What an interesting weekend it has been. My father in London: a delightful and enlightening weekend it was, with my step mother and her mother (so my step grandmother) coming here for the first time, with myself charged with the task of being the tour guide…after this weekend, this could always be an alternative occupation!
Saturday, I decided that as the weather was nice that I would fulfill their desires to see various places along the Thames, with my stepmother wanting to do the Thames Walk that she had come across. As it became evident that she didn’t grasp how long the walk she was intending to make, I suggested taking the Thames Clipper along the river, all the way up to Greenwich. So we did just that.
The weather was glorious, and I believe that my father really enjoyed the journey up the Thames on the boat. Greenwich has never looked so nice to me, until that day. Beautiful blue skies, sun shining and the light cascaded well to show the true beauty of the former Navy Buildings, now occupied by Greenwich University. We discovered the “Painted Room” which has been used for filming on occasions, and more commonly used for functions such as weddings and the like. Indeed, the room is very imposing, and it is truly amazing at how the look for a palatial room has been achieved just with the creative hand of a paintbrush and paint. It is definitely worth seeing, but for those of you that can’t pictures have been posted here.
After the look around the grand room, we made a short walk to Greenwich Market, just a hop skip and a jump away from the Painted Room. My stepmother decided to buy Thai food from the market tucking into her bargain meal at £5. It turned out she got more than she bargained for in more ways that one! Needless to say, she enjoyed the food.
After the filling lunch, it was back to the river down to Tower Bridge. A walk along the north embankment, photos were taken of the Tower of London (and seems that my step mothers history had fallen away from her), and then views of Tower Bridge (probably one of the most picturesque bridges along the Thames, although it has recently transpired to me that mistakes have been made in China, labeling it London Bridge…so I am making a correction here for those that may come across my site). Then it was time to take a walk along Tower Bridge to the Southbank and then a slow walk. It was then decided, that we would take the boat once again to Waterloo, from where my step mother could take photos of Big Ben (“hello I was saying… I’m right here!”, but it turned out she actually wanted a photo of the Houses of Parliament and not me!)
After the photo shoot (of at least 30 minutes, and the memory card on her camera depleted), it was off to for dinner along the Thames. She settled upon one of the restaurants, its name escaping my memory at the moment. I definitely needed a drink, so settled for several Corona’s.
Once dinner was finished, it was off to the north of the River and a walk up to the Houses of Parliament, at which point masses of police vans whizzed past in the direction of East London, in particular Whitechapel and Mile End. Bus from there to the hotel, and that was Saturday done and dusted.
Sunday, was cultural day for them. So decided to take them by tube this time to The British Museum, which is situated between Tottenham Court Road and Holborn Underground Stations. Chinese ceramics being the must see for my stepmother and her mother, which was quite good and it gave me time to have a good chat with my father. We were both particularly impressed with the roof that has been built at the museum, its very imposing and truly does bring a vast amount of light into the central space surrounding the buildings to the various exhibits.
After a quick sandwich and coffee at Starbucks, it was tube time again off to South Kensington to the Victoria & Albert Museum (V&A for short). It is a lovely building, with a delightful central area to sit out by the fountain and have coffee and relax. So I did just that, whilst they trotted around the various exhibits they wanted to see. I have to admit I was rather impressed with the Japanese exhibits, and will be making another trip there myself soon.
Following from the V&A, we took bus 14 to China Town and had a truly scrumptious meal at Four Seasons. It’s a great restaurant and in my opinion does the best crispy duck (shared by others too). After getting stuffed to the houses, it was back to the hotel to say the good byes and wish them all the best for their next leg of their trip to Cambridge.