“One Solution: Revolution (System Change Not Climate Change)”
Buckingham Palace’s beauty & the unexpected protest I ran into on my solo adventure in London, England (11.24.18)
I arrived in London, England after an extremely long twelve hour Megabus ride to Toronto Canada, then another seven-hour plane ride courtesy of West Jet.
I was so eager to get out and start doing all of the touristy things I’ve always dreamed of.
The first thing I wanted to do after I checked into the PubLove Hostel, where I would be spending one night, I was off to visiting Buckingham Palace!
I wandered through the city of Westminster, without a working phone or a reliable WiFi connection, just a screenshot of google map directions that revealed Buckingham palace was only a short distance (25-minute walk) from where I would be spending the night.
I passed by Victoria train station, where just an hour before I was dragging my luggage in one hand and a Burger King meal in the other, lost and frustrated trying to find my way to Publove; now luggage free and full, I followed “Buckingham Palace street” (so clever) all the way to one of London’s famous places.
I heard the palace before I saw it!
To my surprise, I was greeted by loud chants, songs, drums, and people waving flags with half painted faces.
At first, I thought to myself “I must have this all wrong this isn’t Buckingham Palace” but…it was, after all, I was on BUCKINGHAM PALACE STREET and after all of the tourist and swift moving locals I dodge on the way there it just better had been.
It’s just…not exactly what I expected, instead of it being a completely magical experience, it was sort of ruined by the large group of people creating a huge ruckus in the name of climate control; but one thing I’ve learned is that in protesting is there are no rules and it has known no bounds.
I had a brief conversation with one of the yellow-jacketed police officers, guarding the gates, just to confirm what I already knew.
I asked if the protest was really happening before my eyes at Buckingham Palace? To his reply was simply “yes it is.”
The friendly officer, with the awesome accent, followed up by explaining that prior to this protest demands for better climate control programs (by the same group) were demonstrated at the Parliament (law making- city council headquarters) but on this particular day “they chose to come here” out of all of the days I thought!
Anyway, for the record, if I were to be caught up in a protest that would have been the one to wonder into…
Nothing compares to America’s protests or more recently the uproar in Paris where locals (with yellow jackets ironically) are literally setting fire to the streets and police are launching canisters of tear gas for crowd control all over fuel prices.
No, this was something different; it was peaceful, people were singing and dancing, and there was clearly a huge mixture of tourist in with the locals (I could tell by all of the selfie-taking).
Typically you wouldnt think a local would yell “CLIMATE CONTROL” but first, let me get this selfie (although today that may not be too far from reality…)…
I missed the changing of the guards but I still caught a glimpse of the guards marching back and forth at the entrance, in uniform, protecting the Palace.
Let’s get into the details!
Buckingham Palace’s physical appearance is GORGEOUS. The Gold trimmed gates, huge fountains and carefully sculpted statues were just amazing; it was like looking at a page from an art history book.
Although this was not what I expected for my first experience at this famous landmark in England it was nothing short of amazing and is unforgettable.