Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Exploring my Surroundings:London, UK

September 12-19, 2012

          After I got settled in a little and unpacked my suitcase I wanted to find a pharmacy or department store to look for some necessities. Most importantly, I needed a disposable cell phone and a SIM card to contact friends and classmates in the UK, and friends and family in the US. I also needed a towel, contact solution, an electrical adaptor, and other hygienic products. When I returned back to the flat, many of my roommates were gone either shopping for adapters, phones, or had gone to eat. I was hungry too so I went to local pub with my flat mate Zachary called the Gloucester Arms and had a great fish and chips dinner with peas, lemon, and vinegar. The next morning our group of Drexel students had an orientation tour of our immediate surroundings in the Royal Burroughs of Kensington and Chelsea. One landmark very near to where I live is Hyde Park.

Hyde Park

            Hyde Park is one of the largest parks in central London, United Kingdom, and one of the Royal Parks of London, famous for its Speakers' Corner. The park was the site of the Great Exhibition of 1851, for which the Crystal Palace was designed by Joseph Paxton. Sites of interest within the park include the Diana, Princess of Wales memorial and London's Holocaust Memorial. Another memorial in the park commemorates the victims of 7/7 terrorist attacks, in the form of 52 steel pillars, one for each of the dead. As we were walking around Hyde Park I took a picture of this monument as well as a leaf to show how the leaves were turning I guess ha ha. On Sunny days everyone comes to the park because many homes are smaller than people would like so people love to go outdoors. Secondly, there are not many gorgeous sunny days like I've been experiencing. Walking through the streets on our tour I came  across some unique, and highly luxurious automobiles.

 Rolls Royce

The introductory base price for a Rolls Royce Phantom in a model similar to the one above is £250,000 in the United Kingdom and $300,000 in the United States. This luxury car was parked outside the Victoria & Albert Design Museum.

Tesla Roadster

The Tesla Roadster has a base price of $109,000 in the United States and is an engineering masterpiece. The Tesla Roadster is an all-electric sports car that can drive up to 300 miles on a single charge. I spotted this Roadster just down the street form the Rolls Royce pictured above, but near the Museum of Science.

Royal Albert Hall

            The end of our tour ended as we circled the Royal Albert Hall, and saw many people lined up outside, or 'queuing', for £5 tickets to the Prom. The Royal Albert Hall is a concert hall situated on the northern edge of the South Kensington area, in the City of Westminster, London, England, best known for holding the annual summer Proms concerts since 1941. Since Queen Victoria opened the Royal Albert Hall in 1871, the world's leading artists from several performance genres have appeared on its stage and it has become one of the UK's most distinct buildings. The premier for the new James Bond 007 movie Sky fall happened here, and one of my flat mates, Scott got Daniel Craig's autograph!

Piccadilly Circus

           Piccadilly Circus is an Underground Stop as well as a road junction and public space of London's West End in the City of Westminster, built in 1819 to connect Regent Street with the major shopping street of Piccadilly. This is a London equivalent of Time Square for New York City. There are many streets filled with restaurants, shops, and theaters that all meet at one point, which is Piccadilly Circus. For one of my classes, I went to a play called 'The 39 Steps' located right in the heart of Piccadilly Circus. The show was a prime example of British humor, which was excellent, and they only used the same four people to play all the characters throughout the show which was funny to see their interactions. A street that forms off of Piccadilly Circus is Oxford Street. 

 Oxford Street

           Oxford Street is a major thoroughfare in the City of Westminster in the West End of London, United Kingdom. It is Europe's busiest shopping street, and as of 2011 had approximately 300 shops. Oxford Street is the Mecca of consumerism in London boastings such brands as Brooks Brothers, Burberry, Gucci, Hollister, Super Dry, Barbour, and many more. My favorite store on Oxford Street is Topshop. Oxford Street is also home to Selfridges, one of London's largest luxury department store. It's very entertaining to people watch while walking down Oxford Street, as well in Piccadilly Circus too. 
           My classes are starting to assign more work, and I'm realizing different areas of studies I may potentially want to get into like marketing, as well as appreciating new types of design like architecture and interior design that I previous found dull and uninspiring. I like my marketing class because the teachers have plenty out real world knowledge, and experience to back up their lectures. The process of creating a marketing plan is very structured, but allows for some creativity,which I find, can exemplify a great mix of my skills. I also like how in Marketing, every skill is transferrable to meet any marketing goal, for any product. Marketing a product, and creating a brand, directly ties into the core of  many courses within the Design and Merchandising curriculum. I enjoy my other classes as well, specifically history of Modern Design. I never really noticed the importance of subtle detail, simplicity and the history of interior design, commercial design, and the design of many modern items within a home, as much until I started this class. My other classes aren't evolving as quickly but the Transnational Studies Global Diasporas class is really making me think about current affairs, and is interesting me to engage in political topics surrounding the election. These classes are exposing me to many different areas of knowledge than I've never been previously interested in which is really fun, and makes me want to discover more, and new facets of knowledge in my educational career at Drexel. 

1 comment:

  1. This seems like a great English trip! I find the part where you spotted a Rolls Royce and a Tesla Roadster just a few blocks away from each other amusing. It’s amazing how car lovers with different tastes were almost destined to meet. Haha!

    Prince Moss