Wednesday, 24 March 2010

London, Hoorah!

Since Lois' flight left this morning, and she needed to be at Heathrow for half 7 in the morning, we decided to go spend the night.  Booked into the Comfort Inn at Heathrow.  Not a hotel we'd recommend, we discovered, but that wasn't the point!  The point was to play in London in the afternoon and not kill ourselves getting her to the airport in the morning.

Anyway . . . we got around the M25, and checked into the hotel.  It was mid-afternoon, so we weren't entirely sure we really wanted to spend the money to go into London.  But, I decided that it was worth it to spend the afternoon playing, instead of just sitting in the hotel.  After all, if we were just going to sit and "do nothing" we could have stayed at my house til evening, and been more comfortable.  So, we went in!  I'd been really wanting to go to the Barbican to see the little zebra finch sound scape "art" instillation.  Yeah . . . that was fun!  I particularly wanted to go with Lois, since she's one of the few people who will appreciate it in the same way as me.  Unfortunately, no photography was allowed, but here's the youtube video promoting it:

Oh boy was that fun!  If you're in/around London, we'd totally recommend going.  It's only on til the middle/end of May, though!  So, you'd better hurry.

After we left the Barbican, we were trying to figure out how to walk from there to the Museum of London.  They're very close to each other, but it's a bit tricky to get from one to the other in the most direct line.  We figured out that, you actually have to go up to the "Highwalk" area!  This is a network of raised sidewalk sort of things connecting a bunch of the City of London (as opposed to "Greater London") buildings together, above traffic level.  The whole area is a network of quiet nooks, private gardens and waterscapes.  A total hidden gem in the heart of London.

The museum was fun, and a total recommendation for anyone traveling through London.  I've been before, but it's quite large, so it's worth more than one visit.  Especially since come May, it's going to be opening a new exhibit.  They've been working on it for 3 years, so it's probably going to be quite something!  (Besides, it's FREE!)

After the museum, we went to Victoria Station for a "traditional" dinner.  When we lived in London together, we lived near Victoria Station, and we'd go to this restaurant, Garfunkles, there.  There's nothing special about the restaurant itself, but, we enjoyed remembering living in London together.  That was a magical summer :-)

By the time we got back to the hotel, Lois had a headache.  So, we just chilled for a couple hours, watching "Mock the Week", "QI" and "Would I Lie to You?" - 3 BBC productions that are all very funny.  Mock the Week is a comic show about current events.  Would I Lie to You is a bluffing game where celebrities read off pre-prepared cards, and the other team (also celebs) have to decide if it's true or false.  Kind of like the game "2 Truths and a Lie", if you've ever played that.  QI, though, is my favourite!  It stands for "Quite Interesting" and it's a quiz show hosted by Stephen Fry.  Yeah.  You can imagine from there.  It's really funny, and (surprise!) quite interesting.

Took Lois to the airport this morning.  Very sad to see her go, but it was so wonderful to have her here.  I'm really grateful that Grandma sent her over for the week.  It was the perfect present.

I'd specifically asked at the front desk about check-out time (told 11.00 am) because, if possible, I wanted to avoid the whole driving in Rush Hour thing.  Not exactly fun.  Left the Do Not Disturb sign on the door, and took Lois off to the airport. Got back to the hotel and discovered that my bag (which I'd left in the room) was not there, and the room was being cleaned!  Ummm..... what's going on?!?  The front desk had the room listed as being empty!  And that I'd checked out.  Ummm.... no.  So, I made them find my bag (had my laptop in it!!!) and let me back into the room, since I'd not checked out!  Anyway, not impressed.  Like I said before, not a hotel I'd recommend.


KatieLarson said...


What a fun experience you had with Lois. I enjoyed seeing the video you posted with your reaction. Good job Lois. Love your blog, hope you don't mind me reading it. I have a blog if you would like an invite, let me know via FB.

Hermana Armga (Katie Larson)

Jennifer - CEG said...

A the little birdies disturbed by the noise they make?! or are they enjoying it? and who knew about the hidden walkways! Brilliant!
sorry about the hotel experience - Comfort inn are not known for their service and as an employee of the hospitality industry I always feel the need to apologize for bad service - there is no excuse!

Adele said...

Ha ha... Jenn, you have no need to apologise! I just simply won't use them again, and am letting others know. I'm also going to be letting (where I booked the hotel through) that the 3 star rating was not what was delivered! It was more like a 2 star.

As for the birds, no. They weren't bothered by the sounds at all. Of course, the speakers were not right next to them, so it wasn't hugely intrusive. Also, the sounds are fairly soft. And, they're really used to it. They weren't bothered by the people, either! They were flying between your ankles, nearly colliding with your shoulder, sitting at your feet not bothered by your presence.... it was so fun!

Lanie Ree said...

Oh, I bet you guys had such a great time! Those hidden walkways sound amazing. Someday, you'll have to show them to me :)

Adele said...

Totally, Ree!