It’s after 10 and tonight I’m enjoying an egg mayonaise sandwich along with a cup of orange and coconut tea in the hotel lounge. Nice and light. I slept well last night and set out around 10:30 this morning. My first stop was the local Apple store to ask about the availability of the iPad camera connector. The iPad is being released tomorrow so I’m pretty sure I’ll get my hands on what I want. I wonder if the iPad release in London will be anything like it was in the US. I might try to get there when they open at 8am just to see. After perusing a few random shops, I stopped for a traditional English breakfast at a small cafe called Perugino. This consisted of an egg, sausage, bacon (ham), grilled tomato, hash browns and a latte. Healthy, yes? I think they add the tomato to cut the grease. Yes Vanette, I did eat the tomato… because it was grilled! I know people don’t have a great opinion of British food, but my English breakfast was yummy.
As I was finishing up my meal, a group of six guys came in and sat down to eat. They were boisterous so I ungraciously butt in and asked them what they thought of Genetically Modified foods. Most of them had very little opinion on the matter. One asked “If its bad, where’s the science to prove it?” and also mentioned that Americans have been consuming GM foods without a problem. Most of them just shrugged their shoulders. They said there was some controversy over GM crops a few years ago, but nothing as of late. One mentioned that if policy changed, noticeable controversy would likely sprout up again. It seems they don’t have much to think about since GM foods are not readily available and if they are, labeling is required. I asked if they thought they might care if GM foods were introduced into the food supply. One answered ‘no’ and another answered ‘yes’ simultaneously. Apparently, there are mixed feelings among Brits.
After my late breakfast, I found Heal’s, a large and modern store specializing in home decor and gifts. I spent lots of time exploring four floors of fun, colorful stuff and found some very nice gifts. They sell sparklers! So cool! After that I towed my stuffed shopping bags over to the British Library.
The British Library is massive, modern and extremely well organized. They have very strict rules about what visitors can take into the various reading rooms. Each reading room covers a specific topic, such as Business, Science or Humanities. Luckily, they offer the use of lockers, so I stowed my bags and was free to roam about unencumbered. After obtaining a library card, I visited the Science reading room where a very knowledgable librarian helped me find publications on GM crops and Biotech conferences. That was successful. The moment I started to get overwhelmed with information, I took a break. I took some snapshots of the library, perused their gift shop and sat down to write a handful of postcards. I decided to try the Business reading room next, to see if I could find relevant newspaper articles. That went well though I didn’t get far into my search before the library closed at 8pm. I had been there for over 5 hours! I’ll be returning tomorrow to take up my search again and pick up some materials being printed for me from the Science reading room. I didn’t plan on spending my whole day at the library, but I’m so pleased with what I found. Hopefully I can get to the Thames and the London Eye tomorrow.
Just one more note before I head to bed. My room number is 406, which is the street number for the house I grew up in. Funny that.