Tour of the BBC

We came back to London from Kettering on the train.  There were lots of kids riding the East Midlands train  home from school which just blew my mind!  I grew up in a small town and to think that these kids are riding public transport to go to school at such a young age was so unusual to me!  I’m sure kids in SF, NY, etc. do it all the time but not kids from PG.  

It was awful on the tube getting to our hotel during rush hour.  We are only traveling with backpacks and mine makes me 3x as wide as I normally am so I turn around and push people or knock them over and it’s rather embarrassing and I get lots of looks.  Anyways, we made it to our hotel, checked in, dropped off our stuff and RAN to meet up with my friend.  
My friend works at the BBC and offered to take us on a tour!  How cool!  
We met my friend and got visitor passes, (which now resides in my trusty journal) and went up to the different floors to see all the different sections, or departments of the BBC.  It’s amazing, it felt so, happening.  Like everything that is happening in the world is being covered there.  There were so many languages being spoken.  It was also super cool to see how people’s looks changed when you went to the different language regions.  We got to go into BBC Arabic and they were just getting ready to go on air, make-up-ing the reporter.  The teleprompter was even in Arabic!  
The building has cutting edge technology, which you would imagine for the BBC.  There are booth-style tables kind of set apart from all the work stations for people to go and talk and have a little bit of peace, as you approach the tables, the lights turn on via a sensor mechanism and depending on the language that that table is dedicated to, there is a background photo of a city in a country which that language is spoken.  
My friend told us that it gets pretty loud there, too.  Reporters are calling people all over the world to do interviews and maybe the country they are calling has a bad connection so they are shouting and the person next to them then has to shout too to hear her/his interviewee on the other end of the line in say, Timbuktu, this results in a very loud building which I imagine to be multilingual shouting.  I think it would be rather chaotic but in the best possible way.    
the new addition to the BBC building 
the BBC!
view from the BBC building, overlooking Regents st., All Souls church and at the end is Oxford Circus tube stop
Recording studio for radio shows 
a picture of Jerusalem at the BBC building in London
Switchboards 
After our tour, my friend took us to Samarqand restaurant for Uzbeki food (they served some Russian and Georgian food, too).  It was lovely.  Afterwards we walked around the chilly evening streets of London and had ice cream, the perfect end to a perfect day.  

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