The Thirty Minute Blogger

Exploring Books and the Writer's Life, Faith and Works, Culture and Pop Culture, Space Science and Science Fiction, Technology and Nostalgia, Parenting and Childhood, Health: Physical and Emotional ... All Under the Iron Hands of the Clock and That 30 Minute Deadline

Friday, March 18, 2011

Messages Across Time: London Centre Fall 1980, Part 1

I was startled the other day when my wife uncovered the old journal I was required to keep as part of the Ball State University London Centre program, where students spend a quarter in London learning about art, history, etc., followed by a three week trip to Europe. What follows, sporadically, will be a series of excerpts from that journal, complete with slides from that visit 31 years ago. I recommend keeping such journals. They are messages in a bottle from across time to you.

September 2, 1980
The first day was full of wide-eyed wonder, combined with fatigue and a touch of fear. I was full of great anticipation and didn't know quite what to expect. The fear came into play over having to feed myself and over trying to get a handle on the money. Part of the fear came from being a little too tired also. Diana, Dawn, and I got together and decided to pool our resources and overcame the food dilemma and learned how to handle the money together. This was a great help. Also while calling home I ran into the most polite operator I've ever run across! Getting used to the traffic going "the wrong way" is going to take awhile.

September 3, 1980
I spent some time in Kensington Park. I was amazed at the great beauty of the garden beside Kensington Palace. Also I began to see the diversity in the population of London. There are so many different nationalities here! Going to the Royal Albert Hall was a learning experience. I notice that the British seem to be more casual about their lines (queues). They were so much more spread out than American lines. Inside, the Royal Albert was beautiful. I've never seen anything quite like it although the way the interior was decorated reminded me of some U.S.theaters of the 1800s. Also I liked the idea of the open floor seating for low prices. This enables almost every performance to be enjoyed by all.

[Looking back, that was a different age for me and the world. No cell phones, none of the computer technology that currently creates this blog--all Sci-Fi stuff at that point (yeah computers were starting to show themselves, but nothing like today's). The images are all scanned slides. There was no digital photography. The images were taken with a Pentax K-1000 manual 35mm camera with several good lenses. And yet, much remains the same ... ]

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