Continuing my series on our UK Trip: London. In the coming days I’ll give a description of each of the following.
(Days 1–3: 9 July 2011)
- Bankside House, London School of Economics
- British Library
- Globe Theatre
- Westminster Abbey
- Hyde Park Ward, LDS church
- St Martin-in-the-Field church
- Tower of London
- The Orangery, Kensington Palace grounds
- King’s Cross station
I’m glad to have visited London. That’s remarkable because I had no intention of going, and indeed, only Sav’s wish to spend time there drew any of us to the city.
Really, I didn’t care for the city at all, but it was a tolerable evil to be blessed to visit such sites as are listed above. Still I wish that one could get the Tower of London without the London.
The city generally disagreed with me. Much of it smelled of diesel exhaust; much of Southward smelled of sewage and garbage. It was crowded, and there was a great deal of both litter and advertisements to foul up the views.
Passing through crowds, English accounted for not half of the utterances, and what English we heard was from the US as often as from the UK. This was my experience at Kensington, Hyde Park, Southwark, and so forth. Indeed, my windings through London made it not hard to believe reports that immigration into the country has truly been tremendous.
As one might expect, part of me feels remorse for the changing face of England because if I find myself in the mood for a bit of traditional England later on, it might not be around (at least not in such concentration as before). Another part of me regrets the change because I believe the reports a significant quantity of the immigration is from people who impose a net drain, arriving and queueing up for social welfare services.
Another part of me is numbly philosophic about it, though. For nearly as long as the recorded history of Britain reaches, we have one people after another conquering and imposing their ways upon the native peoples: the Romans in the first century; the Angles, Saxons, and Jutes in the 4th–7th centuries; the Danes after that; the French in the 11th century… Then things take a turn and from the 17th century through the 19th century, we have the UK conquering other lands and pushing its language and culture on their natives.