the night of

my last post was written in celebration of apple day, this post is for what happened afterwards. i’m not sure how long i spent dodging flying brussel sprouts and ingesting cinnamon apple fudge, apple tarts, mulled apple cider, and beeswax cheese, but there eventually came a point when the entire event started to wind down. no more vegetables were available for the throwing. children were ushered off to the tube by parents carrying a miscellaneous collection of edible flora. the berry man was tired.

before the very end of it all, i asked pleaded with my eyes for the berry man to pose for just. one. more. photo. i feel this strange, guilty sensation when asking certain people {usually in costume} to take a photo with me. i know that ariel is getting paid to chill out in her colorful lagoon and smile for the camera, but i naturally tend to act much more excited than i actually am, in order to somehow appease said character person. anyway, i was fortunately not alone in that another girl nearby was also wanting her picture taken with the berry man. the timing worked out well enough and we quickly swapped our photographic services.

when deciding what to do next with my open schedule of a day, the same girl that i had shared a moment with earlier came up to me and asked me for directions to that huge clock alongside westminster bridge. her predicament was actually quite unusual. the thought of being alone in london for only one day and for the first time ever, not knowing perfect english {she was russian and just traveling through} carrying around a dead cell phone and no charger to revive it, and with a plane to catch in the middle of the night and no internet or google maps to get her to the correct national express bus stop – yeah, a lot of people would have been way more stressed out than she was.

without a semblance of a commitment for the rest of that day and with a childlike fondness of everything around central london’s riverbank, i quickly offered myself to her as her very own personal tour guide, free of charge. we walked and talked and walked and while she took photographs of sights never before seen, i also took photographs of the exact same buildings and bridges and angles – they weren’t new to me but i have only fallen more in love with them over time. by the end of our day together, after many many hours of perusing london paths, she expressed gratitude that i gave such a large amount of time to help her out and show her around. what she may not have known then but what i knew all along is that she did me a much bigger favor. with only days left before my unwilling return to the united states, my eyes had been reopened through a stranger {now friend} and i was able to see this amazing place in the same way that i had seen it for the very first time, many many months before.

here are some pictures, taken that day.

a walk around london, south bank london, street performers by the tate, tate modern museum, millennium bridge, a day in london, doing the tourist thing, so many beautiful songs, music makers

man making bubbles in front of the tate, tate modern street performers, a walk in london, south bank walk in london, the ladys guide to adventure, children love bubble, i love bubbles, very impressive

sunset over the thames, sunset in london, riverside sunset, the thames in london, beautiful city, i miss you every day

merry go round, carnival ride in london, south bank fun, a walk around london, candy floss by the river, old school merry go round, the ladys guide to adventure

flooding by the thames, using the clever approach, avoiding wet feet, climbing the wall, wet london walk, flooded from the rain, south bank, i did it too

pretty picture of the london eye, ferris wheel, the eye of london, all seeing eye, tourist heaven, a glimpse of london, big ben in plain sight, fear of heights

pauls in london, covent garden pauls, a walk around london, walking in covent garden, beautiful london, delicious food, good time with good company, hot tea in london, coffee and croissants

pretty picture of big ben, sunset behind big ben, big ben in london, a walk around london, for the first time, stream of lights and a bridge, westminster bridge, elizabeth tower, a sunset and the thames

thank you, lilia, for opening my eyes long enough to begin my farewells.

i bid you safe travels, good luck in your endeavors,
and may your phone never die without a charger in close proximity.
– until next time –

my friend from russia, avoiding the flooded walkway, walking through london, traveling the world, new friends in strange places, taking the tourist approach

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