london

What Does It Taste Like?

The London Underground map has inspired a range of spin-offs over the years, with everything from musical icons to popular restaurants plotted along its interweaving lines.
But now a 54-year-old systems analyst from Blackpool has created the most bizarre version to date – a map that shows what each station tastes like.

 

Can We Stay A Little Longer?

Early this morning we went through a list of sights we still haven't seen in London. The list was long. We asked ourselves, "Out of the places we still have yet to see, what would be our biggest regret if we didn't see it?" From there we prioritize our goals. Not making the list of places to see was: Covent Garden, Picadilly Circus, and The National Gallery.

We made our choices and set out for the day.

British Museum

We took the Tube to the Tottenham Court Road station. Shopping, as well as sightseeing, was on the agenda today. Though prices in the UK were high - to the currency conversion - we couldn't leave London without a few souvenirs. When we popped out of the station it was near a clothing store Farrah wanted to visit. We made our way in to look around for a bit before going to the museum.

We made our way down the street toward the British Museum. We luckily found a Starbucks, as we were in need of a little pick-me-up. We ducked on in, ordered drinks, and sat down to do some further game planning. We figured we could see most of the tourist spots we wished to see in the morning - finishing around noontime. Then we would head back to the flat for some lunch. After lunch, Farrah would go shopping while I'd stay behind to do some photo stuff on the laptop. Then in late afternoon or early evening we'd hit one more tourist attraction.

We finished our coffee then headed down the street to the British Museum. We were only interested in seeing one exhibit - The Rosetta Stone.

The British Museum

When entering the British Museum you are greeting with a big entrance way which is topped by an intricate glass ceiling, as you can see in the photo above. The photo doesn't do the setting justice. We spent several minutes taking it in and taking photographs. I wish I had a super wide lens to capture it all. It is beautifully massive. Awe inspiring. Breathtaking. I can only imagine how it would look during a clear starry night. I'm sure one day I will see it.

We found the information desk and a map of the museum. We thumbed through the pamphlet. There is so much too see here, but we were focused on our single goal: The Rosetta Stone. The curators must be aware that this is the main attraction, as they put The Rosetta Stone on the first floor and in the first exhibit room you could enter.

We walked in.

Rosetta Stone

The Rosetta Stone is not uniquely large like the stones from Stonehenge or Avebury. But then it's not the size of the stone but what is written on it that is most important in this case. We spent a good fifteen minutes looking at the stone, also reading the historical notes accompanying the exhibit. We then had a quick look-see at the gift shop across from the exhibit entrance, then we headed on out to our next destination.

British Library

Our next stop was the British Library. I know what you are asking, "Why a library?" Well, this is a pretty amazing library. This particular library has some amazing works on display. The one I found most interesting were copies of the Magda Carta. Also there were:

  • Hand written lyrics by the Beatles
  • Two Guttenburg Bibles
  • Notebooks by da Vinci and Darwin
  • Manuscripts by Bach and Mozart
  • A letter from Queen Elizabeth I
  • A history of Britain written by Jane Austen
  • And many other amazing written works
The British Library

All of these works were only display in a very large room. You can even find some of those items online on the British Library's web site.

For lunch we bought sandwiches at the shop in the courtyard called 'The Last Word". We ate in the courtyard and discussed all the amazing exhibits we saw in the three hours we were out.

Shopping on Oxford Street

We headed back to the flat from the British Library. Farrah did some shopping at the stores on Oxford Street while I hung out at the flat blogging and fixing some photos. The only other plans we had were going to the London Eye, then eating fish and chips as our last dinner in London.

Farrah was tired after walking the stores. She took a long nap. I bought a ticket to the London Eye for her online, choosing the last time possible which was 8:00 pm. Luckily I bought it at the time because we got a late start to the London Eye.

London Eye

The London Eye

We had seen the London Eye from a distance when we went to Westminster Abbey. It look ever more impressive as we approached it in the setting sun. Again, it's difficult to appreciate its size unless you walk up to it.

