west end mapI figured I might as well climb aboard the “if it’s DAY OF THE WEEK, I must be in BLANKITY BLANK” bandwagon.

Hail Britannia! Pip, pip, cheerio, havin’ a nice day, guvna?

Seriously? I’ve been in London a bunch of days now and no one has said any of those things to me. I also haven’t met a single singing nanny, chimney sweep, pickpocket, possibly murderous barber/pie maker, or Cockney flower girl–quite disappointing, as I was looking forward to getting my musical on. Can’t you believe anything you see in movie musicals anymore?
In other news, Daniel Radcliffe turned 18 and can now access his Harry Potter fortune that has been held in trust at Gringotts, and Becks is under consideration for knighthood, much to the chagrin of many a Briton, who feel that it will demean the title.

Since I’m here for work, I’ve been limited in where I can actually go to sightsee, so it’s not been a glamorous tourist life for me. So far, with the help of an imported Jewish Robot, I’ve managed to conquer the Tube, and visit the West End theater district without actually going to see a show. I now know the difference between a mini-cab and a black cab, and here, Oyster doesn’t mean the dude who invented OyBay. Tea is available everywhere, although there are Starbuckses down the street from other Starbuckses here too.

As for the famous Jews of London tour? I went to my family for Shabbat, which lasts forever here (10:20pm for Havdalah??? Crazy…), overslept and missed shul (nothing seems to change, even with a jump across the pond), and I visited with longtime blogging pen pal /JC writer and editor Miriam Shaviv, who hosted me for Shabbat lunch. (Check out her latest piece about NCSY’s website urging Jewish teens to limit their sexual activity here.) If time permits, I’ll try to meet up with Leslie Bunder from SomethingJewish and other things British, Jewish and internet related. (But my apologies in advance if it doesn’t work out.)

So that’s the mid-way report. How’d I do?

About the author

Esther Kustanowitz

For more posts by Esther, see EstherK.com, MyUrbanKvetch.com and JDatersAnonymous.com.


  • You too are nostalgic for a late 19th cent. Edwardian England that scarcely existed and indeed would be almost wholly unknown to most of it’s inhabitants at the time? An artifice & creation of expats & mooning, striving Yanks eager for a diversion from their own ever more stale Victoriana nostalgic pieces? Err, how charming. The robot looks almost fun, send more pics when you can. Cheers & Good Luck! ‘VJ’

  • Put on an “I boycott all British academics and universities for their support of the occupation of Iraq” t-shirt and see whether that makes you some new friends.

  • I wish I had some great London recommendations… it’s been ages since I was there. Three years. Hmmm…

    I loved Camden Market–the hippie market.

    erm… there you have it, no Nannies in Camden though, not that I can remember.

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