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Friday, 20 February 2015

Ten out of Ten

We had a great four days up near London, travelling in to town twice during our trip. 

The first trip was to Camden Market.  This is an extremely popular tourist destination, as witnessed by the wide variety of languages we heard whilst wandering round the stalls.  It is in fact so popular that the tube station is only open to people arriving at Camden for the day, opening at 5.30pm every evening to allow people to LEAVE Camden.  The queues as a result were miserable, so we caught a bus down to another station and had a fairly easy trip back.

The market itself was quite something.  I do remember it from you early years (twenties anyway) and many of the stalls probably have not changed much since then, being a mixture of one-off designers, stuff you would buy for Glastonbury, either to wear or smoke, leather goods and stuff that is what you would expect a steam punk to be wearing.  In addition, there was a lot of street food and even some stalls interesting to us.  We ate magnificently, and thoroughly enjoyed our wandering.

Our second visit in to town was to go to the Houses of Parliament.  We arrived at Victoria station, and decided to walk up to BuckPal, and were rewarded with a changing of the guard.  It was also packed, but we managed to get a pitch on a wall to observe some of what went on.

We then strolled on, through St James' Park, to tHoP.  A quick scan and a rub down by a very nice man, and we were in.  Once our guide introduced herself, and gave us an overview of the tour, we were off, starting where the Queen herself enters when attending the Opening of Parliament and other ceremonies.  In the royal section, the colour-coding is blue.  As we moved through to the Lords, the colour changes to red, and finally on to the Commons which is coloured green.  In between, we had an utterly absorbing commentary from our guide, giving us all the sorts of detail we love, and really bringing to life the place and its history. 

We were blown away by it all, hence the ten out of ten mark for the attraction.  I can only urge you to book a tour at some stage in your life, available only during recess of course, since it really was a most fantastic experience.

Once we had finished our tour, we strolled again, past the end of Downing Street and in to Trafalgar Square, where we found a pizzeria for lunch.  By the time we had eaten, and had a small* beer, we were good for nothing but getting home, which we did forthwith, for an evening of Canasta.

This weekend, I am doing chores and the usual Saturday things.  Nothing going on in the evening, so we will probably play some poker with the Maggots (they are becoming demon gamblers, even if they are still working on their poker faces - net result, a chap does tend to clean up) before some mind-numbing TV.

I hope you have a great weekend, and speak next week.

* well, maybe not so small

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