Monday, December 15, 2008

Trip to England

Life had an exciting twist happen over Thanksgiving, I went to England! DH had a business trip, so I tagged along and when we realized it was for the Monday after Thanksgiving, we extended it to leave the day before. It was a long flight, but I brought along the black fun fur scarf to knit, my i-Pod (with book on it), and then we upgraded to World Travelor plus to give us a bit more leg room, and a lot more quiet (so I did manage to nap on the way over). Good thing, otherwise it would have been a very long day. We got there around noon, got a mini-tour on the way to the hotel (B&B), then went on a tour bus until we got to Westminster Abbey. We gave that an extensive look through. I had no idea so many people were buried there! With huge monuments for a lot of them. The more recent kings and queens are at Windsor (which we saw on our last day), but the early Norman kings are at Westminster Abbey. After spending a few hours there, we headed back to our hotel, stopping at a likely looking pub for dinner. I had boar sausages, DH had venison.
On Friday we got Oyster cards at the tube station, made using the tube and buses very easy, just plonk the card on the reader. Then we headed to the Tower of London, saw the Crown jewels, the old crowns with no jewels, graffiti scratched into tower walls by prisoners, an armery, and more. Again, spent several hours, then grabbed a bite to eat and went to the British Museum. Used Rick Steves' guide to hit the highlights. I have been an Egyptian history buff since the seventh grade, so seeing the Egyptian artifacts that the British "stole" was exciting! The first thing you see when you go into the Egyptian hall is the Rosetta stone, awesome! And bigger than I realized. Not something you pick up and carry around. We got back to the room around 7 and realized we would not make the pub crawl that night (scheduled to start at 7), so we went to another place close by and had a nice dinner with the hard cider featured there. Potent.
Saturday we headed to Leicester (pronounced LES-ter) Square to get tickets to Spamalot. Long line, but we got them. TKTS booth has half and 25% off tickets to many of the current plays, Spamalot was 25% off, but still worth the wait in line. After that we did a bit of shopping on Oxford Street, going to Liberty first. Wow, lovely, and expensive, stuff. They had a fabric and yarn floor that I spent some time on. Did not buy anything, not for lack of trying. The yarn I wanted got sold out the day before L. That evening we went to Spamalot and had a great time, funny, at least if you are a Monty Python fan, which I am.
Sunday was check out day from our London B&B, but they kept our bags for us so we didn’t have to haul them all over. We went to the Cabinet War Rooms and Churchill museum, across from the Parliament building, then to the National Gallery for the quick tour. Also had a bite to eat there. Then back to the B&B to collect our bags and head off to Waterloo station to take the train south to Havant (close to Portsmouth).
Monday was freezing, literally. DH was working, so I decided to just stay warm and rest. We went out that evening with the folks he had been visiting which was fun.
Tuesday was back on the train to get back to Heathrow, only this time we didn’t have to get off and take the bus detour, and it was during the day so we got to see the countryside. We checked into the hotel by Heathrow then took a taxi to Windsor Castle. Not enough time to do it justice, the guards were hurrying us along to get to the end before it closed. We did see a lot though, even if we didn’t listen to all of the commentary of the self-guided tour. We wandered around the town for a bit, then took a taxi back to the hotel. The next day was back home, another long flight, and during the day the whole way, so no sleeping. It did make getting back to our own bed a lovely thing.
Can’t wait to get back and see more of the country.

1 comment:

rdrop said...

Wow how exciting and it wasn't even planned!! ^_^