Am Always Amazed!
My first trip abroad was in 1996 to London. As a typical American or I guess anyone that has not traveled out of their home country I was filled with anticipation, expectation, and a little bit of angst. Of course none of the angst was required, Londoners are incredible people. Friendly, kind, full of energy. The city much like I found on my first trip to New York city did in fact have great restaurants, great hotels, was fun to get around. How could I go to London and not see some of the sights like Big Ben, you know all the tourist stuff thats really cool even when we pretend we are not interested in tourist stuff. Over time I developed a taste for staying in the west end. I always stay at St. Martins Lane hotel. I've seen Phantom, cat on a hot tin roof, and countless others in the theater district. So many amazing meals. So little time. Always ride the London eye, love taking the tubes, love taking the cabs, love walking the city. I think all major cities have a rhythm you can only experience by walking. But of all the many things I love about London, (but first I have to mention my favorite Pizza on the planet is at Spaghetti house, with this amazing Lemon soda), OK I'm of track and showing how juvenile I can be, not much of a sophisticated pallet here I guess,,,,,anyway here is the most important thing and if you never listen to anything else I tell you about London....never, ever, ever go to London without going to Ronnie Scott's club. It is, (and i am more than qualified to say this), the coolest, and I do mean coolest Jazz club on planet earth. I've seen Charlie Watts play with his tentet band there when not drumming for the stones, on my last trip I saw Ahmad Jamal rip through a set with sheer joy plastered on his face. Ronnie Scott's was founded by Jazz musicians for Jazz musicians. If you think you don't like Jazz check out Ronnie Scott's and then tell me. I would like to give a shout out to my new Londoner friend the Hippy, I'm just getting to know her.