We rushed into the ticket kiosk to retrieve the ticket and then Farrah rushed into line and on board her pod. Yes, she was making this trip alone. I wasn't going to take a chance especially after the Eurostar debacle. The round trip on the Eye is about 30 minutes. So as Farrah was going around the wheel, I made my way back up to the street to take some photos.

In the London Eye

Farrah can only tell you how the London Eye was. I could see in her face she was afraid first, but was happy she went on the London Eye. I do think she wishes I was on there with her.

Golden Hind

After leaving the London Eye, we took a slow walk back to the Underground Station to head back to our Bond Street stop. We stopped to take more photos of the London Eye and Big Ben in the setting sun.

We wanted to eat our last London dinner at the Golden Hind, a fish and chips place close the flat. We ate take-away from there our first night in London, but decided to eat in the restaurant that night. We had the Haddock, the mushy peas, and pickled onion. I was going to order the Halibut, which was more expensive, but the owner mentioned it was a frozen fish unlike the fresh Haddock. It was very nice of him to mention that and so I changed my order.

The Haddock is a healthy size. It is deep fried but not oily one bit. I never had mushy peas before the Golden Hind, but if they taste elsewhere as good as they tasted here I'll continue to order them. The peas the mushed were the size of garbanzo beans! I had to try the pickled onion. It wasn't as pickled as I hoped for but it went nicely with the Haddock.

Big Ben

The Golden Hind doesn't have an alcohol license but they do allow you to bring your own booze. Several people did as they were celebrating the win by Chelsea over Manchester United in the FA Cup which brought more liveliness in to the place.

Packing & Posting

We took a slow walk back to the flat knowing what awaited us - packing for home. We gathered our clothes and few knick knacks. Farrah did most of the packing, fitting all our belongings into five pieces of luggage. We packed light, coming with only four pieces of luggage:

  • My backpack for the camera and laptop
  • Our big backpack - the one Farrah used her first trip abroad
  • A small rolling bag
  • A small LL Bean backpack

The fifth piece of luggage, a Yahoo! duffel bag, was packed into the small rolling bag. We broke that one out to fit a few items in. We really didn't buy much, just enough to partially fill the Yahoo! duffel.

While Farrah packed, I did the Underground planning on the computer. We noticed the Underground line we needed to take didn't start running until around 7:00 am. This made getting to Heathrow possibly problematic. This is great news to find out the day before, right?

Our plane leaves at 11:00 am. The Underground, where we are at, doesn't start running until 7:06 am. It takes us to Green Park where we need to catch the Tube to Heathrow. By our estimation we'll be in Heathrow by 8:30 am. There isn't really room for error such as missing the Tube. Stress time! We could take a cab, but it might cost 40 or so pounds versus the 4 or so pounds each to take the Tube. Oh well, wish us luck on the Tube.

Well, we better get our sleep. I'll probably post this when we get back to the US.

The Friday Squeeze

We arrived in sunny London from Paris by mid-day.  Luckily we gain an hour since France is one hour ahead.  The Tube ride back to the flat got us back there around 12:30 pm.  We planned to eat,  rest and shower before squeezing a few more sights.  I can't believe we'll be heading home soon.

We made our way  out of the flat before 3:oo pm.  Our plan: cross the Millennium Bridge, see Shakespeare's Globe Theatre , and visit the Tate Modern.  The only time sensitive place we were visiting was The Globe, as the Tate Modern is open late on Fridays.  The tour for The Globe would end at 4:00 pm.

We took the Underground to the St. Paul's stop which is on the other side of the Tate Modern.  This required us to pass St. Paul's Cathedral and cross the Thames on the Millennium Bridge to reach the Globe and the Tate Modern.  The Underground station is right next to the cathedral, but we were on a somewhat tight schedule so we didn't go in.

