Sunday, January 13, 2013

Beyond Blue Greenwich prime meridian marker.

Many people would think that I did something silly today.  I paid GBP5.00 just for a photograph while sitting on the ground with my legs crossed (photo above).    

That behaviour might be a sequelae of my slight depression after receiving a very upsetting email from the university yesterday- declaring that I need to do my two-week production animal clinical placement again due to some allegations given by my clinical supervisor which for me, was a treatment that's very unfair and too personal.  I just can't believe that in an intellectual environment like the university, I could encounter this kind of attitude.  The only good thing is, the extra-mural studies' advisory committee has given me a chance to discuss this decision with them at my earliest convenience and opportunity.  So I've been keeping my fingers crossed that I can sort it out to the best outcome I could imagine.

Indeed, there's no such thing as a perfect holiday!  But instead of grieving, I ate the most sumptuous breakfast I could afford, took a shower and explore the Portobello Road Market in Notting Hill and the luxurious Harrods at Brompton Road yesterday.  I am grateful for my uncle for the real treat of taking me to those fabulous places. Harrods. Harrods. Harrods.

Aubergines at Portobello Market.

A variety of lettuce sold at Portobello Market.

Mushrooms for sale at Portobello Market.

Mold-ripened sausages at Portobello Market, Notting Hill, London.

We were at Portobello Market at four P.M. and didn't have the opportunity to see it at its peak but I have this feeling that it was comparable to Salamanca Market in Hobart, Tasmania.  The temperature was 3'C that afternoon but I have seen international tourists and locals along Portobello Road taking advantage of the last minute sale of fresh fruits and vege, flowers, beadworks, cloths, textiles, antiques, pastries and cakes such as Belgian waffles and French crepes.  My uncle and I enjoyed a medium cup of mocha and a waffle with two swirls of perfectly whipped cream, decorated with slices of fresh strawberries and drizzled with their sinful, thick chocolate sauce.

From Notting Hill Gate, the underground railway took us to Knightsbridge where the glowing Harrods shop was confidently standing!  Business hours was due to end in an hour so we navigated straight to the food section where the 'golden' meat and meat products, cheese, nuts and sweets were elegantly displayed.

STILL AT HARRODS.  Luckily, Patchi chocolate's national manager was standing by the shelves, so before I could say a word, she gave us a piece of milk chocolate with almonds wrapped in a nicely labelled, sparkling material- all for free!  Patchi chocolate was GBP8.00 per 100 grams but it was, honestly, worth it!  That chocolate variant we've tasted was so lovely (as how the English people would describe a great-tasting food)!  My uncle purchased some- in wide assortment!

"Life is like a box of chocolates!" -Forrest Gump

 DESPITE THE FREEZING TEMPERATURE this afternoon, my auntie and I were determined to visit Greenwich Park.  At the entrance, the place looked a bit deserted- though there were a few families and couples who braved the cold to walk along the concrete path in the middle of the lush, green lawn under the leafless trees- big and small.

I posed for a photograph at the view deck with the London skyline and the Queen's House behind (and below).  I was a bit surprised that another pose at the Prime Meridian marker would entail five bucks.  Since deep in my heart I believe I was a tourist, I paid a student concession (thankfully they honored my University of Adelaide student ID) and shortly after, I found myself queuing, setting my camera for an auto-capture and just like other well-wrapped yet uncomfortably chilled tourists- I sat down right on the official prime meridian marker at the Royal Observatory in Greenwich for a photograph!

The world's official prime meridian- I was there!

A prime meridian is a meridian, i.e. a line of longitude, at which longitude is defined to be 0°. A prime meridian and its opposite in a 360°-system, the 180th meridian (at 180° longitude), form a great circle.
This great circle divides the sphere, e.g. the Earth, into two hemispheres. If one uses directions of East and West from a defined prime meridian, then they can be called Eastern Hemisphere and Western Hemisphere.
- Wikipedia 

The London skyline with a streak of green laser light that represents the prime meridian.

"O degrees.  This laser installation projects a beam of light along the Meridian Line during the evening.  It runs true north for a distance of about 15 miles." -The Royal Observatory, Greenwich, London

Now, do you think I'm silly?


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