London Town

Hi! Here I am back again from a few days away in London (+ a visit to my sister). London in the crisp autumn sunshine was… cold!
A couple of days rootling around in the National Archives and the Metroplitan Archives produced a few new scraps of research for the forthcoming book. Lunch with a friend, at Southwark Cathedral (I really recommend the restaurant there) was followed by a touristy saunter around the Golden Hind and down to Tower Bridge to have a mooch around the backstreets there (in search of ancestral ‘dwellings’ which, unless my forebears lived in a pub, were either flattened in WW2 or ‘tidied up’ thereafter). The smells have certainly changed since the mid-19th century, when the leather trade would have made this a place of nasty niffs and the only way to cross the river would have been by ferryboat (mind you don’t get taken to the Tower – Traitors’ Gate and all that!)
After a busy day connected with Tamba (Twins and Multiple Births Association) I fled to Suffolk for a lovely few days, returning to London yesterday, en route home. The plan was to take a bus to Westminster, eat a leisurely lunch at the Central Hall, wander up to St James’ Park and then wend my way to catch the SW coach from Hammersmith. All went
well until the bus I was on arrived at Fleet Street, then it all went pear-shaped. I was caught up in the student demonstration and found myself on a magical mystery tour of London.
Now, you can buy a tour of London on a special tour bus for a large sum of money – but I have to recommend the £1.20 ride I took yesterday. It went to places I had never ventured to before. The sun was shining, the bus driver was a relaxed lady with a warm personality, who took the conflicting advice over the radio with humour and charm. Any bad-tempered passengers jumped off as soon as they could no longer wait for the bus to move, so those who were left were, like me, of an adventurous spirit!
My Westminster lunch plans evaporated as we negotiated the south bank of the Thames. Nearly 2 hours after joining the bus queue I decided to jump off at Victoria and find lunch – a Cornish pasty, much enjoyed. Then another bus to Hammersmith and the coach home.
If I learnt any lesson at all it was that ‘going with the flow’ can be a very rewarding exercise. I now have a much better grasp of the streets of central London and would feel confident to negotiate myself around if I were ever slightly lost!
I might even consider learning ‘the knowledge’… no, that’s a step too far!

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About apthomas

I love books, reading, writing, baking, chocolate, painting, sewing, people and fairtrade - not necessarily in that order. I am a lazy gardener - who loves the garden, and a lazy housewife who likes the place to be warm and welcoming. I live in beautiful Somerset. I am enslaved by Sherpa-the-cat. Saturday mornings find me 'playing shop' in the Honey Pot - a second hand bookshop, run from my garage, where along with the books you'll find fun, friendship and refreshments - all in a good cause.
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One Response to London Town

  1. Susan in TX says:

    We heard about the student protests over here, but never dreamed anyone I “knew” in the blogging world might be affected by it. Glad you were able to go with the flow and enjoy the ride. I’m finding life to be much easier when I follow the same advice. 🙂

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