Kensington loves dogs

13 Jan

Kensington is known as an affluent neighborhood in London. A typical 3-bedroom flat could cost you roughly $5 million dollars. That’s an apartment, not a house. A short walk from campus is the High Street, essentially a term for the “Main Street” of an area, also where you can shop and eat at chain restaurants. In another direction is Royal Albert Hall, Kensington Gardens and Hyde Park, and Kensington Palace, where Princess Diana lived after getting divorced from Prince Charles.

A word about Kensington Palace:

  • The squirrels will not only walk right up to you, they will attempt to climb up your boots.
  • They currently have the entire visitors section decked out in “fairy princess themed” garb. A must-see later in the semester.
  • Princes William and Harry grew up there and it is rumored that Will and Kate will live there whilst in London.

This is just the front -- it's like a small college.

My dorm is decent, I wasn’t expecting accommodations worthy of Lady Di. The food they serve us is a bit like the reputation British food used to have: inedible. Take-away food will become a near and dear friend to us all.

After we got settled into the dorm and unpacked a bit we went to an IT information meeting and then my roommate and I went out in search of a drugstore, which we found on the high street. The main drug store in London is called Boots. And it is basically the lovechild of Sephora and CVS. When you first walk in, it’s upscale make-up brands. Then you reach the midpoint and it starts getting cheaper, and then there is the glorious CVS-like back of the store and sometimes 2nd floor of the store. Yeah. Two floors for shampoo and other goodies.

While we were walking I saw a dog that’s the same breed as mine and nearly broke down in sobs of “I miss my dog!” but I maintained my composure. A word about dogs in London:

  • They are ridiculously well-behaved.
  • They are walking accessories for their posh owners.
  • They all wear coats/sweaters/vests…etc. so that they may be as well-dressed as their owners.

Floppy ears will now perform "The Sweater Song" by Weezer.

After getting our supplies from Boots we went back to campus to meet for a guided walking tour of the neighborhood. Our guide was a tall blond named Savannah who had a lot of personality and walked quickly which was necessary as it was windy and freeeezing. We hit the high points of Kensington which I mentioned earlier: Kensington Palace, Kensington Gardens, Royal Albert Hall, High Street.

A glorious concert hall built by Queen Victoria for her husband Albert. He died before it was completed but Cirque du Soleil is currently performing and I doubt he would have enjoyed that very much.

Kensington Gardens is huge and full of dogs running around which makes me happy.

As you can see by the warm, welcoming sunshine, I did not take this photo.

Also found in the park…

Geese! It's just like the Fens back in Boston, only these geese picked a nicer park to ruin.

After the walking tour we had an orientation meeting then we went out for pizza on the high street to a place called Soprano’s. Definitely a keeper. You might say it hit a high note. (It’s my blog, I’ll make bad jokes if I want to.)

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