London for christmas, or then throw friends into the water
If Paris stands Mass, then London is worth three days of tramples at the door of the English Embassy. You must first hand over the questionnaire, which includes a number of unusual issues for Russians, for example: "Your annual income?" or "Type of your marriage ceremony?" After receiving the paper with the number you need to go to another queue and wait until your surname crosses through the megaphone installed in the window. This is a challenge for an interview.
We, five employees "IOSTAN", drove to England at the invitation of the company "Croex-M", which is engaged in educational and tourist programs. The first day was scheduled for a tour of London. And I decided to dare around the city on my own. Of course, it would be interesting to know, for example, that "In the royal gallery, various exhibitions of royal collections are constantly held, and in the royal stables you can see royal horses and carriages, including amazing carriages used in coronation". But the London was noticed not so much time. Over two hours you still won’t go around the entire British museum, accommodating the collections of the antiquities of Egypt, Assyria, Rome and Greece. I wanted to forget that I am a tourist, just breathing the London air and at least for a few hours to feel like an Englishman. In addition, I had to bring photo report. And you are more interesting to remove everything where there are people where they are busy: walking down the street, dinner in the cafe, dance on the disco, traded on the market, buy train tickets.
Here it is necessary to admit that in English I do not know a word. It happened. And in general abroad turned out to be for the first time. Without knowledge of the language, I was most afraid of getting lost and look into the eyes of passersby as a child who lost his parents, until the uncle Stepa Polismen takes the hand and does not lead to the Russian Embassy. But it turned out that everything is not so scary.
Has settled in a small hotel "Europe" on Cromwell Road, not at all similar to our hotels. To walk to the room, you needed to open the door, climb the ladder, turn left, open another door, go a little along the corridor, go down the ladder, turn right, open the door again and go up again. It turns out that the British make such a complex space and put as many doors to save heat.
At seven in the morning I went to Cromwell Road. Turned up the morning of October 24 – the most Christmas Eve. In the windows of all stores hung red plates: "Sale" ("Sale"). Shops should have been opened only in three days, but the signs were reminded that Christmas discounts are expected after discovery. Literally all: on clothes, products, books and even funeral accessories. That’s lucky to die someone for Christmas! Each telephone booth hangs a huge number of cards that English ladies of easy behavior are sticking with chewable chewing facilities in search of customers. So, on one of these announcements, there was also a red inscription: "Christmas discount".
Has streets nor soul. Shop "Harrods" All in multicolored light bulbs. In the shop windows moved and rotated mannequins. Through the glass it was clear that all chandeliers and lamps were burning in the hall. In addition, all escalators worked inside the store. And up and down. And near the entrance to the store, bugging the nose in the collar, right on the stone floor. Like us at the Kursk station. Just dressed in an expensive (according to our concepts) Dublin, "branded" Jeans and shoes.
Metro in England Call the word underground (subway) or tube (tube). I showed a cashier through a notebook with the name of the location you need. In Moscow, I was written to me the name of one of London flea markets – Petticoat Market. The cashier extended the metro scheme by circulating on it the station I need: Liverpool Street.
Card per trip costs one pound (seven thousand rubles). It should be shoved in the gap of the turnstile. First capes the card inside, and then she will come out back. Has exit station the same card again need to push into the turnstile (but on the reverse side), after which it cares already forever. (By the way, a passing ticket for one day costs only two pounds. But I found it not immediately.)
In the car seat with a soft plush. Stations are not announced. But when opening the doors to avoid falling into the opening between the train and the platform, a voice sounds: mind the gap! (Caution, hole!). Gaps between stations shorter than we. Despite the abundance of various lines, you can navigate. Has walls of transitions hang ads: "No busking! Penalty 200 pounds". I guessed: the word "penalty" means "fine". But what is "No busking", found out only in Moscow. This is a ban on the subway to play street musicians. Despite a high penalty, in every transition the Africans played their drums. In general, I safely reached Liverpool Street and went outdoor.
Pettyacate Lane is a whole quarter, the streets of which are forced by tents from prefabricated structures. The installation of each of them takes 15 minutes. The market works only on Sundays. Other days is the usual city quarter. At first I was surprised by the almost complete absence of European persons. Around were Africans, Hindus, Chinese, Malaya, Arabs. Right on the street stood the iron furnace, on which chestnuts were roasted. Have taste they resemble baked potatoes with sugar.
