We’ve almost completed our first full week in Europe, and it’s been quite the adventure! From touring Buckingham Palace to the Roman Baths, we have seen many of the sights that England has to offer and experienced so many things. Even within this week, I have learned so much about the world around me. It truly has been incredible.
This week started with our arrival in London on Saturday morning. We got to the airport at 11:30am, but it took us until about 2:30pm to get to the place where we’ve been staying. After an all-night plane ride, we were all pretty exhausted, but after a little rest and time to settle in, we went to St. Paul’s Cathedral for Evensong. The cathedral itself was gorgeous, and listening to the choir was so peaceful. We all then proceeded to pass out immediately as soon as we got back to the flat.
Sunday was our first trip to Wembley Church of Christ, which was a nice little church to visit. The people were all so kind and friendly, and the diversity of the church was amazing. The mix of cultures at Wembley was beautiful, knowing that we were all worshipping the same God together. Also they had cake and coffee, so that was a good plus. The rest of the day was filled with walking through the British Museum and roaming around London. We saw the London Eye and Big Ben, took lots of touristy pictures, and ate dinner with almost everybody together. It was a great experience, because not only did we get to explore London, but we also got to really bond with everybody on the trip for the first time.
On Monday we went to Stonehenge and the Roman Baths. The weather was lovely—sunny with a nice breeze (perfect for walking around outside). We got to talk to a nice little man dressed as a Roman, which was probably the highlight of my day.
One of my favorite days was Tuesday, when we spent the day with Shakespeare. We first went to the Globe theatre and toured, which was very interesting (especially for an English major like me). We then went to his birthplace and the church where he is buried—both located in a cute little town called Stratford-upon-Avon! We all ate together for the first time at the White Swan, and it was probably the best meal that I’ve had all week. The food was delicious and the company was pretty fantastic too.
Wednesday was the beginning of our journeys apart from the group. We all began the day together by touring Buckingham Palace and watching the Changing of the Guard. We then split off for lunch and the afternoon, where my group went to the Camden Market. It was an exciting area of town filled with street vendors and people shopping around. We ended the day with a performance of Macbeth at the Globe Theatre, which was absolutely incredible. Even standing through the 2 ½ hour performance was worth it.
Thursday and Friday were our free days where some of our group went to Scotland and the rest of us stayed in London. On Thursday we went on a punting tour throughout Cambridge, followed by an AMAZING performance of Wicked. It was seriously the best show I’ve ever seen.
Friday, my group went to Brighton, a cute little coastal town that would have been great if it hadn’t been raining all day. After a full day of walking through unique stores and getting soaked, we returned to the flat along with the Scotland people.
This week has exceeded anything I ever imagined it would’ve been. I’ve seen so much and learned so much (and eaten so much). I am beyond blessed to have this opportunity. I can’t wait to see what the rest of the semester has in store for us.
- Destiny Lewis, Junior