It was Wednesday, July 29, 1981 when I got up at 3 AM to watch the coverage of the wedding of Charles & Diana. I was enthralled by the pageantry, history and beauty of it all. I was so happy for them!
Next Friday, I will again be up by 3 AM to watch the coverage of another royal wedding: that of William and Kate. I'll watch as much as I can, hopefully seeing most of it before I have to leave for work.
My husband Terry and I visited London exactly five years ago. We spent six days there and absolutely loved it. One day, we hope to return. Since I know the streets and have seen the city first hand, I'll be able to get my bearings as the procession heads through the streets of London and Kate enters Westminster Abbey.
I thought this would be a great time to share some photos of our London trip. Some of these locales will indeed be on the wedding route! Others... not so much.
Here is the fascade of Westminster Abbey. I regret we did not go inside, but next time for sure!
Big Ben is right across the street from Westminster Abbey.
Here are some shots of Buckingham Palace and the Changing of the Guard ceremony.
When the Queen's Guards aren't rotating in and out of duty, they're doing this...
... and this. People try to crack them up, but they must remain stoic. A few times, we saw the guards begin to march in place and switch their guns to the other side in hopes that would scare the tourists who were getting a bit too close!
A charming carriage just outside the gates of Buckingham Palace.
Just across the street from Buckingham Palace is St. James's Park. It was SO beautiful, with gorgeous flowers, ponds and birds. A true paradise!
The wedding route will not pass the Tower of London...
... nor Tower Bridge. We decided not to take the tour inside the Tower of London. Jails and jewels just didn't fit into our schedule. Maybe next time. I really would have loved to see the ravens that live on the grounds, but they weren't there when we were in London.
I was surprised to see this statue of Abraham Lincoln in the middle of Parliament Square! Especially since it is a replica of the one we have in Lincoln Park here in Chicago!
We Illinoians are mighty proud of old Abe!
Terry is a huge Beatles and British Invasion fan, so we just had to walk up Abbey Road to Abbey Road Studios.
It was almost impossible recreating that famous shot with all the traffic! The locals must think us tourists are crazy!
Here's a typical pub in London. Such quaint buildings, and many have been in operation for hundreds of years!
There's no better way to get a bird's eye view of London than from atop the London Eye!
Well, that concludes our brief tour of London! If you're interested in the Royal Wedding, check out the links below.
For the official Royal Wedding website, click here.
For a helpful interactive map of the royal procession click here.
Here's a fun 3D imagery of the parade route by Google Earth Maps:
And finally, if you're not watching the festivities on TV, you can watch a live stream on the official Royal Household YouTube channel beginning at 5:00 am ET by clicking here!