Author Archives: mackenzie1obrien

England!

I am having a lovely time on this trip! I can’t believe all the amazing things I am seeing and all the exploring we have done! Big Ben and Westminster Abbey are the first that come to mind. I enjoyed our informative tour of St. Thomas hospital with Wendy! She was such a sweet woman and gave us interesting information.
I feel very important to have gotten a tour of the Olympic venue! I didn’t realize it was in such a poor area of the city. But the fact that they are converting some of the athlete housing into low budget housing is wonderful for the public!
It has been quite an adventure finding our way using the tube and double decker busses! We have only lost our way a couple times compared to our many successful trips! It is so neat to use the public transportation that we aren’t so accustomed to in the states.
We weren’t aware of how the city really completely shuts down when it snows! It is very amusing to us, as there was only about an inch on the ground! Trains and busses were packed with people being sent home early from work, they announced delays on all public transportation as well as flight delays. Can’t wait for the remainder of the trip and our visit to Paris!!!

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Next Stop Russell Square!

We have made it to London!! I have to be honest, I was a little nervous when we pulled in to the city last night! It is so different than Stratford, it’s such a busy crowded place. London reminds me of a cleaner, prettier New York City though. It seemed a little sketchy when we did our walking around last night to find dinner. This morning was much better however!
The bus tour of Westminster and London was great, and the tour guide Isabelle was fantastic! She was so funny and informative. Walking through St James park and seeing Buckingham Palace finally made me feel like I was in England! The Tower of London, and the Crown Jewels were the icing on the cake! The snow was a little miserable but it was nice being indoors for most of the day!
Dinner and the theater ended the evening and couldn’t have been more fun! The Mexican food we enjoyed at Les Iguanas and then the performance with John Lithgow was just wonderful! Lots of laughs! Having a wonderful time in London so far!
Mackenzie

Cheerio England!

We have arrived!!! 🙂 So far everything I have experienced in England has been wonderful! The people are so friendly and the little shops are adorable!
Our excursion to Woodstock was enjoyable. We had lunch at a little brasserie and I had a baguette with cheese and tomato! Very yummy 🙂
We had a good morning today, we roamed around Stratford and bought a few things! One of the clothing stores, Jack Wills was very ‘fetch’ as they say!
We then made our way to the public library and it was such a neat building! It was close to the birthplace of Shakespeare and next to the Shakespeare museum/building that we will be visiting later today.
I have been very satisfied with the food and drink so far. I was a little worried there would be some interesting selections but I have found something I liked everywhere! The vanilla spice latte at Starbucks is delectable! And the perfect way to start the morning! I can’t wait to see what the next few days in Stratford will bring! Then off to London we will go!
Cheers! Mackenzie

Toothbrush, Underwear, and Clothing… Oh My!

As all of you are probably aware, packing to go overseas is a little different than an overnight bag to grandma’s house. I am currently sitting on my bedroom floor, surrounded by a stash of medicine, a hair straightener, phone and camera charger, toothbrush/toothpaste, some jeans and a sweatshirt, a heap of underwear and socks and a pile of shirts. There are plenty of other goodies and necessities as I like to call them, strung throughout the house that I am planning on organizing and packing but just haven’t gotten to yet. I was in the middle of trying to pack when I thought, I should probably check my email, and came across the invitation for the blog! Which of course was much more inviting than my suitcase and the mess of stuff around me.

As I sit here, trying to decide what I should and should not try to cram into my bag for our 2 week excursion, I am getting little butterflies inside my stomach. I am unbelievably excited to make this journey across the ocean to England. I am particularly enthusiastic about actually seeing the Cathedrals, landmarks, and museums that we have been talking about in class. Discussing the history of these places is one thing, but actually knowing that in a few short days we will be walking around and “experiencing” it all is fantastic.

I cannot wait to experience what it is like to be inside the hospital in England. I would imagine it is something like a hospital here, although there is just such a huge difference between our healthcare and their National Health Service. In my wildest dreams I could imagine that someday it would be magnificent to be a nurse in a Hospital in Europe and live there for a few years!

I am fortunate to be able to say this will be my second trip abroad, I have previously traveled to France, Italy and Greece. I am thrilled to be returning to Paris and the Eiffel Tower, and I am determined to order my “Un sandwich à fromage avec du jambon et un orangina,” in French of course! (ham and cheese on a baguette with an Orangina) As long as I can remember the correct pronunciation from High school, and Freshman year at Otterbein! The Louvre would be a must see as well, if there is time, because the feeling you get when seeing and being close enough to touch the sculptures and paintings is incredible.

I hope to gain a great deal from this trip, including but not limited to, a better cultural understanding, some fun facts from the museums and Cathedrals and incredible pictures! England has always seemed enchanting to me, partly because of the accents but also their way of life. The royalty, the carefree attitudes, and the history that seems to go back forever!
England, here we come!!