If you ask me what I remember most about London during my recent trip to England, I would say "the crowds"! True, you don't visit big cities like London for peace and quiet, but the city was completely mobbed with the tourists from the UK, Europe, and elsewhere. If we had been astute travelers, we would have checked the calendar ahead and noticed that it was the Easter weekend and the beginning of the Easter holiday.
There were lines everywhere. London had become Epcot at Disney world on a bad day. Look at the inside of the beautiful, but packed Natural History Museum on Friday afternoon. Or Parliament Square on Saturday morning. Or Piccadilly Circus and Leicester Square on Saturday afternoon.
|The mob scene at the Natural History Museum|
|Parliament Square; do you see the statue of Winston Churchill?|
|Piccadilly Circus is ALWAYS crowded!|
|But who knew that Leicester Square, one of the theater districts, was this popular among tourists?|
Don't get me wrong. I love London. Back in my youth, I lived there for six, happy months. The stop at the National Gallery, which was, needless to say, mobbed, was one of the highlights of the entire trip. I got to see in person the 17th-century Spanish artist Velasquez's "Rokeby Venus"!
|This was the only picture I took at the museum until I learned that photography was not allowed. Oops!|
We finally found peace on the Victoria Embankment, a river walk along the north bank of the Thames River. Boy, we walked gazillion miles that day, which wasn't over yet. We would continue the walk for a few more hours until our legs gave out. By the way, if you think that I painted the river with the famous, ancient Egyptian, Cleopatra's Needle too romantically, you are wrong. Paris is not the only romantic city in the world!
|I have a suspicion that the British kept these iconic telephone booths for the amusement of the foreign tourists. The girl in a serious winter gear is my daughter. It was cold!|