Daily Archives: September 26, 2013

London

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When I arrived in London I had time to kill, ’cause I was meeting my friend Sarah after 5 pm. So I checked  my luggage into the “left luggage” section and went to Searcy’s Champagne bar and had one of the nicest sausage rolls I have ever had. Their bread and butter was also pretty damn good. A couple of glasses of Henri Giraud and life was good. The Portuguese waiter was lovely, it was really nice being able to understand what he was saying.

A friend at work had lent me her oyster card that had been topped up. It made life so easy. Such I nice thing to do for someone .I found my way to Croydon East with amazing amount of ease.

I stupidly rang Optus, as the bridge alliance deal they said they would provide did not work. I ended up a little distressed and in a bar called “the slug and the lettuce” where I waited for Sarah.

Today I , as you can imagine, had a bit of a hangover so I wasn’t really up to much. I wanted to go into the city and get my bearings. Another customer at the kiosk I bought my bottle of water from was highly amused by my accent. I was highly amused that he was speaking English but I could not understand a word he was saying. A very nice and handsome man made sure I knew where I was going when I got to Victoria Station. I should have asked him to come to the Victoria and Albert museum with me ;). Victoria Station is HUGE. Without his help I could possibly still be there. I am not sure if today was smile day, but a lot of men smile in London.

I went to the paid exhibitions at The V and A museum, one was one fashion and one was an adaption of a book about memory. It is a pity I couldn’t take photos as they were share worthy.I needed lunch so I got

A tasty lunch for 11 pound. which, if you don't convert it seems very cheap

A tasty lunch for 11 pound. which, if you don’t convert it seems very cheap

I went and visited the shop, which is SO good,a winner in the Gallery shop stakes so far. I ,of course, bought a few things ( i like getting cheap rings from gallery shops).

I felt like some fresh air , as it is very hot in the museum and I was still hungover. I will do the other floors before I leave.

I went for a walk around the city and bought a data sim card for my phone as Optus have really dropped the baton with my data plan. I walked around and got my bearings, bought a map, all that sort of daggy stuff. I am good at daggy!  When I was on the train back to Croydon there was an announcement that the train was going to split in two and go off in different directions. This freaked me out a little but a lovely lady across the way reassured me that it wouldn’t affect me and that sometimes they split in three. Crikey!

I’ve only been here for a day, so might change my opinion but so far the train system is very good. They are very well looked after trains too. My encounters with the public have been really nice, all very helpful and kind. In France to everyone I was American, here they recognise my accent.

There are no bins anywhere on the subway/railway stations, Sarah was telling me that they were taken away due to them being used as depositories for bombs by the I.R.A back in the 80s. I have really noticed that I must use bins a bit as I have missed them

English tv! great! like a walk down memory lane. So many channels . Currently watching The Professionals  which is fine by me as I think Bodey and Doyle are pretty good.

Tonight we went to the White bear pub in Warlingham it is a 16th century pub that is quaint and very traditional English. Low ceilings and mismatched decor and little alcoves everywhere. It was very nice to just be 15 minutes away from where you are staying and be at some old world English pub. Sadly I am still a bit of a suffering bear from yesterday so I am not much fun. There were some books on the window sills that were medical encyclopedias one volume was from rheumatic infections to syphilis HA there is some pre dinner reading for you!

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Au revoir Paris and watch out London.

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So it’s Au revoir Paris and watch out London!

All the exercise in Paris has been wonderful . I haven’t weighed myself but my jeans are loose. If I hadn’t drunk alcohol I could have lost more.  I got up early and went and got my last French made croissant.They are  super flakey early in the morning. 🙂  I did as much cleaning of the flat as I could. Having been a housemaid I know the delight of walking into a room that has been left tidy. David ,the apartment owner, who I would like to bring home with me, gave me a little box of chocolates. He does an outstanding job of making people enjoy their stay.  The world would be a better place with more people like him in it. I had taken all my coins down to the nice but sad beggar down the road that had not taken advantage of my lost and distressed state after the wine tour.  It was probably only about €5 in small coins. I thought she was going to cry. She doesn’t speak english so I couldn’t tell her how much I appreciated her being another navigational guide to me. ( when I saw her I knew my street was just up a little further.

Taxis in Paris turn their meter on when they accept the booking, mine must have accepted the booking in the 19th arrondissement as it was already up to €13..  It only cost a few more to get to Gard de Nord so I left happy. The road out the front of the station didn’t seem to have any defined pedestrian crossing. So it was like a game of british bull dog dragging 20+ kilo across a cobbled road.Customs and immigration are very relaxed. Percy clenched his cheeks needlessly.

I forgot to tell you about Australian wines in Paris,  the French say Australia does not make good wine and while my lovely brother in law may agree with that, I don’t. I was a little horrified to see the choices that were on offer! Basically either Yellow Tail or Gossips! Gossips sells for $3.90 at Dan Murphys, we saw it on a menu for €24.99 . That is $35 aud! When asked about this bottle of wine the waiter said that they no longer sell it. Hmm wonder why? In bottle shops the only Australian wine I saw was Yellow Tail for around €7.99. Do Australians even stoop so desperately low as to drink Yellow Tail? ( insert an apology to those that do ) It is the Fosters Lager of the wine industry in my opinion.
French supermarkets do not have as much variety as we do in Australia.  It is like they have a ban on imported items. Maybe they do I’ll have to google it.

I got out of Paris without stepping on any merde de chien, I only had to passively smoke about one pack cigarettes and only one bad beggar encounter.
I love Paris and I will definitely be back!

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Sorry about the blurry photo The Apartment I stayed in was attached to the building that was the old fonderie that made the gold coins for the Kings.

Here is a web page of the apartment .

Percy was quite happy with our solo seat in Premium standard. The ticket was bought so far in advance that it was cheaper than a normal ticket. The aim was to be in a child free zone. ( says she travelling with her teddy bear)

Percy was quite happy with our solo seat in Premium standard. The ticket was bought so far in advance that it was cheaper than a normal ticket. The aim was to be in a child free zone. ( says she travelling with her teddy bear)

Lunch was ok. The wine was very nice.

Lunch was ok. The wine was very nice.

the view out the window is as boring as the view down the Geelong Road.

the view out the window is as boring as the view down the Geelong Road.

they were very generous with the wine

they were very generous with the wine