St. Paul's Cathedral

We did snap a few photos though, but then quickly headed toward the Millennium Bridge.  The wind had started to pick up a bit, making Farrah a bit antsy about the bridge.  We had read that in the early days of the bridge it was a bit unstable and the "swaying motion earned it the nickname the Wobbly Bridge."  This didn't sound like a fun prospect considering all that lay below the bridge was The Thames.

Millennium Bridge

Millennium Bridge (London)

We stepped on the bridge.  You can feel it give way ever so slightly, but you don't have time to notice as you continue your steps toward the other side.  The crowd, like a river current, forces you to keep moving forward.  Only when you are about half way across the bridge can you breakaway toward the edge, towards the rail, to take a photo.  On one side you can see Tower Bridge, lit up by the afternoon sun.  On the other side is Blackfriars Bridge.  The wind was picking up slightly so we started heading toward The Tate Modern, turning back every once in a while to view St. Paul's Cathedral.

Shakespeare's Globe Theatre

We made our way past The Tate Modern, entering The Exhibition & Theatre Tours section of Shakespeare's Globe Theatre.  We paid our money, then walked around looking at the exhibits.  Unfortunately, The Globe itself was closed for tours since a matinèewas being performed that afternoon.  We did get the opportunity to see a demonstration on costume changes.

Costume Demo @ The Globe

We had an opportunity to have a tour of the Rose, but hunger started to creep in.  So we went to look for a bite to eat.  We were able to have a cone of ice cream (yum) by the Thames.  But the ice cream did not curb our hunger, so we found more substantial food in The Globe's cafeteria.  After  buying food and visiting the gift shop, we headed back out to eat our food on a bench facing The Thames.  We spent several minutes eating and enjoying the view and the sunny weather.

The Tate Modern

We entered the Tate Modern through the River Entrance which placed us on the second floor.  We decided to take the elevator all the way up to the 7th floor and work our way down.  The Tate Modern Restaurant on the 7th floor gives you a view of The Thames, St. Paul's Cathedral and the Millennium Bridge.  We would have bought a drink and sat down, but unfortunately all the seats were taken.  So we headed on down to the 5th floor.

Modern art can be quite different.  The installations we saw, in variety of different mediums, were  thought provoking to say the least.  For example, you can look at this exhibit and wonder, why?  (There is some profanity in both the art subject title and the audio.)  It's nice to take a break from the well crafted Renaissance painting or sculpture.

Ground Floor @ The Tate Modern

We were hoping to see some works by Salvador Dalí­, but unfortunately none were present.  They were preparing a special exhibit in June for Dalí­ and appear to have taken his works down for this exhibit.  A slight disappointment.  I guess we'll need to come back soon :)

We made our way down floor after floor viewing exhibits we had interest in.  On our way out we stopped by the gift shop we passed on our way in.  I looked outside the window of the gift shop out toward The Thames.  The sun that had greeted us at the airport was starting to dissipate as the clouds and wind rolled in.  It started to look a bit nasty outside.

The Best Way Back

We figured the best way back to the flat would be to go back to the Underground at St. Paul's.  This meant crossing the bridge in the suddenly strong wind.  Oh well.  Unlike our time in Paris, Farrah did remember to bring her brolly with her.  But we braved the light sprinkle as opening the brolly in this wind didn't seem prudent.

Tate Modern Collection

The ten minute walk to St. Paul's was quick since the bridge was no longer crowded.  We made it back to our Bond Street stop.  We had dinner at Wagamama's tonight, since we don't have one back home.  Plus it seemed like a good night for ramen.  It was a late dinner - about 9:oo pm. We tried to go earlier, but our first attempt to get seating was met with a very large crowd which went all the way outside.

Paris is a No Go

I have two phobias I am keenly aware of - a fear of heights and of enclosed places.

Fear sucks.  When the Irrational fear becomes debilitating it sucks even more.  An irrational debilitating fear hit hard this morning when we tried to get on the Eurostar to Paris.

