So there I was in London, a huge, sprawling, diverse city whose history dates back about 2,000 years, a city founded by Romans, plagued by fire and Jack the Ripper and, well…the Plague, and what was on my mind?
I passed the Tower of London, where Elizabeth I was imprisoned and Anne Boleyn executed…
But I was all, “OMG look that’s where Michael brought Janine and proposed to her on Eastenders!”
We went for a drink at the George Inn, which is a beautiful old coaching inn from the middle ages and boasts past visitors such as Charles Dickens (who wrote about it in one of his books) and Shakespeare…
And we were all in a flutter because sitting at the table behind us was Brian May, the guitarist from Queen. We know this was Brian May, because he wore a shirt with a huge photo of himself on it, with the words “BRIAN MAY” written in large black letters across the top.
I saw Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament, which is considered the Mother of Parliament, as many governments are based on this system, and was the location where Guy Fawkes tried to assassinate King James in the Gunpowder Plot of 1605….
But all I could think of was that scene from ‘National Lampoons European Vacation’. (Still makes me laugh to watch it.)
(Video embedding disabled but you can watch it here.)
I saw a pub named John Snow (which is named after a guy who traced an outbreak of cholera in Soho back to a single water pump, and which I later found out was in the middle of a gay rights scandal recently)…
But of course I was all, “Mmmmm, John Snow from Game of Thrones.”
And of course, like probably millions of other tourists to London, every time I heard or saw Waterloo (as in the station), well of course I couldn’t help but sing to myself:
It became the inevitable soundtrack to my weekend in London, much to my chagrin.
So you see? Pop culture has ruined me and is standing in the way of any culture that I might possibly absorb on a trip to a city like London.
What’s a girl to do but embrace it?