Every journey (even a two and a half month one) has to end sometime…

San Francisco will always be my home. No doubt. Although I didn’t leave my whole heart there like Tony, I do leave a piece of it behind every time I go away. After that, New York will always be my second home. And now, I must say that London will be my third home. In Malaga (which was just less than a week ago!), I was tired and done, ready to be done with the trip. But something about London has re-energized me, so now I’m very sad to leave.

However, as I said, all journeys do need to end sometime. And tonight will be my last night in London. My bags are bulging, but packed, and tomorrow I leave in the early AM for San Francisco. But I will say that I made the most of my last days here…

Monday started with a visit to Oxford Street. Now I told myself that after Spain I would keep my shopping to a minimum. But that was before I found this wonderful store called Primark. It’s priced cheaper than an H&M or Forever 21, but they had a much better selection. My trip to this store is why my luggage is now bulging…

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Found over Oxford Street. And so true…

After trying on fashion, it was time to view fashion. I went to the Victoria & Albert Museum (aka V&A) where they just opened a special exhibit on Hollywood Costumes.

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Yes, it was a bit weird to see Hollywood-related costumes in London, but it was still very fascinating and the exhibit was well done. One interesting point they brought out was that costume designers design clothes for a 2D environment, versus the 3D environment that fashion designers design for. My favorite costumes were: Scarlett O’Hara’s dress made out of “the portieres”/curtains, Indiana Jones’ famous ensemble complete with bull whip, and the famous LBD (little black dress) that Audrey Hepburn wore while having Breakfast at Tiffany’s. There were also some interesting interviews with Tippy Hedren & Edith Head (from The Birds), Martin Scorsese, and Colleen Atwood (costume designer for some of my favorite films). What a great exhibit! Oh, and I must mention that at the V&A, I was able to meet up briefly with my former co-worker, Megan, who just happened to be vacationing through London at the same time. Small world, right?

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Riding the double decker bus to my next destination

To make my day even longer, I returned in the evening to London’s fabulous West End to see Singin’ in the Rain. Singin’ in the Rain is one of my favorite movie musicals of all time, so I was very interested to see how this would translate into the theatre. I had actually gone to the box office earlier in the day to get a ticket, and the guy there told me that they had 3rd row seats for 1/3 of the normal price! The only caveat?

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What’s Singin’ in the Rain without a little water, right? Well, I took my chances to get the awesome 3rd row center seats. Now I must say that I’m a tough critic since I know the movie by heart, and no one will ever compare with Gene Kelly, Donald O’Connor and Debbie Reynolds. But I will say that the dancing in the musical was incredible. And it was cool to see the main character dancing (and singin’) in the “rain”. By the way, I didn’t really get wet during that number. But I DID get very wet later for the encore when the whole cast came out to dance in the “rain”. But that’s part of the experience, right?

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Boo loves our awesome seats! And somehow he remained dry…

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Mopping up during intermission

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Drying the umbrellas used in the finale. I could have used one of those a few minutes prior…

That was yesterday. Today started off with a trek through the London fog to Bethel for lunch. There we had a delicious tiger prawn pasta followed by a walnut cake with warm custard. Though even better was the great company and entertainment provided. 🙂

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I think I shall call them “The Three Musketeers”…

After that, I had so many options for things to do on my last day (Hampton Court Palace? Kensington Palace? Tate Modern?), but I could save those all for next time. What I really wanted to do was take a walk in the park (despite the cold foggy weather) and enjoy the autumn colors. Thankfully, near my flat is Bishop’s Park (yes, because bishops used to live here) that sits right on the Thames. There, I was able to do exactly what I wanted – to enjoy the fall colors and contemplate my fabulous trip…

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Putney Bridge on the River Thames

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Talk about saving the best city for last! It wasn’t the best weather, but I definitely had a great time!

Tomorrow, I return here…

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San Francisco, I’m coming home! Just in time for Game 1 of the World Series! Go Giants!

Until next time…

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