A Travellerspoint blog

Busy London

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It's been warm, hot and hotter in London. The weather is supposed to crack the day after we leave for our tour, Thursday.
Craig has been our trusty tour guide and since I last wrote we have been many places.
Sunday Jude and I got brave and decided to give Craig the day off and go into the city ourselves on the trains.
We managed to find our way to Totenham Court Road, Kathmandu, Paperchase, Knightsbridge and Harrods and back home again.
Yesterday was an amazing day. All thanks to Craig and Brian.
I have copied directly from my daily journal.
We got up early this morning, leaving the house at 7.15am to make our way via trains to Canary Wharf, a relatively new business area of London, with Craig telling us we were on our way to watch a tv show being made he got tickets for. It wasn't until we were standing there wondering which direction did he confess we weren't going to the show and his friend Brian (a pilot) was meeting us and would be taking us for a fly to another country for the day. Something we found out later they had been cooking up for a month or so. Brian is part owner of a Piper Arrow. He drove us to Biggins Airfield near Kent, roadworks held us up for ages. We waited in the airport lounge and watched the live telecast of the Amanda Knox appeal in Perugia Italy, while Brian got the plane ready. 
It was here at the airport that Brian let slip we were going to France. Exciting!! The plane was a four seater. We had to step on the wing to get in. Craig sat up front with Brian to be co-pilot. On the way we flew across the British channel and Jude said the only way we could top this surprise off would be if we went to Versailles. It was exciting looking out for first glimpse of the Eiffel Tower and then finally spotting it. It took about 1.5 hours and we landed at Toulousse de Nobel airport. It cost £20 to land there. It was while we were waiting for a cab that we found out we were going to Versailles!! The place we both had really wanted to go to but did not think we would make it to on our tour as it is quite a distance from Paris. 
Google Versailles. It has an awesome palace and astounding gardens. Unfortunately the palace was shut on Monday but we wandered the gardens and had lunch in the restaurant there, took heaps of photos, had refreshments in another cafe, and sweltered in the heat. It was garden maintenance day. We caught a cab back to the airport about 4pm, which cost €10 less than the other cab?? Flew off again about 4.30pm. Had to go through customs back at Biggins airport and got another stamp in our passports by the lovely passport officers there while Brian put the plane to bed. We stopped off at a 'real' old english pub for a drink then Brian dropped us off at Canary Wharf to catch the trains back to Leytonstone again. 
Home about 8.30pm. Wednesday we start our Europe tour. After the little taste today I am eager to see more.
Jude and I both feel very spoiled by the awesome treat Craig and Brian 'cooked' up and will remember it always.
P.S. Lois I spent those euros you gave me on a lemonade at the Versailles cafe. Was very refreshing sitting in the shade looking over the lake. Cheers.

Posted by GIJude 22:38 Archived in United Kingdom Tagged versailles Comments (2)

Photos

A bit late

sunny 27 °C
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Hello All. I finally have managed to post some photos. Have a look.
I can't believe how nice the weather has been here in London. Hot and sunny again today.
We visited the London Eye today and could see beautifully due to the clear sunny sky.
After ambling across Westminster Bridge and taking many photos of Big Ben, Parliament Houses and Westminster Cathedral we hopped on a train to visit Madame Tussauds wax museum. Many photos with celebrity wax models later, a good scaring and a mini cab ride back through London history we made our way to Abbey Road. Of course we weren't the only tourists trying to get a photo walking the crossing.
Thanks to Craig our terrific guide!!

Posted by GIJude 12:50 Archived in United Kingdom Comments (1)

Sunday Roast

Update

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25-9-11 Sunday Roast - Leisurely morning at Craigs. Visited Bricklane markets on route to Buckingham Palace. Had peanut butter whoopie woohoo! Yummo!! Made a couple of unique purchases. Back on the trains to get to Buckingham Palace to have a tour of the state rooms. Very ornate and interesting being on the inside of somewhere I've only ever seen on tv but kind of like living in a museum. Back to Leytonstone via the local pub for a counter meal - roast beef with yorkshire pudding. Yummo. 
26.9.11 - Monday - Out of bed by 5.45am to get ready early for Anderson Stonehenge and Bath tour. Left house by 6.40am. Packed in like sardines on the first of 2 trains. Was thinking of Gareth as we sprinted up one of the steepest escalators ever to get to London Bridge to catch the tour bus at 7.30am. Stonehenge is about what I expected and worth a look. Thanks to Paul and Bob who made the trip very interesting. Didn't know they buried people there. American tourist 20 minutes late back to bus!! Bath is awesome. Very nice spot. Would like to visit again for a couple days instead of 3 hours. Roman baths would be awesome to soak in. Visited Roman Bath museum. Lunch of salmon and broccoli patties mmmmm with a glass of wine at Garfunkels, watching the Bath world go by. Lovely. Back on the bus by 4pm and travel back to London on the M4. 
27-9-11 Craig, Jude and I went to Paperchase at Totenham Road, 3 floors of cool stuff there. Soho for lunch of noodle salad at Nam. Yummo. Wander past 'peep' shows, strip show store fronts. Looked at awesome cupcakes in a shop that looked more like a nightclub. Visited Selfridges via Carnaby Street. Off to Harrods by train. Awesome Egyptian area by the escalators. Dodi and Diana memorium there also. Bought Harrods umbrella with bling of course. Pizza for tea yummo. We are having a good variety of food and I'm looking forward to a nice Snog. More action to come. Take care xx

Posted by GIJude 14:49 Archived in United Kingdom Comments (0)

UK

First impressions

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Initiated into London traffic with the longest taxi ride ever from Heathrow to Leytonstone going via central London in peak hour on a Friday - just over 2 hours to arrive. Rafferty's rules for traffic, made worse by improvements being done for the games next year. 
Lovely local Thai dinner followed by early to bed due to extreme exhaustion bought on by severe lack of sleep. 
Saturday we visited Saachi gallery, had lunch at the market nearby then took off to Kew Gardens by train. The tree top walk made you feel like the huge planes above, coming into land at Heathrow, could be touched. Back to the train and off to the massive O2 arena for a stroll and have Mexican for dinner at Chiquitas. Home by red double decker bus after a wander around the newly opened Westfield. Lovely Autumn weather here.

Posted by GIJude 12:08 Archived in United Kingdom Comments (0)

Last day of Singapore

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Last day in Singapore. Hijacked by a taxi driver into visiting a jewellery warehouse so that he could gain a $6 fuel voucher. Taxis fares are so cheap they need to suppliment their income somehow. Breakfasted at our favourite spot at Vivo City where Judle's determination paid off, finally getting her basil omelet. Bit of shopping done before hopping on a train to find the Mint toy museum. 5 floors of all sorts of toys, including Astro Boy and Betty Boop. Walking, walking, walking and stumbling across NoodleStar for a lovely late lunch. More walking to Suntec City to make it in perfect time to see the Fountain of Wealth going and then stop so we could participate in the wishing ritual. It is said if you touch the fountain it brings you great wealth. Our next aim to go to the Singapore Flyer to see the city at night from up high. This made near impossible by the Formula One taking over that part of the city. Ever felt like a rat in a maze? We can tell you how that felt. Bonus - seeing the practice cars racing around the track up close!! With Judle's great communication, a lot of very helpful locals and a bucket load of determination we made it. And was it worth it what!! Awesome. What a great finish to an adventurous stay in a very pretty and friendly country. Typing this as we fly 13 hours to UK, currently over Russia, for the next exciting leg. Write to you there. Love to family and friends xx

Posted by GIJude 12:04 Archived in Singapore Comments (0)

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