London Travel Blog› entry 7 of 7 › view all entries
Despite the terror threats, we did go to London as planned.
We arrived in London, via the Chunnel from Paris. I really wanted to enjoy this part of the trip, but I barely remember entering the tunnel and then I was fast asleep -- for the rest of the trip. I think I woke up when the train stopped in London.
It was on our busride from the train station to the hotel that I decided that it would be okay if I didn't see everything I wanted to -- I would definitely be returning to London. I instantly fell in love with the city.
We dropped our baggage off at the hotel and went to Westminster Abbey. It was especially interesting -- we were still there when the choir boys began to practice, so we sat and enjoyed their glorious music.
Day 2 in London started with a guided tour of the city -- Steven, our guide, pointed out Kensington Palace, Tower Bridge, #10 Downing Street and St. Paul's Cathedral. Our tour ended at Buckingham Palace, where we were too late to watch the Changing of the Guard ceremony. Afterwards, a few of us ate lunch at Harrod's... it was practically the only thing I could afford. British scones and clodded cream are DELICIOUS!! We browsed through the departments of Harrod's and viewed the memorial to Diana and Dodi al-Fayed, which was shockingly small.
Spending a couple nights in London, we couldn't miss out on a true London experience -- an evening at the theatre. We attended Andrew Lloyd Weber's The Woman in White. It was my first theatre performance and I was absolutely captivated. It is a digitized musical, the first of its kind and was on it's debut run.
We had one final day in London, a Sunday -- on our schedule was Windsor Castle, the residence of the Queen (who was on holiday in Scotland at the time). Arriving early in the morning, we toured the Castle, and walked around the grounds, as well as the town. We spent a few hours in Windsor, grabbing a quick lunch at McDonald's of all places. I did find a beautiful miniature teaset, my most prized souvenir from this trip.
We had a free afternoon, so I spent it with Darilyn and Sue, two women I hadn't spent much time with on the trip (I knew Sue as a customer in the scrapbook store where I worked and my mom had worked with Darilyn twenty years ago, even though I didn't know her personally; Sue and Darilyn are aunt-niece.) We went to the London Eye, which was incredibly cool. It is so much more than a ferris wheel, (of course it is, you ride standing up, able to move in the capsules). The ride is so smooth and it offers great views of the city. We also went to the Hard Rock Cafe, but only had time to shop, not visit the museum. Our 15- day European adventure ended with a "traditional carvery dinner" which amounted to a buffet with roast beef carved, at a different (much nicer) hotel than ours.
Throughout our stay in London, we did notice terror warnings. We rode the Tube around the city. We were cautious, but London had reacted with a business as usual attitude, so we didn't want to give in to fear. There were posted notices -- they had removed the garbage cans from the Tube stations, so you had to take your 'rubbish' with you. And, camera flashes were met with bobbies' scolding -- just ask poor Sue. And, we were on the Tube when a suspect was arrested... we were wondering why it kept stopping, and later on the news, we found out why.
London is amazing city and I will DEFINITELY return!