When we were first planning our trip to Europe, we were going to fly to Rome then London.  As we planned further it made more sense to simply visit England and Paris.  We then narrowed it down to Bath, London and a quick day trip to Paris.  Flying was one option to go to Paris.  But a cheaper and (to some) easier way is to use Eurostar which places you near city center.

If you don't know what the Eurostar is it is a fast train to Pairs.  Part of the train trip is going through a tunnel created under the English Channel (or Chunnel).  Yes, that's right, under the English Channel.  When I found out about this I first said I'd rather fly.  But then reading about Eurostar further (it's only 20 minutes under) I felt I could do it.  We booked the tickets.

Eurostar Station @ Waterloo

We arrived at Waterloo station early since our Eurostar train left early.  I took my two Dramamine once we got to station, but something was still lingering in the back of my mind.  We went through the security checkpoint then waited to board the train.

Nothing really conscious was going through my mind, nothing I could put my finger on, but I was getting anxious.  I was getting nervous.  Then there was an announced delay in boarding.  This allowed my mind more time to wander.

I could feel my breathing getting heavier, my legs feeling like cement, and my head becoming light.  Then came the boarding call.  I coughed several times as if I was going to vomit, but I knew I wasn't.  Farrah kept asking me if I was ok.  I kept saying yes, hoping I could get past this.

Another boarding call.

More coughing.  I couldn't stand up.  I looked at Farrah and told her I don't think I can do this.  I honestly don't know why I can't as I'm not really thinking about it.  She looks at me, smiles and says everything is all right.  She touches my face, kisses me on the cheek and says, "Let's book a flight instead.  We'll get to Paris."

My beautiful understanding wife is strong for me in this moment of irrational fear.  We walk out of the station and head back to the flat.

Unfortunately, the two Dramamine hit me hard when we are back at the flat.  Farrah let's me sleep it off until the afternoon.  We then get online to book the tickets through British Airways, and then book a room since we decide to spend the night in Paris.

So, we're set to be in Paris late Thursday morning and will be staying at the Francais Hotel.  I apologize throughout the night for ruining this day.  Farrah just smiles and says it's all right.  I can be apologetic until midnight, then no more talking about it.

I love my wife.

London Lite

We made today a light day since we are heading to Paris tomorrow.  In Paris we need to cram in as much in once day and I know we'll be tired.  This morning we did a dry run to the Eurostar station where we are catching the train to Paris.

We started the day off late since the day's activities are light.  We picked up our tickets then ate lunch bought at the local Marks & Spencer.  We tried to see the London Eye from the Waterloo station where we were eating, but couldn't get our bearings straight.  But the London Eye wasn't really on the schedule for the day, so we went back on the Tube to our destinations.

Buckingham Palace

Buckingham Palace

The Palace isn't open to visitors during most of the year.  It is only open when the royal family is away on vacation.  But this fact doesn't stop people from visiting and taking photos in front of Buckingham Palace.  There were plenty of tour buses and roaming tourists, but we managed to get are requisite photo in front.

Our plan afterwards was to walk to the two adjacent parks, St. James Park and Green Park.  We first went through St. James Park.  A light rain started coming down as we entered the park.  This didn't stop people from eating their lunches or feeding the birds in the park.  As we made our way halfway though the park Farrah noticed it ended near the Churchill War Room.  We were planning on seeing it earlier in our trip, but it dropped from our must see list.

St. James Park

But then Farrah reminded me that Number 10 Downing Streetis close.  So we wandered off our course to see the home of the Prime Minister.  If you haven't been following the news lately, the current Prime Minister is stepping down shortly, so it would be nice to see this location.  Unfortunately, it is very well guarded.  Oh well.

We continued our walk pass a horse guard, then waled up to Trafalgar Square which leads to the National Museum.  Trafalgar Square is beautiful with huge statues to look at all day - or at least during a lunch hour.  We saw many people milling around even though a slight drizzle was present.

