London Day 2,

This day was quite possibly one of the better days of my entire life, from start to an incredible ending. Today I woke up early 7am for a relaxing morning before heading out to see the Westminster Abbey, I started with a light breakfast and set out. Arriving I was the first person in line for the abbey waiting for it to open at 9:30am. I sat in front looking at how spectacular this is in awe.

It was so early the deliver trucks were still in front preparing for the day. As I watched the sun rising over the building I was even more amazed knowing the stained glass windows would have morning light breaching through lighting up the entire church. Like most attractions there is a small fee, 22 pounds is the cost for a tour with a phone that has a guide for the entire building. Which I would of payed twice over. Wait I did, when purchasing your tickets before hand they do not take E tickets!! Only hard copy tickets! Keep this in mind. I was not prepared and had to buy a new one. Oh well. Incredibly worth it. There’s no photography allowed in doors so I can’t show you how just spectacular it really is. But the architecture was purely beautiful and astounding, every small detail was taken into consideration. Every room became more and more beautiful. You must get here at opening, it was empty. I was the first person into every room. Get there 30 minutes early it’s worth it. At the end I found this room people kept walking by, it was completely empty and echoed. Very very neat.!

After this I went to harads which is the fanciest department store I have ever seen. Everything here costs a fortune, everyone says you have to see it. To be frank I could have passed it wasn’t that special and being from America it’s basically a glorified Bloomingdales, over the top.

I killed some time walking around waiting for my 1pm guided tour of the Tower of London and St. Paul church. When getting to the tour there were protests throughout the city about global warming and pollution which was dead stopped traffic. This was frustrating and making me sit there so I headed out on foot to get there in time made it at 1:01 by the grace of god so I didn’t lose out on this tour. This was with Evans & Evans tours and was highly professional from first impressions. Our guide was a blue licensed tour guide and appeared highly knowledgeable. While heading done the road he knew everything about every building. We arrived at the Cathedral, wow spectacular.

The inside was mind bending on how it was constructed. Every detail was incredible. The hidden facts about the cathedral that aren’t taught in standard tours. Everything was incredible. My tour guide was incredible. My group was incredible. Just wow. After this me moved on to the London Tower. Upon arriving it was pretty interesting to think about what this was and the altered changes to tourists over the original.

In here we got to see many things, where people were tortured how they were tortured the stories of Nicholas Owen and what an incredible man he was. The sad stories of the beheadings and the traitor hate and how all the gates in the castle worked. The real special treat past the sad grim history of this place is the Crown Jewels. This was incredible. Every piece in there was mind bending diamonds the side of golf balls. Tons of golf. Jewels and gemmed swords. Beautiful. The guard out front stayed ever vigilant and ready for anything.

We finished up here and this was the end of our group tour. I met a new friend while on it named Jan he was from Beijing originally from Taiwan what a nice great guy and as we were leaving introduced ourselves to another person whom was on the tour alone Tatiana who was from Russia. At this point we have the 3 super powers talking to each other and headed off for the boat tour to catch some new sites from a different perspective. On this we laughed and joked about how London’s new buildings are very unattractive in comparison to their historical ones looking at parliament and the Eye. Sadly Big Ben is covered right now and will be until 2021 all that could be seen was the clock. No tower. Sad indeed. But tower bridge made up for it! This finished up we continued to talk and decided to get dinner with each other and have a couple drinks. We went off wandering having no idea where we were, 3 miles later and a lot of sites and jokes we arrived at the Angus Steakhouse, which to be frank was a knock off American steakhouse that was merged with an American diner by looks, not expecting the steak to be much I was very pleasantly surprised.

This place had the worst selection of drinks imaginable. Bud light or Stella? We are in London come on. Quality of the steak made up for it though!

This night would not have been as incredible if it wasn’t for meeting these great people. So kind and funny and just all around great people! We finished up and set out to find a pub to continue chit chatting. By some crazy way we ended up back in soho just walking down the streets! The one place I’d never want to return to. While here we had some good drinks and laughs and were entertained. Went to the restroom and walked in on two men involved with one another. That was odd, backed out of there quick like.

