Sunday was my nineteenth birthday! This was my first adult birthday except for the big eighteen, which meant that barely any of my friends were home for it with them all being off at uni or other such places. So today’s blog post is kind of like a little update to share my birthday with everyone who couldn’t be there, friends, family and anyone who follows me on twitter.
I kicked the whole day off with a birthday breakfast of strawberries and brioche. I’d bought prosecco to have in the morning too but I’d been drinking the night before and didn’t really fancy it first thing. I also opened my presents from my family; including €100 – I’m finally going to Paris! It’s been my dream for as long as I can remember, and I did cry when my mum and sister told me we were going in April. I am already counting down the days.
I then celebrated Valentine’s Day with a significant other for the first time in my life, which was weird. My boyfriend Jamie, came round and we exchanged presents before a birthday buffet lunch – where I did have prosecco.
Then it was a big old rush to get ready and get down to get the train to London! If you’re from Oxfordshire and haven’t used the new Oxford Parkway rail station yet, do it, because it’s so nice, so easy and so quick to get to London. I always enjoy the journey to London however I go, because it’s really quick to get to from Oxford and I bloody love London.
After about an hour, the first stop in London was Covent Garden’s Royal Opera House, just to see the BAFTA red carpet. It was weird visiting and not staying for it when I have been there for the event the two previous years (you can read my previous blog post all about that here), but Stephen Fry did walk past us and say hello so we did get our taste of stardom. By the way – he is really tall.
We then moved to Trafalgar Square, for a quick look around at the Chinese New Year celebrations going on! There were masses and masses of people, stalls and live music on stage too. It was so beautiful with an amazing atmosphere, and seeing all the celebrations was really lovely!
Our next stop was Madame Tussauds – the main reason we’d come to London. As I said at the start, this was my first birthday I wouldn’t be able to spend with friends in ages and I was stuck for ages trying to figure out how to spend the day. The answer came to me via Twitter, with Madame Tussauds doing tons of promotion (and I really do mean TONS) for their latest wax figures of Kendall Jenner and Cara Delevingne. It’s been years since I last went to the tourist attraction so I booked four tickets for a late afternoon entry.
It’s hard to explain what the attraction to Madame Tussauds is. It’s a bunch of fake celebrities in a load of overcrowded rooms followed by a really weird ride and a 4D short film from Marvel. But it’s so good. There’s just something so fun about jumping up to a celebrity lifelike and taking bizarre selfies with them. Here are a few of my favourites:
There’s also the amazing chance to have photos taken with icons who are long dead. Of course for me, the absolute highlight was seeing Audrey Hepburn’s figure. She’s in her infamous Breakfast at Tiffany’s pose with a table and backdrop to match, and an extra chair for you to sit in. I adore anything Audrey, so having the closest thing to a photo with her was a very nice moment. Madame Tussauds also usually has a Marilyn Monroe waxwork but she wasn’t there, which I’m guessing was down to maintenance or something. You can also see the likes of Charlie Chaplin, Humphrey Bogart and others.
After sports, music, politics and horror sections, the tour continues with the Spirit of London ride. Honestly, this bit’s a little odd/terrifying, and chronicles the history of London from the reign of Elizabeth I to the plague to the swinging sixties, all whilst you sit two to a carriage in the shape of a classic black cab taxi. Like I said, it’s a little odd but unavoidable as it brings you into the next stage of the attraction – Marvel superheroes. There’s waxworks of the likes of Wolverine and Nick Fury about, with a huge figure of The Hulk towered two stories right in the centre. This is the queue to get into the 4D experience film, featuring Marvel Superheroes in a little story about saving London from a supervillian with 4D effects like water spritzes and back poking, which really surprised Jamie, who loudly exclaimed “what the fuck?” in surprise. Fun for all the family.
You’re then given the option to either move straight on through to the gift shop, or go to the Star Wars experience. Obviously I went for the latter, which was BRILLIANT. here you can kick back with Han Solo, hang with Stormtroopers and put yourself in scenes straight from the films. I’m also ashamed to say I tastelessly groped Princess Leia in the gold bikini (sorry Carrie Fisher).
We then headed down Baker Street to GBK – which my mum accidentally referred to as Great Burger King (and which we will never let her forget). With such amazing food, friendly staff and comfy booths, I highly recommend this restaurant. They have baconnaise. Baconnaise! I’m vegetarian and still that amazes me. That’s one good point too – they can substitute any burger for a veggie one, as well as having two only veggie ones on the menu. Their prices are decent too – and they do takeout.
After eating so much we nearly all died, we headed back to Marylebone to get the train home, and sing to me round a cake – decorated with both an Audrey Hepburn silhouette and Supernatural edible photos. Mum’s the best.
The day was a big old success and I had a really great birthday.
Things you will need for a day trip to London:
- Portable phone charger
- Citymapper app
- Tube Map app
Actresses that were nineteen in film roles:
- Debbie Reynolds in Singin’ in the Rain
- Sarah Michelle Gellar in season one of Buffy the Vampire Slayer
- Emma Watson in Harry Potter & the Half Blood Prince
- Kristen Stewart in Twilight: New Moon
- Eliza Dushku in Bring it On
- Alexis Bledel in season one of Gilmore Girls
- Michelle Trachtenberg in Ice Princess
- Scarlett Johansson in The Spongebob Squarepants Movie
- Jennifer Lawrence in Winter’s Bone
- Emma Stone in The House Bunny
- Hayden Panettiere in season three of Heroes
- Vanessa Hudgens in High School Musical 3: Senior Year