Thursday, April 30, 2009

The things I notice

Here we are in England and you would expect to hear the odd lilt of the English accent right? Well no actually I have hardly heard a really pommy accent at all, german, french, italian, Arabic, and who knows some eastern european but not hardly a pom in ear shot. Interesting isn't it just how multicultural Britian is becoming.

Now things we have learnt in the last few days....... Taxis and buses really don't give a hoot if you are crossing the road, run cause they actually swerve to get you and then honk to let you know you are about to be run down.

Don't waste your money buying a London Pass most of what is on it isn't really worth seeing. It is interesting though and I guess it has actually encouraged us to visit place we wouldn't probably have gone to if we didn't have the card forget what I just wrote.

Don't ask for mineral water in London and expect to get a nice bubbly drink you'll get water, plain flat and probably out of the tap in a bottle.

Coffee isn't great here either so don't expect a great cup just hope its hot.

Squirrels travel in packs and will chase you for!!!!!

Alfred Hitchcock filmed the movie Birds because he had encountered the pigeons in London.

Travelling on the Tube in London will give you great thighs and will wreck your knees....I guarantee it.

You will take the wrong Tube line more than once and it will take you 3 times as long to get where you are going. You will also get very good at playing like a sardine in a very small tin.

Take some hand cleaner, wipes, dettol, whatever with you everywhere and wash your hands after every trip in the Tube. Seriously .......

It really is possible to fit approx 400 people in a tin tube about 8 feet wide and 20 feet long, and make them pay for the privledge. It's called the Tube.

London Walks are fantastic google them if you are coming to London anytime soon and take one.

British television is terrible.

Travelling is amazing exciting and never dull, I love it.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009


Well what a day we had yesterday and I think I was a little overtired when I blogged yesterday. I actually hardly remember it. We've walked every morning since we arrived, strolled through Hyde Park and seen the bins for miles in a row along the edge of the paths, emptied out and scavenged through. The rubbish left in piles on the ground, at frst I thought it was squirrels, but it's the homeless people. The streets are scattered with people sitting on bits of cardboard, wrapped in blankets asking for change. We give them some if we have coins with us. I saw a show on Austar about some rich kids going on the streets for 10 days and having to live like they were homeless and it was awful. No one even hardly acknowledges the people. They ask for change and people just take a wide step around them and keep going. They don't even look at them most of the time. What have we become when we can't even give a bit of change to someone. Then there's the next extreme, Rolls Royce's chauffeur driven and Bentley's (I can't tell the difference between oné and the next but Adrian is very excited whenever he sees one), and you see the driver's out early in the morning polishing the cars before the people even leave for work. Huge town houses circling locked walled gardens, and the stores in Kensington and Picadilly cater very much for the upper classes. Harrods, Fortnum & Masons all so beautiful inside and we have nothing like it in Australia. Shopping for us is totally boring.

15.90 kms in one day......

Yep the title tells it all. We walked nearly 16kms today. So Europe here we come. We headed out early this morning toward Notting Hill and back towards home through Kensington Gardens where all the embassy's are lovely. I think I could handle living there. We got hopelessly lost in Picadilly while trying to find the Britian Visitors centre. Good thing we did too because we found the Duke of York monument, Admirality Arch, Big Ben at midday what a fluke and Westminster Abbey's bells ringing for ages.

I have to say I wasn't interested really in seeing Big Ben or Westminster but how silly was I. Big Ben and the building alongside look like those drippy sand castles I used to make with the girls at the beach. Beautiful. Then we walked the Thames for hours, not exagerating....We were looking for London Bridge (well Adrian was) and we found it and didn't even know it was London Bridge. Totally unremarkable and in the distance what Ade thought was London Bridge ended up being the Tower Bridge. We ate lunch in the walls of London Bridge in a pub tucked away where only people who get lost or live here would find it. Good value and good food.

I was quite interested in seeing Shakespeare's Globe Theatre....boring..and not original anymore anyway. Bummer.

Oh and in Picadilly we found a shop called Fortnum & Masons. I loved it even better than Harrods. I've read about it but never thought much about going there. It's like stepping back in time and beautiful chandliers hang glittering from the ceilings. The glass cases are filled with handmade chocolates and marzipan fruits. Cakes, teas, coffees, wines, fruits and vegetables. Scorpions in vodka, chocolate covered scorpions, barbecued giant ants, and cheeses I have never seen before. In the childrens section on the upper levels there was a little Ralph Lauren baby suit and only $50gpb. Ha!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Rainy days and window shopping

Is your mouth watering looking at the gorgeous fruit tarts in the picture above. This is just a tiny sample of the unbelievable food for sale in the Harrod's Food hall. There were chocolates, like you wouldn't believe and food from all over the world. Sushi like I have never seen, Asian, Lebanese and on and on. It's like an Aladdin's cave wandering through there. And there are camerás flashing every where.

