Monday, September 3, 2018

Travels with Debi: Let's see even more of London!

Back to London!  After a few months, things have gotten murky for me, especially since it wasn't all clear what I did when I was there!  

Saturday and Sunday were devoted to getting around to more parts of the city.  I actually am having to consult my phone photos to remind myself where I had gone, since the phone puts location tags on the pictures.  After a nice little breakfast each day, we packed a little food (or bought a little when out) and went on our way around the city.  Seriously, I know we went on the Tube, I know we ended up seeing many things including a big protest against Brexit, I got to another museum and other amazing things, but it is such a blur.  I will try to tidy this  post up into 2 separate days, instead of mashing it all into one incoherent mess.  Incoherent seems to be my mode of operation these days.
My view from the Thames (whilst on the ferry)

In front of the National Gallery
Street Artist

Saturday:  This was really fun because we got to walk through all sorts of places, walked through Picadilly Circus, saw so many double decker busses and arrived the National Gallery, and there are some FABULOUS things at that museum as well.  We were all over the place, I know I saw Big Ben from afar, which is covered for the most part with scaffolding, but meh.  Whatever.  That didn't faze me in the least.  We went shopping at a really cool department store  (Liberty) and I was wowed by some really amazing items for sale.  Mark and I were poring over all the beautiful Persian rugs and of course we both honed in on this GORGEOUS one that was so finely woven with silk and it was some crazy amount of money like 12,000 pounds....  and it was divine and it was of course the most expensive one we saw....  what can I say? We have excellent taste.  In many areas of life!  ;)

Lovely fabrics 

This was a fun little display!

A nice alley we walked through

I loved seeing odd little vignettes like this

Beatles- of course
Picadilly circus

Double decker!

The National Gallery had some stunning paintings - from works by Vermeer to Van Gogh and Rubens to Cezanne.  And the building itself was breathtakingly beautiful. The architecture in this city is generally amazing.  So different from the US, so much character and history in much of it, with sprinkling of more modern and shiny/glassy sorts.

Inside the National Gallery

The Ambassadors by Hans Holbein the Younger
Van Gogh's Chair

Degas pastel

Hillside in Provence, Cezanne- one of my favorite artists

LOVE all the marble

After shopping and walking and museum-touring we headed back to the apartment, after a stop at their grocery store called Waitrose.  This place was pretty fun- interesting to see the foods there.  I was told it was sort of like Whole Foods.  The evening was then spent have "nibbles" and Sangria in the exquisite company of Mark, Jonny and Lucia.  Lucia is a friend of theirs who I met on their last journey to the US last year.  Lucia and I hit it off really fast and we had SO much fun catching up.  That was truly a magical evening that I don't think will be matched for a while.  Maybe next summer.
I packed these bad boys all the way home
Marksie taking pictures of us taking a pic of him. :)

All the sangria and such.

SUCH good food

What a great night
We had a great night

Add caption

Here we are!

Taking pictures of Mark taking pictures

The drinks were so good and the appetizers she brought were just divine.  I had the most wonderful time in that beautiful little garden with the most delightful company.


Sunday The Mad Art teacher got more training in the Tube travel and we headed on down to start at Canary Wharf.

Dingos at the station :)

Tower Hamlets

So this Conservatory, for lack of a better word, was somewhere down by Canary Wharf.  It is getting too late in the day to pester Jonny and Mark to find out where it was.  It was very lovely, but according to our resident horticulturist, some parts were not properly taken care of.....  But it was nice to see.

Sunday was the day we went down to Canary Wharf (where we saw a really nice garden/greenhouse in Tower Hamlets)  and then took the Thames Clipper down to a place called the Embankment.  While traveling down the Thames I got to see all those buildings with the creative names, plus old places, and even London Bridge.  

Looking down the Thames
Marksie!  <3

We also then got to see Cleopatra's Needle along with a host of other things that I can't even begin to recall.  But I have photos of a lot of it.  :)  

Cleopatra's Needle

Sunday evening I took my dear hosts out for dinner at a super nice little Italian restaurant- Carluccios.    It is apparently a small chain there and it was good!  A few of us had wine, some really delightful food and then some of the best desserts that I have ever had in my life.  Good, well-made, dessert, not the nasty overly sweet ick that passes for dessert here.  We each ordered something different and then shared.  It was just heavenly.

Pretty little place

See the photo below for my meal here- which was delish 

Monday gets it's own post as we spent the day at Kew Gardens....  another spectacular way to spend a day.  I wanted an art and gardens visit and I got that and more during that 5 days.  I can't begin to tell all the stories and places we stopped at and looked into or little alleys we walked through or streets we crossed and at one point almost got run over!  OY!  Lol.

Down the Thames

The pictures help, but really it is an overall feeling of warmth and smiling and joy that I remember the most.  And of course  that is all because of my two favorite people who live in the center of London.  On to the next post.