We were just about finishing up the evening walking Tatiana back to her hotel and Jan and I were waiting for our rides. What an incredible evening. We got yelled at, a man tried spitting on us. We laughed at everything, and still incredible! 2 new lifelong friends I hope to see again while traveling to Moscow or Beijing. Till tomorrow! Keep moving forward!

First day in London, Boom!

So what an incredibly insane first day this was from the flight to getting situated to the weird nightlife I discovered and walked through. My flight, I cannot tell you how terrifying this flight was, I have never before experienced turbulence of this magnitude for as long as it lasted. We were rocking dropping shaking, wouldn’t be complete without people screaming and babies crying what an experience, amazingly I was mellow through this without the aid of my flying happy pills (Xanax) but I sat there stoic. I was surrounded by a bunch of terrified people which probably assisted me in being ”the tough guy” which is a proven scientific fact as you may know. We finally landed in London Heathrow safely. Everyone was happy to be alive me included and I carried on my way through customs laughing it up with the guy talking about hangover cures such as ”just go to the pub and knock out” he claimed was the only true way to handle it. But I made my way to the heathrow express where I then moved on to the city of London.

When I got into Heathrow I made my way to the tube and picked up a Oyster card for the yellow line looking to jump off at Victoria for my hotel. Along the train ride I enjoyed people watching as I saw the locals coming on and off on their way to work and such, everyone looked at me in an odd manor that I couldn’t put my finger on but I just laughed about it staring at the marketing signs on the walls stating that on the tube it’s better to stare at your phone then speak to the person next to you. Finally made it to my stop where I went off walking a little ways to my place I was going to be staying. Had to pick up my keys from the hotel across the street of mine which practically made me almost cancel my reservation, the hotel was possibly the craziest stuff I’ve seen in a place which I couldn’t even use words to describe however once I got into my room across the way I was pleasantly surprised by the difference from one side to the other. In awe of how this could be the same management I passed out like a rock from the flight of doom and having not slept in ages. When I woke up from my planned 3 hour nap and reality 8 hour nap it was already night about 7pm I went on my way with a plan to get something to eat, particularly with one place in mind which had been recommended by the every British person I’ve come in contact with which was Nandos, this was basically just a chain chicken house but hey thought I’d give it a go, surprisingly really good. And they actually know how to rate spicy food!

Like I love spicy food but WOW! The actually “HOT” hotel is hot let me tell you jeez! I enjoyed every bite in agony but it was good! So much seasoning and flavor bursting and the chicken was so delicious and perfectly cooked. The lady who took my order even stopped by to chat since while ordering I was blank at her thick accent, didn’t know English could sound so foreign to me but we chatted it up and had some laughs. After finishing up here I jumped in a crappy and went on a short tour around Westminster crossing the bridge catching an eye of the London skyline and the eye which is the large Ferris wheel everyone knows in London that I refuse to set foot on. I ended up making my way to trafalgar square which was just incredible. I was blown away by the architecture and the beautiful statues,

This was just incredible. So blown away by it all, the fact I was in this place standing here. I wish I had more history on what I was looking at but still just wonderful. So I set out after this to see the night life a little and see a pub which led me on to this little place on Warwick way, interesting joint kinda what you imagine of a English pub but I knew there was more now and just had to have a English lager at a English pub. Couldn’t refuse the memory got a actually very good beer and enjoyed every sip but that’s all I could handle was one. with it being 11pm and getting later I set out. I was chatting with this nice Czech girl who recommended I go to soho, not knowing anything I was eager and happy so I got on going to this place she explained as the night life of London. Wow what I found was something. This was the one nightlife you do not want to be apart of if your a straight man. She sent me to the gay scene of London,

It was almost the China town of London. Every corner someone trying to sell you on going to the strip clubs or get a special massage. Bars and clubs littered everywhere sex shops on every street what a weird place. Being out of place I strolled around looking like a lake in the desert. Just clear as day I don’t belong but had some fun met some interesting people chatted with them having to refuse going into every establishment. This was something one of the nightclubs was smoking from the side of the building went up to tell a bouncer and was told ”this so private party” in a thick Russian accent. That’s something apparently it is quite a place and many famous people go there I guess called the red box but I explained to him that hey your building looks on fire just a heads up and went on my way. Could of just been some people smoking a lot and be the vent who knows but just to do my best. I made it back to my hotel around 3am where I was not tired at all and just blown away by everything I experienced. What a day. Man I’m happy I came here. So many hiccups then I could even understand but it was worth every one to see what I’ve seen! And it’s only day 1!

