One of the reasons London is lovely is because I’m staying here with family! It is so good to be with loved ones in amongst meeting new people whilst travelling, and the boys look after me soooo well.
My week back in London ( stay 2) started off very action packed….
Firstly, I needed to return my hire car to the nearby Europcar place, then..
We caught the train into the city, had a delicious chickeny lunch, followed by an excellent coffee!
Followed by the matinee performance of “School of Rock”, which was enjoyed by all 4 of us!!
Then on return to their lovely home…
It was the annual Street party, with all the neighbours. Simon’s cake came third in the cake competition, but was the winner in my eyes!
Needless to say ( but I’ll say it anyway!) I was very tired on Sunday and had a lazy , PJ kind of morning. But I did have the energy to photograph T’s work with Lego.
I then caught the train into Westminster and attended the 3 pm evensong @ the Abbey. It was more special than usual, as it was the last Sunday for the choir boys before summer break and 3 were leaving the Abbey school. Their parents and families were all there, as well as extra visitors like me! The singing was superb, and whilst it’s not my normal kind of church, I’m glad I went. It’s an incredible piece of architecture!!
I came home to a delicious bbq, eaten outside in the summer evening warmth.
On Monday, I finally ticked an excursion off my “Must do in London” list. I walked from the boys’ home in Hither Green to Greenwich. A very pleasant walk, which I started after dropping T off at school, before the day got too hot! The route is mostly via parks, with some leafy residential streets along the way and a commercial Street in Blackheath. ( Where I stopped for refreshments. )
I was stunned to see brown grass as I got to Greenwich Park…a sight I’d never seen in the UK before!
I kept on walking through Greenwich Park, past many other tourists, and school groups; past flower beds, the Greenwich Observatory, paused for a pot of tea, and my picnic lunch, then continued on , with amazing views of the city of London before me! I passed the line signifying Greenwich Mean Time and walked down the hill to the Queen’s house and the Maritime museum.
I finished off my adventure with a walk through Greenwich until I found the DLR station, from where I caught 2 trains home! To say I was pooped is an understatement! But I’d finally done it!! And enjoyed the excursion too!!
Tuesday dawned late for me, after my big day on Monday, but after doing my washing, I ventured out for a shorter adventure: Notting Hill and Portobello Road. Never having explored this London “village” before, it was fun to walk from the station, past some swanky homes and around the suburb made famous by the movie of the same name! Although it wasn’t a market day, there were enough stalls and shops plying their wares, that I got the idea!! A great afternoon, and I found “the” bookshop!!
Wednesday was a quiet stay at home day, apart from taking Mr T to school and picking him up afterwards. My big effort was to cook dinner that night…chicken snitzels with roast vegetable salad! The boys approved, methinks!
I had somewhere else on my “to do” list that I wished to visit today…the Chelsea Physic garden. My good friend, SAR, had told me about this amazing garden years ago and today was my day to see it!! Yay! I walked past the Chelsea Pensioners’ home on the way and caught a Scottish send off for one of its clients.
I continued my walk and spied on some cricketers and found where Oscar Wilde had once lived.
Finally, I found it!
I then spent a lovely 3 hours ( at least) here, including a very informative ( free) tour along with only 2 others…1 each from Melbourne & Sydney! My picnic lunch has never been eaten in such beautiful surroundings. As the above sign states, this garden has been around since 1673, and was established to study and preserve plants that were both good and bad for human health. It’s on an amazing ( & valuable) plot of land, that backs onto the Thames, and is, of course, in Chelsea!! A wonderful afternoon…. Followed by a walk along the Thames for some distance and then I met the 3 Boys for end of school year celebratory burgers, in Covent Garden! Along with the other million Londoners and tourists enjoying the summer evening! 😂
The next day was my pack up, leave and travel by train to the Cotwolds day! So that’s what I did!! I left from Paddington station so I couldn’t resist a little Bear hunt!
So that ended my Second visit to London!
And the Third visit was very short, restful and low key. I arrived on Wednesday evening, after my house sit and 2 days in Oxford and then spent the next 2 days, washing, almagamating all my bits and pieces into luggage I could carry, eating well and last-time chatting with my family.
Suddenly, it was late Friday afternoon and time for me to catch the train into the city, then head off by another train in a north easterly direction to Harwich, where I was catching the night ferry to the Hook of Holland! That is , where I JUST managed to catch the ferry, after missing a connection, not finding a taxi and…….well that’s another story!! 😊