When my husband told me that it’s always overcast and/or drizzling rain in London, I thought he was exaggerating. Well, it wasn’t exaggeration people. It IS always overcast, if not raining. Of the time I’ve spent here, I can count the number of times I saw the blue of the sky or seen the sunlight hit the rooftops. Ohmygod, it’s such a gloom-fest weatherwise! Oh, the number of times I saw sunlight so far? Twice. In 4 days.
But enough cribbing about the weather. I think one gets used to it in a while and learns to ignore it and also make the most of it when it isn’t raining. So, here I am! In London. So far, it’s been absolutely amazing. This is my first time in the UK and I kinda like it. It’s cold, yes, but if you have around 4 or 5 layers of warm clothes on you, you’re all set.
My most unforgettable experience so far has been the Underground rail transport system. Oh. My. God. If I can get even 50% of this kind of service in Hyderabad, I’ll kiss my car goodbye. The Tube is so awesome, it’s close to infallible! Ofcourse, if one hasn’t been here a while it’s a wee bit of a challenge to get to know the lines and the directions but it’s easy after the initial few mistakes. Like any first-timer in the Tube, my eyes never left the map on the walls of the train – what station is next, how many more stops to ‘our’ station, repeating the station name after the announcer – you’d think I was 8 going on my first train trip! If it weren’t for the fact that my husband actually found my behavior amusing, he would’ve downright asked me shut the hell up. Well, I don’t care anyway. I’m a pro now at navigating the Tube, hah! But if I were you, I wouldn’t bet my life on it though.
Since I’m a tourist here (though the spouse is here on work), we did typical tourist-y things so far. Which interestingly enough included a 3 hour stop at the neighborhood 24/7 supermarket, Asda. 3 hours, I kid you not. I felt like a kid at Disneyland, for cryin’ out loud! It was mind-bogglingly out of this world! After buying every frozen food known to mankind (since the kitchen setup in the apartment is virtually non-existent, and the only thing we used was the microwave), we trundled home laden with my loot. Life never felt better.
Though most things about this trip have been absolutely spiffing (yes yes, one is practising the ‘other’ English just for the heck of it), one thing I don’t like so much is the getting-ready-to-go-out bit. I have one set of going-out clothes and thermal wear on, a sweater on top, a woolen stole around my neck, a pair of gloves and then the rough-n-tough woolen jacket. And then the monkey-cap-thingie. And my trusted chapstick and ear-plugs. And the woollen socks and shoes (goodbye to the times of wearing the first pair of sandals you see and walking out the door in India). The worst part? Inspite of all this, I’m a frozen block of ice by the time we reach the Tube station, a mere 5 minute walk from the apartment. So much for wearing protective gear against the cold. What nonsense!
Tomorrow’s post will be about the London Eye. And how I was on the verge of hypothermia sitting on the open terrace of the ferry that took us on a Thames cruise. Interesting it was, not to mention freezing. I lived to tell the tale, evidently.