After I accidentally deported myself, I had two choices. I could either fly home to Canada and stay there until I received my Irish passport, or I could stay in the UK and hope that I did not completely destroy my savings by doing so.
I decided to stay in the UK and see if I could find a way to live there affordably. If it became too expensive, then I would fly home to Canada- but only if I absolutely had too. In the meantime, I would visit my friend for the week and do all the things we had planned. She was on vacation because it was half-term for the schools and we were both excited to be seeing new things together.
We spent the weekend in London, taking in the sites and wearing out the soles of our shoes. I am always amazed by the amount of walking I do whenever I am in London. Considering the efficiency and ease of the public transit, you would think I would save my feet. I never want to take the tube though because there is so much to see wherever you go and I want to experience everything. It is not only beautiful, it is also an incredibly clean and organized city. It is easy to navigate, the public transport is accessible, and the London police are always willing to point you in the right direction if you go the wrong way.
The history available to experience in London is so dense that it would take years to explore it all. We spent a couple of days taking pictures and getting lost or wandering around the downtown. We also celebrated Canadian Thanksgiving with a bunch of expats in Twickenham. Keeping with the theme of Canadian Thanksgiving, we seemed to find ourselves in places significant to Canada.
Like Canada Gate at Buckingham Palace,
And the Canadian War Memorial
We spent an entire day at Hampton Court Palace in London, learning about Henry VII and Henry VIII. It was my first visit to a palace and I was blown away by the scale of the building and extent of the grounds around it. By this point, I was completely overwhelmed by the amount of history and culture I had absorbed in such a short period of time. Like the addict I was quickly becoming, I just wanted more. Perhaps I would not have felt the same way about being in the UK if I had started my trip off somewhere else, but London is irresistible. It has something to offer everyone, no matter your interests, and there are always things to do there.
Though I knew I would not be living in a castle, living in England for a bit began to seem much more appealing to me. Desperation paired with a few Disney aspirations fuelled my desire to continue exploring the country. I was going to be there for a while, so I may as well start my adventure right away! This was only my very first weekend spent in London and I was already hooked.