Great Britain

London 2022: Muswell Hill, Soho, and the Jubilee

June 08, 2022
• by
Maisie Jones
Jubilee
a Jubilee celebration

​​​​​​I started the week leading up to Jubilee with class. We learned about the cultural differences between the US and UK and the context that explains them. We learned that Britain has a much more leisured society than the US. There’s a much better work-life balance here. It’s also not uncommon for co-workers to drink together after work as alcohol has a place in the professional culture here. Around this time in the trip, I started learning other things about food and drink. The expiration dates here are much shorter than they are in the US. A lot of preservatives aren’t allowed in the food here, so when grocery shopping you should only buy things that you’re going to finish by the time they expire. When I first got here, I thought it’d be smart to buy what I would need for a prolonged amount of time so that I would have to grocery shop less.

Muswell Hill
view from a street in Muswell Hill

I quickly realized that much of what I bought would go bad before I got the chance to eat it. Also, there is no ranch dressing anywhere in Britain. They just don’t have it. Very random, but I thought I’d add it in. Also, I came across some interesting terminology that I think would be helpful to define. The word “pants” in Britain means underwear and the word “trousers” means pants. If you were to say to someone that you like their pants, you’d be saying that you like their underwear.

Greenwich
Old Naval College in Greenwich

On Tuesday, we took a field trip to the British Maritime Museum in Greenwich. Britain being a collection of islands is a fundamental part of its identity as an imperial nation. In colonial times, the Brits had to travel by water to get anywhere outside of Britain. This restraint forced them to develop a strong navy, which helped them establish their empire.

​​​​​​The Jubilee holiday started on Thursday and continued until Sunday. It celebrated 70 years of Queen Elizabeth’s reign. On Thursday, there the Trooping of the Colour to kick off the Jubilee celebrations. It’s a huge parade that celebrates the Queen’s birthday. On Friday, I spent all day out and about in the city. I started in Chelsea at a breakfast place called My Old Dutch which makes sweet and savory pancakes. After, my friends and I stayed in the area to shop. Chelsea has great cafes and stores, and the area is cute.  

 

This is my favorite part of London so far. After, we went to the Carnaby Jubilee festival in Soho. All of the shops there were having discounts and deals. I didn’t like it as much as Chelsea, but it was still fun. That night, we went to a rooftop bar called Bussey and got a great view of London from the south bank.

rooftop bar
Bussey rooftop bar
pancake
savory pancake from My Old Dutch

On Saturday, I went to an area of London called Muswell Hill to eat lunch and shop. It’s in northern London, and it’s a hill so you can look down on London from the streets. The trip made me realize that London is far bigger than I thought. The rooftop bar, which was far south of the Thames, and Muswell Hill are about an hour and half apart but both in London. During the Jubilee, most restaurants have a Jubilee menu or special. The Union Jack is strung everywhere, and the city is more busy than usual. It was a once-in-a-lifetime experience to be in London for the Jubilee. Who knows when it will happen again!