Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Our Venetian Thanksgiving

As many of you know, we spent our Thanksgiving holiday in Venice!  Thanksgiving morning we hopped on the tube and rode out to Stansted Airport to catch a plane to Venice.  We arrived in the afternoon, checked in to the hotel, and our time in Venice had begun!

This is the hotel that we stayed at.
For our thanksgiving dinner we first had a couple courses of gelato.  My first course was lemon, chocolate, and stracciatella (chocolate chip).  I then went in for a second course of lemon and maro (blackberry).  The maro, while still good, was not quite up the the standard of the others.  The chocolate was divine and tasted like brownies.
We were lucky to get to the gelato place when we did because thanksgiving was the last day before they closed for the winter (the sign says "Last Day").
Then we went out and had pizza for desert.  I had artichoke pizza (yum yum yum).  This pizza is what caught our attention.
This is a nice picture of one of the bridges spanning the canal in Venice.
And, of course, there was a Hard Rock Cafe (that we didn't go to unfortunately).
This is a picture of me, Dad, Beno, and Bro. Seely standing by the statue of the *Tetrarchs.
This was a the window of a shop that we found.  Venetian glass is very famous and glass shops are one of the three types of shops to be found in Venice (glass shops, mask shops, and clothing stores :) ).  These are tiny glass sculptures of insects.  On the other side which you can't see in the picture were cute little hippos and elephants and all sorts of other kinds of animals.  Unfortunately I wasn't able to find the shop again, or I would have bought some.
Then next morning, it was raining like crazy, and we were warned that the water would be past our ankles in some of the streets.
  Fortunately our hotel provided Wellies for all.
Brellies and Wellies
It turned out that the water was indeed up to our ankles, and beyond.
St Marks square is the main square in Venice.  That day, it was more like a pond than a square.
Mom and Yours Truly.
Here is Mom on one of the many duck boards erected for those who didn't wish to wade in ankle-deep water.
More duck boards
Sloshing around in a shop.
A cute little kid.
The **bell ringers
San Giorgio church located on a little island.
View of Venice from San Giorgio bell tower
The place to lodge complaints anonymously (mouth).
The next morning sported a welcome blue sky after the floods of the previous day.
An impressionistic shimmer on the canal
Dad, Beno, I, and Bro. Seely went to a church while the girls shopped.
Another nice shot of the church interior.
And more glass.
A beautiful blue sea to greet us.
In Venice there are police and fire boats as well as ambulance boats like the one shown here

Glass blowing on Murano island.
The grave of Igor Stravinsky on San Mishele island.
Another impressionistic scene.
And after the day was done, we bid farewell to Venice.

*Probably the 4 co-rulers of Rome in its last days.

**These were the first robots to kill someone.  Someone was up there working in the 1700s and they knocked him off.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Parades and Remembrance

This week has been a very busy week.  Yesterday I was woken up at an unearthly hour and told to get dressed for our tour at the houses of parliament.  After the tour was over it turned out that it was the day of the Lord Mayor's parade through the city.  We first made our way home, and then to the parade.  Now enough blabbing.  Time look at pictures!!!  Oh!  Also, we've been having remembrance ceremonies around here because of remembrance day.  The first one was at Trafalgar Square.  It was amazing.  We participated in the 2-minute silence, and to hear noisy London completely silent is an amazing experience.  Pix below.

Here is at Trafalgar Square during the remembrance ceremony.  Here we listened to some singers, participated in a 2-minute silence out of respect for the dead, and threw poppy petals into the fountain.
These are just some cute school kids "bunking off school" to see the remembrance ceremony.
Here is Dad throwing some poppy petals into the fountain at Trafalgar Square.
OK, now we are into the parade.  These guys are the royal artillery.  You can see the caissons rolling along in the foreground. 

 And here is the big man himself in the carriage that is only taken out of the Museum of London for this occasion.
 Here is one of the many marching bands.  I included this particular one because it lets you guys see the traditional hats that the soldiers wear.
 Here is a random potato harvester that came through.  You can see the potato guy up on top.
And lastly, the steam bus from Yorkshire.  Driven solely by steam.

