Wednesday, May 12, 2010

The Age of Aquarius Has Arrived!!

Sorry I've fallen behind again everybody. I find that my days are so full of activities that I get home and I'm dead tired and I still have homework and readings to do (believe it or not I'm getting credit for all these misadventures) so blogging unfortunately gets put off until the end. But here I am and I'm blogging, so yay! I figure I'll follow the same format as before.

FRIDAY - We went to the Royal Kew Gardens today. It is essentially a GIGANTIC park. Like, no joke, acres and acres of beautiful landscape, immaculate flowers and trees galore. It was actually really fun. Granted it was freezing outside, but it was still really cool.
It was probably one of the prettiest places I've ever seen. Some of the highlights included the tropical greenhouse which looked and felt just like my mission and made me all nostalgic; the Evolution House which was a hackneyed green house meant to teach us how we evolved from primordial ooze, but it was ok because Allan and Christian and I were raptors and it was awesome!
We also took some time to be transcendentalists and speak in lengthy parentheticals, like this one, and become one with the universe as well as get our zen on in the Japanese rock garden, but we left that spot quickly because all I wanted to do was mess up the rocks (it's my inner 4-year old). Sadly my camera battery died about 1/3 of the way through the park so I didn't get pictures of everything, but the vivid transcendental memory lives on.

On Friday night we went to the National Theatre and saw a show entitled "Women Beware Women" by Thomas Middleton. We knew NOTHING about the show except that it was good, and WOW it was was good! It was one of the best shows I've seen ever in my life. It's actually a classical piece written by a contemporary of Shakespeare (and who collaborated with Shakespeare on "Macbeth" and "Measure for Measure") but it was set in 20th century facist Italy. It was INCREDIBLE! I don't really have words to describe it except that it was brilliantly acted, GORGEOUSLY staged and technically incredible. I loved it and am VERY interested in the script. It's being added to the list of "Shows I Want to Direct" for sure.

SATURDAY - Today was laundry day for Christian and I so we went over to the Metrogate house (the owners of the flats where we live) and trekked down to the basement to find 2 washers and 2 dryers in what can only be described as a hobbit hole. The ceiling was about 4 feet high and 3 feet wide and somehow there were 4 machines in there. It was funny for the both of us to try and do laundry in there. Anyways after that we putted around the apartment and then went with Jana and Brianna to the Imperial War Museum.
It was this really cool building filled with guns and tanks and symbols of male phallic oppression. There were some really cool exhibits, but we only had time for one. We'll go back another day since it's free and see the rest of the stuff.
One of my favorite parts that we did get to see, however, was this wall covered with pictures that children have drawn of their impressions about war and the museum. Here is my favorite picture:

Yup. That's the Council of Evil. Members of this council: Hitler, the Devil,a skeleton, a vampire, a pirate, and a werewolf. I love the little kid who drew this. 'nuff said.

After the museum we headed over to a highly rated fish 'n' chips shop just about 3 blocks away. We walked in for take-away food and it was this little room that was papered with tickets to every sort of theatrical or sporting event you can imagine that I'm sure the employees have been to. We all got cod and chips (french fries, for you ruddy Americans) and it was less than 5 pounds and delicious! The place is called "Master's Super Fish" and was excellent. We got our food to go and headed up to the National again, eating as we went. We intended to see "The Habit of Art" but it was sold out so we went to another show we had wanted to see called "Love the Sinner". It was questionable at best. Jana and I liked the first half but not the second, and Christian and Brianna liked the second and not the first. Altogether, however, it was a mediocre script at best with characters that needed further development and a needless nude scene that was just awkward. So yeah, not worth 10pp. Oh well. We had fun at least.

SUNDAY - Most of us have been assigned to go just down the street to the Hyde Park ward. The people are super friendly, but it's kind of a weird ward because its where ALL the tourists go so it fluctuates in number and the people treat you kinda funny. But it's ok. We had a fun ward "munch 'n' mingle" after the meetings and I talked to the missionaries who are way cool. Typical lazy Sunday. It was a nice day to try and recharge batteries and whatnot.

MONDAY - We went to class and then hung around the house in the afternoon for a bit. We then decided it was time to go see a West End show, so we were either gonna go see "Hair" or "Lion King" depending on which could get us better seats. We went to the Gielgud where "Hair" plays
and we were offered INCREDIBLE seats for on 25pp so we took them and didn't bother with "Lion King". We decided we wanted some Chinese food and we were basically in Chinatown so we wandered around London's less-than-impressive Chinatown and finally decided on a little dumpling shop with INCREDIBLE dumplings. The rest of the food wasn't that great, but the dumplings were made-to-order and delicious and were only 4.50 a plate.

After dinner we puttered around Leicester (pronounced 'lester') Square where there was some crappy movie premiere filled with half-rate European celebrities and screaming fan girls. I got some hazelnut gelato. Then it was time for "Hair"

I know I already posted about "Hair", but no joke it was INCREDIBLE! It is the best musical I have EVER seen.
I'm kind of obsessed. I bought the soundtrack, which I've listened to non-stop since Monday, and am continually blown away by it. Anyone who gets a chance to see it here in London MUST do it. I'm going again at some point. There is no way I could get away with not seeing again. I can't even describe to you how dazzling every aspect of the performance was. Even Christian, who doesn't like musicals, liked it. Just. Incredible.

TUESDAY - Today was our temple trip. We hired a coach (bus) and traveled a little over an hour to the temple. It was gorgeous, but I didn't really get a chance to see it because I was whisked inside to help with the baptisms because, despite letting them know weeks in advance that we were coming, they had NO temple workers in the baptistry so Allan, Richie, Lance, Rodger and I had to do it all. It was cool though, because I've never had a chance to do that before. It was an enjoyable experience for sure.

On the bus ride back I started to feel really sick with a headache and body aches and fever so I came home and went to bed. I woke up enough to write my paper and chat with a few friends and then bed again.

I'm still not feeling that great but I'm getting better. Today has been low-key again. It's getting boring actually, but I need to relax if I don't want to get sicker. Tonight we have tickets to "Taking Steps" at the Orange Tree Theatre, which I'm REALLY excited to see, so I'll be sure to blog about it tomorrow or maybe tonight if I'm not feeling gross. Until then!

Over and out.

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