I left out tales of yesterday because it was mostly a day of travel and getting settled in. 

Say hi to Anna and Micaela (photos below) on the Heathrow Express. 

It was so fast and convenient – if you listen to the announcements. We made it to Regent’s, then met up with the others to take a short campus tour and get settled into our digs. Or I should say, the students settled into their digs. This old-timer is not sleeping in a dorm. 

I was pleasantly surprised by my Airbnb – which is called a flat even though it’s basically a studio apartment. I am personally an open-air kind of gal, so the thing I like about this space is that despite how small it is, it doesn’t feel small because of all the light. And there is even a patio (garden). My daughter, who loves little nooks and crannies, would love this place.

But the best of all is that it is extremely affordable, and very close to the students – an approximate 7-minute walk.

Today we finally got things up and running as far as a formal course lecture.  It was a lively discussion. 

Here’s what the classroom looks like (photo below): 

Prior to the start of the trip, the students learned about the United States, health care policy, how our government functions and the major drivers of our policies. They also learned about the National Health System of the UK. So after Dr. Good’s lecture on London’s cultural makeup, we hit the ground running with some lively discussion comparing the UK and American value structures, which of course go much further than just health care. Those discussions will continue this week of course.

There is great diversity in this group (including geographic background – which matters!, age, gender, etc.), and this leads to rich discussion usually. Today was no exception. There are certainly no “wallflowers” in this group. Everyone participated with some strong statements about how they feel about where our country stands on health care (not all bad by the way). 

After the morning’s lecture/discussion, I unleashed them onto London to do the windshield survey. Most of these students have done the windshield survey for their Community Health Nursing course, and this survey will look VERY different from the ones they have done. Even if they only do one block.

Then we all scattered to do some of the “touristy” things. I went to Camden market, where I got just slightly lucky.

I stopped at one of the Indian food vendors and tasted something that for the life of me I could not understand the pronunciation of. Then when I tried to pay the woman, it was 5 GBP (pounds). I handed her a 10 (I am positive of this). She handed me back 15. No matter how hard I tried, she would not take the 10 back. So I basically was paid to eat chicken in a sauce that was the perfect blend of sweet and spicy, and again, I have no idea what it was!!

Tomorrow I am especially looking forward to it. We’ll lecture in the morning and head to the Florence Nightingale Museum. Then in my free time that evening, I’ll see Phantom of the Opera. I landed on that choice because of its London connection. Andrew Lloyd Weber – ahem, I mean the Lord Lloyd-Weber is English, and Phantom of the Opera debuted in Her Majesty’s Theatre in October of 1986. It has been playing there ever since.