London Calling–Part I

For the last 2 years at work, we've been working on a big project, and this February / March, we finally started rolling it out world wide.  As part of that rollout, I was tapped to visit our European offices in London, Brussels, and Geneva.

This would be my 3rd trip to London.  I'd been there roughly 10 and 20 years ago, totaling just over a month's time.  I only had a couple of items on my "Must See" list: Abbey Road crosswalk & the Royal Observatory at Greewich.  It would be my second trip to Brussels, my other one was maybe 25 years ago, and I'd spent maybe a day there in Brussels proper that trip.  And it was going to be my first trip to Geneva. (More on that later.)

Cora didn't get her passport in time, so I was flying solo.  I was also flying business class!  It is an nice way to spend 8 hours, but I wouldn't pay for it myself.

IMAG0663 IMAG0664

And relax, I'm not going to give you a blow by blow recap of the trip.  To be honest, I worked a lot.  During the week, I usually didn't leave the office until 7:00, and then went back to my apartment, ate something, then Skyped with Cora and worked the rest of the evening, because the Chicago people needed my help.


I stayed with City Apartments.  It's a short term apartment rental company that owns a number of buildings around central London.  Sort of like Airbnb meets a hotel.  I stayed with them last time, too.  You get a pre-stocked kitchen, cleaning supplies, a clothes washer, TV's in the living and bedrooms with free movies (I never even turned them on), internet, blah, blah.  I would highly recommend using them.  I was there for just over 2 weeks, and it was so nice having a real 1 BR apartment to come back to, vs. a hotel room.  I'm not a "hang out in the bedroom" person, so it was nice to have a sofa to crash on, and a bedroom to sleep in.  (I stayed at the 4 Cloth St. location.  Between the Barbican & Smithfield's)

It was a great location, I could walk to work in about 10 – 15 minutes.

DSC03706Love Lane.  Lead right to my office. A section of the London Wall that used to circle the medieval city.
And not a Target in sight. This whole trip, I became infatuated with photographing neon lights.
The Girdler's Company.  I fell absolutely in love with this little hall tucked in with the skyscrapers. And they had some beautiful flowers.
And flowering trees.

"The Ward of Cheap" This sounds like the worst honorary title, EVER.

There was a Subway basically right outside apartment.  This was a common dinner. I never ate at this subway.

As I said, I was working some long hours while I was there, so instead of going out much after work, I would head out at lunch.

Bank of England The City Wing – I giant pigeon wing growing out of the sidewalk.
The Kindertransport statue, Liverpool Street Station… I found this particularly moving…

And touching.
But this is a statue called "The Gardner" outside of the Brewers Hall.
This little sunken garden of the Churchyard of Saint John Zachary was a favorite.  Visited it almost every day. "The Three Printers" statue in the courtyard.
Back to "Love Lane" and the Shakespeare statue.  I tried climbing up there to see if the head tilted back to reveal a red button that open the entrance to the Bat-Cave.  No such luck. This is Leadenhall Market, also known as "Diagon Alley" from the first Harry Potter film.
The Parish Church of St. Michael, Cornhill. Damien Hirst's "Charity" by The Gherkin.  Statues with teddy bears.  Or, "A Girl & Her Pickle"
And now, two churches with blue glass buildings behind them. St. Botolph's, Bishopsgate.

To be continued…


Cora said...

Sooooo many great pictures!

Scope said...

Such a good camera.
Such a good teacher/muse.