1. Toilet, Loo, WC = bathroom
2. Fit = good looking
3. Cheers = thank you
4. Skanky = dirty/ratty/old
5. Tuff = conceited man
6. Tart = promiscuous girl
7. Aubergine = eggplant
8. Biscuit = cookie
9. Scone = biscuit
10. Crisps = chips
11. Rocket = arugula
12. Mind = watch out
13. Lift = elevator
14. Trousers = pants
15. Knickers = underwear
16. Jumper = sweater
17. Trainers = sneakers
18. University/Uni = college
19. Mucking around = goofing off
20. Holiday = vacation
21. Boot = trunk
22. Car park = parking lot
23. Motorway = highway
24. Petrol = gas
25. First Floor = Second Floor (this is VERY confusing)
26. Bill = Check
27. Off license = liquor store
28. Bangers = sausages
29. Chips = fries
30. Take away = take out
31. Toastie = grilled sandwich
32. Bin = trash can
33. Way Out = exit
34. Cooker = oven
35. Hob = stovetop
36. Mobile Phone = cell phone
37. Queue = line/wait
38. Knackered = exhausted
39. Fag = cigarette
40. Porridge = oatmeal
41. Tutor = professor
42. Cab = taxi
43. Are you all right? = Can I help you/How are you?
44. Wanker = drunk
45. Till = register/checkout
46. Snogging = making out
47. Fancy = want
48. Loads = tons/a lot
49. Dodgy = sketchy
50. Zed = Z
Hoped you all celebrated Fat Tuesday yesterday– I sure did! It was National Pancake Day here and I love me some pancakes. There were pancakes races all over the city yesterday, my friends and I decided to go to the one at Borough Market, right near the Southwark Cathedral and the Thames River.
Gorgeous! So anyway, because it was a Tuesday, I may or may not have skipped my morning class to attend this crazy event, but I just felt like I couldn’t miss it (what has my life become??)! Before the race began, we had some interesting entertainment…
And then the race began!
Needless to say, it was hysterical. What a day!
Oh, and here’s my “pancake”… I guess they’re crepes here, another American thing I miss dearly! It was delicious anyways, Spinach & Ricotta!
Until next time..
After hunting for the perfect (i.e. cheap) restaurant, I finally had my first proper English breakfast! It was certainly different than the typical hearty “American” breakfast and consisted of fried eggs, sausage, bacon, baked beans, a grilled tomato and a choice of either a portobello mushroom or black pudding (I won’t disgust you with an ingredients list of the latter…).
Since I’m a vegetarian and I’m a bigger fan of French toast, we’ll just say that I’m happy I had it, but have no desire to have it a second time.
I also went to Portobello Road, which is about a two-mile long street market selling all sorts of food, clothing and miscellaneous items. I spent probably a good three hours there and walked away with loads of stuff for hardly any money at all! It was so much fun and I’ll definitely be visiting there again.
We also visited Covent Garden, which was a fruit, vegetable and flower market for over 300 years. In 1980, the Victorian halls were transformed into a main tourist attraction filled with shops, restaurants and street performers.
It’s such a lively atmosphere there and we found an amazing cookie place there called Ben’s Cookies…the white chocolate chunk was heavenly.
The Social Programme I am enrolled in took us to see Phantom of the Opera last week at Her Majesty’s Theatre in Piccadilly Circus. It was an incredible performance! The theatre itself is really small, but they really worked the stage and made a great use of space. I haven’t ever seen this particular performance in theatre and I haven’t seen the film version since high school, so I was surprised to find myself singing along with them (in my head), and I could even understand the opera verses!
Before we got to the theatre, we decided to make an evening out of it and go out to dinner too. We went to a really popular chain restaurant called Bella Italia… and I died. I’ve found that the Italian food here is particularly yummy and the chain restaurants are not your average Olive Garden’s, it’s REAL Italian food. I can’t wait until I actually go to Italy—I might never return home.
Went to a club over the weekend, had so much fun and met a cute English boy who saved me from creepy men and danced with me all night long. Found out later his name is Mike and lives in Northern England so I’ll probably never see him again, so sad. The night went from great to awful as I stepped outside of the club in negative degree weather and got lost getting home. That night I honestly thought I was going to die and cried in the middle of the street because I was so cold. Needless to say, I will not be going out again until it gets warmer.
Over the weekend, I finally went to Harrods and decided that I’m moving my family to Kensington. It sounds fancy and it’s even better in person. All the high-end shops, restaurants, and museums are within walking distance from each other and Harrods is smack dab in the middle of it all. I thought it was just another high-end department store, but oh no, this place puts Niemen Marcus to shame.
