I liked it, but I wouldn't have picked it out myself. Adam retorted "I know, that's why I told you to try it on." Then we played this game where I went around the store asking Adam if I could wear this or that accessory with my new shirt. He was so helpful that I resolved to take him with me every time I go shopping for clothes. We stopped in Top Shop on our way home as well. They were having a sale, but the racks had already been picked over and both of us forgot how crowded it gets there on the weekend.

Anyway, we saw Wicked that night and it was spectactular. Idina Menzel was amazing! She won a Tony for her part as Elphaba when the musical first opened on Broadway. She's here for the London opening, until January, I think. We were so lucky to see her! The rest of the cast was great too, especially Glinda. I had the songs stuck in my head all night. The beginning was cheesy and I was afraid that I wouldn't like it, but it quickly picked up. There were some things that they left out from the book, and, if I'm remembering correctly, they made a massive change to the end. They did a great job for an adaption, though. The set was awesome, as well. They had a giant metal dragon puppet above the stage, which wasn't explained, but it looked really cool. I still can't get over how amazing Idina Menzel was, though. She was the best part of the show, by far. If you're thinking about going, go. It's the best show I've seen since I've been here and I'm recommending it to everyone.

Posted by flame1985 16:00 Archived in England Comments (0)

Blue Man Group


View Study Abroad on flame1985's travel map.

Maggie, Ike, and I were among the few people staying in London last weekend. We spent some of our time in Hamley's looking for poker chips and buying fudge. We also went to the Tate Modern to ride the fifth floor slides. Unfortunately, they were out of tickets by the time we arrived, so we slid down the second story ones instead. They were fun, but not nearly as impressive.

The coolest thing we did all weekend, though, was to see the Blue Man Group on Sunday afternoon. I don't really know how to describe it. I was expecting a drum based show similar to Stomp, but I was dead wrong in that respect. I was impressed by the music, which led me to be disappointed when it paused for cheesy gimmick. Some bits of the show lasted too long. Others left me feeling pretentious when I thought "I could have written something better than that" (but I really could have). The best part was at the end, where massive amounts of (recycled) crepe paper was unrolled and passed through the audience, from the top of the venue down to the stage. It's hard to describe, but trust me, it was cool.

Posted by flame1985 16:00 Archived in England Comments (0)

The Opera


View Study Abroad on flame1985's travel map.

We went to see La Traviata at the Royal Opera House on the 10th. The building itself was gorgeous. There were lots of statues of Roman gods, godesses, and emperors surrounding the stage. The production itself was awesome. The two main singers were sick, but that didn't matter to us, since we didn't know who they were anyway. There were subtitles, which were tempting to watch, but you didn't need to know what was happening word-for-word in order to follow the story. The scenery was magnificent. They had enormous trees on stage at one point just to show that the scene was happening outside. I think everyone's favorite scene was when a bunch of gypsies and matadors showed up at a party to sing and dance. It didn't really have anything to with the story, which was part of the reason it was so amusing. The last scene took way to long; we were watching the main character die for at least half an hour. I can't say that I'll go to another opera, but this was an interesting experience.

Afterward, a bunch of us went out for Pimm's and lemonade, which is a big drink around here. We don't even really know what Pimm's is, since the recipe is a secret, but we do know that it tastes pretty good mixed with lemonade. A lot of people went home after that, but Maggie, Adam, Ike, and I found a bar to hang out at. They played a bunch of songs from the eighties. Everyone was looking at the American tourists singing along with the music, but it was a lot of fun... well worth the embarassment.

Posted by flame1985 16:00 Archived in England Comments (0)

Stratford-upon-Avon


View Study Abroad on flame1985's travel map.

It's been a little while since I wrote in my blog and I've got a lot of stuff to catch up on. I'll start with Stratford, since that was the least recent of my outings. We left our flats a little late that morning. We paused about halfway there and most of the group decided to get a taxi, but Ryan, Paula, and I decided we'd walk the rest of the way. Needless to say this was a bad idea, or else I wouldn't be writing about it. We ended up running most of the way there. We made it just in time to get our tickets from Armitage; he was about to get on the train without us. We got on the train and everyone was surprised that we made it. Of course it didn't leave for another ten minutes. After that it was a three hour train ride filled with crazy talk.

