I'm officially settled in London!! We've been here since Tuesday morning and I'm already in love. The area is so gorgeous around us, it's exactly what you would picture. I've been doing a bad job of picture taking, so I don't have anything of the building or dorm I'm in, but in the grand scheme of things it's nice, and the location is perfect. We're an extremely short walk to Kensington High, where you can pretty much find anything you want, and right by Hyde Park which I need to spend a day exploring.
The flight over wasn't bad at all! There were about 8 of us from the AIFS program flying out of Cincinnati to Dulles, then probably 15 more that we met up in Dulles. It ended up being a great way to get to know people before you were even in London. In the last few days we've just had a lot of information given to us, trying to prepare us for the semester ahead. We took a walking tour of Kensington as well as a bus tour of London. It was all a little overwhelming, but so exciting at the same time!
My roommate Katie and me with Big Ben!
We saw all the very touristy spots, which was definitely fun, but there's soooo much more to do and see in the upcoming months in terms of traveling around London. Some of us are planning days to just pick spots on the map, ride the tube in, and spend the day wandering around.
Outside Buckingham Palace
We haven't adventured outside of Kensington yet at night (still trying to get our bearings around this area before we tackle the night buses), but it's only the second full day, so we have plenty of time for that. There are some nice pubs really close to our dorm though, so we've been able to go out, hang out and meet new people.
Some of us out at a local pub/nightclub in Kensington
The people in the program are tons of fun, and everyone is already starting to find their groups of friends. Katie and I were joking that it's like a sped up version of Freshman year of college. You only have four months, so you're making friends as fast as possible! There are people from all over, California, Washington, Minnesota, Virginia, Alabama, New York...it's a great mix and totally crazy what random connections you have to people you've never met before!