Fountain in Trafalgar Square

We didn't realize we walked so far from Green Park, so we caught the Tube near Trafalgar Square and walked though Green Park.  The lunchtime crowd that occupied at St. James Park across the street seemed to be non-existent in Green Park.  We then headed back to the flat because we were going to see a play tonight.

Green Park

Sunday evening we were able to purchase tickets online for tonight's showing of The Sound of Music.  It has received many positive reviews.  We didn't realize the theater was fairly close to the flat - one Tube stop away. We rested for a couple of hours then headed to the show.

We had somewhat nosebleed seats in the upper balcony.  From our theater sets we lose partial sight to front stage right, but it didn't affect enjoying the play.  The performers were good, but it is difficult to live up to an iconic movie. This is only my third theater experience - the other two being The Phantom of the Opera and The Lion King.  This ranks third, but it was my first London play!

We ended the night anxious to head to Paris.

The Big Four

Today was my first experience with Tube congestion.  It's Monday so people are off to work.  Plus we got a little late start in getting out of the flat.  We needed to catch two lines to reach our destination: the Jubilee line and then the Circle / District line.  Unfortunately, when we got to our second Tube destination the line was seriously delayed.  We had to find an alternate route that took us north,  then back around to get to Tower Hill where we needed to be.

Tower of London

We arrived at the Tower of London in pouring rain.  The forecast for today, as with many of the previous days, was for continued rain.  It was steadily pouring when we purchased tickets and entered the Tower.  We planned to go it alone though the Tower, but a tour was just beginning so we decided to follow the tour guide for as long as he went.

He talked about the history of the Tower of London and the many queens and royalty who were held there before their execution.    Our tour guide spoke mainly in the chapel and talked about who was buried there.

Tour Guide at the London Tower

After his talk, Farrah and I headed to see the Crown Jewels.  The line to see the jewels is long, but when you see the actual Crown Jewels you pass by while on a conveyor belt.  There will be no linger near the jewels!

If you wonder why there are no photos of the Crown Jewels it is because no photos are allowed.  In general I hate taking photos at museums because the lighting is low and I don't have the proper lens.  Plus most of the time photo taking isn't allowed in the museum.

After the Crown Jewels we went into the White Tower and the Bloody Tower, both fun places full of history.  We also stopped by Traitor's Gate before heading out the side entrance which faces Tower Bridge.

This was a lot of history to soak up by noon.

Tower Bridge

We exited the side of the Tower of London which faces the River Thames.  There we look out at Tower Bridge which still looked impressive in the light mist.  We tried to take a few photos on the crowded walkway filled with french speaking students and other tourists.  We then made our way up in search of lunch, stopping by a local Wagamama to give it another go.

Us and Tower Bridge - The Myspace Photo

Big Ben

After refueling, we headed back into the Tube to head to Westminster Abbey.  When you head out of the Tube station to head to Westminster Abbey you are greeted with - BAM! - Big Ben!  It is an impressive sight.

Big Ben

We stood around in awe for a good 10 minutes just snapping photos and admiring is sheer size.  We looked out across the river from Big Ben and were able to see the London Eye as well.  We didn't stop by the London Eye though as we are saving that for later in the week.

Westminster Abbey

After milling around Big Ben, we made our way to Westminster Abbey, another large impressive structure. a place where monarchs are crowned and buried.  Our feet were getting tired at this point, but we needed to go into the abbey.  We walked around looking at each burial or commemorative marker.

Westminster Abbey

After our exhausting tourist-y filled day, we headed back to the flat for dinner.

To Market, to market, to buy....

Camden Lock

This weekend we went to the two big markets that happen on the weekend: Notting Hill and Camden Town.  Both markets are very popular, very crowded, but also very different.  Rain was in the forecast for a majority of the weekend, but we wouldn't let that stop us from going out.

