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I have returned!

I woke this morning to the news that not only was this The busiest day of the year for air travel, but that the Heathrow Express on which I was booked wasn't working!!!
Never fear though, because the train started running again and it didn't even take long to get through security. There were plenty of seats, and I had a nice lunch at a restaurant at the airport. Well done Heathrow.

I made it to the V&A although I only had an hour on it. I will definitely go back.

I loved the building

And ❤️ the Fashion exhibit even though I only saw part of it.

It was meant to be cooler today in London but it was still pretty warm and by the time I got to the train station I was sweating like you know what. I had to change my top before boarding the train…..

I walked straight out of Belfast City Airport and into a taxi – very convenient service by ValueCabs who take the word "value" to extremes by charging £8.80 for a 2.5 mile journey. I will let them off with the £2 airport surcharge but £6.80 for 2.5 miles is ridiculous.

I've eaten a Chinese and opened a bottle of wine

And the cat is right beside me 😁

On her owl

Bus day

I took the hop on hop off bus today and managed to walk further!

All that mileage on a sore foot. My left foot was a little achy this morning and then I tripped and almost hit the ground, in front of about 30 people queuing at an Embassy round the corner from here…. and hurt my left foot. It's a little swollen and I'm spraying Deep Freeze on it

But after that incident, I was propositioned by a man who wanted to know where my man was. I instantly made up a complete lie, telling this man that my man was working and couldn't come on holiday with me, and that my man would fight any man who
tried to win me away 😂😂😂

Then I hot footed it out of there.
Well, limped slightly.

One of the places that I wanted to go was Westminster Abbey but the bus didn't stop there! I think it should have but there were roadworks so maybe the stop was out of service. Anyway, I saw it from the outside only

Also

I took the included river cruise from the Tower of London to Westminster
The recorded commentary on the bus – The Original Tour Company- wasn't very good but their buses passed close by my accommodation from early morning, & their buses are regular.

I wanted to see the Changing of the Guard but there were enormous crowds and all I saw was this!

I've just noticed that the new black jeans I bought – well I should have washed them beforehand! Black legs. Black dye on my bag….

Anyway, I also saw St Paul's, which I have longed to see

A sneaky video from inside

Throw in an ice cream

Knackered.

I shall be in bed super early! I have to check out by 10 am tomorrow so no lounging about. I long to have hair which I could wash and let dry naturally, but I am blessed with hair that needs washed, dried & straightened every day. Which of course means you need to let your straighteners cool down before packing them away!

First world problems

There's still things I want to see in London, including the Cabinet War Rooms, inside Westminster, inside Westminster Abbey, the Horseguards Museum…..😃

Kings and parakeets 

Honestly, both Kings and parakeets have featured today. 

There’s a man who appears to kindly give away bird food for people to feed the wild parakeets that (apparently) live in Kensington Gardens 



How cute is that!!!!! 🐦 

I made it to Hampton Court!! Quite proud of myself for managing that! 


And my feet are sore again 🤗


I have retired early because I’m knackered and I’m enjoying a bottle of wine, peanut M&Ms and crisps. And a programme on TV about sweet making in Tudor times, which is rather appropriate given where I’ve been today!

Distance so far

My feet hurt 😂😂

I’m lying on my bed listening to the pouring rain! Quite glad it’s raining because it’s very warm and the air could do with some life in it. 

I’ve talked myself back into going to Hampton Court 🙄 fingers crossed I figure it all out! I stumbled over the tube station when I was out for dinner and think I’ll just give it a go. 

Dinner was in Garfunkles 


Which wasn’t too bad. Not amazing but not bad at all. I like the idea of going with someone and trying this sharing dessert 


I’m watching the Paddington movie and remembered that I took this yesterday 


Today I have been to Kensington Palace, eaten a huge salad from Whole Foods in Kensington Gardens for lunch, went to the Natural History Museum and the Science Museum. 

The Palace was nice but I have been in many more impressive palaces and homes and I think it suffered because of that. Mind you, there are some lovely things to look at and it’s worth a visit 


Lovely Diana Memorial Garden


I had never been to a Whole Foods and I didn’t want to leave 


This is the worlds most expensive salad but it was a novelty!