Now that's just the food and there are floor upon floor of clothing, perfume, shoes, handbags, home wares and anything else you can think of. I don't know how many people are shopping, I think most of the people are tourists, taking photographs. And I was amazed very few of the stores in London open before 10am. They close at 8pm very European. This trip is a little different than our Christmas jaunt. It was dark at 4pm back then and the sun didn't come up till say 7 or 8 am. Now they are having twilight and right now it is 7.30pm and it's like it is at say 5pm in Australia. We went walking this morning for about and hour and a half through Hyde Park at 6am and it was light then too.
The picture above of me at the phone booth is a little sad. At Christmas the girls and I had our photo taken in a red telephone box in every town we went too. Now its just me, lonely me in the box. Take a good look though and you can see the girls on the wall behind me. I didn't see that when I quickly opened the door and tried to look not to much like the tourist I am having my pic taken.
It's quite cold here, nothing like December of course, but it is cool and quite rainy. Gotta love the English weather. Also we are hearing nothing but news about the Swine Flu at the moment. Makes me wonder what on earth we are doing here and we're going on a tour with Americans, who probably all live right on the Mexican border. So I will have to live by Psalm 91 for the next month. Well God is good. All the time.

On top of that Alicia is expecting to have her little boy induced some time next week, she'll be 37 weeks and he at this point, has a minor heart problem which will need surgery. Talk about lousy timing, what the heck is going on. Well we will just have to rely on the Lord that all will be well.

Monday, April 27, 2009

The Eagle has landed!!

We have arrived!! Finally we touched down in London at Heathrow and what a relief. When we arrived at Bangkok airport last night it was around 7.30pm and we were able to check in and go straight to the lounge and low and behold we were told we were able to get a free massage each. So did we get them yes of cours we did!!!! Boy it was so good. The young lady who did mine had fingers of steel and it felt great. I would have paid for it but bonus I didn't have to. Fantastic!!!

We travelled on a jumbo this leg and we had seats in the upstairs section, I would guess at about 24 to 30 people all up. What a trip. I can say I have finally had a decent sleep on a plane first time ever. The staff were great and when we landed we felt fine. Last Christmas we were wrecked when we got home so another tick for Business class travel. It just keeps getting better.

When we checked in to the Rhodes Hotel in Sussex Gardens London, just a quick stroll from Hyde Park, we had to wait about an hour because we were so early. We went for a coffee in Hyde Park and ended up at Kensington Palace, we'll go back for a proper look in a day or two. The gardens are so different this time round, for a start there are leaves and the pond isn't frozen. Ha how funny. It looks beautiful, stacks of squirrels and flowers really pretty.

We will have a good sleep tonight and work on our plan of attack tomorrow.

Can't wait.


Sunday, April 26, 2009

So I was going to load a couple of pics of todays adventures but I don't have my lead with me its in the suitcase so next time.'

Today we got the shuttle bus to the airport hotel which was beautiul by the way very flash, but looking around here everything is. Heaps of gold and fancy statues everywhere. We had a shower had a couple of hours sleep. Not anywhere enough and then had a really nice Thai lunch in one of the 5 restaurants at the hotel. Then a bit more sleep and catch the bus back to the airport. And to our delight we were given free massages in the business and first class spa ...... very nice indeed and now we are relaxing in the lounge with movies running and very comfy chairs and nice cold drinks and food. I tell ya I will never want to fly any other way again. What have I done.....

So next time I write I will be in London and who knows what we will be up to something good I hope.


Friday, April 24, 2009

Life styles of the rich & famous or boy are we blessed

I can't believe I just spent 20 mins typing all this and then lost it, me and blogging aren't friends. Agh!! So I'll start again.

We had the funniest bus trip down the driver crunched the gears every time he changed them nearly and we left 30mins late because the bus was late arriving from Brisbane. Traffic chaos as usual and then add the footy at Suncorp Stadium Doble trouble.

So now we are sitting in the business class lounge in Bris waiting to jet out to Bangkok and then to London. It's 10pm now and we leave at midnight so we have a while to go. It is pretty cool though there are only say 10 other people in here and there is a fridge full of grog and softdrink and juice. There is soup and fresh bread, internet wifi (free) and sweets, coffee and pancakes. We have had some soup, some nibbly things and we are having some cheese and fruit now.

I tell you I could get used to this.

Anyway more after the flight which I will probably sleep through or at least I hope to.


Heading Off

So it is nearly 4pm and Vicki will be here at 5.15pm to take us to the bus depot. Quick & easy 2 hours and we're at the international airpot. Of course we don't actually leave till midnight so hanging around for 4 hours isn't my idea of fun, but what can you do?

Actully I'm really excited about travelling this time, business class who would have thought we would ever do that!! So exciting.

But of course there is the fact that Alicia is going to have her baby anytime soon and we won't be here I'm not over the moon about that. We just pray that she is ok and that he is healthy and beautiful. Seeing him on the scan in 3d was amazing and he is so cute he really does have his father's nose.

So if you think of it please pray with us that all goes well.

First stop Bangkok a trip to the Novotel airport hotel and shower and stretch and lay down on what I hope is a comfortable bed and then back to the airport to hang around again, only this time for about 6 hours I think. We leave Bangkok at about 1am and arrive in London at close to 7am. Yeah then the adventure begins. Will try and post pics of course and keep you up to date with the baby news. Cheers