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London Day 1






Our neighbourhood


June 16: Arrive in London

We arrived slightly ahead of time at 10:49AM. We walked over to baggage reclaim, where our luggage awaited us. Well, all but Patti's! Finally, as we were about to give up hope, her suitcase showed up and we were on our way.

After clearing customs, our car, driven by Terry, picked us up. We collected some cash at the ATM, piled our luggage in the car, and were transported to to our flat in Belgravia.

We arrived at the flat to be met by the cleaning lady, who spoke some sort of dialect we barely understood. She showed us round the flat, explaining all the machines, the lights, the three locks on the door, etc. The let-in person hadn't arrived yet, so we had to wait until 2 for her to give us the keys. In the meantime, Max and I walked down to Victoria Station and collected our London Museum Passes.

After we were officially checked on the the flat, we all walked down to Harvey Nichols where we had a spot of lunch. At this point, we were all delirious from lack of sleep and it was difficult to stay awake through lunch. Patti lost her beloved map (briefly), but after we were able to translate to the waiter ("I need my map" really means "I left my mapbook at our table, but now it's gone walkies... have you seen it?") he took a quick look-round and found it.

From there, we decided to take a nice stroll through Hyde Park (only 6 more hours to stay awake kids!), where Max & Lauren were enchanted by the ducks on the pond and the horses trotting around the park.

Exiting on the other side, we went through Mayfair and saw where we might have stayed, had our flat not been doublebooked. We also went by the American Embassy, which was cordoned off with a fence and guarded by a London policeman, complete with submachine gun. Spooky.

We walked from there to Selfridges where Lauren declared herself in heaven. Candy, chocolates, stationery... what more could a kid want?

We purchased some groceries and some stationery, and headed back to Victoria Station by tube. We walked back to our flat from there. Lauren & Patti later went out to get some fried chicken for dinner (for them, I mean :).

We made it until 9! In fact, we stayed up until after 10 trying to plan out some of our week.

Lauren & Patti are sleeping upstairs in the master bedroom, and Max and I are sleeping downstairs in the 2nd bedroom (which has a queen-sized bed and two bunk beds too).

Max declared that he wasn't tired, so I told him to wait 15 minutes, and if he wasn't asleep by then, then he could read some. That was the last I heard from him that night..




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