Today Craig (Sandy's Son), who arrived Wednesday morning, and I ventured out to the Tower of London. We took the Tube from Anne's to the Tower which is located on the north bank of the Thames and began our day of history. The tower is a complex of buildings, surrounded by two rings of defense rings and a moat. The tower primarily served as a fortress, palace and prison. We spent close to four hours touring the Tower including an hour guided tour from a Beefeater (left, not me!), a warder, who acts as a tour guide for the Tower. They are a sight to see in their own right and we found out later that our tour guide was the first ever woman Beefeater, which was a huge deal here. The Tower was very entertaining serving as a place of execution, torture, armory, mint, and the home of the Crown Jewels of the United Kingdom. The Tower bulit in 1078, has a tremendous amount of history we could never take it all in. We were not able to take pictures of the Crown Jewels, which is a good thing because everybody should see them in person anyway. They are very extravagant.
After hours of touring the Tower, Craig and I headed west along the Thames River to Trafalgar square. We walked there, stopping at Shakespeare's Globe, outside St. John's and crossing Millennium Bridge. Trafalgar square is a recently renovated square in central London. It is a great place to hang out and people watch. There is a 185-foot-tall column in the center of the square surrounded by large lions, fountains, a tons of people (right is a picture of me on the Lion with Big Ben in the background).
Afterwards we met up with Anne and Sandy at his office and went to the pub for some pints and then went to eat my first Lebanese dinner. The food was scrumptious-we had hummus, pita, rice, chicken, and lamb. Indian food is really popular here also, I am excited to try that.
London has so much to offer and I know I would not be able to take it all in without the greatest guides/family to ascertain it all with. Craig and I were talking about the reality that we are actually here and the history we are surrounded by, it is hard to grasp. Tomorrow we witness the Changing of the Guards!
Until next time, Cherrio!