Drink up, Pal!

Conversations with my bartender…

Hey! Look who’s here! Let me pop the top off a cider for ya! We haven’t seen you since you got back from your London trip. How’d it go?

It was fine…we had a good time.

Only fine, huh? Didn’t get to see The Queen? No personal audience with Prince Charles?

Oh, you know I’d given up that little dream, but I thought at least I’d be able to go down to watch the Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace with Alice, but it seems we were there on what they call the Early May Bank Holiday and there was a marathon kind of running thing going on, so they blocked off not just Buck Palace, but the Parks surrounding it — both St. James and Green and the Mall was covered with barriers and such that stretched all the way around the city, blocking the Horse Guards, too. The Victory Statue in front of the Palace was covered with scaffolding and there was no parade. And Kensington Palace was closed, as well.

So didn’t you see anything else? I thought you were going to Windsor Castle?

We did, we did, but we only had 2 hours there and that was barely enough to run through the State Rooms and St. Andrews or whatever Chapel. The little town of Windsor looked so charming that I feel like we needed to spend at least four hours there, but I went cheap and that’s what I get. We rode the London Eye, visited The Tower of London and Westminster Abbey. Overall, we walked 24 miles in the 4 days we were there and we loved that.

Did you get to check out the Museums? You were pretty excited about going to The Tate Modern, weren’t you? And how about that Shakespeare place?

Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre was a joke! It was crunched in between buildings along the Queen’s Walk, so the pictures they use to entice you there must be taken with drones. There was a nice Lichtenstein gallery at the Tate, but the building is not as impressive as I expected. Really, I didn’t get to spend enough time there to judge and though we traipsed through the National Gallery heading toward their restaurant, we moved on very quickly.

Was there anything good about the trip?

Oh, yes, we had a great time, really. The weather was all you could ask for — no rain! Two of three pubs were great. I discovered a new Cider, Old Mout, that was delicious. The hotel where we stayed provided a steady supply of Magners Pear, which I cannot find in the US anywhere except Epcot. Some of the food was good. We love walking and all of the sights and we got a real kick out of using the underground.

Too bad you were disappointed.

I’m following coverage of the Queen’s Jubilee and now the streets are lined with Union Jacks, the Parades are daily…it’s more what I was thinking of…before I changed the reservation…which I might have to admit I regret…if it weren’t for the crazy crowds. But we feel really familiar with the city now, so Yeah, I think we’ll just have to go back, maybe next year…

Drink up, Pal…

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