I am weeks away from flying across the pond and spending 5 days packed with everything British. For those who know me, the fact that I am an anglophile is not surprising. If there was any doubt, check out my tea collection, multiple copies of Pride and Prejudice, and British chachkies adorning my apartment. On this kind of trip I want to make sure I am maximizing the experience since who knows when I will have the chance to be back. However, I am conscious of not getting my hopes up. I find that I get overly excited about something and then when it happens or I purchase whatever it is, the excitement decreases and I am filled with doubt. Although my preparation for the trip has been extensive, I am doing my best to be open-minded to the experience and learn a lot (about the city AND myself).
For the holidays this past December, my group of friends participated in a secret snowflake (similar to Secret Santa). My friend who had chosen me, gifted a beautiful journal with a cloth cover decorated with the world map and entitled “The Wander List”. Whenever I receive nice stationary such as this, I make sure I use it intentionally and purposefully. With that, it was the perfect option to record my musings and travel thoughts while I am abroad. Maybe if I feel creative, I’ll bullet journal 🙂
As I began my initial planning, one of my main goals was to have a proper Afternoon Tea experience. So after I tour Parliament, I will be able to enjoy a vegetarian afternoon tea with 60 other people with a view of the Thames River. I have been curious about this aspect of British life and am hopeful to talk with the rest of the guests over a lovely afternoon.
I have mentioned several times on this blog that I am an Introvert. A challenge I will have for this week is to be social!! I can certainly carry a conversation, but it tends to be surface-level. With this opportunity to learn from people from all over the world, I want to lean more into my extroverted side and truly make connections from inhabitants and tourists I encounter. This will be put to the test as several places I plan to dine are restaurant/pub style. Of course I’ll have my security blanket of books to whip out if I am extremely uncomfortable, but I want to push myself to have conversations.
Now, as a bookworm, I’d be remiss if I did not check out the numerous bookshops London has to offer. Here is a sampling of what I am planning to take a peak into:
Have no doubt that I will be bookstagramming the heck out of these stores. I am optimistic that I will be able to talk with the bookshop owners and staff as well as leave behind some of my business cards so I can feature them on here in the future!
When I was younger, I was in awe of Amanda Bynes roaming around London in What A Girl Wants! hahahaha! To be fair, she went to a lot of cool places, Camden Market being one of them! Even more of my teenage years included Winning London with Mary Kate and Ashley. While I am walking over to my tour in Kensington Palace, I’ll stop through Hyde Park to see Peter Pan! Unfortunately, I will just miss Prince Harry and Ms. Meghan Markle’s wedding, but that is ok haha.
Although a lot of my obsession with London comes from entertainment, royalty, and books, I’m looking forward to digging into the London beyond those assumptions, to meet with the locals and engage in their past times. My agenda may look pretty set but the spontaneity of conversations, inspiration, and reflection will be priceless!
Any other places I should visit/things I should do?