Friday, May 13, 2011
London with Bo, Part 2
Note: This post is an excerpt from the March 1, 2011 entry of my "London with Bo" travelogue. My dad and I made a quick trip to tour London as preparations began for last month's Royal Wedding.
My dad and I sat in the Business Elite cabin of a 767-400ER, as expected, for our flight from New York to London. The cuisine was characteristically flavorful, from the seared pepper crusted tuna seaweed salad to the garlic and herb shrimp with lemon butter, and each of the courses in between. I read, worked on my netbook, and watched the airplane version of "The Town." I didn’t sleep at all as we flew over the ocean, mostly by choice.
After landing at London Heathrow airport, Bo and I navigated our way through the various shuttles, trams, and underground Tube lines to reach Victoria Station. We walked through the neighborhood to find the Cherry Court Hotel, which was near the top of our list for possible accommodations (Bo had ruled out the local youth hostels that Kathy and I usually stay at overseas). They had a vacancy, so we dropped off our bags and hit the streets of London.
Despite being familiar with London from my previous visit with Kathy, I suggested that Bo and I join a hop-on, hop-off style Original Tour (catching the last day of a “2 days for the price of 1 day” promotion) for an overview of the city. Every 15 minutes a bus loops through the major tourist sights, spouting out canned narration, and allowing opportunities to make stops at the popular attractions and catch the next bus to continue on (or just ditch the bus altogether and walk around).
Throughout the day, we were able to catch glimpses of the iconic London Eye (pictured above) and other famous London landmarks (to be featured in my next Blogspot post) from various vantage points around the city.
We stayed onboard for the entire city bus tour, taking in all of the sights, before hopping a different bus to start the loop again.
Hopping off at Buckingham Palace allowed us to catch the tail end of the Changing of the Guard and pick up some presents at the palace gift shop for Kathy and our yet unborn baby.
It felt great to stretch out our legs in Hyde Park on our walk back to the Victoria district (Bo is pictured in front of the Princess Diana memorial fountain).
A “Free Iran” political rally/protest against Iranian leaders Ahmadinejad and Khamenei made life interesting (and loud) for us as we left Hyde Park. Eventually, we walked our way back to the Victoria district and ended up at St. George’s for fish and chips that evening.
We saved the best for Day Two.