Step into seven floors of designer heaven stretched over 4.5 acres, where you can buy everything from shoes to clothing to makeup and perfume, all by top name brands. They even sell children’s clothing (designer only, of course), evening gowns (I’m talking red carpet), costly housewares (as in £900 for a fancy bowl), and a whole floor devoted to fine food/wines! There’s also a Harrods gift shop, bookstore, furniture, home entertainment, bed & bath, and almost an entire floor appropriately titled “Toy Kingdom.” There are also an astounding 25 café’s and restaurants inside including Café Godiva, an ice cream parlor, a steakhouse, a sushi bar, and a pizzeria! We went to the famous tearoom and paid an outrageous amount of money for a pot of tea and a couple of scones… but I loved every second of it.
On Sunday, I felt super fabulous because I got to go to an International Fashion Show at the Saatchi Gallery in London called Scoop. It was awesome because I asked a lady at the tube how to get to the gallery and when she told me it was closed for a private event, I got to tell her that I had a VIP pass, BAM!
We arrived at the gallery and walked down a glamorous purple carpet, and once we entered the doors, I knew this was legit. Three floors of fashion and brand representatives treating you like royalty, hoping that you will buy into their brands and sell them in your store. My co-worker and I were at the event representing Henrietta Ludgate (my internship) and because she doesn’t sell other brands in her store, I was tempted to buy for myself! All the top brands were promoting their new collections at discounted prices up to 60% off… but I managed to retain my self-control and left with only the goodies they gave us. It was a fun experience and I got to learn how to approach and sell to customers, since I will be doing the same at London Fashion Week (which officially starts tomorrow by the way, I’m dying).
On Tuesday, I celebrated Valentine’s Day for the first time without a boyfriend (or my daddy) and it was actually one of the best. We went to the Haagen Dazs Café in Leicester Square and I had a Caramel Banana Crepe served with one scoop of Banoffee and one scoop of Dulce de Leche topped with sliced bananas, warm caramel drizzle and caramelized hazelnuts… I’m drooling just thinking about it.
My valentines and I then went to the Odeon movie theatre and saw The Artist, which is a silent movie set in the 1920’s. Everyone has been raving about this film and how great the little dog is, and I wasn’t disappointed. It was so fun and unlike the usual romantic love story. Go see it!
Booked a trip to Dublin last night for mid-March and currently counting down until my trip to Amsterdam after fashion week… can’t wait to start traveling! Keep you posted, I’ll try and take as many pictures as I can at Fashion Week, fingers crossed I can attend a couple fashion shows!
This is so crazy to think about, but I’ve officially been here one month! I didn’t realize how quickly time would fly, even when I am missing my family and home. My dad just celebrated his 55th birthday on the 31st of January, so it was really hard for me not to be there for it. But, we skyped, and we are going to celebrate again when I come home! (By the way, shout out to whoever invented Skype… I don’t think I would be able to study abroad without it!)
Anyway, I said I would talk more about my traveling and sightseeing in this post, so let’s get right into it! I’ve made myself a bucket list for two reasons: I’ll use any excuse to make lists and it’s probably the only way I’m going to do everything I want to do, since I’m here for such a short period of time. I’ve crossed quite a few things off, but my list is still about two pages long, categorized by shopping, museums, places to travel, things to do, sights to see, restaurants, and bars/clubs. It’s quite a daunting list, but I’m determined to do and see it all!
I’m signed up for a Social Programme that the university offered for international students for a chance to visit places we may not get a chance to see. They are taking us to see Phantom of the Opera next week and eventually Stonehenge and the Olympic site!
One of the first things I got to do here was take a weekend trip to York, which was so beautiful but freeeeeezing! We got to tour around town the first day and see Abbey Ruins, old castles and the one and only York Minster—(hard to imagine, but the inside is even more beautiful than the outside!).
There is also a cute town centre with lots of shops and café’s, including the famous Betty’s Tea Room! I didn’t actually know this until a few days ago but Betty’s is apparently the oldest and most famous tearoom in London. The one we visited in York was the very first and opened in 1920! I was so thrilled this is where I had my first “proper tea.”
Last weekend, we celebrated Chinese New Year in Chinatown, which is right in the heart of London. We had to get up super early to see the parade, but it was so worth it! I got some amazing pictures and it was such a fun atmosphere to see everyone coming together to celebrate the year of the dragon.
There was a dragon dance later on with other performances, delicious street food, and vendors selling paper lanterns, toy dragons, and firecrackers. That was also one of the greatest days because on our way through Leicester Square, we accidentally ran into M&M World!! It was amazing and I swear the M&M’s were the best I’d ever tasted…
And if you’re wondering if I watched the Superbowl on Sunday, of course I did! I’m a diehard Patriots fan, and even though we lost, I had an amazing time at The Roadhouse in Covent Garden. It was so much fun to be surrounded by fellow American football fans (and some extremely confused English people). The game didn’t start until 11:30pm here, so needless to say, it was a long night (and even longer literally running around the city trying to find the night bus…)! I don’t think I got to bed until about 5:00 am! It’s all about the adventures.
To end things on an awesomely positive note, I am OFFICIALLY going to London Fashion Week!!!!! My life is complete.
More updates soon! Cheers!