On Saturday 15th April, my parents and I boarded a train to London, excited for the day ahead! The purpose of our visit? I’m going to be reviewing at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival this summer, and I had a training day in London in order to meet other reviewers and find out exactly what we were going to be doing! My parents seized the opportunity for a day trip to London, and thus, we were on our way!
After negotiating the tube, we arrived at Westminster station, near to the Southbank Centre which is where my training was being held. As many of you will know, London recently endured a terrorist attack within this area, and it was strange walking amongst the crowds of people on Westminster Bridge, whilst considering that this had happened just a few weeks ago. There was a noticeable police presence (on foot, in the water, and in the air), but there was also a sense of defiance, and the bridge was still buzzing with people, buses, taxis, and cars. London’s a pretty sturdy city, and it was obvious that the actions of this individual would hold no bearing or impact on my visit.
The training was really interesting, and it was great to meet such a lovely group of people, from all over the UK! I was excited to learn I would be reviewing two shows a day, and spending some time on the Royal Mile, chatting to people about our reviews, and offering recommendations. I’m really looking forward to the summer, I’ve always wanted to go to the Fringe and I’m going to be working with a great group of people – so I’m super excited!
During our lunch break we stumbled on an outdoor market selling a huge variety of street food; from duck burgers, to smoothies, to Greek wraps (which is what we opted for, and was simply delicious!). I love how busy and cosmopolitan London is, the place was packed, business was constant, and it smelt amazing.
At roughly 2.30 the training came to an end, so I left the Southbank Centre, and re-joined my parents. They’d had the best few hours (without me – how rude), they’d visited the ‘Sherlock Holmes’ for a drink and had managed to get tickets for the London Dungeons, which they agreed was brilliant – but terrifying.
During the afternoon we walked around Westminster, and stumbled across a demonstration protesting human rights violations in Venezuela, walked to Covent Garden to watch some street theatre, and then headed to Leicester Square for dinner, in a little Italian restaurant – which was delicious, but quite fast-paced (we were offered the bill within a minute of finishing our meal!).
After dinner, we walked around Leicester Square, popped into M&M’s World (it had to be done), and visited a few shops. We then headed to the nearest tube station, in order to catch our train back home.
Evidently, there really is no such thing as a ‘standard day out in London’. It’s a fantastic city, with an eclectic mix of different nationalities, races, religions, cultures, and ages. I saw businessmen and women, tourists, students, families, and school trips. I saw performers, protestors, a solitary painter on Waterloo Bridge, and even a person playing the piano. I love London and I love its energy. I had a simply fantastic day out.
SHAMLESS PLUG ALERT: I’m reviewing through a group called ‘Edinburgh Fringe Review’ (EFR) this summer – check us out on Facebook/Instagram/Twitter!