So we have returned to Ottawa safe and sound. And sick. I am actually home from work today, as I have come down with a nasty cold, which is honestly not all that suprising ... I always get sick when I travel. A combination of being run down (not enough sleep, too much walking!) and being stuck on an airplane with people who have all kinds of bugs (I swear the guy behind me flying home had tuberculosis). Anyway, what follows is a list of things I did/experienced for the first time on this, my fifth, trip to London:
-- visited the National Portrait Gallery
-- visited the Temple Church, which dates from 1185 and is the church associated with the Knights Templar, the crusading knights
-- had my carry on bag inspected by a drug sniffing dog (you'll be glad to know I was cleared to continue)
-- racked myself spectacularly tripping over air on the sidewalk, stumbling for nearly half a block and finally taking out a garbage can (and narrowly missing several innocent bystanders) before crashing to the ground -- awkward!
-- found my way to the center of the maze at Hampton Court
-- took a photo of Henry VIII in the flesh
-- encountered a chatty customs agent who wanted to discuss the shopping opportunities in London (when we said we were bringing home purses, shoes, and dresses he nodded sagely and said "yes, they tell me London's where the good stuff is")
-- was on a plane where a medical emergency was declared and a doctor paged (I have no further information -- the doctor went into the first class cabin and returned about half an hour later, but that's all I got)
-- had my suitcase removed from the carousel at Heathrow on the other side from where I was standing, by a tour group who were "helping" by pulling off the suitcases of everyone on their flight, whether they were part of the tour group or not ... we stood there for ten minutes fearing my bag had been lost before the tour group leader announced their "helpful" gesture to those still waiting
-- breezed through check in and security at Heathrow in *less* time than it took us to check in and get through security at Ottawa ... I don't know where everyone was that morning, but they weren't at Heathrow!
-- went shopping on Oxford Street
-- had "typical" London weather ... grey and rainy, all except one day
-- touched an actual genuine Louis Vuitton bag (PetDoc's bday gift from Noise)
Photos are here. There aren't all that many, as this wasn't a sightseeing trip as much as it was a visit with PetDoc and Noise, but we did go to Hampton Court on Monday, which is where most of the photos are from. It was a great trip, mostly because I did get to spend so much time with PetDoc and Noise ... they were both off work most of the time we were there and we had a blast bumming around the city. When do I get to go back???