A Big Birthday in London

In case you missed it, Tuesday was Charles Dickens’s 200th birthday. Of course, Dickens is considered one of the greatest writers of all time, so there was quite a buzz about it online. Google even honored him by doing their thing with the thing.

I like Charles Dickens. I remember enjoying A Tale of Two Cities, and though I never read A Christmas Carol, the movie Scrooged is definitely a personal favorite. If you’re taking a trip to London this summer, you might soak in some of the Dickens bicentennial excitement.

This article talks about how London itself was the true inspiration for most of Dickens’s works. He grew up in the city after moving there as a child, working in a shoe polish factory from the age of 12. When Dickens was an adult, they say he would spend hours wandering the streets, observing, getting ideas from all he saw around him. One area that played a central role in many of his books was Covent Garden. Back in Dickens’s day it was a real working marketplace. Today it’s a popular shopping area. A different vibe sure, but the same footsteps.

If you really like your Dickens, you can check out the Museum of London’s temporary exhibition called “Dickens and London”. It’s about Dickens and London. The exhibit will be there until June 10. If you miss that, all is not lost. You can still see where he’s buried at Westminster Abbey, you can go on a guided Dickens Walk, and you can wash it all down with a pint at one of several historic Dickensian pubs.

Dickens
Photos: pandrcutts via Flickr (CC)

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