Smelling: bacon smoking
Hearing: songs in Arabic
Feeling: warm, tired, wind up high in the Elephant ArtWorks
Seeing: a tired fry cook early in the morning, the grand interiors of British and Victoria & Albert Museums
Tasting: a slightly salty waffle
I didn’t expect to wake up at a reasonable hour due to my being up late, but my roommates getting up and out early took care of that. But on vacation that can be a good thing, since I’m trying to get breakfast out and about and I can’t necessarily expect restaurants to be open before 10. And since it was Sunday I had not only breakfast of an egg chapatti, but went to a tiny gluten-free patisserie for vegan waffles and cappuccino. Hey, they were both in the same storage container pop-up complex. I crouched over my laptop and notebook for a bit and tried to get some studying for my Celtic Languages exam. And I picked up some dumplings from the Mauritian place to eat on the go.
Around noon was when I actually headed out into the city and started to do things. I first went to the British Museum, which was enormous, and I didn’t really have a plan for things I wanted to do there. All I knew was that I wanted to see the Rosetta Stone, which I did! I wish I had more words to describe it besides “so cool,” but I’m kind of speechless about it. On my way there though I saw some other interesting things, like a mini temporary exhibition on vandalism and defamation in the Roman Empire. Apparently it was widely believed that certain name inscriptions would effect someone’s fate in the afterlife, so removing the name could ruin their afterlife! I also loved learning about how Jews would stamp over the coins with their own symbols, as we disagreed with the deification and idolatry of the emperors.
I took the Tube to South Kensington to the Victoria and Albert Museum. There was a cool exhibit on fashion there, and anywhere with a fashion exhibit is a place I want to be. I wandered around South Ken after for a bit, and picked up an amazing falafel with fried cauliflower, fried eggplant, and pickled cabbage. I ate it on the street like I have been eating a lot of things, because the street food here’s the best. No one really gives a damn about eating out in the open, which I love. I can’t explain what I like so much about street eating. It’s sure not all it’s cracked up to be, with the increased likelihood of spilling on oneself, likelihood of forgetting silverwear, etc. Maybe it’s just because I love eating everywhere.
I got back to the hostel and talked to my mom for a bit, since it was Mothers’ Day in the UK. There wasn’t much open nearby for food but I did have some delicious saag aloo. As people entered they greeted whoever was behind the counter with a “salaam aleikum” and got a “wa aleikum salaam” in return. I wondered if I should have done the same, but the staff were very friendly and didn’t seem to mind. I fell asleep a little after midnight, so I guess that’s an improvement from last night.