The Natural History Museum I had in my head was amazing. Somehow it just wasn’t. The central hall is amazing but there were SO many people there and it was SO warm that it didn’t get off to the best start. Despite this impressive entrance 

And I did laugh at this


Okay, if you insist 

The Science Museum was an extra I put in because i didn’t spend as long in the Natural History Museum as I had expected . It really was great


That’s all for now.! Hoping to sleep better tonight. This is one warm place ☀️

Holidays 

I am on a train on the way to London 😀

I had a lovely time with my friend, her son & mum. We stayed in a hotel chain called Premier Inn outside Bristol. It was really good and I have just posted a review on tripadvisor. From what I gather it’s a good example of a Premier Inn and maybe others aren’t as good. Food, staff, beds etc all good. And busy too,  well over 300 rooms. 

Longleat is a great place to visit, highly recommended. We were there for hours and didn’t do half of what was there. 

So I’m off now to the big smoke where 

I don’t think I’ll need the umbrella I brought with me. The heat of this train carriage is preparation for that heat to come! 

We are now in Swindon. 

I’ve never been to the loo on a train before. I don’t need to go but if I do I think I would brave it because I’m in first class and there’s hardly anyone in this carriage…..

I think I have talked my way out of going to Hampton Court in favour of a 48 hour hop on hop off bus. This is only because of The palaver of getting there on my own. I don’t think it’s difficult but sometimes I’m not feeling the bother of faffing about on different trains to get somewhere. It depends on how I feel on Wednesday but there’s so many things I still want to see inside London that doing the bus tour also makes sense. I learnt (was taught 😀) how to use the tube the other year so I’m not frightened of that but I might not even find myself needing to use the tube. 

The view out of the other side of the train is nicer but here is the rolling English countryside 

Hols

I’m off on my holiday later. I’m at that wasting-time stage. My flight isn’t until 18.25 but I’m getting the bus to the airport, and another bus into town before that. Therefore I will be leaving home before 3pm. I like to be a place early and always want to factor in traffic, so I will be at the airport super early & then wonder why I didn’t get the next bus…. Better safe than sorry 😐 

I’m having some lunch 


Semi healthy too. And hopefully it’ll see me through until I get to the hotel about 8.30pm & get something else. 

I’m going to miss Roger Federer’s Wimbledon semifinal. Boo! And I’ll miss the final, which I’m hoping he’s in. I’m spending the weekend with my friend, whom I haven’t seen for more than a year, so that’ll make up for it!! But still, i will have an eye on the scoreboard 👀

Catch you later 🤗

Feeling Ancient

I’ve just read an article that compares the post-career fortunes of one time rivals, Boris Becker and Stefan Edberg. This is a quote about Stefan:

“Since retiring from tennis 21 years ago….”

OMG!

21 YEARS AGO!

I feel old. Elderly. Ancient.

It couldn’t actually be that long ago……………………………………….

Anyway, yesterday was a bit of a nightmare. The cat decided to hot foot it up the street. She was away for almost 12 hours. She’s never been away from this house, and hasn’t been away from home for more than 30 minutes for about 9 years. And she’s quite stupid, so finding her way home might have been difficult for her. We were up and down the street several times calling her. Skyerocketstitcher brought her dogs down to help in the search. (who were useless by the way :)), and no sign of her anywhere.

Then at about 10 o’clock with the light fading, my brother found her. About 12 houses down the street. She couldn’t have been there long because I’m sure she would have heard me call her an hour or so earlier.  Nothing wrong with her at all – she was as happy as Larry and wanted outside straight away…..for a big drink of dirty rainwater out of a bucket. Not the nice clean water we’d just given her….

Today I was meant to go out with mum for a drive but she slept funny on her neck and didn’t want to go. I did some gardening instead and within 10 minutes, something had happened inside my gardening glove, and some skin on the inside of my thumb had lifted off! About 5 layers, in an almost perfect circle.  Sure, that’s better than it just being a blister, I suppose. It blistered and burst straight away.  Nice.

So I turned to ironing and packing instead. And walked to the shopping centre to get some last minute things. And a KFC…..

Right now I feel like going for a big long walk but I have changed into my comfy clothes that I wouldn’t been seen out in, so instead I will try again to find my Oyster card for London, and then find a film to watch. I might even slip in a wee vodka and orange juice!

Holibops

I am officially on my holidays! No more work until the 24th. Which really isn’t very far away….. I go to Bristol in 3 days, which is really, really not far away!

Time to fill this

Also, tonight a load of these will be lit:

I walked past this when I left work. I’ll say nothing more.

I will be staying indoors, and doing laundry in preparation for the impending holiday.  And changing my bedclothes. And I might remove the massive toy gun and the bicycle helmet which are lying in my garden……I would like not to, but I really need to cut the grass.

And I will almost certainly be draining the wine bottle.