"Street where the riches of ages are sold..."

London Travel Blog

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Street sign! Yes!
Well, not exactly. At least not anymore. If you've never seen Bedknobs and Broomsticks, you will never begin to understand how excited I was to go to Portobello Road/Portobello Market today. Cate, Stephanie, Kristin and I were greeted with another absurdly sunny day, and took a much elongated journey to the Notting Hill tube station. There was a lot of construction going on, and so we had to keep getting off and back on the tube, which was thoroughly annoying. Finally, we got off the tube, and followed the tourist signs to the market. Apparently Saturday is the day to go to Portobello Market, because that's when most of the vendors come out. I was kind of disappointed when we first got on the road, because it just seemed like a neat little row of shops, and nothing like the dirty open air antique market I had imagined.
Some guy playing those metal drum things, like in the movie!!! I'm so lame!!!
However, as we walked further, we fell upon just that. In the song, it claims that the market contains, "anything and everything a chap can unload," and this proved completely true. I can't tell you how long the stream of junk-filled carts lasted, because even being there for a few hours didn't get us to the end. There is SO MUCH there that it exhausts you just looking at it all. There are shops lining the streets that have permanent residency there, and on the other side of the sidewalk assorted vendors were set up. The majority of it is antiques, and then there is two blocks or so of food stalls. Honestly, everything you could think of is there, and most of it is really neat and old looking (whether it is actually old or not is often a gamble). Most of the things are over-priced, and so we didn't really buy much.
Blurry picture of the huge mass of people who were crowding the market today.
It didn't matter though, because looking was fun enough. We had to split up eventually because it was so incredibly crowded. Maybe it was the nice weather, or maybe there were a lot of tourists today, but this place was absolutely jam-packed with people. I didn't even buy anything, really, Cate and I went in together on purchasing a bundle of dried lavender for £3. We had a really, really amazing time here, and we are going to go back as soon as possible. Or, as soon as we have any money.

After that we got on the stupid half-working tube again and headed for the Menier Chocolate Factory theatre to see the first European run of The Last Five Years. I had already seen this show twice, once with the writer/composer IN it, so I wasn't expected to be very impressed.
Yay antiques!
And, to be honest, after hearing everyone go on and on and on in drama classes at UCI about musical theater Broadway and New York theater, etc., I don't know how London could beat what was (mostly) born in the U.S. I was, although, surprisingly impressed with this show. As with Les Mis, the singers appeared very, very well-trained. The theater we watched it in was very small, which worked very well for this type of intimate show, and though I felt that sometimes the actors should have reminded themselves that they should be playing for a smaller audience, I thought that the show was very effective, and, as anticipated, cried for entirety of the show on to my sleeve.

Feeling a bit melancholy and very hungry, we walked to the Thames and crossed the Millenium Bridge over the St.
Paul's Cathedral (it sounds like I'm name-dropping with places, but it's hard not to when everything you walk past, on, or under is big, beautiful and famous). Here we lazily picked a restaurant to eat at, hoping it wouldn't turn out to be expensive. Everything is so expensive in this city. It's ridiculous. Other cities I've been to, there are definitely expensive places to eat/shop at, but there are ALSO a great assortment of cheap alternatives. Maybe I just have to get over it and accept the fact that everything costs more money here. Anyway, Cate and I shared a seafood risotto thing that wasn't actually that bad. I think it's going to be my new life quest to find honest to goodness GOOD FOOD in London. If anyone has any reccommendations, I'd be more than happy to take them, and pursue them.
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Street sign! Yes!
Street sign! Yes!
Some guy playing those metal drum …
Some guy playing those metal drum…
Blurry picture of the huge mass of…
Blurry picture of the huge mass o…
Yay antiques!
Yay antiques!
Old musical instruments
Old musical instruments
When we went in this store, it ope…
When we went in this store, it op…
They also had a lot of old books, …
They also had a lot of old books,…
Old cameras.
Old cameras.
Old paintings? Probably not.
"Old paintings"? Probably not.
Furs
Furs
Fruit and vegetable stands
Fruit and vegetable stands
Cate and I loving life at the mark…
Cate and I loving life at the mar…
Alices, which is apparently a fam…
Alice's, which is apparently a fa…
A sideways view (I was too lazy to…
A sideways view (I was too lazy t…
Proof!
Proof!
The tube
The tube
Le tube encore
Le tube encore
The lobby of the Menier Chocolate …
The lobby of the Menier Chocolate…
The Millenium Bridge, which we dec…
The Millenium Bridge, which we de…
Kristin, Stephanie and I were all …
Kristin, Stephanie and I were all…
The view of St Pauls from the end…
The view of St Paul's from the en…
Stephanie, me, and Cate on the bri…
Stephanie, me, and Cate on the br…
The random restaurant we ate at, w…
The random restaurant we ate at, …
London
photo by: ulysses