Saturday - Notting Hill

The market opens around 7:00 am, but we started out late in the morning hoping some of the clouds would break.  The walk down Portobello Road was crowded and dangerous at times, as cross traffic is still open.  You just need to remember to look right-left-right instead of left-right-left.  Oi!

The shops and stalls seemed to line the road at least a mile long.  The stalls were part antiques, part flea market, and part farmers' market.  We walked the whole thing, with the rain pouring in and out through times.  The sun managed to peak out for about 10 minutes at one point.  But as we were heading back to the Tube station, the rain had started to come down in a steady downpour.

Farrah in Notting Hill

Camden Town

We awoke to steady rain Sunday morning, but this wouldn't stop us from heading to Camden Town. For some reason I really enjoyed taking the Tube today.  I was impressed that we were able to transfer to a couple of trains quickly. I can imagine living in London without car.

Camden Town has a more youth and fashion oriented appeal.  The majority of the crowds there remind me of my record store days.  You can see several goth clothing stores and music shops along the streets.  Most of stalls in the market areas deal with clothing, jewelry, and accessories.  The food court area in one portion of the market offers a variety of tasty looking dishes easily served in an aluminum tin for your takeaway pleasure.

We stayed in Camden Town for several hours before heading off to a more touristy endeavor - The Victoria & Albert Museum (aka V&A).

V&A

The Tube station stops near the bottom section of The V&A.  A long walk down a tunnel takes you to an underground entrance.

The V&A has both a mixture of old and modern art.  Heck, they even had an exhibition for Kylie Minogue!  We didn't go see that exhibit or the surreal exhibit as they cost extra.  But the rest of the museum, like most of the British museums, was free.  We were able to view the amazing Raphael Cartoons - for which I was chastised for taking the photo below.  Luckily I was able to say it wasn't of the cartoon themselves but of the archway.  Otherwise I probably would have been chided even further.

The museum was impressive.  I will need to post other photos once we get home.  The internet connection here isn't bad but it isn't that great either.  Plus some of the photos really need work.  I hate taking photos in museums, as they normally have low lighting due to the nature of the work being displayed.  I was able to take a few photos, like the one of the idiot leaning on an exhibit below while trying to admire other art before him.  More will follow once we are back in the states.

Harrods

The last stop of the day was at the world famous Harrods.  We walked around a while looking at many things.  This is one large department store that has many brands available.  But it isn't really my cup of tea.  On the lower floor you can find a small memorial to Princess Diana and Dodi Fayed, the son of the store owner Mohammad Al-Fayed.

We didn't much after Harrods as our feet were dead tired after walking all day.

In London - Catching Our Breath

My First View of Stonehenge

We are in our rented London flat now.  It is a nice one bedroom flat in St. Christopher's Place, which is off one of most busiest shopping streets in the world - Oxford Street.  Luckily, we are off a quiet branch of the busy hustle and bustle of the main shopping lane.

We arrived in London early Thursday afternoon by coach (bus) from our time in Bath.  I meant to blog more often then I have and about our lastt two days in Bath, as well as our past two days here, but the jet lag is still hitting me.  Farrah and I find ourselves up at 5:00 am, then knackered by 1:00 pm in the afternoon.  We get our second wind after a quick afternoon nap.  Hopefully we'll be on full London time by the tomorrow.

Stonehenge and Avebury via Mad Max

On Tuesday we took the Mad Max tour of Stonehenge and Avebury stone circles.  Mad Max Tours received very good review in the trip planning references we used.  I thought the tour was going to be rough when we first got on the small tour bus of about 12 people.  Our tour guide Nick seemed a little flustered in the beginning, but his demeanor and the tour picked up as we moved through the day.

I suppose stone circles can be looked as large rocks placed in unusual but possibly significant positions, but they mystic that surrounds these formations is hard to ignore.  We arrived at Stonehenge after an hour ride from Bath.  The drive was uneventful.  We were the first tour group to arrive at Stonehenge.  This afforded us the opportunity to view Stonehenge without the many people to come in the ten minutes after our arrival.

