So far, London has been everything I expected it to be: gorgeous architecture, awesome sites to see, fantastic food, and cold & rainy. All in all, it’s been so far so good.
February 12-13, 2010:
We arrived on Saturday after an overnight flight out of JFK, where Diana Ross touched me. Yes, she did. Well actually, she technically brushed aside me as she cut through our security line to go ahead to the front of the line. Even though seeing celebrities at JFK is about as expected (yawn) as seeing them at LAX, it was still kinda random. Oh and she definitely looks fabulous. Like, really fabulous.
After we arrived on Saturday morning, we went through customs, met up with Christie, got our Tube passes and were on our way back to our hotel, The Regency in South Kensington. At this point, we were utterly exhausted so my parents and Christie graciously allowed Katelyn & I an entire hour of rest/nap time. Woot. While we were napping, flowers came to our door. They were Valentines’ Day gifts from Jay & Jeremiah. My flowers are yellow & red (as seen below) and Kate’s were red. Yay, flowers, pretty. Post-nap, we headed out to Picadilly Circus (reminded me of Times Square), Trafalgar Square (they had a huge screen set-up that the Olympics were broadcasting from), and the National Museum. At the National Museum, we saw original artwork from Vincent Van Gough, Monet, Manet, Leonardo DaVinci, Rafael, Michelangelo, Claude, Rembrandt, and a whole bunch of others. Despite being incredibly tired, it was still really, really cool and something that I’d recommend to try some day.
Side bar: This entire time I’ve been in London, I’ve been having terrible problems with my rental World Edition Blackberry. Word of advice: Get the Tour if you’re a traveler and avoid all of this annoyance/phone time with Verizon. Katelyn has a Tour & has had no problems getting service. I constantly have to reset the phone (taking the battery out) to find a signal & then hope that it actually connects with the network once it recognizes it. It’s such a pain in the ass. #VerizonFAIL.
Following the National Museum, Kate & I went back to the hotel to nap for an hour and a half because Christie wanted us to go out with her and her friends for one of the girl’s 21st birthday. My old ass must have looked like a chaperon hanging out with all those 20 & 21 year old girls lol. I ended up having a great time.
Sunday, February 14, 2010:
My parents graciously let us sleep in while they went to mass. We did a crapload of walking on Sunday. We walked around Notting Hill (didn’t see the infamous house with the blue door from the movie), visited Portabello Market (totally did sing Bedknobs and Broomsticks in my head the entire afternoon), then walked a little bit through the Baker Street area. If you’re not into shopping as much as you are sight-seeing, then I’d say that perhaps this isn’t for you BUT it’s neat area & they have fun places to do a little shopping/browsing, so it is worth the walk thru. Before heading back to South Kensington, we went to Tottenham Ct & Oxford St. see where my dad lived when he studied here back in the fall of 1977. It was still there, only a hotel had bought out where he stayed. It was a quaint & quiet area and his face was so joyous when he showed us the ‘hood.
Rounding out Sunday, I sprinted in the rain to the Apple Store on Regent Street to get there like 3 minutes before closing time so I could buy an international adapter kit for my Macbook’s power cord. WORD OF ADVICE TO FELLOW TRAVELERS: Make sure you purchase the proper power adapters for your cell phones, computers, etc. BEFORE you leave for vacation. If you put it off til the last minute, you’ll end up sweaty and soaking wet in the middle of a London Apple store and that’s not fun or fabulous. We had dinner at a delicious Italian restaurant in our neighborhood on Sunday night. I still dream of that Italian sausage (that’s what she said) and broccoli in my pasta. I’ll have to ask my father for the name of it.
Speaking of dreaming, I should probably go to sleep now because it’s 12:35am and I did not get a good night’s sleep at all last night. I kept thinking about falling down the winding stairs at St. Paul’s Cathedral and then my heart would start pounding and I couldn’t breathe – if you haven’t heard me mention it on Twitter, I’ll tell that story next time. Then I also started having the first of my wedding planning anxiety attacks because well, I’ve never been married before and I have no idea where to even start. My mom said we should start with the guest list first because it’ll be the most difficult of decisions and already that’s causing me panic because we’ve had people contact us assuming they’re invited or joking about it and that makes me super stressed out because aaahhhh I have no idea; I don’t have a date or wedding party or anything other than a state and a possible color scheme picked out. So I was thinking about that crap all night too. AND NOW I’M GOING TO STOP WRITING ABOUT IT AND THINKING ABOUT IT SO I CAN GO TO BED TONIGHT…aka right now.