Monday, June 11, 2018

England in the rear view mirror ...

I went to England last year and so I was surprised to find myself heading back again this year; but how could I not go back for my Aunt Audrey's 90th birthday ?



I find flying quite magical.    And was amazed to see Windsor Castle passing below the plane; three days before the royal wedding.




My cousin Steve once more offered his lovely apartment for me to crash in.  Last visit I tried to "tough it out" and not waste my first day in England and ended with a headache.  This time I immediately settled onto his couch for a lovely nap.  "Wake me in two hours", I asked.  Instead I woke on my own to the aroma of dinner four hours later.   



From Steve's I headed to Limehouse to stay with my nephew Andrew and his wonderful wife, Jess.

I was so glad to finally meet Jess and we had a marvellous wander around the nearby marina and beside the ever changing Thames. 



Folk have to manage the locks themselves








While Andrew and Jess worked, I happily explored London on my own.












Tours were offered of the inner workings of Tower Bridge; including a walk across a glass floor looking down on the river and road below.  Wowsa.   I couldn't resist that.





Even better, one section of the glass walkway had a mirrored ceiling above it making for some interesting photo opportunities.




The monument to the Great Fire of London (1666) is a narrow column built in 1671 which once-climbed affords marvellous views of the city.  





What had to be impressed upon me was the fact that it was 311 steps to reach that amazing view.


However I did get an official certificate when I reached the bottom. I was amazed that it had only been 311 steps; my guesstimate was more around the 5,000 mark !

London is a feast for the eyes; even derelict buildings have a certain beauty.  I marvelled at the Butterfly bushes growing all over this place.


These ruins of St. Dunston in the East is a church that was bombed in WWII.


Notice the palm tree; this is in London.
  
In Greenwich I visited the Cutty Sark built in 1869.  Unlike our own famous Blue Nose it is no longer in the water but instead perched like a stranded creature caught in a trap.


London is so chock a block full of amazing things to see.  Standing on the deck of the Cutty Sark with the Thames in the background and a domed structure on the left.  What do you suppose it is ?   Ladies and Gents toilets ?  Want to guess again ?


It's the entrance to a 1,300 foot walking tunnel under the Thames that was opened in 1843 !


Of course I had to follow it, not realizing that where I wanted to go was in the opposite direction.  So, once I reached the other end, I walked back ... wondering just a teeny bit about the ceiling leaks ...




Since I was in Greenwich I went for a lovely stroll through Royal Park and up the hill to the spot where the Eastern and Western hemispheres meet.



And once there, I stood with my feet straddling the time line.


Back to the other side of the Thames.  

Canary Wharf

How do you feel about driver-less trains ?


Would you believe I did all this and more in my first two full days in England !

Times to head to Exmouth.

4 comments:

  1. I've only been to London once, but I'd love to go again! I'm green, positively green, with envy about your trip!

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    1. Debra, I feel very connected to England and always enjoy being in London. It was an amazing experience. Hope you get to go back ...

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  2. someday I'd love to go with you. Your photos are beautiful Sybil! Thanks for the tour.

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  3. Sara, we'd have a blast. Have you been to England ? Where would you like to go first ? What sort of things would you like to do there ?

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