The adventure begins…

Hi everyone!

Don’t worry, I haven’t succumbed to the jet lag and time difference. Here’s an update on Day 2 in London…

Our Library Science class met at 9 am this morning for Orientation, led by our fearless leaders, Dr. Welsh and Dr. Griffis. We went over some of the amazing places we’ll be visiting this next month (Dr. Welsh promised us there’d be some surprises along the way!), played a little Icebreaker activity, and discussed some “housekeeping” details. There are 24 of us in this class – not only are we the biggest group, but we’re also the only class with all graduate students! Or, as the Brits like to say, “post-graduate” students… which is really a much more accurate description.

At 11, the entire British Studies Program met with Dr. Davies, the Dean of the program, and all of the other professors. Many of the professors were leading various themed walking tours around the city. There were so many wonderful choices, but Jade, Jessica, Laura Douglass and I decided to do the “Sovereigns and Suffragettes” tour. After a quick lunch at Pret (short for Pret A Manger, where I ate a delicious ham and egg sandwich), we set off to walk and learn!

The tour was brilliant because we discussed several (in)famous women while seeing some of the major sights around London! We started off at Waterloo Bridge,

Book sale under Waterloo Bridge

Underneath Waterloo Bridge, you can find this lovely book sale! We did not have time to stop, but I fully intend on returning…

walked past Big Ben, Parliament, and Westminster, strolled beside Clarence House and St. James Palace, and walked through Trafalgar’s Square. Along the way, we saw many statues of women such as Emily Pankhurst, who fought for women’s voting rights in the early 20th century, Boudica, an Iceni queen who led several successful uprisings against the Roman Empire, and of course, the Queen Mother, Queen Elizabeth II’s mum. We also learned about the “Sovereigns,” aka the Queen Regents such as Elizabeth I, Victoria, and Elizabeth II. I’ve always loved British history, particularly the Tudors, and there’s something truly special about discussing these fascinating women while walking in the city they once lived…

Afterwards, the USC girls and myself rode the tube to South Kensington Station, where I enjoyed my first Ben’s Cookie! It was milk chocolate & peanut butter and was absolutely delicious. IMG_3124-1It was raining on and off all afternoon (typical London weather), so we took a few buses, and walked through Hyde Park, where we saw the beloved Peter Pan statue. Of course, all of us had to have our picture taken with Peter.

Despite our scrumptious cookie snack, we were starting to get a little hungry (you’ll soon find out why…), so we took the tube to Victoria’s Station, walked around, got a little lost, tried to eat at several busy pubs, and eventually found seating in a pub called Bag O’ Nails. A chicken burger and pint of Guinness later and I was good to go!

By the end of the day we had walked over 23,000 steps… almost 10 miles! Needless to say, I didn’t feel too guilty about having that cookie!

Here are a few more pictures of the day…

Big Ben

Big Ben and Parliament

Ducks and swans at Hyde Park

Ducks and swans at Hyde Park












London Eye

The River Thames and the London Eye at dusk

Hyde Park

(L to R) Laura Douglass, Jade, and myself in the Rose Gardens in Hyde Park













Say a prayer for my feet, please! I’m feeling those 10 miles…

Will keep you updated,