This is actually a photo of the other side, but you get the idea, plus the breathtaking view. Note the lack of tourists. Early March is THE time to visit. The weather was pretty much the same as in Philadelphia, but not as cold.
Where am I going with all of this? I do have a point. It seemed clear to me right from the getgo that marketing in the UK is very different than in the US. Here, we have products that compete with each other to see who can be the loudest and most obnoxious to grab your attention when you walk down the supermarket aisles. HEY, BUY MY DETERGENT, MY LOGO IS RED AND YELLOW AND REALLY UGLY--SEE IT? NO? HERE IT IS AGAIN!!!!!! BUY ME!!!!!!
I saw none of this. What I did see were thoughtfully packaged items, some actually downright adorable. Case in point, just about everything from Marks and Spencer (or Marks and Sparks for the initiated).
I felt calm and serene walking around in a world where I was not constantly assaulted for my buying dollar. This made me WANT to spend money. The concept seemed somehow consistant with the personality of every British person I know. They are refined. They are kind. They enjoy quality over quantity. They are reflective and cerebral. I felt right at home.
Here are some things I miss terribly:
I know I've left a ton of things out, but this is my little memory slide show. We went to every major museum in the city and they were all incredible. I probably enjoyed the National Galley the most and wished we had spent more time there. The building itself is as beautiful as the works of art it showcases. Oh, well, there's always next time, which reminds me, Virgin Atlantic is the best airline I have flown to date. Our American carriers have a lot to learn. Every time I fly a European airline, I am blown away by the service. All in all, London is my favorite city so far and I felt instantly at home there. I was indeed sad to get back on that airplane.