Archive for September 22nd, 2014

September 22, 2014

21 Sep 2014 West Kingsdown to London

Had a whirlwind day through London today. Started by seeing the millions of poppies around the Tower of London (spectacular) then drove with Lin and Perry past Fleet St, Law Courts, Australian Embassy, Trafalgar Square Picadilly Circus, queens guards. Stopped at Covent Garden and saw Pearly Kings and Queens, had lunch at Casting Pipe, watched buskers and browsed through Jubilee Market Hall.

Not long back home and then off to Canterbury for a quick look at Canterbury Cathedral and shops from 16th Century. It is fascinating to think that people have been there that long and it hasn’t changed a lot. Lin and Perry’s daughter is starting at Canterbury Uni and staying in the student accommodation in the area. It is very quaint and beautiful.

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September 22, 2014

19-20 September West Kingsdown to London

19 Sep
Went to The Castle, Eynesford, for dinner. It’s a lovely pub with great meals, run by a local family. The salmon with scallops was delicious as well as the dime bar cheesecake for dessert.

20 Sep
Slept well and got up for a short walk around the town this morning. Turned right and kept on the same road towards the Hever Road shops. Coming back I couldn’t find the right house and got disoriented. Kept going over the same territory but nothing looked familiar. I stopped to ask a tradesman but he wasn’t from the area! He did let me use his phone because I hadn’t brought mine, nor did I have a map or the address of the place we are staying! Starting to panic then. I knew I wasn’t far away but couldn’t figure out which way to go. The tradesman finished his job and offered to drive me around to try to figure my way back. I remembered the number of the house and finally figured out I was on the right road after all! It just didn’t look the same going back. I nearly kissed him when we pulled up outside the right house. When I went in Peter commented that I’d been a while and I burst into tears!

Joe, Lin’s son, drove us to Swanley station and Peter and I caught a train into Victoria Station, London. Didn’t take very long. Victoria station is massive. We bought lunch and then wandered outside to get our bearings. Walked to Cafe Nero and had coffee while we looked at some maps to decide which way to go. Westminster Abbey was not far away and we had a look inside. They were having a service and were not happy when Peter took some pictures. On a bit further was Westminster Cathedral and the crowds were getting thicker. Bloody tourists! Deans Yard is worth a look. Over Westminster Bridge where the shysters were ripping off people guessing which cup had the ball in it. There must have been half a dozen of them. I think they are franchising businesses!

On the other side of the bridge is the London Eye. We queued up for a ticket then queued again to get on it. At least it wasn’t raining and the queue moved quite quickly. We’ve done it now but the day wasn’t very clear and we couldn’t see very far. The views are better than on the Melbourne one though. Sat down in the City Hall bakery for a drink after all that. It seems blasphemous that there are fast food restaurants in the former City Hall building.

Walked on further to the Imperial War Museum. It is an imposing building in lovely gardens. I queued (again) to get into the WW1 exhibition while Peter waited in the cafe. I skimmed through as the crowd was taking forever. The world in 1914 was nothing like we know it. Not many lived past 55. Children only had to go to school until they were 12. Not many went past 16. Only 2/3 of men had the right to vote and no women.

Perry cooked dinner at home tonight. We had steak, mushrooms, chips and asparagus with berry cheesecake for dessert with double cream. Mmmmm.