Arrival in London

Trip Start Jan 13, 2013
Trip End Feb 04, 2013

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Flag of United Kingdom  , England,
Thursday, January 31, 2013

Thursday morning I was up very early, before 04:00 so I could be on time for my flights. Mr. and Mrs. Vernaud were kindly up as well to offer breakfast at 04:30. I just had a coffee, but we had the chance to talk for another half hour before I left for the airport.

I dropped the car at the rental area and rode the shuttle to the departure level. The Geneva airport is right on the border between France and Switzerland. There are both French and Swiss zones in the airport to simplify travel. I walked past the immigration desks in the airport and entered the French zone. That meant I wouldn't have any formalities to clear in Paris, I was legally already in France before the plane took off.

I had just enough time in Paris to have a cup of coffee in the lounge before walking to the departure gate for London Heathrow. The flight was quite bumpy, there was a lot of turbulence on the way across.

Upon arrival I cleared immigration, picked up my luggage and cleared customs. After changing a little money, I headed for the tube station. The Piccadilly line on the London underground runs all the way to Heathrow. I bought a day pass and caught the underground to King’s Cross – St Pancras station, then changed to the Northern line for two stops and finally arrived at Old Street, where the Holiday Inn Express was about two blocks away.

I checked in and then walked down a block to a pub called "Nelson’s Retreat" a reference to Lord Nelson of the Nile. As with many English pubs these days, it was not exclusively English. It had an English pub grub menu (fish and chips and the like) but an even fuller Thai menu. The cook and waitress were Thai; I could make out a word or two as they cackled back and forth.

After lunch, I had intended to head out and shoot some video and photos, but by this time I wasn’t feeling 100%. The accumulation of fatigue, and not quite enough sleep had given me a scratchy throat, so I decided to take it easy in the afternoon and just rest and write, which I did.

I had dinner in the hotel pub, and will head to bed early.
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Mary Hendren on

Hi Joel,

We're glad that you are in London and trust you have a pleasant Sabbath. Thanks for the update. What a long tube ride, but you know all the connections. We hope you can rest and recover from the long, strenuous trip. We appreciate the commentary and photos. Thanks for the extra effort to take us along.


Tess Washington on

It is good to listen to our bodies' signals for sleep and rest! Glad that you have the time and space to get needed rest and sleep before moving on to London. Fascinating about the London resembles the BART transbay tube under the SF Bay which the commuter trains from the East Bay to SF cross everyday...We will pray for your safe & peaceful ride to London. Thank you for the sights and sounds of Switzerland and France through your words & pictures! May you have a wonderful meeting with Mr. Hawkins and the rest of our brethrens!

Charlene McCrady on

Thanks for taking us along Joel. What a fruitful and colorful trip this was! So glad for all the baptisms you could administer and the contacts you made. Hope you can get a little R&R now that the bulk of the travel is behind you.
You are in our prayers.

Tommie Briley on

I traveled in that London tube once from Heathrow, to a church member’s house in a quiet neighborhood…that trip and our stay at his flat are pretty clear (and his delicious Indian cuisine!), but there was a steady downpour the 2 days spent there so the rest of London is rather blurred in my memory. The only other clear memory is the beautiful, crisp fall day on departure and the verdant countryside on the train ride N to Scotland. Mr. Meeker, very much appreciate all the faithful journeying and journaling you share with us. I pray that you were able to get some much needed rest and that your troubling symptoms have abated. My prayers are also with you for continued safe travels.

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