London Bound

Trip Start Apr 02, 2012
Trip End Jun 04, 2012

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Where I stayed
Hilton Olympia
What I did
Picadilly Circus

Flag of United Kingdom  , England,
Monday, April 9, 2012

This morning we woke up with London on the mind and commenced packing up from our week in Bath. After seeing the ‘rents off to Germany for their family holiday, we made our way to the train station in the rain via a cab. We were careful to pay attention to how our cab driver shifted gears in preparation for our manual car rental in Portugal. It was an easy and uneventful trip to London, and we soon arrived at Paddington Station, where it was immediately apparent we had reached a metropolis. I have never seen such a busy train station, it felt more like a happening airport. As we tried to figure out the extensive public transportation in London, we made it very obvious that we were tourists by holding up more than a few people along the way. We got it under control after the first hour, though. Nonetheless, I’ll try to remember to be a little more forgiving of the tourists back in San Francisco. After making our way to our very cheap accommodations at the Hilton Olympia ( in a pinch works wonders), we headed out into the evening drizzle to get my first taste of London. We headed to Picadilly Circus and Trafalgar Square, which are both very much the tourist destinations. We quickly had our fill of both the crowds and the rain, and ducked into a cafe for some wifi and tea before heading to a pub for dinner. Being late, with more cider and rich English food in our bellies, we made our way back towards our hotel, stopping off to get a bottle of wine on the way. Once at the hotel, Julia and I struggled for 10 minutes to open the bottle of wine with the archaic wine opener provided in the room. We both got on either ends of the wine bottle and pulled with all our strength, expecting the situation to end in catastrophe. Much to our surprise, we had zero effect on the cork and finally acquiesced, calling the gentleman at the front desk to come help us. He was a nice chap, and rescued us from a night of staring at a taunting unopened bottle of wine. Unfortunately, after all that trouble, the wine was terrible... but never mind, if that’s our biggest problem in life right now, you won’t hear me complain! Tomorrow we explore...

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