Londen 2020

Donderdag, 22 augustus 2019
Londen, arrival day
Today, we traveled to London. Again.
However, the day did not start out the way I would have expected a travel day to start out as. Because I needed some more of my allergy medication but the car I drive was in the shop, Mom had the brilliant idea of us first going to the garage and then the pharmacy. The garage was nice enough to lend us a car but it was a piece of crap, that I could not for the life of me put in reverse. Hell, I couldn't even get the window to close. Or start the engine after it had been parked.

Anyway, I made it back home in time to go to the airport. Mariecke and I have this running joke that EasyJet planes follow us whenever we go on vacation, mainly because they are at the airport when we leave and they are at the airport when we arrive. Well, this time we were flying with EasyJet. First time we didn't book a window seat for me and a middle seat for Mariecke. Instead, we both got aisle seats. Only to have the flight attendant tell me I had to switch seats because the table was broken and it was too dangerous (sharp edges and stuff). So there I went from row 22 to row 1. All the way at the front; said goodbye to Mariecke since she had to stay there.

It's funny because it's also where the flight attendants at the front of the plane sit. And they complain about people just like everyone else. One of the funniest things one of them said was when a guy got up before the seatbelt sign was off. This is what the flight attendant said to his colleague; "you know those harnasses in a roller coaster? If we could strap you in with those we would."

Another perk of sitting all the way at the front was that I was the first one out of the plane. Through the air bridge, to the airport's actual building. No one in front of me the entire time. Then, of course, I had to wait for everyone to get off and for Mariecke to finally join me. But it was all pretty zen; we spotted the rows at passport check where there were the least people so that took maybe five minutes instead of the usual 15-20 minutes (if not more). Then we grabbed a quick meal deal and headed off to the shuttle and eventually the train.

Once in London, we got on the underground and it was a smooth trip to the hotel. We had booked a room, most likely with a double bed, but we had asked for a quiet one as well. We tried to get a twin room when we arrived but instead, we got upgraded to a small family room. So, still a double bed, but also a single bed. Mariecke gets the double bed, except for the last night, then it's all mine. By that time, the London Pass kiosk had already closed so there wasn't even a rush to head back out.

We left again around dinner time to take bus 15 to Trafalgar Square (or thereabouts as it turned out) and eventually grabbed dinner at Itsu. Sushi and chargrilled chicken udon. The sushi was good, as usual, the noodles and the chicken were good too but there was something in that soup that made it less than appetizing. We did our best. Fortunately, London has enough to offer foodwise and we were planning on heading to China Town away. 

There was a lot of activity on Leicester Square but we are never one to stay and watch street performers for long, especially when we can't even see them. So we went through China Town and wished we hadn't eaten yet because there was so much delicious stuff. After having salivated over bubble wrap cones (bubble waffle cones with ice cream and chocolate), we eventually grabbed two bbq pork steam buns and a meat and vegetable dumpling thingy. All to-go because that's cheaper and we were full anyway. I tried looking for the shop in Sherlock (because since the last time I was in London I have seen a bit of Sherlock and wanted to take a picture of it), but it was gone. It's like it's nothing but restaurants there now. A little further away, there were China Town bakeries, where they had melonpans and fish-shaped taiyaki. We got four taiyaki for just two pounds to go as well before heading back in the general direction of Trafalgar Square, hoping to find where we could catch the bus back.

We had to go to Sainsbury's to get some supplies, such as milk, water bottles, fruit, and olives. By then, it was getting dark but not too dark so the street lights weren't on yet. Saint Paul's was looking pretty pretty and I went to take a few pictures. By the time, I got back to Mariecke, she had started to wonder if we were going to have to cross Whitechapel in the dark. Then the lights and the bus arrived.

Now that we have stuffed ourselves, we are going to bed. See you tomorrow kids.