England: Even a Bus

England was great fantastic bloody brilliant. England was just bloody brilliant.

I loved the history. I loved the pubs. I loved the countryside. I loved the people.

My pre-trip list was a tough one to check off. We saw a lot of rain. But we didn't see any corgis. Not one. All the dogs we saw were scraggly Irish dogs. I'm not 100% sure they were Irish, but the scraggly, scruffy nature and "sure, I'll have a beer with you" vibe they put out led me to think so.

Early in the week, we just explored the city of London. We went on a rainy bike tour, getting to check tick a few things off our list: Buckingham, Westminster, Elizabeth Tower (the building that houses Big Ben), and Kensington Gardens. We went to Piccadilly Circus. And we went to pubs. Lots of pubs.

Later in the week, we took a train to Bath (a beautiful small town in Somerset, England). We took a bus to Leeds Castle, Canterbury, Dover, and Greenwich. We went to Borough Market. We went to the coolest restaurant in the world (check it out here). And we went to pubs. Lots of pubs.

Bath, Somerset, UK
If you look closely, you can spot my new vacation home.

Roman Baths
spa day!
Leeds Castle
"Hello, landlord.
Yes, I'd like to order a moat.
Yes, in NYC. I don't care how much."

Leeds Castle
half expected to find the eye-hands guy from Pan's Labyrinth

Canterbury Cathedral
where I prayed for forgiveness
for how much I still enjoy Blurred Lines

My favorite part of the trip was the Tower of London (aka Her Majesty's Royal Palace and Fortress). The Tower of London is an old castle with a lot of history. It is steeped in WAY too much history to put in a post on this blog. But to paint you a picture, imagine George R. R. Martin visiting, going into a coffee shop, then sitting down and writing A Song of Fire and Ice based off what he'd seen. Or to paint you a better picture, just look at these pictures:

Our view from across the River Thames.
We swam across jk I took a bridge while my girlfriend swam across.

My new apartment.

House for sale: Pets allowed, even lions. Comes with trebuchet.

a moat and not the restroom toilet

A sign explaining the Tower ravens
since they can't do it for themselves.
Dumb ravens.

What you don't see in these pictures are the Crown Jewels. They reside in the Tower of London, but they don't allow photography inside. It's probably best they don't. Or else there'd be footage of me doing cartwheels through the halls singing Run The Jewels. I was slightly disappointed when I walked in and didn't see Killer Mike continuously rapping for 6 hours à la the National's Sorrow at the MoMA.

To get to the Tower of London, we walked across the Tower Bridge. Fun fact for those who are like me and have no world awareness - the Tower Bridge is THE famous bridge in London, not the London Bridge. While it has a lot of history, the London Bridge is a pretty standard concrete and steel bridge. Whereas the Tower Bridge is a beautifully constructed sight to behold. Bring that up at a party and check out all of your new friends!

"Hi, I'm a bridge. Americans call me London. My friends call me Tower."

I want to share another piece of advice for my American friends so you don't embarrass yourself at parties. It's well documented in the U.S. that if you want a girl to like you, you tell her you're going to take her to "Pound Town". People know this. This is a thing. However, in the U.K.,  if you tell a girl you're taking her to "Pound Land", it means you're going to a UK version of a dollar store. So please be sure to make that distinction when speaking to women.

NOT a club

I loved England. I knew I would. And I was right. Because I'm always right. Just ask my travel buddy girlfriend.

I loved the history. I loved the pubs. I loved the countryside. But most importantly, I loved the people.

Everyone we met was so polite and welcoming. One day as we waited at the bus stop, a bus passed displaying this message: "SORRY Not In Service".  Even a bus apologized to us. Even a bus.


For the entire trip, my girlfriend worked the camera, taking all of the pictures.
Meanwhile, I worked FOR the camera throughout England. Those pictures have been destroyed.