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Old 10-10-2007, 09:36 PM   #1
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Default My dream: Photograph London

Hey all, first time poster... I'm sure I'll be hanging out here leading up to my trip in June(ish) of '08. Can't wait to get to know you all!

So, I was in Europe with my high school choir in the summer of '02... and it's been too long. I was in Holland, Belgium and France for a total of 7 nights - not enough. I need to go back.

Since that trip, roughly 5 years ago, I have always had this quirky little dream of going back. This is no ordinary dream, no... it's quirky. Here's what I wanna do:

Spend about a month in London and ride around on a moped (an absolutely critical part of my dream) and stop whenever I feel the need to take pictures. At the end of the day, I'll drive home and edit my photos on my laptop.

This needs to happen, and I need you to help me out here:

I figure I'll stay at a hostel for around $25/night (thanks to this site I've found one in London with great reviews for that much). My first question: will a hostel let me stay there an 20 days to an entire month?

Second question - about this particular hostel and it's location in relation to London: it's advertised as...

"Centrally located in SOUTH KENSINGTON, vis - à - vis with the NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUM and in the direct vicinity of HYDE PARK, KENSINGTON GARDENS and NOTTING HILL"

Is that a part of London that I'd like to be?

Next... I must bring a laptop. Again, it's part of the dream. I must edit these photos at night or I'll flip out. Is this doable? I have a MacBook and will most likely purchase a Kensington lock for it. Question three: will that suffice?

The other integral part of the dream: the moped! How much can I expect to rent a moped for 2 weeks? 20 days?


Any other suggestions? I really would love to just hang out in a completely new place and be able to have time to relax and explore the nooks that I might not get to if I were to stay for a shorter amount of time.

Give me feedback, I already love you people!
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Old 10-10-2007, 09:52 PM   #2
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I unfortunately can't give you any good advice, but I wanted to say welcome to tpunk! Sounds like you have a fun, quirky time planned out - I love the moped (sounds like a step up from what I was doing cycling around town with my SLR dangling from my neck!).

Oh, I have met plenty of people traveling with laptops without much issue (other than having to lug it around). Some places have lockers that you may or may not be able to fit your laptop into.

I'm sure you'll hear from the London experts soon, and I'm sure we all love you too.
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Old 10-11-2007, 01:48 AM   #3
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Sounds like a fantastic trip! That area of London is pretty nice, South Kensington and Notting Hill are classy areas, plus you're close to two tube stops, so that's nice and easy! Also Hyde Park is close by, so that's cool.

Not sure how they'll feel about having you stay for a month, but why don't you drop them an email?
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Old 10-11-2007, 05:49 AM   #4
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Welcome Dan! (why do I feel like I'm initiating you to AA or something?)

Haha I think I love you already. Quirky people rock (mostly because I am one )and your post made me smile.

As for the questions,

I dont see why any hostel wouldn't want you to stay for 20 days, it's not an excessive amount of time. In fact, a lot of places where people end up staying a while end up offering them jobs for a bit (option B?) which will at the very least give them a free place to stay. In fact, since you'll be there for a while I'd inquire about that right off the bat.

Not sure entirely about the type of photography or the cost of a moped, but I love London. I think it's so pretty in a classic sense. I could totally go live there to chill and take pictures for a month or 2. You'll have a blast.

Jake used to be a locksmith (or something) and he's told me he knows locks so perhaps he'll be better for that sort of question....where are you from? Can't you just ask a locksmith how great your lock is, and what he'd recommend? I will tell you to be careful with that laptop though. Laptops are a hot commodity (and macbooks rock...and powerbooks....) and easy to steal!

Good luck!
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Old 10-11-2007, 05:55 AM   #5
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my hostel was in that part of london and it was great! the area was really nice, and close to the tube in case you wanted to go anywhere else. you can walk to Buckingham palace and whatnot.. and a LOT of london hostels have people living in them for longer than a month, so i don't think an extended stay would be a problem at all! just make sure its a hostel with a kitchen, or your stay could get very expensive!
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Old 10-11-2007, 12:04 PM   #6
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Many thanks to your warm welcome and kind responses! Woo!

Your responses were very encouraging. I was hoping that I wouldn't get a response along these lines: "ooof... well, that's not exactly a good idea, plus that area of town sucks... yada yada" - But no! You guys rock. Thanks so much for validating my plans!

If only I could figure out hire rates for a moped...
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Old 10-11-2007, 12:13 PM   #7
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Learn how to hotwire a vehicle and you're set.

Maybe you could even look into buying a cheap used scooter/bike?
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Old 10-12-2007, 08:16 PM   #8
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Well, it's beginning to look like I'm going to be making this trek alone. I've been trying to convince some friends of mine to come with, but it's not looking like anyone will be able to join me.

On one hand, I may be a little stressed to be in a foreign country alone (thank god they'll speak English), but on the other hand I think it'll be bad ass to go somewhere so far away from something that's comfortable and force myself to make it work... for a month.

Again, thanks for the responses... some of your ideas really got me thinking.

Specific thanks to simply_angelic for the suggestion to work for the room, lauren313 and aliz for info about the area and to my mom and dad for bringing me into this world... couldn't have done it without you!
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Old 10-13-2007, 08:58 AM   #9
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Ah, you'll be fine going it alone, especially living in a hostel. You meet people SO fast it's ridiculous. I backpacked Europe for 2 months as a 17 y/o female (going on 18) , mostly in the countries that don't really speak english (or choose not to ) and I never had problems meeting people to sightsee or party with that night. It was awesome. You might go alone, but you're never ACTUALLY alone...unless you choose to be.
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If you walk backwards, you'll find out that you can go forward and people won't know if you're coming or going.

Dream as if you'll live forever. Live as if you'll die today.
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Countries I've Visited: Austria, Botswana, Canada, Costa Rica, Democratic Republic of the Congo, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Italy. Malawi, Mexico, Portugal, Rwanda, South Africa, Spain, Taiwan, Tanzania, Uganda, USA, UK, Vatican City, Zambia
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