Having a wander around central London

London Travel Blog

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Entering the Bloody Tower (and hoping not to get skewered by the porticollis)

My first day, we decided to start with the Tower of London. Now, we're only in London for the weekend. That could lead to a dangerous desire to try to cram in as much as humanly possible in 2 days.

In our case, that means dropping our "to do" list down to as few things as possible so we can actually enjoy ourselves.  It's something we've learned over time, travelling together. You're always afraid you'll never come back, so you have to see everything!

1.  You can't see everything.
2.  Assume you'll come back if you like it enough.  It took me 20 years but I finally got back to London!

We started with lunch across the street.  Grilled prawns (messy!) and a spicy pizza.
I believe these were living quarters for the guys who guarded the castle.
  Quite liked it.  It had proscuitto on the top, which was a new one for me.  We make it a point to try pizza in every country, just to compare.  Worst so far?  New Zealand.  What they do to pizza!

We thought about walking to the Tower.  It wasn't that far away.  But my back was really tired and doing little mini-spasms about every 20 steps.  We decided to take a cab.

Love London cabs.  So roomy, so easy to get into and out of.  So sensibly designed.  The drivers know where they're going and don't chat you up excessively.

It was a gray and damp day but what the heck.  It's November in London so we mostly expected that. There were more people at the Tower than I would have expected and a lot of them were Americans.  Let's face it, that part of the American public that loves to travel will do so regardless of the exchange rate.
Sir Walter Raleigh's lodgings while a prisoner at the Tower.

I like the Tower.  Cool buildings.  Interesting history.  And then there's the Crown Jewels......

Now, I'm not a big jewelery person.  A wedding ring and a pair of earrings is the most I usually wear.  But, wow, these things make your jaw drop.  When I was here 20 years ago, they had much more out on display but it was more crowded and harder to see things.  It's easier to see things now but they don't have nearly as much out.

What's out, though, is very very shiny.  And while you're in line, they have a huge video display of Queen Elizabeth's coronation in 1952(?).  Helps you appreciate the jewels you see.  Many of them are part of the coronation ceremony.  Pretty impressive stuff.  They really know how to crown a royal.
Actually taking advantage of the drawing pad/travel book Judi gave me to draw a picture of what I was seeing!

Afterwards, we wandered over to a pub recommended in our guidebook.  It involved meandering through a marina past sailboats.  You know that just broke Jeff's heart!  :) 

The pub was quite large and maybe half full.  By the time we left 2 hours later it was completely full.  We found a spot in the corner and relaxed, resting our various aching body parts.  That's a nice way to wrap up a day of sightseeing!  If it had a roaring fireplace, it would have been perfect.

I've had to get accustomed to the fact that the sun sets even earlier here than in DC.  Maybe 4:30 pm.  Being overcast obviously doesn't help.

Took another cab back to the hotel.  Jeff's ankle was a bit sore and my back was a wreck.  We seriously debated whether we were actually hungry enough to spend $50 on a cheeseburger from the room service menu (I'm not kidding!) and decided we were more tired than hungry.

We were asleep by 10.

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Entering the Bloody Tower (and hop…
Entering the Bloody Tower (and ho…
I believe these were living quarte…
I believe these were living quart…
Sir Walter Raleighs lodgings whil…
Sir Walter Raleigh's lodgings whi…
Actually taking advantage of the d…
Actually taking advantage of the …
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photo by: ulysses