Visiting Liberty of London was the thing that I (Lexy) was the most excited about! Chris was able to get us there with no problem, we even got our sweet Oyster passes for using the tube, so everything went pretty smoothly!
Liberty is a massive (and old!) department store, but they also have some of the most amazing and high quality fabrics ever! We carry a few Liberty prints at Harts, but usually no more than 4 or 5 at any one time. So being able to see a whole floor of Liberty fabrics was insane!
They even had silk! If I weren’t terrified of sewing silk (and if it wasn’t £50 a meter) I would have loved to buy some!
I did end up getting a meter of one of their cotton lawns, I’m not sure what I’ll make, maybe bloomers??
In their sewing notions section they had a whole display of Colette patterns! It made my little heart so happy to see them in the UK!
They also had a section of garments made from Liberty fabrics, soooooo pretty!
In their home department they had tea sets with Liberty prints! I pretty much died! I wanted to get a tea pot soooooo bad, but I already have like 5 tea pots and I would be afraid of it getting totally shattered on the flight home.
I can’t get over how pretty everything was! I wanted to live there!
I also wanted this mint toaster! Holy shit so cute!
The building is so pretty! It was built in the 1870’s!
I’m surprised I didn’t end up spending thousands of dollars! Chris was very patient and surprisingly not bored by all the time I spent flipping out over fabric 🙂
Food time! I had researched vegan restaurants in London and there were lots of good reviews for the Vegan Hippo, and it was only a 15 minute walk from Liberty, score! Luckily Chris had thoroughly mapped out our route beforehand, ’cause the place ended up being in kinda a sketchy area. Not dangerous or gross, but there were like three porn shops and a bunch of massage parlors around it! Plus the streets in London make no sense at all and it is stupidly easy to get lost!
Anyway, the food was AMAZING! We both got vegan gyros, and they were seriously so delicious! It actually made me sad because I knew I wouldn’t be able to eat them again. Why can’t this restaurant exist in Santa Cruz????
(… Chris taking over from here…)
It was now time to get onto the beaten path a little for some of the standard tourist stops.
Trafalgar Square was busy. Something to do with the Olympics? Seemed to be a celebration of winners. We saw the crowd and steered clear.
Can’t visit London without taking a Big Ben selfie:
And of course, a ride on the London Eye.
Oh, pardon me, the Coca Cola London Eye…
The folks in the next pod were getting married (or something):
We established a policy on the first day to put all of our change in the hands of street musicians and/or panhandlers. Bagpipe Guy here was today’s donation.
For most of our time here so far, we’ve felt like aliens among the locals. But in the London Eye area, we definitely felt like tourists among tourists. Preferring alien, we quickly headed back across the Thames.
Cavalry at the ready:
Buckingham Palace. I was surprised to learn that the Queen’s Guard are actually functional soldiers, and not merely ornamentation. (Then again, isn’t the Royal Family itself merely ornamentation now?)
Walking through Green Park, we encountered hundreds of wild critters, mostly squirrels, birds, and such, with utterly zero fear of us (and utterly no interest once they saw that we had no snacks for them).
Plenty of unfamiliar species, like this guy (thanks for the photobomb, goose):
We moved from Green Park back into Hyde, much of which was fenced off today for some sort of construction.
The 7/7 Memorial:
Gingerbread-looking cottage that we wouldn’t mind living in:
After a rest, we headed out to the Queensway area for dinner, deciding to just wing it for this meal and try a place at random.
Lexy got a pizza with artichoke hearts, sundried tomatoes, and no cheese; I had a meaty burger (with delightfully fleshy bacon) and a Hoegaarden.
We walked A LOT today. The numbers tell the story.
Next: London Zoo!