Good morning, guys, and HAPPY NEW YEAR!!! To start off the first of January, I have another London update for y’all that is looooong so you might wanna grab some snacks 🙂
This day started a bit rough because we got going a little later than planned, but it all worked out in the end! First thing in the morning, we went to breakfast in Covent Garden at a place called Balthazar’s and it was absolutely delicious! It felt very ritzy and sophisticated, but still casual. Brig got the New York-style pancakes with bananas, “maple sauce” (aka maple syrup) + a banana, passionfruit, and greek yogurt smoothie (SO GOOD). He really loved both! I got the hazelnut waffles with creme fraiche, maple sauce, and berries. The waffles were so crispy and delicious, I loved them! Also the portions were so much smaller than American restaurants, which we really liked.
After breakfast, we headed to get a SIM card for Brig’s phone, which actually went pretty quickly. We then discovered that we had to run back to the flat to have access to Wifi cause the SIM wasn’t working yet, and we couldn’t access the directions we’d saved or anything, and then after that we ran to meet Ian, Brig’s brother, to get print copies of our tickets, all the while stressed because we were supposed to be at our next destination (the TOWER OF LONDON!!) already. It was a bit hectic and we were quite the pair of frazzled, unhappy tourists. BUT! We got to the Tube and the Tower of London just in the nick of time.
Below is Tower Bridge — isn’t it so pretty?! I love the blue accents!
The Tower of London is SO SO SO SUPER SUPER COOL!! I didn’t know what to expect from it because I literally didn’t even know what it was, I just thought it was a nice lookout tower in London, but Brig was super intent on going when we booked our trip so I figured why not! Right before we got there he told me that it’s a big prison and I was like, WE’RE GOING TO AZKABAN!!! It definitely looks more like a castle, not really a tower, but it’s where all these cool famous people from history resided, like Sir Isaac Newton, but also imprisoned and executed, like Anne Berlin, and Queen Elizabeth I, if I’m remembering correctly.
The tour of the tower is led by someone called a “Beefeater,” which are these men and women that have served in the British military and are technically part of the Queen’s Royal Bodyguards and are assigned to protect the tower in the Queen’s honor, if that makes sense. They’re not just these random tour guides that dress up and know stuff about history, they’re LEGIT. There’s also a whole lot of qualifications you have to have to become one of those guys, like having to serve in the British military for at least 22 years. Super neat. Our tour guide’s name was Clive and he was the coolest. So funny, a great storyteller, and so knowledgeable about British history. It was fascinating to listen to him tell us all about the tower.
It started raining about 10 minutes after the tour started and Clive was like, “Now, we’re not allowed to give tours in the rain because of umbrellas, with everyone being so close together we end up poking each other’s eyes out. So, if you don’t open your umbrella, it means it’s not raining, and we can continue the tour. Does everyone understand?” It was so funny. We spent probably the last 20-30 minutes in a chapel nice and dry while he explained the rest of the things he wanted to tell us about the executions and all the other cool prison things. Like how all of the traitors that were killed were literally buried right underneath the chapel, under our very feets. After the Tower of London, we saw the Crown Jewels, which were super neat and glittery and pretty, of course.
SO. After the Tower of London, we rushed over to Victoria to see WICKED!!!
AHHHHHH!!! Brig completely surprised me out of the blue with tickets the night before and I was SO shocked and happy and excited. I’ve been wanting to see this show for a reeeeealllllllyyy long time and it totally blew my expectations out of the water. I am so in love with the entire production, it was absolutely PERFECT. Thanks babe!!! It takes serious skill to surprise me like that. He was keeping it secret for like 3 months! Bravo, husband 🙂
After Wicked we were totally starved, so we stopped at Nando’s for dinner. Mango lime chicken sandwich for him, quinoa salad with fried halloumi + chicken for me. Super yummy!
We then met up with Ian and Charity in Hyde Park to walk through a Winter Wonderland carnival. Ohhhh that was so fun! It was huge! There were fun rides and food places, like crepes and waffles and bratwursts and pretzels and fish and chips and candy. We ended up grabbing a chocolate covered strawberry kabob and Brig got stocked up on gummies at the coolest gigantic gummy station. He was SO happy haha, he’s the biggest sugar/candy lover I know 🙂
After walking through the park, we split ways, Charity and I walking around more to see the fun Christmas lights and walk through stores, and Ian and Brig to go see the Star Wars movie! Charity and I had a really really great time just talking and seeing the sights. She’s such a stellar human and I’m really grateful to call her my sister-in-law! We came home for a bathroom + water break at around 9:30-10 pm, then headed back out to Covent Garden to grab a couple macarons at La Duree before it closed. I got a rose macaroon and a black currant macaroon and they were SO delicious!
^^ Aren’t Ian and Char so stinking cute?! ^^
^^ And THIS guy. I love him 🙂 ^^
That basically wraps up day 3, it was SO crazy and busy but so much fun, definitely one of my favorite days from this trip!!