Well, sorry about the ridiculously long wait but hope you enjoyed the pics.  No videos because of the terribly slow internet connection.


Friday, July 30, 2010

Trips, Trips, and more Trips!

Hey guys, I'm just writing to tell you to hang in there and keep checking. I've been on a week long trip so now that i am home, you can expect a new post in the next few days. Thanks for your comments!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

England, Paris, and Welcome

Hello all! This is my first real blog post on my own blog. It's actually partly a response to Bron's request that I post some pictures of Paris. This is going to be a ridiculously long blog post so brace your self or stop right now. For those who don't know, we made it to England on 27th (?) of June. I've been enjoying it a lot. I actually haven't missed Provo as much as I usually do when we go to England. Maybe that's because I don't look forward to going back to Timpview High. This year I had my shortest summer ever. I got out of school the end of May and started it again two weeks later. Oh well, at least the classes are interesting now. My friend Beno and I, have been taking the college classes with the students in addition to precalculus from my mom, and a humanities class from Beno's mom. Anyways, enough of school. Two days after we got to England the first group of student got here and will be staying for two months, then the 2nd group will be arriving for 4 months. We will then come home probably for the last time (meaning that we're not coming back to England). Just in time for Christmas.
The first site that I remember going to is St. Paul's Cathedral.

This is St. Paul's in it's glory and splendor (actually, it's not a very good picture). Considered by many Christopher Wren's greatest work (he's the architect). We climbed up that huge dome which is not a small feat.

Here are some amazing pictures from the top of the dome. The first one is a double decker bus. The second is the millennium bridge with the tiny specks walking across it. Note that these picts are zoomed in quite a bit.


Each week we go on day trips. On these we travel on a coach (long distance bus) to various sites around England. Our first one was to Canterbury. Canterbury is a cathedral town. It has amazing historical significance. It is where many people come on pilgrimage to the place where Thomas Becket was murdered in his own cathedral. It is where Christianity was reestablished after the Romans left England. Its also the home of the Arch Bishop of Canterbury.

During the reign of Henry VIII, many abbeys were destroyed. We went to see what's left of one of the largest. This is St. Augustine's Abbey. It was very cool to go there and see something so old like that. It was also fun to learn some of the history that's tied in with this place.

This is a nice picture of the Salt Lake Temple seen through the trees. Just kidding! This is Canterbury Cathedral.

I've tried to scale back on the pictures of stained glass just because you will be getting a ton of them in later posts. I couldn't help putting at least one in though.

And this is a memorial to Thomas Becket's martyrdom. The three swords plus the three shadows on the wall represent the six soldiers that were sent to kill Becket. Pretty lethal looking actually.

Well, maybe one more of stained glass. This is the last one. I promise.

Okay, the second day trip that we went on was a triple trip. The three sites that we went to were Glastonbury, Stourhead, and Bath.

Glastonbury is notable for myths and legends concerning Joseph of Arimathea, the Holy Grail and King Arthur. Back in the 11 hundreds, monks claimed to have found the graves of King Arthur and his Queen Guenevere. Naturally, this is a place to meet interesting people. Very interesting people.

Again, not much left of the original abbey. Just a few walls.

This is where the high alter would have stood back in the abbey's hay-day.

And, oh look, the big man himself (well, sort of). This is the supposed grave of King Arthur. Cool, huh?


Stourhead is a big estate located in Wiltshire. It is very large and very beautiful, with its large gardens and magnificent estate house. The reason that we go there is that It is also where Mr. Darcy has his estate in the movie Pride and Prejudice. Since there isn't much to be said about the pictures, I will leave you in peace to enjoy them.

Well, I guess that I will have to forgo Bath till another post because blogger is making it ridiculously hard to move my pictures to where I want them, but keep looking for more posts because I haven't even caught up to the present date. Till then, goodbye.