Saturday, August 11, 2012

Of Flags and Hippies.

Hello people! Back to Day 4 of my London trip. I think you remember that our first stop for the day was Trafalgar Square . And my sister...

Hello people!

Back to Day 4 of my London trip. I think you remember that our first stop for the day was Trafalgar Square.

And my sister loves walking so this is the route that we took for that day.

A walking route of 8.52952km! Or 5.3 miles if you want to act British and all. I think we may have taken the tube to get from B to C but there was still a LOT of walking to be done after we got off the tube.

So here are the locations that we visited for the day.
A - Trafalgar Square
B - Chinatown
C - The Albion
D - Camden Lock
E - Primrose Hill

I already touched on Trafalgar Square in my previous post so moving on to Chinatown! Here are some of the more interesting things that we passed on the way to Chinatown.
We saw Big Ben. And every time you see "Big Ben" on my blog, please know that I actually typed "Big Beng" and had to press backspace to delete the "g". I type "beng" out of reflex. Must be all the complaining that I do on Twitter.

Bernard and I had already seen Big Ben at night, so we decided that we didn't need to make a separate trip to the tower in the day.

We did however, spend time taking photos with Little Ben here.
I took this photo at St. Martin-In-The-Fields.
Also I only took this picture because there is a Singapore flag in it. I don't really know much about the place. Neither do I know why the church has so many dashes in it's name. Wikipedia didn't say and a Google Search didn't work. So, I'm assuming there are many dashes because somebody got a sneezing fit while painting the sign and added 3 dashes to the sign.

We saw many flags on the way to Chinatown! Apart from those at St. Martin-In-The-Fields, we also saw flags at Leicester (read: ˈlɛstər) Square (Yes, it is the Anglo-Saxon thing again. I blogged about the pronunciation here).
Also At Swiss Court. This is the "Cantonal Tree".
Remember we used to study about Switzerland and their neutrality in Social Studies? And how the country is not divided into GRCs but Cantons? The Contonal Tree shows the coat of arms of all 26 cantons in Switzerland and symbolises friendship between Switzerland and the UK.

Anyway, want to see more flags? Here!
And then these were the flags which told us that we reached Chinatown.
LIKE SO MANY FLAGS! Like the whole street had little flags strung from building to building.
So exciting! They even had lanterns!
Felt like Chinese New Year was here!

Headed to The Albion for Sunday Roast next. My sister, the exemplary tour guide, felt that it was essential for us to do all the really British things. Like to have a Sunday Roast. According to Wikipedia, which is the mecca for all information,
"During the industrial revolution, Yorkshire families left a cut of meat in the oven before going to church on a Sunday morning, which was then ready to eat by the time they arrived home at lunchtime."

Well, actually there is another explanation as to how Sunday Roast came about but I choose to believe this one. (I will show you why later).

Here are the starters that we got!

Warm Norfolk Asparagus with Oxsprings Cured Ham and Shaved Caerphilly Cheese.
Ham Hock Terrine with Piccalilli and Toast.
Hansen and Lydersen Smoked Salmon with Buttered Brown Bread.
Mine was the salmon. In retrospect, I shouldn't have gotten the salmon. Smoked salmon always tastes the same to me, unless it's really badly done. But the terrine and the asparagus was really good!

And here's our main! 28 Day Aged Rib of Longhorn Beef.
You can't really see the beef from here because of the pastries stacked on top. And now I will tell you why I think that Sunday Roast originated from Yorkshire families. Because the pastries on top are Yorkshire puddings!!! And Yorkshire pudding is traditional to Sunday Roast. And so I conclude that Sunday Roast came abut during the Industrial Revolution when Yorkshire families left a chunk of meat in the oven in the morning so that it'll be ready for lunch.

Also funny thing, I never pictured Yorkshire pudding to be a pastry. I always thought it'd be more like, mango pudding-ish. Like firm tau huey/jelly. Who knew!

And this is how Sunday Roast looks like after being arranged by the artistic sister.
So the meat strips on the left is the beef, the pastry on the top is the Yorkshire pudding which you're supposed to dip into the gravy and in the middle you see a bone with marrow in it! And at the side are the "trimmings" aka veggies and potatoes. YUM YUM, as Ness would say.

And then we went on to dessert. Also English food is very strange. In Asia, pudding is like mango pudding. You just change the flavour. But a pudding is still an opaque jelly like thing that tastes sweet. In Britain right, their pudding can be like pastries, and also can be ice cream with biscuits. CONFUSING. Don't believe me? Here is our menu. All the desserts are listed under "Puddings".

Anyway! Here is what we had for um, pudding.

Lemon Posset with Raspberries. I cannot remember the actual name. But what it is is very awesome and good lemon curd at the bottom, a layer of light cheese in the middle, and raspberries at the top.
To be honest I wasn't crazy about the cheese. But the curd was definitely awesome.

And we had fresh strawberries topped with a scoop of strawberry sorbet! Very good and refreshing, especially after the heavy lunch.
And this is how The Albion looks from the outside.
I thought that it was a really nice place to have a Sunday Roast. Very warm and English inside. And if you are not adverse to sitting outside in the wind then they have a huge garden at the back with al fresco dining. You can visit their website here. Also there are apparently many bars/pubs/restaurants in the UK named "The Albion". So if you want to go get some good Sunday Roast, MAKE SURE IT IS THIS ALBION AND NOT OTHER ALBIONS. (Y).

After lunch, we walked to this place called Camden Lock. Because my sister is energetic like this. Maybe it was the weather, maybe I was unconsciously jet-lagged, maybe it was the huge amount of food I ate, but seriously, IT WAS A VERY LONG WALK. I almost died. We walked along a river which was really scenic (but it got old after a while) we had to walk under many bridge and I was scared by these bridges because they were dark and I was scared that pigeons would fly out to attack me.

And here are some photos of the very long river.
You see the boats? People live in them. Omg really why would you want to live in a boat along a river okay.

LOOK DUCKS! Also two of them have their butts in the air! Or in the words of The Offspring, they are "waving their cabooses".
And also this bird thinks that he is the king of the river.
And this is really all the interesting things to see along the very very long and neverending river when you are forced to walk after a good and heavy lunch when all you want to do is to go into a food coma.

Anyway, popped up later at this place called "Camden Lock".
I didn't really like it. You see, I am scared of hippies. And Camden Lock is full of hippies.
Don't know if you can see them but they were all along the river and I WAS SO SCARED.
They were like drunk and the placed reeked of weed. And so I was scared. Okay la, but the place did have it's own charm, if you are in to that sort of thing. The angmoh Pasar Malam kind of charm.
Camden Lock did have this very interesting street where the storefronts of shops are decorated with 3D art.
But apart from that, I didn't care much for it. Too crowded and too hot. Like Bugis Street but with Angmohs and a stronger food smell. And smokier. But I guess if you want to immerse yourself in the local culture à la my sister, then please, this is a great place to go to.

ANYHOW, we walked to Primrose Hill next! And it was gorgeous!! It was just full of random people lying down its grassy slopes chilling out and admiring the view.
Hahaha I am very proud of this photo I took.
And I am very proud of Bernard for this photo that he took.
And I am very proud of my sister for this photo she took.
Okay just a few random photos before I end off! Here are some good flowers planted to form the Union Jack!
And here, you see the British version of ERP.
And this is the best photo of them all. My sister calls it "The Rude Glove".
Okay the end everyone!

❤ Jac.

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