London Diaries

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“When a man is tired of London, he is tired of life; for there is in London all that life can afford”. This quote from Samuel Johnson captures the essence of my experience with London. The beauty of this city cannot be expressed in words; it has to be felt and experienced. I have never been in more love with any city. For me, London was love at first sight.

We were so mesmerized by the city that we drank it all!

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Some of us even tried to take a bite out of London!!

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The view of Thames during the night is breathtaking. The iconic Big Ben and glowing London Eye leave you speechless.

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Even if you are scared of heights or giant wheels, the London Eye is still the thing for you. It moves so slowly and smoothly that you barely feel anything. Riding the London eye gives you the sense of being on top of the world, and the landscape is just amazing.

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London has such iconic structures with such rich history that one can only wonder about how much effort and imagination went into creating them. Tower Bridge is one such example. This engineering marvel, built a century ago, is still functional. The blend of old and new is a constant theme throughout London. Tower Bridge is no exception; it overlooks office buildings reflective of modern age architecture. Talk about having a view from the office!

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The Tower of London is another iconic structure which stands tall to this day. It is also the houses the world’s most famous diamond: the Kohinoor. Growing up in India, I heard stories about Kohinoor being discovered in India and making its journey into the Queen’s crown. Knowing the history of this rare gem stone, seeing it was a thrilling experience. For all of the Indians out there, don’t worry, I have struck a deal with the care taker. You can expect the Kohinoor to be returned soon via Royal Mail.

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If you were the Monarch of a first world country, how grand would your residence be? While you think about that question, here is where the Queen lives. The palace contains 775 rooms and has a garden 40 acres in size. It is also the world's largest working palace, but they turned down our request to use one of the rooms as an Airbnb. Sigh!!!

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In London, you can indulge yourself in learning about history, science or modern arts through various museums, which are all free to the public. Woohoo London- you just increased the homework for school kids due to field expedition reports. Just kidding!! Seeing wildlife specimens, cultural artifacts and ancient paintings leaves you wanting to learn more about the past, and to make sense of where we are heading now. This picture is from the National History Museum. Right at the entrance is a life size specimen of a dinosaur.

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Inspired by the experience of our classmates visiting wildlife safaris, we also spent some time closer to nature and took pictures climbing a tree. After all we evolved from monkeys.

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Some of us even tried to get too close to the wildlife. It was dangerous, but Dave is a brave soul. No animals were hurt in taking this picture.

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London, you will be dearly missed. If only I could turn back the clock and return. Oh wait! I can!

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