Friday night after work I caught a cheap Ryan Air flight to London. I was a little wary of the airline, since one of my coworkers really talked it down, but it was fine! It was like Southwest but with extra money-making schemes. Like they played these weird radio commercials for other businesses while we were boarding, sold scratch-off lottery tickets on board, and they had a deal with a ground transport company so that they could sell us transfers on the plane for cheaper than you could buy them once you land.
The friend I was staying with met me at the airport and took me home, where I met Stitch for the first time:
We spent Saturday sight-seeing in London. I’d been there once before, though it was a long time ago. I wanted to see the most important sights, but I wasn’t hell-bent on seeing absolutely everything as quickly as possible. We spent a good long time in the Tower of London, going on the guided tour and exploring the nooks and crannies of the various buildings within its walls. And, of course, seeing the Crown Jewels (no photos allowed)!
Our “Beefeater” guide:
The Norman chapel in the White Tower:
My friend and hostess:
After grabbing lunch (fish and chips, of course!), we headed over to ride the London Eye.
Afterwards, we headed over to take a few pictures of Westminster Abbey nearby:
Then on to Harrod’s! Harrod’s is more than a department store. I couldn’t believe the incredible food hall and the Egyptian room (basically a really well-themed escalator well with a live singer to entertain you while you make your way up through the levels).
Through the use of guerilla tactics, my friend and I managed to score seats at the ice cream counter. I really can’t believe we each managed to eat a whole one of these:
Then, to finish of our day right, I just had to try to sneak onto the Hogwarts Express. I was almost successful! My luggage cart got stuck halfway through, unfortunately, as you can see. So we turned around and went home.
The next day, I wanted to see some of the English countryside, so we went for a lovely drive through Kent. Our first stop was Leeds Castle:
Next, we drove through some amazing tree-lined (more like tree-canopied) country lanes to a pub for an authentic English roast lunch, topped off with Gypsy Tart:
Finally, we explored a bit of the city of Rochester. The castle:
And the cathedral, which, as my English friend taught me, is what qualifies Rochester to be a city, rather than a town:
And that was it for my weekend in England! I headed back to Berlin on a Sunday evening flight. Now (Friday afternoon) I’m off to the train station to visit my old host family from my high school exchange year. So, there will, of course, be a new installment next week!
Flydog update: A lot of people have been asking me about Flydog. She’s OK… I can’t say doing well, but OK. She’s on a medication to present seizures, so she is stable in that respect, but she simply isn’t back to how she was before the seizures started. And she’s an old girl, so we don’t necessarily expect her to improve from here on out. But she’s hanging in there, and Mr. Flyaway is taking care of her the best he can! I think there’s a good chance I’ll be able to see her again, when I get home in a month.