London Stories and Tips

London, Part 4

Spitalfields Market Photo, London, England

Sunday was another cold and windy day. We headed east to Spitalfields Market which wasn't quite what I expected. I thought it would be a big warehouse filled with stalls of old and new merchandise and food. It was all new stuff, crafts, clothes, food, and all very nice and interesting but it was situated between several office buildings and only covered over by a roof. It was still chilly because it was open to the streets but at least, out of the wind. We did find some really interesting things to buy.

I think if the weather had been nicer, we'd have also gone to nearby Petticoat Lane market which would have been more "flea" market style that we'd been expecting, with stalls lining Middlesex Lane but as it wouldn't have been an indoor market, we decided against it. We found a little takeaway with a few tables that specialized in hot soup. Ah just the thing! From there, another bus over to Holborn where we had thought we might be meeting up with some more London friends at a pub there called Shakespeare's Head.

In the end, we didn't manage to connect with our friends but sat in the large airy pub and had a nice meal later on in the afternoon. It's one of the Wetherspoon's chain and the menu has lots of variety and some very good prices.

Finally, the cold was giving us chills and we decided to head back to the hotel to get warm and have an early night.

Monday was our last day in London. We checked out and stashed our luggage in the morning after breakfast and headed to Oxford Street for a bit more shopping. We all managed to find something to buy and even though it was Easter Monday, the stores were still busy. I don't suppose Oxford Street is ever not busy! We were too footsore to walk around too far to find some place to eat so took a bus back to the hotel and had a nice large plate of fish and chips for a late lunch. I went to the bus station with Graham to see him off and came back to wait for our airport shuttle. Another near disaster to end the week, when Mom couldn't find her handbag! turns out she'd left it in the hotel lobby toilets but again, luckily, it was turned in at the concierge desk! Phew!

And because I didn't call to confirm the airport shuttle, it never showed up! See, the travel agent called us before we left to find out when we wanted picking up. I figured I didn't have to confirm if they'd already been told when. I was wrong. So remember that! Even if you book a pickup time, call to confirm! We had the concierge book us a private mini-van that took us right to the airport hotel that we were staying in tonight. Saved us an extra trip by the Heathrow Hotel Hoppa at least. We ate in the hotel and in the morning, after breakfast, took the Hoppa to the terminal.

All in all we had a really good trip. Mom was very impressed with London and could see why I like it so much. She loved the castle and cathedrals, loved the shopping and the sights and the theatre. She may not get back again but I know I will even if it's only overnight or shorter stays en route to other places.

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