It was about a ten minute walk from the train station into Stratford. We got some lunch to go (I got mine from an organic health food store... yum!) and ate in a garden with lots of flowers and modern art sorts of statues depicting scenes from Shakespeare's plays.

Then we went to see the house where Shakespeare was born and raised. It was a big house. I wish we were living there instead of in our tiny flats. After that, we went to the courtyard of Anne Hathaway's cottage and Armitage gave us a much needed description of King John, so that we would be able to follow the play that night.

Skaespeare's Birthplace

Skaespeare's Birthplace

The Back Door

The Back Door

Shakespeare's Backyard

Shakespeare's Backyard

Then we went to see Shakespeare's grave and got dinner at The Black Swan (aka The Dirty Duck). Adam and I shared this amazing half cooked bread with olive oil and basalmic vinegar drizzled on top. I also had asparagus and this chocolate rasperry tart for dessert. Adam and I also strolled along the Avon somewhere in there. There were a few houseboats and a lot of bridges in the area.

Holy Trinity Church

Holy Trinity Church

Shakespeare's Grave

Shakespeare's Grave

Avon River

Avon River

When we got to the theatre, we had to turn around and evacuate because the paramedics were coming to help this old woman who had gotten sick. So the play started probably half an hour late. It was an amazing performance. We didn't, however, get to see how it ended. We had to leave the theatre two scenes before the end so that we would be sure to get to the train station in time. We had to walk briskly to keep up with Armitage, but then again, we always do. About halfway to the station we found bubbles coming from the roof of some building. We became very confused and intrigued, until we realized that we were losing Armitage. I decided it was good that we had a guide who was not distracted by bubbles. At the station, Armitage recounted the end of the play to us while we waited for our train to arrive. We had five minutes to change trains at a station about halfway home, and we had to catch some taxis back from Victoria station, since the tube wasn't running when we got in at 1am. It was a very tiring adventure.

Posted by flame1985 16:00 Archived in England Comments (0)

Greenwich


View Study Abroad on flame1985's travel map.

Last Monday we went on a field trip to Greenwich for History of Science class. We started our tour at the Royal Observatory. It was pretty neat. The thing I was most excited about was seeing H1 through H4. These were a series of clocks that Harrison made in an attempt to help ships pinpoint their longitude and win a big sum of money from the government. They were impressively accurate for the time period. Then we saw the Prime Meridian, which was not nearly as awesome as I had imagined. Oh well. Also, I learned that Newton was a thief. He stole and published records of astronomical observations by Flamsteed because he wanted them made public immediately, even though poor Flamsteed wanted to finish his observations first. There were also some pretty flashy quartz clocks there. And by flashy I mean literally flashing purple and orange in little circles in a bunch of bulbs on this big metal box. Alright, it's hard to explain, but it was cool.

GMT Statue

GMT Statue

Greenwich

Greenwich

Looking Out the Telescope

Looking Out the Telescope

After all of this we went to the National Maritime Museum. We spent most of our time there in the children's All "Hands-On" Deck exibit. We communicated with Morse Code, felt what it was like to work with tools in a scuba suit, and loaded bags of wool, hemp, and jute onto a rowboat with a crane. Fun was had by all.

Signaling Flags

Signaling Flags

Playing on the Crane

Playing on the Crane

Wind Exhibit

Wind Exhibit

At the Helm

At the Helm

Playing Pirates

Playing Pirates

Then we headed to the boat driving simulator, where Maggie made faces at the man in front of us for taking too long and Ike was upset that he didn't get a turn because an elderly man cut him in line. So we decided it was time to leave the museum before Ike tried to avenge his wasted time in line. We all went to the pub with Armitage and Iliff (our History of Science teacher). It was fun, but going out drinking with your professors is such a surreal experience, it still kind of weirds me out. Tomorrow we are headed to Stratford, so look out for more updates!

Posted by flame1985 16:00 Archived in England Comments (0)

(Entries 16 - 20 of 30) « Page 1 2 3 [4] 5 6 »