The photo above represents the first time I saw Stonehenge. I know it's not the best photo, but  it is an honest representation of what I first saw.  I can honestly tell you my heart skipped a beat upon seeing Stonehenge on the horizon.  To see Stonehenge in person is amazing.  We were able to walk around the whole structure.  I know we took too many photos, but I wasn't sure what photos were going to turn out with the cloudy slash sunny weather we were having.

After Stonehenge we headed to Avebury, another stone formation.  Avebury is not as famous as Stonehenge, but the rock formations are just as impressive.  The rocks at Avebury are more natural wheareas the stones at Stonehenge were beaten smooth.

We then took a short ride to Lacock where we ate lunch at a small pub there, the George Inn.  We had the fish and chips there with a pint of Guiness for me and a half pint of the local bitter for Farrah.  We chatted it up with some of the other people on tour with us, finding out that two of the other single passengers were from California - one from San Diego the other from Mountain View!  Small world.

Lacock has been used as a filming location from time to time, since it can represent old England and it is a very small town.  It has been used in such productions as "Pride and Prejudice" (BBC version), Harry Potter, and a new Dame Judi Dench BBC mini series.

Family in Bath

Wednesday morning we went to a hairdresser in Bath.  Not just any ordinary hairdresser but Farrah's host mom's business in Bath.  At first Lin (Linda) wasn't sure who she was seeing peering through her door, but after a quick smile and a "Do you recognize me?" from Farrah, memories of Farrah's stay in Bath nine years ago came rushing back.

Farrah and Lin talked for about half an hour, which consisted of introducing me,  and quickly catching up on the time spent apart.  Lin invited us to dinner that night, an opportunity  to catch up with Brian and Louise.  We spent the rest of the daylight going to the Costume Museum and other sites we wanted to see before we were to leave on Thursday morning.

At about 4:30 pm we started the slightly long uphill walk to Lin's home.  Farrah said she remembered how to get there, questioned her recollection about halfway through our walk, then assuredly guided us to the right place.  The rain was steadily coming down that night.

We arrived at Lin, Brian, Louise and Barnaby's lovely home to smiles and hugs.  We spent the next four hours drinking wine, eating dinner, and talking about everything under the sun.  It was a lovely evening spent with warm genuine people who I know Farrah can truly call her family across the pond.

Our time spent in Bath was enjoyed to the fullest.  I wish we could spend more time there, but we needed to head off to the second part of our journey.

Travel Day

Thursday found us partaking in one last early morning walk around Bath, then a quick breakfast before catching the coach to London.  The three and a half our drive to London wore us out.  Once we got off the coach, we headed to the crowded Tube station.  We bought an Oyster card which seemed more economical for our 10 stay in London.  Loading the card took a considerable amount of time as the blasted machine did not want to read my credit card.  Imagine the frustration after the tiring coach trip!

We boarded one Tube train then another to our destination.  I must stay the Tube platform looked like a movie set.  Nice, clean, and unreal.  I'll need to take photos of the station some time later.  I couldn't at that time as our hands were full with the luggage.

When we got out of the Bond Street Tube station to locate the rental office it was pouring rain.  Oxford Street was crowded with shoppers even though it was raining cats and dogs.  We managed to easily find the rental office, only about a three minute walk from our location.  We received the keys from Lizzie - our representative at Globe - then found our flat.

The flat is nice and roomy, having a nice small kitchen, bedroom, bath, etc.  We've settled in pretty well, having bought the necessary groceries at the local Tesco Express.  I am happy we rented a flat, allowing us to live the local experience unlike a hotel room.  Plus it almost cost the same as a decent hotel room here in pricey London!

Anyway, as I finish this up it is coming up at 1:00 AM.  I better get some rest.  Farrah is already asleep.

I'll blog more when I can.