LAX->London Heathrow

Arrived 3 hours ahead after getting out the door late due to transportation issues. What’s new, light rain in LA waiting in the terminal. Security was surprisingly incredibly fast. Pretty much just walked through, not sure if that’s because I chose the slowest travel day of the week or not. Decided to have my last American sandwich from jersey mikes before departing, basic as usual but that’s what America offers I suppose. Options were that or Pick Up Stix which is left out Chinese food under a hot plate. No thanks when I looked at it I just imagined things crawling on it like a summer hot plate with flies, cringe for sure. Stopped at a little book store picked up a new thing to read, the stowaway, in the first chapter it’s pretty decent so far will help me survive the 11 hour flight to London. The angst is definitely building but I’ve found slight salvation in stretching on the floor of the terminal like a weirdo and listening to classical music to mellow my nerves. And apparently writing this as I sit. Everyone boarding the same flight as me appears to be nice, hopefully I sit next to a outgoing person that u can befriend over a businessman glued to his laptop or documents. I’ve never flown virgin Atlantic, I’m sure it is high quality with good pilots, that’s what matters most. I’ll take a cranky mean flight attendant any day if she’s accompanied by 2 great pilots. I talk to you all when I land. Don’t be static all.

2 days before leaving.

My bags are packed and I’m ready to go. As the trip is approaching faster than I anticipated so is the anxiety around it growing never have I done something like this before alone. It’s quite a mystery how it just came up in my mind but oh well gotta role with this new found liquid ideology I have found trying to go with the flow and not pay too much mind to things that don’t matter. I’m extremely excited for every play I decided to go to, and am open to anything that may happen, wishing I meat other solo travelers doing the same route, unlikely but would be incredible to meet some new friends and create life long memories with them. My packing list was kinda wonky and will be at the end since I took stuff from others and then made my own, weird things we find as necessities make their way into the bag and take up space that shouldn’t be there. All together I tried 3 different bags. 1 too massive 1 too small and one that was kinda right I suppose. Ended up with the 55L fairmont my osprey. The backpack that unzips off for a daypack is incredibly handy and the backpack straps zip away so they don’t get damaged by the airlines. Very useful and comfortable if I do any long walks since its a full suspension system with it. adding in my city by city must see. Specific museums have caught my eye not just because they are very affordable if not free which is great. And the lack of knowing a lot of the languages spoken is exciting. I love being immersed in other cultures from what I have done, just need to defeat any anxiety on the trip. I believe I will be pretty distracted, need to not be a shut in! Day tours will be key in trying to discover new things. Can’t wait to write about everything I see and show you the awesome experiences I have. Keep praying for me!

6 underwear

6 socks

4 shirts

2 button ups

1 polo

Rain jacket

Sweater

Down vest

1 shorts

Camera

Toiletries

Charging accessories

Gloves

Beanie

Cable lock.

Padlock

Neck donut

Earphones

Journal

1 guide book with half of it torn out

Passport carrier

Shower sandals

Pcking cubes

Belt

1 pir of comfy all weather shows.

Quick dry towel

Playing cards

Mountains gone wrong but so so right at the same time!

