I am writing right now from my hostel in London. My trip, including my first Ryanair flight, went OK. Despite what people say, I was actually impressed with the quality of Ryanair. The tacky interior did not bother me. I was just impressed that my large book bag filled up fit no problem into the overhead compartment.
France does have a dirty secret though. Their airport security in Poitiers was worse than what I expected in Saint John and Montreal. They confiscated my combination lock because it was a dangerous item, containing too much metal. What was I going to do with it, honestly?! Throw it at someone, knock them out, and then lock them up (without giving the combination)? Certainly a week-old French baguette (which would be allowed on board) is more dangerous, since those things get hard as rock, and become quite the weapon (the only useful purpose after a week, since they’re not a joy to eat anymore).
London, what little I have seen so far, is interesting and expensive. I dined tonight at McDonald’s since I arrived too late for dinner at the hostel. It is weird seeing cars drive on the wrong side of the road, as it is for many tourists, since all crosswalks in central London are labeled with a “Look left” or “Look right” message. It is also interesting that they don’t use the words “trash” or “garbage”. Instead, you put your weekly admail, homework assignments, etc. “rubbish” into a “rubbish bin”. That’s pretty much where my combination lock of many years has ended up.
I have no pictures yet. I’ll hopefully have plenty tomorrow in my first day around the motherland of the Commonwealth.