Jun 2, 2008

The Tower, Cambridge, and Cornwall

This last week was a mighty busy one for me, as are the weeks to follow! There's so much to do and I only have two weeks left! Oh no!

So I started off the week on Tuesday by spending the day at the Tower of London. Oh my gosh! Thank you LaMar! It was amazing! We went on the Yeoman tour, and our guide was really great. We had some problems with helicopters though--there was once when there were two helicopters just hovering over the Thames for about 5 minutes! He was going to talk to us outside, but took us into the Chapel instead. Of course, the minute we went into the Chapel the copters left. So the Chapel was really interesting. In Queen Victoria's time they took up the floors because they were in bad disrepair and they found over 1000 bodies! Some of them headless! Out of them they only identified 33. Among the 33 there was Anne Boleyn, Lady Jane Grey, and Catherine Howard (the one that haunts Hampton Court). They were given a proper burial and now rest under the altar in the chapel. Every week fresh red roses are put on Anne's grave.

After the tour we went off by ourselves and looked at the crown jewels, which were very shiny. I really liked the first room in the jewery. It had a chair for every known monarch of England as well as their crests. After the jewels was the White Tower. The first thing we saw was the place where the bones of the two young princes who were mysteriously kidnapped and murdered were found. Freaky. As we wandered through the White Tower (which is actually a palace) I was thinking how creepy it was that people actually lived there, but then I remembered that back in the day it wasn't creepy because it didn't have the history it does now. Then we went to walk around the walls, and I might have sat in the very window that Lady Elizabeth sat in when she was held prisoner there! You never know! The only thing that we didn't get to see and I wish we could have but I needed to get back for kitchen duty was the Beauchamps Tower. This was the tower that the princes were taken from before they were murdered. But it was a nice day out.

That night we went to see Pygmalion! That was awesome. It's so cool to see things that take place in England and know the places that they are talking about! Or to recognize something in the background.

Wednesday all of us headed out to Cambridge. We went punting on the Cam the very first thing and I think I would have been happy to just sit in the punt and go up and down the river all day! It was so relaxing! We saw a lot of bridges and most of the colleges! We ended up going during one of the worst times because it was exams! We couldn't go into any of the colleges! But we did see King's College Chapel which is the largest open nave in England, meaning that there are no pillars holding the ceiling up. It was a nice day out. That night my friend Jessi and I went to a show in the West End called Into the Hoods. It was AMAZING! It's a hip hop revival of Sondheim's Into the Woods. They told they story using popular hip hop songs (but not just hip hop, other genres as well) and the dancing was so cool. It was very original and the first of it's kind to get into the West End. Next time you're in London, you should try and see it!

The next day was the start of my free weekend. Three of my mates and I decided to head down to Cornwall and stay in Penzance. We went to St. Michael's Mount which is an island that you can walk out to if the tide is low. Unfortunately, the tide wasn't low while we were there, but we were able to walk on the beach, feel the sand beneath our toes, and the water around our ankles. And the castle on the island was fabulous. After that we went to Land's End where there is nothing. I did find out that from that point Provo is 5374 miles away. Sad! It made me a little homesick! But not for too long!

We headed down to Porthcurno beach. It was gorgeous! Nothing could do it justice, it's something you have to see for yourself, but I'll try. Beautiful white sandy beach, water that was a thousand different shades of blue, surrounding by cliffs that were green and red. I swam in the Atlantic Ocean! It was freezing! We ate real Cornish pasties on the beach, then walked up the cliff to see a play at the Minack Theatre. So this theatre was built entirely on a cliff, so as you're watching a play you have the ocean for a background. It was so beautiful.

Unfortunately, all good things have to come to an end, and on Saturday I returned to London. But I like London, it's almost becoming a sort of home to me now. I know that I will miss it when I return to the states.

Today I went to Samuel Johnson's house. He made the first comprehensive English dictionary! Cool guy, but a little obsessed with his cat...
I also walked the entire perimeter of Kensington Gardens. I saw Peter Pan, which made me happy!

Love you all and wish you could share in my joy! See you in two!


  1. That is so cool Whitney! Sounds like you are having a great time! :D

    Love you!

  2. I am so glad that you enjoyed your day at the Tower. I only wish that we could have shared it with you. I have been there four times and I still have not seen it all!