Monday, September 26, 2011

Plane, Trains, Buses, Toilets and Lots of Sights to See

My trip to London was not a long one, but it was a good one. Between trying not to get run over by traffic coming from a direction I wasn't used to, trying not to start a fire with the power converter for my hair dryer, looking for toilets and in some cases making sure I had the right change to get into the toilet, I saw lots of sights and had a great time.

After a long overnight plane ride I got to my hotel at about 8:00 in the morning. Of course, I couldn't actually get into my room until about 2:00 in the afternoon, so I left my bag and started walking.

I walked around the neighborhood my hotel was in near Paddington Station, I walked through Hyde Park which was close to the hotel and around Notting Hill.

By the time I finally got back and got into my room I was exhausted and it took me about 2 days to learn how to make the room key work in the door. It took me another day to figure out I should leave the very heavy key at the front desk instead of carrying it with me all day.

I spent the next few days riding buses, trains, taxis, and of course doing a lot of walking and seeing as much as I could see. I hit a lot of the very popular sights including, Big Ben, Westminster Abbey, Buckingham Palace, The Tower of London and, of course, I made a stop at Harrod's.

I, fortunately, succeeded in not getting run over. The signs in the streets saying to "Look Right" or  "Look Left" were great, but I needed one saying "look behind you because someone coming around the corner is headed right for you". 

I did a lot of eating on the run, but I did have afternoon tea at Harrod's one day and a traditional pub lunch at a pub near Buckingham Palace on another day.

A trip to the bathroom in the pub after lunch took me up three flights of these stairs, but at least I didn't need any money to get into it once I got to the top. I often found myself without the right change when the need to use a pay toilet arose.

I read a lot of Henry VIII history before my trip so I enjoyed a train ride and visit to Hampton Court Palace.

The hotel staff was very friendly and wanted to say "Hi" to everyone.

Oh, and even though I didn't get invited to tea at the palace I did get to visit briefly with The Queen.

She was very friendly and it was nice to visit with her and she only charged me a pound to take her picture. She was a little taller than I expected.


  1. I'm so glad you had such a fun trip.

    What was the pub lunch, btw.

    Pay toilets? blimey, that's not very cricket.

  2. Sounds like a busy trip. I remember looking in the wrong direction when trying to cross the street.

  3. Welcome back, Jeanie! Sounds like you had a great trip and did lots of things! So glad the queen was accommodating to have her picture taken and to chat with you :)


  4. Sounds like a great trip! Yeah, they charge for toilets in Paris, too!!!

  5. Yes you must keep enough change for the toilets. I am so glad you enjoyed your time there.

  6. The Queen was really decked out that day, wasn't she? :)

    What a great trip you have had! (I'd also like to know what that pub lunch was - it looks pretty tasty!)

  7. Looks like you got to see and do lots of different things. You even met the Queen! Was this vacation for you? sandie

  8. Welcome home darlin', I'm just thrilled that you had the opportunity to do this. What a treat!!!

    It's a grand treat that you let us tag along with ya! :o)

    God bless and enjoy this glorious day sweetie!!!

  9. Looks like a wonderful delightful time (o:
    You are so brave to do that all by yourself.
    The bathroom thing just might dome in though. When I need one I need it NOW (o:
    I bet you are swamped now that you are back home. Baseball may be over, but soccer and football games to go to??? Have a great time seeing all the family (o:
    I have a new daycare kid today....not sure why I said yes to this. He comes equipped with an eppi pen for allergies. YIKES. Then she said she would be here at 5 and I thought it was suppose to be 4.... How do I manage to get myself into these things.

  10. This was so interesting. You´re my hero, for going alone. I wish I had the guts to do that. How about we meet up in Italy in a few years? I would love to see that place, but no one wants to join me. :)
    The bathroom thing would be a problem for me too. I´m like Pam, if I need to go,I need one NOW.
    Hope you´re catching up with everyone at home. I bet the grandkids missed you.

  11. Hilarious photo of the Queen!

    It sounds as if you had a wonderful time in my native country!

  12. What a wonderful trip, I'm glad you had a great time. I can't believe you have to pay to use the restroom. That's crazy!

  13. Welcome home! I've been wondering about your trip and am glad you are back, all in one piece with no broken bones! (I had that same left/right problem when I was there, too!).

    Your comment about the pay toilet brought back a great memory. My mother and I were traveling together -- I was 21. Both of us wore these all-in-one bra/girdles. Now they'd call them bodyshapers -- but back then, well -- you had to practically disrobe to hit the bathroom. We only had one coin so we both went into the stall together-- a tall floor-to-ceiling door, a tiny room, and neither of us were (tiny). We started to laugh so hard, tears ran down our face, trying to maneuver in and out of our clothes. After that, we always made sure we had change!

  14. Love your pictures! Looks like you had a great time!

  15. Jeanie, I read your comments and can't believe how paying for the toilets seems to be the topic of interest, followed by the Queen.
    I wanted to say,
    1)The weather looks like it always does in London.
    2)The hotel staff look friendly.
    3)Your hotel looks like the one I stayed at near Christie's.
    4)What's wrong with the key? Isn't it a regular old-fashioned key like we used before those cards?

  16. Fun, Jeanie! Your trip sounds fabulous - except for the pay toilets. Welcome home.

  17. Looks like a fun trip. I would love to go there one day.

  18. Pay toilets! Oh my. That alone would turn me off from going abroad. Never been one who wants to travel much, and that would just about cinch it.

  19. "I often found myself without the right change when the need to use a pay toilet arose."

    I feel your pain. I've often been caught without change, although I've found that jiggling up and down and looking vaguely desperate often elicits a kind donation of twenty pence from someone. There once was a time where I could actually squeeze myself through the turnstile without paying but unfortunately, those days are no more.

    Having to pay for the privilege of using the loo aside, I love London. I do want to get back there soon. I always go there with a list of three or four things that I want to get done and you can always bet that I'll find at least one fascinating tagent that I want to go off on.

    Last December, Mum and I booked into serviced apartments London in Covent Garden. We were only there for a weekend but we came home feeling like we'd had a week's holiday. The atmosphere in Covent Garden is always wonderful but at Christmas, it's even better.