A Tower of Sickness and Obstructed Views
So the only real thing on my agenda today was to go and see the Globe Theatre. As I said in the last post, my Thames River lunch cruise was cancelled, and I’m still convinced that was because I am a single person and they wanted more money, but that kind of killed the day and the mood for me. I was real excited for that.
Before heading to the globe I intended to go to a cafe for an English breakfast. I took the tube to downtown and started walking past stalls and shops and the like and I realised I was feeling pretty sick. Mostly, my stomach just felt sick. I haven’t ate the best here, and I’ve been in this perpetual state of knowing I’m hungry but not being able to eat because my stomach just feels upset for some reason. It’s probably a result of The Portman, to be honest. That parsnip puree… I’m telling you.
Anywho, while I was walking I decided it might not be best to have such a large meal and a meal I’d not had before. So I stopped in a little sandwich place instead and just got some fruit juice and a small steak and cheese sandwich. I still didn’t eat the whole sandwich, and I had to take it real slow, but the juice made me feel a lot better. I’ve decided I’m likely a little dehydrated and I am making an effort to buy some more water and drinks.
Random Note: I’ve seen far more Subways, Burger Kings, and KFCs here than I have McDonalds. I thought this was odd. Also, I don’t understand why everyone doesn’t have a Wendy’s. We all know they’re the best US fast food establishment.
London Globe or Good Old Cedar?
After that adventure I headed over to the globe museum. The tour guide here was interesting and the Globe itself was cool I guess. Largely, I kind of like my hometown Cedar City globe more. But let me qualify this. I think it would be real neat to see an actual production in the London Globe; they make a real effort here to perform all of Shakespeare’s plays as they were originally viewed. This means no mics, no lighting, a standing only section next to the stage, an abundance of audience interaction (everyone is a part of the play). The globe would be great if you could see a play in it, unfortunately, the last play they were showing in the Globe was on the day I flew out here. The architecture and everything isn’t much more interesting than that of my own globe in Cedar, except for the thatched roof (only one allowed in London, by the way, this is due to the Great Fire.) I will say, they had a cool soundboard in three rooms where you could listen to past actors perform the most famous lines from some of the plays. One board was like, all Hamlet, and well, I love that to be or not to be speech. I suppose it’s my existentialism. John Gielgud was my favourite, followed by Richard Burton.
To Happen Across a Tower
After the globe I walked along the Thames. Like I say, I didn’t have any other plans, so I just walked and walked. Headed up towards the Tower of London and got a chili-dog from a street vendor. Then I decided, what the heck?, and I got my ticket to go and see the Tower of London. Our beefeater tour guide was fantastic (they don’t know why they’re called this, by the way), very funny, very personable, a joy to follow around. The Tower was really pretty neat too. I kind of love all the castles in this part of the world, and I need to go see more of them in Scotland, Belgium, Hungary, etc. The Crown jewels were pretty. Couldn’t take pictures because it is all protected by the Royal Family Copyright, along with everything else related to the Queen, oh well.
Following the Tower of London, I decided I was going to get on the Thames anyway. I just took the public transit thames clipper to Westminster, and it wasn’t as exciting as I hoped, but it was nice. It was also the first time I’d seen Big Ben and Westminster all week and it was the best view I’ve had of the Eye. Ben is all covered in scaffolding right now, sadly, so you can’t actually see him. I’ve saved the West end for Daniel’s Saturday and Sunday plans.
To get to the Tower of London I walked across Tower Bridge for the first time. As I was exiting I saw the bridge open and close.
I Don’t Do Food
Got off the Thames and headed to grab my ticket for Les Miz. Then I walked about the smoking capital of London (seriously, there’s a lot of smokers in London, but I swear every single person smoked in this area), trying to find somewhere to eat. This is another issue I’ve had regarding food. There’s so many options that I don’t know what to do. I see places that look interesting but I don’t really want to spend 16p on a meal. The other places look run down and crappy though, so I don’t want to go in them either. I walked for round about half an hour before I finally just grabbed a slice of pizza from this place… It wasn’t great but it was loud. I’m having trouble communicating with some people because of how load some places can get. At the same time though, she just acted like she didn’t have an idea of what the parmigiano pizza was, even though she repeated the world exactly as I said it to her. Like, I know I was pronouncing it correctly, I’ve taken Italian. It was frustrating. I just got the margarita.
The Queen’s (awful) Theatre
After this I went to the theatre where they made me wait forever before I could go to my seat. They opened the stalls but for some reason wouldn’t open the upper levels until 20 minutes before the show?? It was really frustrating. What was more frustrating though was when I got to my seat. It was awful. I couldn’t see ¾ of the stage, and it wasn’t because I’m short. You’d need to sit a bunch of Rudy Goberts in those seats for anyone to see anything. I was in the side box area of the dress circle. These don’t slope downward at all, like 0. In addition to this, they have a 2 foot piece of padding on the rail that further complicates the view, the seats aren’t raised, and the side juts out too far so that the seats closest to the main seats of the dress circle can’t see past the far end of the part that’s jutting out. It really kind of pissed me off. People would start singing and I’d have to try and guess who it was because I couldn’t see them. An actor would walk on the stage, unbenounced to me, because I couldn’t see. The music was fantastic. The singing was top-notch. The lead guy, Jean, was phenomenal. He had the voice of an angel and the appearance of a Ewan McGregor, mhmm, nice. Killian Donnelly is his name, and he’s super famous in the theatre world. I’m quite upset I didn’t actually get to enjoy it.
Do note that I was leaning over the railing here and you can still only see half of the stage…
I left the theatre and it was raining pretty hard. Made my way back to the house and basically immediately crashed. I was really tired. I slept in today because I have no plans. So I’ve tried to figure them out in the last half-hour. I’ve decided I’m going to go get lunch at Daddy Donkey, and then check out the Museum of London, and the Tate Modern before I go see Matilda tonight.