Today last minute I decided to reach out to 3 friends of mine Jamie, Grant and Rafeal to go on a little adventure of a day trip up to big bear lake to be baptized as an adult. Even after seeing the storm advisory for the mountains I still wanted to set out! It was raining throughout the area and we started driving up towards big bear at an incredibly slow pace, to be expected with how strong the rain was. Along the way we jammed out to 90’s pop punk and conversed about all types of random things and just had a grand time. Once we reached the halfway point on the mountain we started seeing patches of white spots and it continued to grow and the snow started falling. By the time of the must have chain advisory we were in a white out blizzard in my little Mazda CX-5 thankfully it is a 4 wheel drive vehicle so we did not have to attach my chains which would of absolutely been a nightmare in the weather. We finally made it to big bear, somehow. Upon arriving we ended up in teddy bear cafe and enjoyed a incredible lunch that tasted so much better knowing we tempted fate in the weather! We each got our favorite breakfast for lunch besides Rafeal who wished to have a burger and eat it with a fork and knife… Brazilians!

After lunch we drove around and checked out some local shops, bought some trinkets and just messed around, we went down to the lake to try to find a place to baptize me, when getting down to the “water” we realized the entire lake was frozen over, so needless to say the option sadly would not work out! We threw some snowballs around and hung out a bit which was great and took some funny pictures in the snow. Without and gloves beanie or real jacket our time outside was quickly coming to a end as it was getting dark it was dropping temp and getting worse and worse weather conditions. We later ended up at this coffee tea exchange where we wanted to try some of the local brews. While there threw down some chess and such learning a couple new card games which were incredible and somehow got into it for 4 hours straight so it was super late at this point and we had no idea what to do as far as getting home so the day trip turned into a over night trip scrambling for a hotel we found one, overpriced and lied about the bed situation but better then being dead over the side of a cliff! So we ended up hanging out and heading to a Indian restaurant which was actually incredible. Upon arriving at our hotel we payed some cards had some laughs.

Finally exhausted we turned In for a night of rest in our odd sleeping arrangements. 1 on the floor 2 in the bed and one on the couch which supposedly pulled out and slept two, tisk tisk hotel. Successfully weird day. Wonder what’s in store for tomorrow!

It’s Decided!

So after talking to a few people and getting ideas I have now a plane ticket and a euorail pass for a month. I will be departing Feb. 13th for 3 weeks in Europe! I have never been so this is very exciting for me, I have no idea what to do while I’m there but I have chose a few cities I absolutely want to visit. I’ll be landing in London since it is the cheapest air fair. I will be spending a couple days in London where then I will be traveling to Amsterdam and then Berlin following Prague and Munich and ending in Italy in Florence then Rome! I can’t wait to see these beautiful countries and all the people in them. The culture is so rich the architecture is so gorgeous and its breathing history all around you. I have pretty high expectations and am concerned for the prices but since Ill be traveling alone I don’t need the best accommodations and as well using Couchsurfing it will be cool to meet some new people. the itinerary and countries is 100% flexible so I have nothing holding me back from traveling to other countries just that I have to be in Rome on February 5th which isn’t a bad deadline for being able to do whatever I want across Europe. Ive already began packing and getting supplies I need, researching monuments and other activities. My main source of aN itinerary is coming from recommendations so if there’s any must sees you have to share! I’ll be directly thanking you for any incredible experience I have across Europe. Being a new blog I have to find most of these recommendations from family and friends but thats fine I can still share with you! This is completely out of my comfort zone, greatest fears are planes and being places with no idea of what’s going on. Great place for me to go if you ask me. But thats what the adventure is for. Chat soon, don’t be held back by anything!

Curveball where to go now?… 1-29-19

So slight change of plan unforeseen circumstances that is now blocking me from being able to go to Japan until June, which is a let down especially since it is the place I felt drawn to the most right now but its all apart of a bigger plan I suppose. Soooo, the question is where to now? Europe, South America, Asia. What would be the most rich experience for me to embark on, id love some feedback regarding this from any of my viewers with ideas or things that you would recommend, I’m open to anything in the world. I am kinda thinking across Europe would be entertaining, Netherlands, Austria, Germany, Greece maybe even Italy. The options are there, everything is in my favor so what should I see. tough indeed. Europe offers a rich culture at a steeper price compared too much of the rest of the world, the experience is great. the spiritual surroundings are incredible with the history of the church throughout the land. Tough decision. Different set of planning all together, what to bring, where to stay, who to contact. Who to contact? take that back I know practically nobody in Europe, close to nobody.