Act V: If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need.

“If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need.” — Cicero

That’s probably one of the nerdiest things Cicero ever said, but he’s right.  London offers some of the most amazing parks (actually vast and pristine estates) and one of the most admirable libraries in the world — the British Library.  I would just add a sandwich from Pret a Manager to that list (preferably the argula and crayfish triangle sandwich) and then I would agree — you truly do have everything you need.

London’s parks are huge, vast estates that give provide tired tourists with the shady, pristine haven we need after pounding the pavement in Trafalgar Square or elbowing our way to the Rosetta Stone at the British Museum.  I personally like to take a book and sit on a bench or wander down a tranquil, solitary lane with my iPod blaring out a soundtrack for my reverie.  My favorite park is Regents Park. 

Also, the British Library is an underrated gem that is the mecca to all nerdy tourists like myself.  The British Museum might be stuffed to the gills with Babylonian and Egyptian artifacts that document the world powers that forever changed the scene of the world, but it doesn’t possess the gems that once belonged to the rock band that forever changed the world.  It’s only at the nerdy British Library where you’ll find the first drafts of the Beatles’ lyrics for “Yesterday,” “Ticket to Ride” and “I Wanna Hold your Hand.”  Another plus for me was a copy of Canterbury Tales published in the 16th century.  (I loved studying the Canterbury Tales in Middle English in college.)  And to top it off, there’s an extensive Philatelic Collection (500 vertical drawers containing thousands of stamps from around the world) for those of us who always wondered what stamps from Hawaii looked like 75 years ago. 

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