Back from London

This Thanksgiving weekend I spent in London with my family. I went there without my laptop, so let me spend fifteen minutes to record my notes from this visit. Otherwise I “ll forget.

1. First of all, London is a place when you can run into your friends from anywhere in the world. We were walking on the street on our first day there and ran into our friends from NYC. Also, I was corresponding with Dr.Heinz Kabutz from South Africa about organizing his talk at Java Users Group during his upcoming visit to New York. Only later I found out that he and I were in London at the same time staying in the same area one Underground station apart.

2. We were flying by Virgin Atlantic, and I highly recommend this airline. Seats were convenient, food was better than on many other airlines, and the TV offered a selection of about fifty movies and lots of other programs, which made the flight shorter. My friend (see item 1 above) with his wife flew by British Airways, and this is his amazing story. A Japanese couple sat next to them on the plane. In the beginning of the flight she put on her hands on her belly and a smile on her face. He turned on the TV programs for her, and she did not change the position or said a word during the entire flight!

3. London is expensive. You have to pay $2.1 US dollar for each pound. The numeric values of the prices for goods and services are pretty much the same as in New York, but it “s in pounds.

4. Computer books are also very expensive. You can find only very thin books that costs under $50 USD. Can English programmers afford paying for the books? On the positive side, I found an entire bookcase with books on Java, which is impossible to find in the USA.

5. People are much better dressed in London than in NYC. Especially young generation. I did not see falling pants even once! Neither did I see women in expensive fur coats wearing sneakers.

6. We Will Rock You , the musical by Queen and Ben Elton is a must see. I bought the tickets at the ticket box in Piccadilly underground. The guy there is a crook ndash; he sold me tickets quickly flashing seats 2-3-4, and only at the theater we found out that the tickets were in different rows. We overpaid. But the show was amazing. If you like the musing of Freddy Mercury and Queen, go to see this musical. This is probably the best musical I “ve seen after Jesus Christ Superstar.

7. The underground is expensive ($8 vs. $2 in NYC, purchasing tickets requires college degree, and it “s unreliable. Not only you have to insert you ticket to enter, but you can “t get out without inserting the ticket again. You might go to an unpaid zone and may be killed for this.

On the way to the airport, I found out that there is not service on that line and this info was published in their brochures. I do not remember the need to read any brochures about closures in New York subway.

8. An average English lady has 1.6 kids, while an average immigrant Pakistani woman living in GB has 4.6 kids. Welcome to the Islamic GB circa 2050. Hey Brits, I do not feel sorry for you ndash; you “ve asked for it.

Several years ago I was thinking about finding a job that would pay me American salary for working in Europe. Forget it, I can “t afford living in Europe anymore. Also, I need to spend more time studying the Japanese culture.

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