I arrived in London in excellent time about 15 minutes ahead of schedule. My brother, Tristan, met me directly off the train and we moved quickly towards the underground and soon met up with my father and his partner. We got on the tube and headed for Canary Wharf and straight into a supermarket in the massive metroplex of the underground shopping city. When we got back to Tristan’s apartment we flopped down and visited with each other for a while.
On the second day we went via tube to the London Wetland Centre which is a bird sanctuary in the heart of London. Quite an interesting experience, lots of different birds. Although I may not have chosen to go to the sanctuary under normal circumstances, it was fun there and having a naturalist and bird enthusiast in the party it made at least one member very happy.
Evening time on the second day, March 23rd we went to a performance by the percussion group STOMP! which was fun, really fun. They made music with normal objects, some examples: wooden sticks, plastic pipes, metal garbage can tops and many other things. The noise that these musicians made was at times loud but at all times in synchronisation and musical. The overall performance was good and it is a pity that no photography was allowed in the theatre, I would have liked to have had a photo of the performance.
We got back to the apartment absolutely tired out, or at least I did where after some conversation we all went to bed. One of the only negatives about this London trip was the sleeping arrangements. Sleeping would seem like the easiest thing in the world was turned difficult when I ended up sleeping on sofa cushions on the woodblock floor of the flat. I was quite uncomfortable and look forward to sleeping in my own bed this night. Anyway back to the trip, we went to the British museum which turned out to be an interesting experience, the place was absolutely ginormous. The exhibit halls seemed to go on forever and ever. The actual size of the place made my brain make a Star Trek comparison! Think Borg cube…. Massive. We left the British museum and got back to the apartment to go out for dinner at a French restaurant.
This is when my trip began to get a little stress marked. I was irritated for a few mundane reasons on the way to the restaurant, despite almost being run over by an extremely unaware person pulling a power assisted hand “cart” The reasons that I was upset during the entire evening compiled to the point where I felt like I was going to have a bit of a breakdown. …emotional, not nervous! The principal reason for my irritation with the evening was that everyone in our party but myself, two other couples: My brother and his boyfriend, and My Father and his Girlfriend, was with someone, so I was quite literally the odd couple, so as they walked together in twos I was on my own. I suppose I am ridiculous feeling left out, but I was feeling awkward. This situation continued throughout dinner and I felt extremely conscious of the fact I was alone. Anyway, the last thing that annoyed me were some words that were exchanged between my brother’s boyfriend and myself.
All the reasons for being upset for the evening aside, the food was good and the restaurant experience was quite good sans the extremely loud party next to our table who insisted upon shouting 5 times louder than anyone else in the restaurant, they laughter permeated the atmosphere and interfered with civilised communication at our table. When dinner was finally over we took a taxi back to the Ritz which was where we were staying that evening, the taxi driver was extremely impressed that we wanted to tip him. He must have thought we were rich and generous. Unfortunately staying at the Ritz was just a pipedream and we made our way back to the tube station that was about 200 feet down the road from the Ritz.
We got back to the apartment and within about 20 minutes, Tristan and I were out again, hitting the local ASDA for Wine. Obviously not hitting like a hold up, what kind of person do you think I am?! We went back to the apartment and talked for a while. At about 2:00 in the morning we all filtered off to bed. Bed for me, as you know, was the uncomfortable sofa cushions
Last morning there we got up really late and decided that we did not have time to do anything far away so we went into Canary Wharf for a nice pub lunch and then rushed back to make the Train at London King’s Cross for 16:30. We did make it with plenty of time and I began the end of my little holiday in London. I sat next to an interesting woman on the train who turned out to be a writer and horse trainer and we had a very pleasant discussion for most of the journey.
I got home about 8:05 on Saturday night and was very pleased to get home.The last four days is certianly a blur!