Everyone knows that in England the movement of the left-sided. That is, the car steering wheel is located on the right. Especially for tourists in the locations of the streets right on the asphalt with large letters it is written: "Look Left" (Look to the left) – and the left arrow is drawn, or "Look Right" (See right) – and the right arrow. From Liverpool Street, I turned to Cannon, Cathedral Cathedral.Paul in Strend Fleet and moved to the other side of the Thames through the Waterloo Bridge. Under the bridge stands on the joke ship-restaurant type ours "Poplavkov". Has a big inscription that I rewrote in a notebook. As it turned out, the following was written: Sorry. It’s worth throwing no objects into the water, including your friends. However, and you too. Please. English humor combined with English politeness.
Accidentally taped each other, the British certainly apologize: "Sorry!" Then in one, then elsewhere on the street constantly sounds: "Sorry!", "Sorry!" Suddenly I got some lady. With the habit of habit mechanically said: "Pardon". She missed out. Something like: "I poned here!" Or maybe I just thought.
On the way, I looked at some gallery and examined the exhibition of the German photo of the National Socialism period. Then I found out that the royal festival palace visited.
Somehow was at the Cherling Cross station, from where the high-speed trains go to Paris through the tunnel under La Manshas. Visited the station toilet. The entrance costs 20pens, but for some reason they are allowed for free. Very night there was a Trafalgar Square with a huge amount of pigeons serving food "Trill" For parrots. Alien appetite contagious. Bought in a mobile Arab bench for two pounds a big shawarma, which was enough until the evening. Further on Ridge-Street rose to Soho. Strictly speaking, it is a small dial with evergreen grass, covered with maple leaves. The leaves lie at the same distance one from the other, as if someone specifically folds them in the morning. It is said that the SHOHO is the center of debauchery. Externally it is almost imperceptibly. HU, hang in two or three places half-lit ladies. Has not surprise this. True, in any pip show and gay clubs I did not go.
Almost near Chin Town. Many restaurants, benches. They say only in Chinese. Bought a porcelain dragon on the rope. Then wandered into the Hyde Park, but SPEAKER CORNER (A corner of the speaker) did not find there. Going to parliament on Margaret Street, I saw the following scene.
Right on my eyes overturned a trailer for some machine. From there the whole mountain of beer cans. The movement stopped. He managed to walk to the accident site, how there on a rabid speed rolled up a pickup with the inscription on the side: "Independent". The correspondent girl jumped out of it and began to photograph the incident, flashabling a blossom with a machine gun speed. After a couple of minutes, the police rod. They began to customize the owners of the car. Those began to fuck beer passersby, stuff through windows in the car and buses. A bunch of cans slightly decreased. Let move. The road was covered by the foam river. I scored twenty banks in the package (who had the handles immediately broke away), Sink it to the nearest metro and went to the hotel. My colleagues just returned from the excursion. My find we celebrated her drinking. Beer turned out to be very strong. And not beer at all, but a malt drink. They say, alcohol add to it for the fortress. After three half-liter cans, I have ripe the idea to go to Westminster Abbey for the night Christmas service. We went there on foot. Why for some reason turned out to be at Piccadilly. Under the music "Beatles" Performance of street musicians near the Guinness Museum Dancing Negro Santa Claus. We drank another bank, and when they reached the abbey, the service was already approached. Has not allowed. I had to drink back. And then I understood everything. Westminster Abbey is the Anglican Church. Protestant. And you need to go to the Catholic. There is something exactly the Christmas service lasts all night. At your English-speaking friends, I found out how in English to ask: Where is the closest church?
Hado say that the Protestant and Catholicism are a few different confessions. Ask such a question – it’s like asking those who leave the mosque where the nearest synagogue here. Nevertheless, in response to the question given to him ("Veriz Ze Niret Catholic Church?") Elderly gentleman stopped and explained in more detail how to go. Here, finally, I felt like a real Englishman!
The following six days were also insanely interesting. We went to East England, to the County Suffolk, where the older and modernity are connected, was visited by Colchester – one of the oldest cities of Britain, bathed in a unique pool, where sea waves simulate, visited Cambridge and Felixstou, dinner in the old English brewer and bought souvenirs in Shopping mall at the lowest price in England. Still, most of all I am grateful to fate for the first day in London.