Tuesday, 6 September 2011

St Paul's

Photo: St Paul's - from close up so you can't see the dome.

Day 18: Welcome to London

Today we drove to London for the start of our 3 nights here. The drive into London wasn’t as bad as I had dreaded and the Lady-in-the-phone found our hotel for us easily. I dropped off Carol and the kids to check in while I found the Hertz office to drop off the car. It was only about 100m down the road from the hotel, but there was no evidence of its existence. First time round I overshot the driveway and had to find my way back for a second pass. Second time I still couldn’t see where I was meant to be, but saw an underground carpark in the general vicinity. With no other options I drove down. “Reserved for Hertz” signs in the carpark – but I still didn’t know where the office was. Eventually I found it – but the rest of the family must have been wondering where I was.
We then walked down to St Paul’s Cathedral. Wow. Lachlan says it’s now his #1 church – bumping York Minster out of that position. We spent a fair bit of time here, including looking at the crypts (including Nelson’s Tomb), then climbing the many, many stairs to the gallery and then up further to the top viewing area, overlooking London in all directions – but my camera was back at ground level with Carol because you weren’t allowed to take photos in the rest of the Cathedral. Damn.
From there we walked to Shakespear’s globe theatre and looked at the exhibition, but unfortunately we couldn’t do the tour because there was a play on in the theatre.
Back to the hotel on The Tube. With 3 of us on the packed train I attempted to get in the carriage, but as the doors closed they closed on my backpack. I couldn’t go forward (too many bodies) or back (the door was three quarters closed) so I had to pull the backpack free.  The next 15 minutes were some of the most uncomfortable minutes of my life. And people do this every day. People think this is normal! People all around us were reading, texting, playing games on their phone, and generally behaving as if humans were meant to be treated as sardines. Meanwhile we were all concentrating on just breathing. Yuk. I hope we can work out the bus routes – because at least they have air available.
We’re now relaxing in our room. It seems like this is the first time we’ve slowed down for many days. Or weeks. I didn’t even get a chance to do a geocache in Jim’s area.
Did I mention the weather. It’s pouring. Really, really pouring. Welcome to London.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Somebody is having a good time......