Posted by: londontravels | September 17, 2009

Days 13, 14

I had the best Guinness tonight…but that wasn’t the best part of my day. Today started off with a tour of Parliament with my London Stories class. I must say, Parliament (in my eyes) is so much cooler than Buckingham Palace. When I walked into Buckingham Palace I felt a sort of distance with the place. We had earphones that explained what each part of each room was, no tour guide. Also, I feel like the Queen doesn’t set foot in any of those rooms. But, Parliament man…now that was cool. Our tour guide told us where different parts of history happened in certain rooms. Things like slayings, commencements, carnations, etc. Also, each room is so intricate in its architecture. Every little thing is mostly wood and it each little nook is carved so precisely. The colors are amazing and the paintings are fascinating. Although you can’t take pictures inside, I took some of the outside including more Big Ben. There is scaffolding around most of the building though so not too many.

At night we went to see a play called Stockwell which is about the innocent man who was shot by the Metro Police after he was suspected to be a fifth terrorist after the London tube bombings in 2005. Here is some background on this fascinating story. For you who didn’t know, London experienced their version of 9/11 in 2005 when 3 men got on the London tube  and detonated homemade bombs within 50 seconds of each other. A fourth bomb went off an hour later on a double-decker bus. 56 people died and 700 were injured in this attack.

The next day, a suspected fifth terrorist attacker was still alive and the police were camped out in front of his residence to gain as much knowledge as possible about this fifth terrorist. Unfortunately, Jean Charles de Menezes (Brazilian heritage) lived in the same residence as this suspected terrorist and the police followed him all the way to the bus and then the tube station in hopes of gaining a signal from their captain to either go along with following him or rule him out as a suspect. A long story short, the police weren’t absolutely positive if it were the man, but taking the matters into their own hands, an officer shot de Menezes 9 times in the head. There are obviously more factors that go in to this story, but it all boiled down to poor communication by the authorities and their lack of standing up and saying that they made a mistake.

This was a play that had flashbacks of the court hearing, the family interviews, and the actual tube where de Menezes was shot. There was no scenery, no costume… just 7 actors, 12 characters and 10 chairs and it was absolutely brilliant. And to make it even better, the Attorney who represented the de Menezes family (who also represented Dodi Fayed’s case as well as many other prominent celebrities) was there to answer questions from the audience. Which brings me to my Guinness (ha ha). After the play Andrew, Chris and I went to the pub around the corner and I got the most crisp, refreshing Guinness I have ever had (I sound like an advertisement don’t I?).

The pub was really cool…it was sort of like an old time lounge with vintage leather couches and bar stools, but it also had a place for live music upstairs. I am thinking about labeling it “my pub” (In London, and I am sure a lot of other places in the United Kingdom, people label where they like to go to drink…the North London Tavern is gonna be my place).

Well, that is it for me…Like I said, pictures are below…nothing special though. Talk to you all later.

Love,

Zac

p.s. Day 13 was a bore so I didn’t even post anything about it…just class and reading 🙂

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Responses

  1. The play sounds very interesting, something I would love to see what with how I like history. I remember that incident. Did you wear a white wig like you see in the movies when you toured parliament? I’d love to see a picture of that. Was the gel douche everything you expected it to be when you washed your hair?

    • No I left the wig at home…the gel douche was everything I expected and more 😉 haha


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