Tuesday, October 30, 2007

London Journey: Interlude

October 27, 2007 Notes On Everyday Life

While London is an exciting city, it is also, for the time being, home to Bobbi, Izzy and me…and so, alongside the historical, the international, and the artistic beauties, we exist, going through the mundane chores and routines that compose daily life.

We take the tube around the city. While many complain that this system is antiquated, out of date, expensive and inconvenient…I must say that, coming from a land where we have bungled public transportation (everywhere, perhaps, but Boston and New York), the existence of the tube trains is something we are quite thankful for.
While we love British life, and try to steer clear of too much American culture, there are a few imports which are QUITE welcome…

...yes, that IS a Krispy Kream Donut Shop!

When we are not visiting some historical site, or medical shop of horrors, we often find fun simply walking the streets.

These, of course, are full of their own attractions…

which, if we ARE in a hurry, can prove damned obtrusive! At least, to some of us.

Last weekend, we visited that great British Institution….Harrod’s Department store.

Outside of Harrods you will find another great institution….the animal rights protestors. Good thing I already HAVE a nice furry Russian Hat.

Many people have inquired about Izzy the cat- wondering how she has settled in and if she misses her fellow felines: Buffy and Fluffy. The answer is that she is settling in just fine, thank you very much, and no, she doesn’t much give a damn that there are no other cats here. In fact, I think she is quite happy to be an only cat again. She has a big bathtub to sit in (empty, of course) and windows to look out…there are other cats in the neighborhood, to whom Izzy directs a transatlantic sneer.

The other question we are often asked by friends and relatives at home in the States is: Did you ever solve your coffee problem? Readers of this blog will note that in the land that gave us Jersey cows- cream for coffee is not to be had anywhere. Much MORE unfortunately, the most common way to drink coffee here is to prepare a cup of instant.

It is possible, of course, to get coffee drinks that are quite good- lattés, espressos, etc…but a real, honest to god cup of coffee is a rare find. The British call this “filter coffee” and they make it very badly.

So…what’s a couple o Yanks’ to do?

We tried instant- too sour.

We tried going out for lattes- too expensive.

So finally we came upon the perfect solution…..

Well, really, it was the ONLY thing to do….

And THAT, my friends, is how Britannia continues, despite her somewhat reduced circumstances, to have her way with the world...because she offers freedom and choice, and yet does so in such a fashion that it becomes inevitable that you shall come 'round to her way of thinking in the end.


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