This is my last post on my trip to London. I promise. When I travel, I like to see the places frequented by writers, living and dead. I already posted about the Globe Theatre, here and here.
On our last day in London, DH and I visited Waterstone’s, the largest bookstore in Europe. Six of the store’s eight floors are packed with books. I perused the children’s section and romance section. I saw many of my favorite children’s books there, including the British editions of the Harry Potter books. The romance section was stocked with mostly vampire books and historical romance. I was surprised to see contemporary romance missing.
That same day, we went to afternoon tea at Brown’s Hotel. This was the first hotel to open in London in 1837. It has hosted several famous visitors including Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt, who stayed there on their honeymoon, Alexander Graham Bell, who made the first telephone call from the United Kingdom at the hotel in 1876, and Rudyard Kipling, who wrote part of The Jungle Book there.
But that is not why I chose Brown’s Hotel from all of the establishments offering afternoon tea. One of the English Tea Room’s most famous frequent visitors was Agatha Christie. She wrote At Bertram’s Hotel in the tea room, inspired by the hotel and its patrons. While we were there, I wondered if she sat near the same fireplace, observing the other guests, penning her novel in longhand.
Well, okay, and I also wondered if anyone would ever care where I sit to write my stories. Are you inspired by the haunts of famous writers? Can you pass a bookstore without going in to see what treasures are shelved inside? Are you a travel guide planner or a wander about visitor?